The only thing we have to fear is, you know, the thing. Like Eleanor Roosevelt holding seances in the White House, President Joe Biden is trying to channel the spirit of former President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. A multi-trillion-dollar “once-in-a-generation investment in America,” a proposal to violate Americans’ civil liberties, and advising families to put the record player on – Biden is not trying to bring back the days of his ex-boss, former President Barack Obama. Rather, the 46th president is attempting to take the Oval Office back to a time when the nation was collectively singing Happy Days Are Here Again.
Here’s the (New) Deal
It is believed that the first 100 days of any administration will carve the path for the remaining 1,300-plus days. Whenever a president inherits a crisis, there is hope that the new occupant at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue will go big and do whatever it takes to resuscitate the carcass that is on life support. This was true in 1932, 1980, 2008, and perhaps 2020 – depending on your perspicacity and what motion picture of U.S. politics you are viewing.
When President Biden recently unveiled the details of his American Jobs Plan, an eight-year $2.3 trillion phase-one infrastructure spending plan, the talking heads immediately harkened back to the days of former Presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Lyndon Baines Johnson. The “largest American jobs investment since World War II,” says Biden, is something the United States “can’t afford not to” do. Like the billions of dollars that were allocated to the Public Works Administration to build dams and bridges, the current White House wants to spend hundreds of billions of dollars modernizing roads, subsidizing the electric vehicle industry, increasing the supply of child care, expanding broadband internet access, and so much more.
Reminiscent of FDR’s proposal of a second Bill of Rights – a right to the Four Freedoms of employment, health care, a home, and education – Biden is poised to announce the details of the second part of his post-pandemic vision that will cost another $2 trillion.
In American history, FDR has become synonymous with the New Deal. Can Biden cement his legacy with this astronomical spending under the guise of making America “the strongest, most resilient, innovative economy in the world”? Their presidencies might be decades apart, but they shared the same objective, coming into office – hit the Great Reset button – and utilized the same type of messaging. For FDR, it was about “human happiness and well-being.” Seventy years later, Biden is promising to “restore dignity for everyone.” Ninety years ago, FDR stated that “We Can. We Will. We Must.” Today, it is “build back better.”
Indeed, it also helped that both administrations enjoyed the bobbysoxer mentality with the mainstream press. Back then, journalists gushed over FDR’s so-called Brain Trust. Fast forward to the present, reporters are in awe of the diversity in the Oval Office, distracted by the incompetence, secrecy, and scandals situated within the Democratic-controlled corridor of power.
No matter what, the endgame is the same: Increasing the size of the Leviathan. Time has proven that these statist blitzkriegs leave behind a lasting legacy of “hampering the successful operation of the market economy and diminishing individual liberties,” as economist Robert Higgs describes it. Yes, in the age of the coronavirus, individual liberties are at stake, too.
COVID Passports the New Internment Camps?
Leftists tend to conceal FDR’s cruel act of sending more than 100,000 Japanese to internment camps. But this will forever be a permanent stain in U.S. history as it violated civil liberties on a grand scale. Fast forward to the present, and the government could be on the cusp of undermining freedoms once again.
The Biden administration and private companies are partnering to establish a standard for vaccine passports. There are already more than a dozen campaigns to introduce some type of “papers, please” verification system for vaccines and tests, such as the Vaccination Credential Initiative. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are also leading efforts to manufacture digital vaccination certificates.
New York recently became the first U.S. state to develop an “Excelsior Pass,” a mobile app to store and share digital records of testing and vaccinations to attend events, from concerts to ballgames. But how much longer until this becomes a national strategy to undermine your liberties in the name of Listen to the Science (TM)? Modern history has shown that too many people are willing to concede their constitutional rights. Consider the evolution of the response to COVID-19. “It’s only 15 days” became “it’s only a jab,” which is now morphing into “it’s only a passport.”
“A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves,” said Edward R. Murrow.
Joe Biden the Next Jimmy Carter?
Does Biden have aspirations to become the new FDR or LBJ? Despite his outlandish spending sprees, he might turn out to be the next Jimmy Carter. Until former President George W. Bush came into office, the consensus had been that Carter was the worst commander-in-chief in modern U.S. history. Soaring inflation, gasoline shortages, tepid economic growth, and loose monetary policy – these were the hallmarks of the Carter economy that many Americans would like to expunge from their memories. Bidenomics could wield similar results. But as the president recently said, “So the best way to get something done, if you, if you hold near and dear to you that you uh um like to be able to, anyway.”
Read more from Andrew Moran.