If President Obama's method of governance could be summed up in one, concise sentence, it would be Rahm "The Godfather" Emmanuel's oft-quoted adage: "Never let a crisis go to waste." These days, conservatives would be wise to heed those words, as well.
Why? Why should conservatives be listening to Rahm Emmanuel? Because of another oft-quoted saying: "Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely." Put these two sayings together, and you pretty much sum up the legacy President Obama is poised to leave. This presents a unique opportunity for advocates of small government.
One more hallmark of the Obama presidency has been one of the longest-running presidential campaigns in the history of the world - since 2008, President Obama has not stopped campaigning, and even after he won re-election he continued his campaign, just pausing long enough to re-name "Obama for America" to "Organizing for America."
But lately, the president's ongoing campaign hasn't been in very good shape. It started with his recent legislative loss on gun control, which failed in the Senate not because of some vast right-wing conspiracy in the form of the NRA's evil gun lobby, but because too many Democratic senators understand that overreaching federal gun control is extremely unpopular among the American people.
Today, nearly every news story about the White House in the mainstream media centers around the numerous scandals the Executive Branch continues to try to cover up or scapegoat. Each and every one of these scandals centers around how the Obama administration has abused its power. Each and every one of these scandals provides very clear insight into why President Obama's vision of an overarching, all-powerful Nanny state is a horrible idea, in practice if not in theory.
Regardless of whether or not President Obama was directly involved the numerous scandals plaguing his administration (his foremost skill seems to be plausible deniability), it is without question that the president, at the very least, created a culture in the Executive Branch that was ripe for exactly the kinds of abuses of power that everyone in the Executive Branch is now trying to blame on someone else. The entire Obama administration is built on two moral imperatives: punish Obama's enemies, and when the s*** hits the fan, blame someone else.
By all appearances, the admnistration has found its scapegoat for the IRS scandal: when Lois Lerner improperly invoked the 5th Amendment, refusing to answer questions from a Congressional commttee, she painted a huge target on her forehead. She has now been placed on paid administrative leave - hardly a punishment, but just enough of a punishment for the Obama administration to lay the blame for much, if not all of the scandal on her shoulders.
So what should conservatives do in light of the ongoing difficulties faced by the Obama administration? President Obama has been one of the nation's most vocal supporters of big government; now we see that he, along with many of the public "servants" under him, are drunk on power and are all-too-willing to abuse that power for as long as they can get away with it.
The IRS scandal presents a solid case for radical reformation of the tax code. It is bad enough that the Internal Revenue Service weilds power that could very well effect our elections process in adverse ways, but moving forward, that same IRS is poised to weild even more power over the American people, as they become the primary enforcers of the Obamacare insurance mandate. If the tax collectors hold this much power now, and are poised to inherit even more power from one of the worst peices of legislation in all of human history, then now is the time to strip out the complexity of the tax code and implement a flat tax. The time for this push has never been more ripe. We can see, in blatant terms, how destructive the power of the tax collectors can be. We must
strip the IRS of that power, and the only way to do so is by drastically simplifying the tax code.
These other scandals, at the least, make clear the importance of Separation of Powers, as well as why it is dangerous for any one political party to have too much power in the United States. The Democrats cannot be trusted to run our nation honestly. Given the same powers, it would be inevitable for Republicans to fall into a similar trap. We can never have too much accountability in our government; we should, at the least, be able to keep our government accountable enough that they aren't able to pull off a gunrunning scheme (much less two), and then cover up both, as well as the reasons behind the tragic deaths of a U.S. ambassador and 3 other Americans. How amazing is it that now, nine months after September's events in Benghazi, we still do not know what President Obama was doing while Americans were dying in Libya?
No other presidential administration in American history has done as much to make the case for small government as the Obama administration has. Even while President Obama stood before graduates at The Ohio State University and told them to ignore voices warning of government tyranny, his administration was engaging in tyrannical behavior. In point of fact, all that is happening now is that the Obama administration's abuses of power are finally in the national spotlight...but the administration and the Democratic Party have been involved in numerous overreaching actions from the very beginning.
Conservatives across America should be glad: President Obama is making our case for us. Now it is time for conservatives to take advantage of the lessons Obama is teaching, and take action now to shrink the size of government and bring the executive branch to heel.