Die Welt, Germany
America Should Stay Conservative
By Leon de Winter
Translated By Ron Argentati
14 November 2012
Edited by Gillian Palmer
Germany - Die Welt - Original Article (German)
A rebuttal to Europe's Obama enthusiasm: Obama is leading the U.S. down a hopeless path. Under his leadership, America will remain a disjointed nation and will risk losing its traditional qualities.
When I kicked off my America Project in February, I told the editors at Die Welt I intended to take an in-depth look at the deep social divides in America.
I began my interviews with pessimism. My travels through America revealed just how much of the rural American landscape was already in decay.
The Dead South Will Become Spanish Again
I visited a town in Texas where half the shops on Main Street were boarded up and ivy grew inside empty factory buildings. It all gave the impression of a ghost town reeking of decay. I hardly saw any people on the streets; those I did see were old and poorly dressed.
The hotel I landed at still had an aura of earlier elegance but had become rundown and shop-worn. My family and I were the hotel's only guests and we cursed the minute we had decided to spend the night in this place.
In contrast, there are Texas cities like Austin and San Antonio that veritably radiate self-confidence. Elsewhere, I saw many signs of the changes currently taking place: small businesses were disappearing and more and more people from Central and South America were coming into the country.
It will only be a matter of a few decades before the Southwest reverts to a Native American and Hispanic culture.
Obama's True Character Is Ultra-Liberal
But that doesn't explain everything that's happening in America. The nation not only has several strong ethnic identities — the white Anglo-Saxon Protestants are losing power — but it now has, in essence, two souls.
The people I talked to had differing opinions about that, but they were all united in impatiently looking forward to Election Day. And the closer it came, the more I was infected by the Romney campaign's enthusiasm.
In my opinion, Barack Obama has led America down a hopeless path. There hasn't been enough economic growth to bring down the unemployment rate. The Middle East and North Africa are in chaos. Billions of dollars are being spent on aid programs that primarily benefit Obama supporters.
I'm convinced that Obama's policies will turn further toward the far left and away from traditional American qualities because Obama himself rejects these qualities. The only reason he has thus far been unsuccessful in completely implementing his policies is thanks to the institutions created by the founding fathers. They limit Obama's power. But over the next four years he will show his true colors as a politician of the far left.
Romney's Defense against a Hate Campaign
Obama's campaign was directed against Mitt Romney personally, in an attempt to tear him apart. He accused Romney of being a misogynist and an out-of-touch rich guy. Obama's campaign spent millions of dollars to cram those views down the collective throats of the American people. It was apparently an effective strategy.
Romney is neither of these, but if you repeat the accusations often enough there will always be some people who begin to believe them.
That a political opponent's campaign organization is permitted without cause or the least bit of justification to attach such labels to his opponent is troublesome. But that's what the Obama team did and Romney was forced to spend a lot of time denying the allegations.
In the first televised debate, Romney was able on his own to prove to the American people that he was a modern, liberal politician, but in retrospect one must concede that some of the mud slung at him by the Democrats, six months before the election even took place, had stuck to him.
Women and young voters, convinced by Obama's campaign that a religious zealot like Romney would ban abortion and restrict contraception, voted predominantly for Obama.
A major portion of the American electorate allowed itself to be manipulated by the crudest of tactics. To invent flaws for an opponent and throw them carelessly about is apparently a legitimate tactic of American liberals if the goal is to gain and retain governmental power.
Individual Liberty Is History
Today's America consists of two different people divided into the religious and non-religious and further differentiated by their manner of speech, their geography, the way they dress and what they like to eat. In short, by everything. The Union is preserved by the Constitution and adherence to it is assured by the Supreme Court. Several seats will become vacant in that court in the next few years due to retirements.
Obama will then have a chance to appoint more progressive justices, thereby further chiseling away at the glue that holds a fragmenting America together.
Meanwhile, the disparity between the individual states and their respective populations has increased due to the less than optimal conditions found around the turn of the century. There's a danger of real conflict. One way to prevent that conflict would be European-style governmental power whereby the 50 semi-autonomous states would be transformed into one big welfare state.
That would at a minimum spell the end of liberty and personal responsibility and hollow out the intent of the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution. There would be a threat of the rise of something akin to the European Union — a continent of restricted movement nourished by high taxes paying for gigantic social programs that would doom its own successes.
America Should Remain Conservative
America under Obama will remain a divided nation over the coming four years. Obama has the opportunity to move America even further to the left, where it doesn't belong. The individual states should retain their own characteristics. But that doesn't square with Obama's desires — nor, apparently, with the desires of many of America's citizens.
So is this the end of America as we know it? Over the coming months, I'll keep looking for the answers to that question. The bottom line is that the fate of the world depends on the extraordinary qualities of this American union.
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