The most recent Rasmussen survey released on May 9 reported that only 27% of all Americans believe that the country is headed in the right direction. This is the reason that both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are doing so well in their respective races. Conservative voters who believe in traditional American values are obviously unhappy with the progressive agenda being implemented by the Democrats. They backed Donald Trump because they felt that the Republican establishment is not doing much of anything to block the progressive agenda. At the opposite end of the political spectrum, “Bernie” Bernard Sanders ’ supporters feel that the establishment Democrats aren’t doing enough to enact progressive programs that promise them the lifestyle they’ve been told they deserve as their birthright.
In fact, both sides are correct. Traditional minded Americans are justifiably concerned with this Administration’s policies. Establishment Republicans have come close to stemming the progressive agenda. Neither winning the House in 2010, nor winning the Senate in 2012 has resulted in the progress of anti-progressive measures. Obama Care is still alive and well and stifling the economy. Government agencies are still heaping more and more rules and regulations on businesses further slowing any economic recovery. Immigration laws are still not enforced. Government has grown even bigger and more powerful as government agencies ignore the will of Congress. The IRS has targeted conservative groups with immunity. The State Department has not cooperated with Congress on issue after issue. Government officials from the President on down have deliberately lied to the American people about everything from health care to Benghazi with impunity. Our national Debt is rapidly approaching $20 trillion dollars and our foreign policy has been a disaster. America is less and less safe. Traditional voters are right when they believe we are headed in the wrong direction. That is why so many are willing to gamble that Trump will do something to change the status quo.
On the progressive side, Sanders’ supporters are also unhappy with their establishment leadership. In spite of the expansion of welfare, health care, food stamps and a myriad of other progressive programs, many of these voters feel that those in power have not done enough to improve their standard of living. In that they are correct even if they are mistaken as to why this is. College graduates with worthless liberal arts degrees and a mountain of debt, as well as high school dropouts working minimum wage jobs, aren’t living the lifestyle they’ve been told they deserve just for being born. The fact that the progressive utopia they’ve been promised is unachievable hasn’t been acknowledged by them. They are basically in a state of denial that it is the progressive policies that are killing the American Dream.
So what does this voter rebellion mean for the future of our country? In an 1864 address Abraham Lincoln said, “Property is the fruit of labor; property is desirable; is a positive good in the world. That some should be rich shows that others may become rich, and hence, is just encouragement to industry and enterprise.” In 1942 William J. H. Boetcker, released a pamphlet titled Lincoln On Limitations, included this quote and added 10 statements written by himself. These famous 10 Cannots are more obviously true today than they were 74 years ago.
- You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
- You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
- You cannot help little men by tearing down big men.
- You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
- You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.
- You cannot establish sound security on borrowed money.
- You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
- You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn.
- You cannot build character and courage by destroying men’s initiative and independence.
- You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they can and should do for themselves.
Those ten cannots explain why America is headed in the wrong direction and are the reasons Trump and Sanders are able to challenge the political establishment that has endangered our country by their policies or their unwillingness to challenge those policies. Traditional voters are hoping Trump can restore sanity in a government that no longer serves the best interests of the nation. Progressive voters, who don’t understand why their lives aren’t what they were promised, are hoping that the progressive agendas of Sanders and Clinton will somehow make things better, because even they understand things are getting worse. If our nation weren’t in a very bad way, neither of these rebellions would be happening.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com