According to the Business & Media Institute, Sen. Jim DeMint told The Heritage Foundation that President Obama will "create crisis and widespread panic," as his predecessor did, to force through his proposed stimulus package.
Put aside for a moment the debate over the potential effectiveness of an almost trillion-dollar economic stimulus.
DeMint needs to understand something: There is a crisis and if nothing changes soon widespread panic will follow.
South Carolina's unemployment rate is at a 25-year high and expected to rise. Nationally, more than 70,000 layoffs were announced in a single day earlier this week.
It would be easy to list more dire numbers but that would be too scary. Anyone who has been paying attention knows these aren't the best of times.
But these are the times that try men's ideologies.
Over the next few months we will get a clear view of those who are more concerned with political ideology than getting us through this downturn. I'm hoping DeMint and everyone else we've sent to Washington and Columbia won't be in that group.
I'm hoping his opposition is based on a belief that we are heading the wrong way. I'm hoping it's because he's upset that legislators are shoving pet projects into a bill designed to stimulate the economy.
I'm hoping he's simply trying to make the bill better and with more accountability than the $700 billion bill passed last year.
If that's his motivation, I'm with him.
But I find it hard to understand why anyone in Washington would claim certainty when so few of them saw what was coming. And given that they all missed it – Democrats and Republicans – how can any of them say they are certain they know precisely how to pull us through?
Reality has been turned on its ear. The law of supply and demand is supposed to dictate prices, yet we were paying almost $4 per gallon of unleaded gas despite a major drop in demand and an increase in supply.
Economic gurus such as Alan Greenspan didn't recognize the real estate bubble soon enough. MBAs and bank CEOs got sucked into the derivatives house of cards. And the S.C. General Assembly held so steadfast to the belief that tax cuts are always good and increases bad that they worsened the state's budget problems. Tax cuts caused about two-thirds of the revenue shortfall.
The last thing we need is more rhetoric and ideology. We've been feasting on such things for years. Look where that's gotten us.