By Arthur Herman
Published January 03, 2013
The New Year has started with a monstrosity of a budget deal, one that proves that neither political party, Democrats or Republicans, is really serious about controlling the growth of big government.
But soap opera dramatics about fiscal “cliffs” and sequestration shouldn’t deflect from where President Obama is really taking this country. Consider this story from the Wall Street Journal a few days before Christmas:
“Thousands of people in several Argentine cities ransacked supermarkets for a second day in the latest challenge to President Chistina Kirchner, who is struggling to revive a weak economy…In the central city Rosario, two people were killed during the incidents and 137 people arrested.
“The violence puts Mrs. Kirchner in a difficult position as the poor are [her] core constituents…Her government spends billions of dollars a year to help low income families, including free health care…[Yet] Argentine activists who claim to represent the poor traditionally block access to supermarkets in the month of December to demand free food and other items…The latest events were some of the worst acts of looting and vandalism in years…. Local media showed dozens of men, women, and children hauling away televisions, refrigerators, and food.”
Some have said my warnings about a coming civil war between makers and takers are exaggerated. It’s true that Argentina’s politicians have been waging class warfare since Juan and Eva Peron–and they aren’t fazed when it turns bloody. Obama and the Democrats are relative newcomers to the game. But Argentina reveals who really suffers when those who create a nation’s wealth get mugged by those who spend it–as just happened this week in Washington.