Here are the Top 10 Losers of 2014…
10. The Yankees. They have spent nearly a half of billion dollars in the last two years and missed the playoffs both years – proving throwing money at problems doesn’t work.
9. Climate Change Mongers. The drought is ending in California and the cold temperatures are setting in. The Polar ice cap didn’t melt (it actually grew) and Al Gore is nowhere to be found. Now, that is political climate change we can appreciate.
8. Movies, Miley, and the Kardashians. The crass world of music, television and movies took a thumping in 2014. Lack of talent and poor judgment left the likes of Miley Cyrus exposed for who they really are – while the likes of Taylor Swift showed the world what talent matched with commitment can bring.
7. New York. Mr. De Blasio, I have met Rudy Giuliani. He’s a friend of law and order. You, Mr. De Blasio are not Rudy Giuliani – and New York is going to pay for it. (I wrote this prior to the shooting death of those police officers. I hesitated to publish it but it remains the truth).
6. Hillary. She ran around the country campaigning and all she got to show for it was losses among her friends, half empty halls and an Elizabeth Warren headache. Hillary is still the frontrunner but the pixie dust just ain’t working like it used to do.
5. Vladimir Putin. For awhile there, Comrade Putin had approval ratings as high as 80%. Thos ratings were a product of (a) his steam rolling of the EU and Obama, (b) the Russian military running over Crimea, and (c) state propaganda that blamed the US for Russian troubles. Now, however, the sharp stick in the eye of falling oil prices has the Russian bear economically trembling with Saudi Arabia piling on and pushing oil prices even lower. Let’s see how long before Putin dares to walk around without a shirt again.
4. House & Senate Democrats. The 2008 elections produced 257 House Democrats and 58 Senate Democrats. In 2014, there are but 46 Senate Democrats and 188 House Democrats. 69 Obama Democrats in the House and 12 in the Senate have found their way to unemployment and low labor force participation – the same effect their policies are having on the country.
3. Obama. Voters repudiated his policies – plain and simple. Sadly, he really doesn’t care. So who really lost?
2. Separation of Powers. Our Founders did not want divided law making. They wanted laws to be passed based on consensus – a moderating and patient process. By allowing for divided government, i.e. separation of powers, they knew it would slow the pace of government and force the Congress and the Executive to work together. Even so, they allowed too much leeway when it came to the Executive – in part because they thought Washington would be such a strong role model. Allowing such leeway was a mistake as Obama is proving. 2014 was a bad year for our system of government. It was the culmination of this go-it-alone presidency. Once abused, it is hard to imagine future presidents being able to put that bad genie back into the bottle.
1. Christians Worldwide. The rise of ISIS and the fall in the character of the West are not unrelated. Christianity consoled the Western World during the Dark Ages, gave it an agrarian ethic that was the foundation of its ascendancy and whose charity gives meaning to an often blind industrial world. The unmet atrocities occurring to Christians in the Middle East and around the World are a scar on the soul of the West.
The Top 10 Winners of 2014 are…
10. Madison Bumgarner & the Giants. Sometimes being good (not flashy) is rewarded.
9. Hillary. Didn’t I say she was a loser? She also won because the demotion of Harry Reid and the far Left lurch of Obama means that Hillary doesn’t have to defend them going into 2016.
8. Taylor Swift. She dominated the music world and pop culture – keeping her clothes on all the while. There may yet be hope.
7. Money in Politics. If you spend, you can win. $300 million was spent in Iowa, North Carolina and Georgia. Money had its say in 2014 and 2016 has already started.
6. Obama. The elections are over. He never has to be responsive to voters again. Obama is now free to say, think and do almost anything he wants – the country, consensus and the Constitution be dammed.
5. Saudi Arabia. Sure they still oppress their people and women in particular – but in 2014 they proved they have geo-political muscle and started waking up to the dangers of radical Islam. Better late than never.
4. Governor Scott Walker. His policies have turned around a broken state and beat the public employee unions in three knock-down drag-out elections in 4 years. As he will ask you, “When did it become courageous to keep your word?” For once we have an answer.
3. Stockholders. Obama’s policy of distorting the stock market by using the Federal Reserve to “print money” has mostly benefitted Wall Street not Main Street. How long that effect will last remains to be seen. For now, however, if you own stock, you still have your sugar high.
2. Consumers. For decades, world governments, including our own, have artificially driven up the price of oil and gas for their political purposes. In 2014, the free market and fracking, led by America, reasserted itself with a helping hand from the Saudis bent on hurting Iran and Russia – not to mention wanting to hold on to their market share. Those lower prices were a welcome Christmas gift to most of America.
1. Senate & House Republicans. The low turnout election of 2014 meant they were handed a political gift even though they didn’t run on a specific reform agenda. Nevertheless, they racked up historic margins in the House and the Senate. They will wind up in the Losers column in 2015 if they don’t figure out something productive to do with those margins.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and onto 2015!
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Del Beccaro is the is the former chairman of the California Republican Party, publisher of PoliticalVanguard.com, author of The New Conservative Paradigm and frequent contributor to several nationally known publications. This article appears at Political Vanguard.