As a dog returns to its vomit

There is a pattern in recent American history:

  1. A big problem exists.
  2. The conventional wisdom says it’s hopeless; all we can do is live with it.
  3. Republicans propose a plan to fix the problem.
  4. Democrats mock the plan. “It won’t work. Nothing will.”
  5. Republicans enact the plan. It works.
  6. Democrats and the media say that the improvement — which they previously said was impossible — was actually inevitable, and had nothing to do the Republican plan.

This has happened over and over during my lifetime: Inflation. The Cold War. Crime. Energy.

We defeated inflation by controlling the growth of the money supply. We won the Cold War using a variety of tactics, most prominently a military buildup that the Soviets could not match. We defeated crime using broken windows policing and by analyzing data. We became energy independent by developing domestic energy sources.

And in every case, Democrats and the media deny that our success had anything to do with what we did to bring about that success.

Now we’re seeing the bitter epilogue, as all those crises that we defeated in the past are returning. Inflation is back. China and even Russia are aggressive and we are in retreat. Crime is surging. And our shining moment of energy independence is over.

It’s not too late. Most of these trends can be reversed by returning to sound, proven policy. It will probably take a decade to repair the damage we have done to our police, and China will be a struggle of at least a generation. But we know how to do these things now.

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