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And as they did in 1976, Democrats now show every sign of repeating the blunders that led to a generation-long discrediting of liberalism. As the phrase goes, they have learned nothing in the intervening years, and they have forgotten nothing. And they will soon face a barrage of issues that they have neither the will nor competence to understand. Liberal triumph in 1976 led inexorably to evisceration in 1980. The same trajectory is likely to recur in the Obama years.

In 1976, liberals were wrong on multiple counts, and all the signs point to them repeating the same mistakes. Even if Obama plays Mr. Moderate, the congressional party contains more than enough take-no-prisoners far leftists to torpedo any chance of bipartisanship or restraint. Specifically, liberals believe that the public will support radical change in three highly sensitive areas, and in each area they will overreach to the point of self-destruction. In domestic affairs, they believe the culture wars are over and that revolutionary social changes like gay marriage can now advance unchecked. They think that popular concern over environmental problems will translate into a blank check for limitless government spending and the decisive transfer of U.S. sovereignty to international agencies. And liberals are now sure that all that foolishness with international dangers and crises is firmly behind us so that we no longer need the military or intelligence capabilities developed to respond to them. As the coming three or four years will show, they are dreadfully wrong on all counts.

It will be an interesting four years. If we can avoid economic collapse due to insane energy and environmental programs and serious attacks due to the bad guys not taking the O-man seriously, it might even be fun.

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