In Sarah McLachlan's wonderful, double-platinum 2003 album Afterglow, she has a song called "World on Fire". It is a paean to left wing ideology, with one really standout line:
"The fortunes of one man means less for some"
This is the melodious summation of the democratic argument for reelection in 2012. It is most often illustrated with the pie analogy the left uses ad nauseum about eeevil rich guys taking huge pieces of the economic pie and only leaving thin little slivers for the rest of the proletariat to squabble over. (by the way, how much is Ms. McLachlan worth again? More than her sound tech, I bet)
When most world history has dictated that those in power allocate resources, it tends to be an acceptable world view. In order to to rationalize the deprivation and need that system imposes due to its participants' inevitable gluttonous greed, the theory develops that there just aren't enough resources to give to everyone. It makes a certain amount of sense.
But here in America, we have a different mentality. Or at least, we used to. In America, each and every one of us has the freedom to go out there and...well, make pies of our own. It's not for us to wait for government to hand out the piddling little slice they deem worthy. All government can do here is try to limit the size of your pie by, say, demanding the addition of an ingredient that doesn't exist yet or by burdening you with so many taxes that it's just not worth it to try to make a big pie. Instead you make a smaller one or use cheaper ingredients or, maybe, have fewer assistants in the shop.
The problem is, the Baker-in-Chief loves pie, and simply cannot resist dipping his fingers into as many as he can, effectively cornering the pastry market by forcing bakers to give more than half of their wares to him. The cronies and donors get first crack at the best ingredients now and when they burn their pies, he's always there with a fresh one for them, courtesy of the neighborhood housewives.
I find it quite fitting that a symbol of America is apple pie. Here in America, we don't squabble over crumbs, we make our own damn pie, thankyouverymuch.
Or at least, we used to. At one time, Susie Jones cooling a prize-winning deep dish caramel apple streusel on her windowsill would have inspired Betsy Smith to make her own mouth-watering creation. Nowadays, Betsy would call the town council and have Susie's pie removed, citing scent allergies, an aversion to the overt oppression of the patriotic reference to which apple pies allude and a feeling of social injustice and victimization because her oven did not spontaneously produce a pie when she demanded one. After rigorous investigation on the local, state and federal levels, Susie and her family are finally left alone to enjoy the forty-seven percent of the pie they are generously allowed to keep (the other fifty-three percent being redistributed to Betsy and other, hopefully more worthy, recipients) and the oven industry has strict new standards for mandatory spontaneous pie manifestation technology within the next decade. Naturally, a stiff penalty will be incurred if said technology is not implemented within the allotted time.
The biggest problem seems to be that it's not just a matter of fighting over crumbs anymore. More than half of us are telling our government that it's okay to go ahead and help themselves an enormous chunk of someone else's pie so we don't have to be bothered taking the risk of jumping the flaming hoops required for making our own. We've gone from "I want what you have so I'm going to go out and get it for myself" to "I want what you have so I'm going to take yours". It's a violation along the lines of what happened to that poor, innocent apple pie in the 1999 movie "American Pie". It is a defiling of our system, and the inevitable outcome will be stagnation and riots a la Paris and Athens. When only one pie is allowed, deprivation is sure to follow.
Which brings us to Mitt Romney. He understands that every man is his own baker, and should be able to make whatever size - and flavor - pie he (lawfully) chooses. He knows that there should be a few rules about baking, such as banning endangered animal meat pies, or using quality ingredients in a clean, safe environment so the consumer and the baker aren't injured. Such common sense rules and regulations are part and parcel of a well-run workplace. But government intrusion into every aspect of the baking process is not.
We really need to get Chef Obama and his inexperienced sous staff out of the kitchen and let the real drivers of the economy - the neighborhood bakers like you and me - get to work. Here's a hint, Chef - the ingredients you were left with aren't the problem, it's the recipe you insist on following. That particular souffle will fall every time, as it has in countless state-run kitchens across the globe.
It's time for government to get out of the kitchen and let the bakers bake again.