Actually, it's not just visions related to America, but visions related to the global economy and all nations involved, many of them struggling with debt and economic stagnation or decline. I wrote earlier this morning about a couple of the Sunday talk shows which discussed austerity and government stimulus and debt and other current issues presently debated by the Right and Left. The debate is different in Europe because there really is no rightwing like there is in America -- in Europe it seems to go from socialists to social democrats to centrist-types to, now, nazis in Greece. Liberal biased media will surely associate the nazis in Greece with America's rightwing, but you know how dramatic the Left-wing media has become -- drama queens, all of them, especially when it comes to America's Rightwing.
I'm confused about Left and Right in America, because when the Left is confronted with failed or failing Letist policies, they claim to be centrists, and the Right in America is made up of either redneck/racist/extremists, or conservatives who want to limit government, or centrists who want to compromise and gradually bring about fiscal sanity, or neo-conservatives who want to kick international ass, or whatever the pundits say at the moment. What's becoming clear is that there are two directions proposed, and whether or not each side is serious about their proposal, they are proposing the directions, and we'll go in one, willfully and cheerfully or not.
Democrats, for the most part, are calling for government spending and higher taxes with plans to deal with the debt at a later date when the economy recovers. Republicans, for the most part, are calling for tax reform, lower tax rates and reduction in spending so that we move toward a balanced budget.
Democrats claim their approach promotes growth, while the GOP claims the same thing. Dems claim that growth will happen when government takes money from the welathy and invests that money in infrastructure and state services to hire more teachers, firemen, police, etc (it's the etc I'm worried about).
The GOP says that if we stop government interventions in the economy and lower tax rates for businesses, this will create confidence in the business community and investors will invest, thus creating more sustainable jobs that are productive.
Dems say that regulation is vital to ameliorate the unfair results from businesses acting selfishly without government oversight and control, and that government will not be limited in this regard, so another answer is called for in this stagnant economic environment -- they say government has to step in where the private sector has failed. Dems also say that lowering taxes will only benefit the wealthy and that they, the Dems, will fight for higher taxes on the rich.
Dems might win a majority in 2012, and they might go forward with their tax and spend policies, but at some point they'll realize that American companies need incentives and certainty in order to invest, unless Dems work out arrangements with the largest corporations for protection if they hire and invest in growth that is generated from government-approved industries like alternative energy and transportation. What will happen then is what always happens --capital misdirected and bubbles created, backed by nothing but government wishes, shaky cronyistic arrangements and schemes.
This time, though, we'll be in deeper debt, and the world will become doubly concerned about our ability to develope strong economic fundamentals, and the dollar will become threatened. If interest rates are forced higher and the debt, coupled with the higher interest rates, becomes a greater burden, and, if unemployment remains structurally high, and, if the rest of the world begins to distrust America's economic direction, we'll face collapse. At this point the painfully obvious will be that we have to allow American enterprise to operate freely without huge tax and regulatory burdens. We'll be forced to make drastic changes, and this huge shift will disrupt the market. Scepticism from foreign onlookers will increase. America will be forced to fully implement State Capitalism with centralized government management or allow a free market. Those concerned with economic reality will propose a free market, while those concerned with political power, base support and statist control will propose full centralized, economic management.
2012 is the year we set the foundation for which direction we choose. Full State management and control can take two forms -- the totalitarian-type form or the authoritarian/fascist-type form, but it will take this type of domination to force whatever plans government officials develope. The free market approach would be an environment in which producers and consumers interact to allow an organic process to develope -- peaceful, free trade. There's no guarantee that a free market will produce sunshine, lollipops and a hitch-free get-along, but, I, for one, will promise that Americans will appreciate a free market much more than they will the State managed alternatives. Statism or anti-Statism -- two visions, and one must be chosen. Choose carefully, because if you choose Statism, it might one of the last significant free choices you make.
Suggested reading -- Ralph Raico, Thomas E. Woods, Tibor Machan (for starters). For serious reading, accomplish something important and read Ludwig von Mises. Even if you don't agree, you'll never just accept the modern liberal narrative without serious questions bugging the hell out of you.