The Party is Over.

As I have written, the End of the Party means releasing unreasonable expectations and assumptions about the nature and meaning of life. The End of the Party means a return to reality. The End of the Party is an opportunity to purge our lives of pernicious distractions and reconnect with ancient human truths. Again, this is essentially positive--although it will have its inconveniences. Up until a few days ago, I believed most of us were in the process of coming to grips with these resurgent facts of life.

An Important Aside: the End of the Party, however, should not be confused with the "End of the World." The End of the World is a much scarier scenario, although, unfortunately, altogether possible.

A Note on Terms: to be clear, the "End of the World" speaks to the reality that we are flirting with a titanic economic collapse. A complete financial meltdown so mammoth that the government and culture of the United States would cease to exist in a form recognizable to our generation.

What to do? We the people must change our ways, and, more importantly, we must demand that the government change the way it does business to avert the eventual economic cataclysm is this country.

Perversely, massive federal borrowing to avert a bank collapse seems logical to me. We know exactly what happens when the banks fail (the Panics of 1819, 1837, 1857, 1873, 1893, 1907, and 1929). Who knows what chaos such a financial calamity might wreak on our modern society? We cannot take that chance. Seven-hundred billion or three trillion dollars, restoring the financial sector in this country is a matter of national security; it is the proper role of government.

Having said that, the banking crisis and the recession are two different problems; they are connected but distinct. The difference? Most of us have lived through many recessions; few of us have lived through a bank panic. Fix the banks and heal the credit sector and the recession fixes itself naturally. However, there is a much bigger systemic liability: we are approaching a moment in which our collective ability to generate revenue can no longer support our extravagant national lifestyle.

What next? What must be done in Washington? Our government must work out a sustainable plan for the USA going forward. Understand our basic problem: we cannot be all things to all people. We can no longer believe that the key to economic success is spending every dime available and then some. We must face the unhappy reality that the Keynesian Interlude is finally over.

Although I dutifully voted for John McCain and divided government, for a brief moment during the transition, I allowed myself to believe in Barack Obama as the agent of necessary change. Why?

1. I am a person of hope.

2. As a nation, our other options were so dismal.

Barack Obama was uniquely qualified to bear bad news to an admiring nation. Only Nixon could go to China. Only Barack could explain our new reality to a nation in need of tough love.

Why was I hopeful that he would rise above partisanship and ideology to be a great American president? Because it was so necessary; our posterity depended on him doing just that. In my heart of hearts, no matter how illogical or un-biblical, I continue to trust in Providence as it concerns American government. I was optimistic about Barack Obama for the same reason I was optimistic about the "surge" in Iraq. Not because it was logical or likely--but because failure would be lethal. It just had to work.

Our economy today faces a crossroads that dwarfs Iraq in terms of importance. It is not an exaggeration to assert that our very survival as an independent nation is at stake. Would Barack Obama rise to the occasion? If he failed to grasp the urgency of the moment, we would be in dire straits.

The Bad News: the events of last week demonstrate clearly that he does NOT get it. Instead of folding our bad hand and leading us to a new epoch of real sustainability, the President has decided to double-down. If our pattern of spending, taxing, and borrowing regardless of sound economic principles and plain old good sense got us in to this mess, then more of the same will surely get us out.

What Now? I still support and respect this duly elected President of the United States. But it is now time to face facts. I am now painfully aware of how much I disagree with his governing philosophy. This President's political ideology is destructive, and we need to defeat his proposals.