Can our reelected president and his party, the democrats, lead our nation to renewed prosperity and continued safety and well being for its citizens? They made some headway against a brutal economic recession generated during the Bush administration, but they accomplished far less than President Obama promised during his 2008 campaign. The respite from the recession has come at the cost of a staggering annual budget deficit that threatens worse problems than the 2009 recession in the near future. I see little hope the party in power will lead us out of these near-term economic troubles, and as they struggle with them they are neglecting some longer-term problems that threaten our security and wellbeing. Romney and the republicans might have done a little better on the deficit, but they too are focused on the short-term economy to the exclusion of other important matters. Thinking about these things reminds me of a promise from the Lord to the people of The Book of Mormon “inasmuch as ye shall keep the commandments of God ye shall prosper in the land.” (Alma 36:1) Both candidates and both parties fail this test to obtain God’s blessings of prosperity.
Republicans fall short in helping the poor among us—particularly the poor who have entered our country as economic refugees, and too few of them recognize our obligation to be good stewards of the earth. The Democratic Party has sold its soul to those who look with contempt on the idea of any commandments from God. In addition neither party has fully grasped the economic and scientific reality that the present American economy cannot continue to grow and prosper in a finite, tightly-connected world where we are a small minority of the total human population. This is spelled out clearly in Jeffrey D. Sachs’ book “Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet” that I am reading. We need an economy that respects the limits of what we can extract from the earth and what we can dump into it, not more of the same profligate economy our political leaders are trying unsuccessfully to perpetuate.