But for those who need the grand explanation, the sweeping conclusions drawn from limited data, the themes that allow us to boil elections down to slogans, I humbly submit the following. The 2010 midterm elections were a mandate for the new GOP sorta-but-not-really majority in Washington. The American voter has clearly demanded:
1. Social Security reform that guarantees my current level of benefits, alters someone else's, and cuts everyone's Social Security taxes to boot.
2. A world-class national infrastructure that can be built and maintained without tax dollars.
3. A balanced budget that doesn't sacrifice any of the government programs – especially the sacred military-industrial complex and the various old age benefits – that we like.
4. Clean air without pollution controls, clean water with a neutered and underfunded EPA, and businesses that do socially responsible things without any regulation whatsoever.
5. Consumer goods at Made in China prices that create high-paying jobs in America.
6. Giant trucks and SUVs that drive like Formula One race cars, look cool, fit into small parking spaces, cost under $18,000, and get the fuel economy of a Toyota Prius.
7. Complete freedom and complete security at the same time.
8. An America that acts like a swaggering, sociopathic asshole on the global stage yet is beloved by all the nations of the world.
9. Wars against every enemy, real or imagined, all of the time, with no U.S. casualties and no effect on the budget.
10. Incredibly rich and rewarding professional lives while supporting our employers' right to do whatever they want to us without recourse.
11. A vibrant, consumption-based U.S. economy with good jobs for anyone willing to look for one resulting from free trade policies that encourage money and capital flows to cheap labor markets.
12. A highly educated workforce produced by a school system that requires no tax dollars to achieve excellence, students who have no interest in learning, and a virulently anti-intellectual society.
13. Closed borders and an endless supply of cheap labor to keep prices low.
14. To buy whatever we want irrespective of what we can afford while maintaining the drumbeat of personal responsibility.
15. Health care that is cheap, superior, and readily available to me without the danger of the same being enjoyed by anyone I deem undeserving.
It couldn't be any clearer: we want a government that will resolve every problem we currently face with solutions that require no effort, no sacrifices, and no money. And I have no doubt that we have elected a group of people brave enough to promise exactly that.
It's the Free Lunch that Ronald Reagan promised us long ago. We're still waiting. But if we double-down and just try harder THIS time, it will work... honest.