Did Barney Frank Contribute a New Word to the Political Lexicon? Did He Say “Changeinism”?

A new word for our political dictionary?

A new word for our political dictionary?

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On Monday of this week, Rep. Barney Frank spoke about a stimulus package recently proposed by House Democrats:

I think at this point, there needs to be a focus on an immediate increase in spending. At this time, I think deficit fear needs to take a second seat. I do think this is a very important time for a very big dose of changeinism[?].

Yes, I believe later on, there should be tax increases. Speaking personally, I believe there are a lot of rich people out there who we can tax at a point down the road and recover some of this money.

On Glenn Beck’s Tuesday radio show, Glenn discussed these statements with the show’s producer, Stu, when both discovered Frank’s apparently newly coined word. And it’s a gem. On the first two rounds of listening to the audio clip, it sounded as if Frank may have been saying “changelism”.

Stu pondered whether or not the word “changelism” means “change by vandalism”.

The show’s first caller postulated that the word new word was a combination of socialism + change.

The second caller speculated that Frank really meant that the country needs a big dose of Keynesianism. The theory of Keynesian economics was largely employed during the New Deal. A number of Keynesian principles have been with us ever since (think the Fed). The central tenet of this theory is that government intervention in the economy promotes prosperity and stability.

Stu’s and the callers’ theories are viable prospects. “Vandalism + change”, upon examination, is a good candidate because Barack Obama and the Congressional leadership are promoting a policy that could be construed as vandalism ala Robin Hood; we all know that Obama’s central campaign theme has been that of “change”. By “spreading the wealth around” through higher taxation of anyone with an income over $250,000, and giving a “tax credit” to 95% of Americans, 40% of whom pay no income taxes at all, Obama / Robin Hood promises to steal (hence, vandalism) from the rich and give to the poor. Delving further into the vandalism theme, one could also say that these tax policies would cap or discourage the level of achievement to which business owners and workers would aspire, cause the loss of jobs when small businesses have to lay off workers to pay the higher taxes, slow down spending by the rich on goods and services made and performed by workers, and thereby wreck the economy. This would be a change, that’s for sure, and wrecking something is vandalism. Hence, change by vandalism.

The second viable intrepretation, change + socialism, would fit Barack Obama and the Congressional leadership’s proposed plans. Outright socialism would certainly be a change for America. Although many of these kinds of policies have been creeping into government by stealth for many years, there is a historical American antipathy for openly, unabashedly admitting that certain policies are socialist.

The third proposed intrepretation is “Keynesian”. The interventionist, tinkering policies employed to head off and lessen the Great Depression have continued to be used by degrees ever since the early 1930’s, are certainly already being used to deal with the “financial meltdown” and their expansion are being aggressively advocated by Washington leadership.

Perhaps it was Frank’s speech impediment. Perhaps he misspoke. Did he coin a new word? He probably meant “Keynesianism”. It’s unlikely a clarification will be called for, much less answered. In any case, “changeinism” is at least more entertaining. If we’re going to go down in flames as a country, it would be nice to at least have fun doing it, right?

Unfortunately, there is no misconstruing the remainder of his statement. The ridiculous policy measures Frank is proposing are exactly the wrong thing to do at this time. They come at a moment when the United States has for the first time in its history ecrued a $1 trillion deficit in one year. Because of the continuing massive overspending, the country’s creditors are considering downgrading the country’s credit rating. A number of nations are calling for “a new world order” and even one world currency.  Dangerous and unprecedented powers have been granted to the same administration officials whose Keynesian-style tinkering with the country’s financial system helped sew the sides of a financial meltdown. These powers were granted despite the vast majority of the public rising up in efforts to prevent it. In the legislative branch, the very same corrupt politicians who are not being called into account for their aggressive advocating and engineering of the very policies that led to the mortgage meltdown are now leading the way to “fix it”. There is now an astounding volume of money being churned off the printing presses to fund all of the bailouts and forced government purchases of shares in private banks. The unchecked flood of currency into the financial system can lead no where but to massive inflation, perhaps on levels found only in such places as Zimbabwe or the Weimar Republic.

Yeah right, we really need a big dose of “changeinism” or a bigger dose of Keynesiam, as semi-defined by Barney Frank. But that doesn’t actually seem like change at all. Ironically, it’s a continuation and expansion of the abysmal failure of the current administration’s and Congressional leadership’s policies. Maybe that’s what changeinism really means. If Frank was attempting to contribute a new word the American political lexicon, perhaps it was the much-touted change hybrized with “continuism” and “expanison” to disguise the actually villified “more of the same”.

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