The Future That the Speaker Saw
Put aside that it was pure fundraising pabulum; it’s a pity that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi probably doesn’t know just how right she was:
“When I return to Washington, D.C.,” Pelosi said, “I’ll tell them that I’ve been to Rhode Island and I’ve seen the future.”
What she was talking about hardly matters. It could have been a new ice-cream mixer at the Frosty Freeze. What she wasn’t talking about was the thing that ought to keep somebody of her position awake at night: The effects of high taxes, over-regulation, one-party rule, labor union dominance, an overly “compassionate” and organized poverty industry, and insider politics on a polity.
Yes, Rhode Island’s sclerotic economy, crumbling infrastructure, high unemployment, and prominence at the wrong end of every list may indeed be the ghost of America’s future. If it is, Pelosi shouldn’t “return to Washington, D.C., to tell them” (whoever “they” are). She should run to Washington to warn them.
The folks across the street from the last event of her long day of mooching would surely have been able to provide a concise message, if she’d deigned to acknowledge their presence:
Pelosi and company wrapped up their visit with an evening fundraiser at the Jamestown home of Princeton Review CEO Michael Perik and his wife, Elizabeth. For the first time all day, Pelosi and Kennedy received a less-than-enthusiastic welcome.
Shouting “Vote them out” and carrying signs that said, “Welcome, Comrade Pelosi,” more than 50 boisterous protestors jammed the sidewalk while sleek SUVs with tinted-windows arrived at the waterfront fundraiser, where some couples paid $30,400 to be in the “Speakers Cabinet.”
Every conservative political stripe was represented, from the Rhode Island Tea Party, an anti-big government group, to Rhode Islanders Against Illegal Immigration. A few protesters, though, had it in for Kennedy.
“Patrick is incompetent,” said Chris Kairnes, of North Kingstown, who was wielding an anti-Kennedy placard. “You can’t perform your duties if you are highly medicated. He should be realistic and resign.”
Ultimately, the crowd was disappointed. Pelosi and the local congressional delegation slipped into the party through a back entranceway. They never saw Rhode Island’s version of the populist spirit.