It is increasingly clear that the liberal welfare state is not sustainable in its current form, and its costs and inefficiencies are increasingly present and real and are putting huge burdens on our economy at every level. This can’t really go on. From here on, the Left has mostly to play a defensive game of retrenchment and reaction, and this is an exhausting game, especially for liberals.
This comment encapsulates part of the argument that Jim Bennett and I make in forthcoming book, America 3.0: Rebooting American Prosperity in the 21st Century – Why America’s Greatest Days Are Yet to Come.
The liberal welfare state is long past its peak. The question is, what next? We offer some predictions. But the main thing to consider is the transformative nature of the era we are living through. Both sides of the political spectrum are still stuck in 20th Century thinking, both thinking that the Blue Model can be tinkered with. It can’t. The challenge for Conservatives will be to figure out what they want to conserve and how to adapt their principles to the times. Progressives will need to figure out how to preserve their goals of protecting the weak and powerless using new methods, since the old ones are not working and will not continue to be popular once voters understand the burdens and costs.