It must be true. He supported a national bank and wanted to help the working man get ahead; from there, it’s a mere hop, skip, and a jump logically to $800 billion in pork and infrastructure spending.

I realize the media has a certain quota of “Obama is the new Lincoln” hagiographies to file each week, but can we at least spare America’s greatest president (I don’t care what the polls say) the comparison on his birthday? Good lord.

Obama’s situation is different from Lincoln’s, as is the political environment. But historians say their responses to their crises bear striking parallels.

“Both Lincoln and Obama advocated big government and actively believed it could do good,” said Timothy Roberts, professor of American history at Western Illinois University in Moline, Ill.

“The size and complexity of the situation facing Obama would have baffled Lincoln, but he would have embraced Obama’s attempt to balance tax cuts — intended to encourage individual initiative and entrepreneurship — and government spending,” Roberts said…

Lincoln favored a more active government during financial difficulty. And his party favored publicly financed internal improvements — especially for building the nation’s transportation system through canals and railroads. And the first income tax was passed during the Civil War…

Could Obama have taken note? The president’s stimulus proposal to fix the economy calls for massive government spending.

Yes, truly, if not for Lincoln’s example, The One would have to be dragged kicking and screaming towards massive government spending. Even I have more faith in him than to believe he’s approaching a hopelessly complex modern financial crisis by trying to divine Honest Abe’s will. What he’s actually doing, I suspect, is approaching the crisis on the merits, with an eye to dumping dopey Lincoln parallels on the media afterwards to spin his strategy as brilliant. It’s worked so far! Exit question: It’s Darwin’s birthday tomorrow, too. What evolutionary analogy will the press use to compare Obama’s economic acumen to Uncle Charlie’s scientific insight? Something about how the same keen perception that recognized complex variety among the Galapagos turtles is at work in the new TARP?