By Jon Matthews, Right & Wrong Radio
“The defining issue of our time is how to keep that promise [American Promise] alive. No challenge is more urgent. No debate is more important. We can either settle for a country where a shrinking number of people do really well, while a growing number of Americans barely get by. Or we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules. What’s at stake are not Democratic values or Republican values, but American values. We have to reclaim them.” (Barack Obama, SOTU January 24, 2012)
Probably the most common thought I hear expressed about our first half-white President is the level of narcissist arrogance he projects every time he stands in front of his teleprompter. Sporting a very now identifiable smug posture (The old Mussolini propaganda poster images come to mind) enhanced with color coded gray hair (the color matches the perceived importance assigned to the topic) employed in unison with a well practiced oratorical tone (emphasis tone not content), Obama never appears to be in doubt what he is reciting is the absolute truth regardless and at times, in spite of any and all facts that state otherwise.
Obama’s SOTU message this past Tuesday left no one disappointed in this regard. Whether a supporter or an opponent Obama once again stood unashamedly before his teleprompter and reaffirmed his unwavering delusional perception of himself and his ideology by stating that under his leadership (not free market principles) and through his stimulus package (not Bush’s or Congress’) businesses had created 3 to 4 million jobs, all in the private sector. This apparently has been accomplished in spite of the fact the unemployment rate in this country has remained virtually unchanged since 6 months from his inauguration in 2009 (unemployment has barely budged downward and is currently 8.6% from 9% two years ago).
Noticeably missing from this address, his opening lines indicative of what was to become a long list of mantra-inducing verbal accolades on his achievements was the spin phrase “created or saved”. You know, the one his administration was forced to use 2 years ago when the facts stated the allocation of stimulus money at his direction had virtually not created any jobs at all in the private sector but had gone to public sector union jobs by giving raises to those who apparently were preparing to leave in the midst of “…the greatest recession since the Great Depression” because they weren’t being paid enough.
Also conveniently absent were several facts like that in the time frame Obama was talking about (2009 and onward) the economy created over 288,000 without stimulus package aid and that most of the jobs he claims to have created since (I still doubt the number is this high) are jobs of those who have been rehired (not created from scratch) and/or part time jobs like seasonal employment (census workers and holiday staffing) that have since been eliminated. Not to mention (which he didn’t) the fact that any jobs that were “saved” by the stimulus was at a cost of $278,000 per job.
Obama went on to absurdly claim that because of his great influence and leadership Congress had agreed to cut the deficit by more than 2 trillion dollars, apparently forgetting to include an important side note that his appointed “Super Committee” (the folks assigned this task) failed to come up with what they were going to cut by their assigned deadline, instead choosing the default option which will affect our country’s national security rather than wasteful spending. Also left out was the fact these unidentified cuts were actually only referring to projected increases in future debt rather than current spending. To this day we still haven’t been told how this is going to happen.
Obama then bragged that under his leadership and policies Wall Street has now been reeled in from making obscene profits at the expense of the ignorant, forgetting to mention that yes, while his policies may have made it more difficult for investors to make profit they have done virtually nothing to correct those affected negatively by Wall Street’s actions. Mortgage modifications have proven to be as corrupt as the sub-prime scandal itself, cash for clunkers is a lemon and Obama’s new banking regulations make it now virtually impossible for banks to lend, so much so that banks like Bank of America have simply shut down their lending offices. But hey, he succeeded in nailing that 1% to the wall.
Of course also missing was the fact that more than a few key people involved in the sub-prime lending fiasco are either currently serving in his administration or have since left his administration and returned to the very institutions Obama demonizes at every campaign stop, press conference and You Tube address. Obama’s exercise in self-exaltation also conveniently left out those in his party mainly responsible for the meltdown have since retired, or will soon be retiring almost assuring they will never be brought to justice for their crimes. And lastly, Obama never mentioned the campaign money he still receives from these evil perpetrators of economic injustice.
Obama topped off his economic achievements by trying to convince us that his bailing out of the auto industry has put U.S. car manufacturers back on the top of their game. Of course absent from this claim is the fact Chrysler is no longer a U.S. car company but a division of a foreign company (you didn’t know that as part of this deal they were sold to Fiat, something that could have happened just as easily had they declared bankruptcy?), or that Ford never took any stimulus money at all and fixed themselves (using none other than the model Lee Iacocca implemented at Chrysler decades ago). And while it may be true GM is number one in the world, Obama never mentioned that most of the parts are still purchased from oversea operations, making the point nothing more than symbolic.
Yes, according to the Narcissist-In-Chief; “The state of our Union is getting stronger. And we’ve come too far to turn back now.” Obama then made it clear this is no time for contemplation of past mistakes (unless there needs to be a scapegoat), nor is there any need for further hesitation toward “winning the future” (because we just can’t wait any longer).
We need only to be concerned with those who don’t see his policies and ideology as progress. “As long as I’m President, I will work with anyone in this chamber to build on this momentum. But I intend to fight obstruction with action [translation: Executive Orders and/or unconstitutional appointments], and I will oppose any effort to return to the very same policies that brought on this economic crisis in the first place”.
Of course we are used to Obama reminding us he is worthy of the praises heaped upon him by his worshippers and reiterated to us in his speeches and by the media. Obama has never been shy of telling us he is a legend in his own mind.
In his first Christmas at the White House in 2009 Obama, when asked by Ophra Winfrey to grade his effort gave himself a “Solid B+”. Considering he had only been in office less than 365 days this extremely obvious half-hearted attempt at humility was in and of its self revealing as to his self-perceived level of ability. But then like the creature in “Alien” the narcissist monster that dwells within his soul burst through his chest as he quantified his remark by saying he would deserve an “A” had his Obamacare legislation already been passed.
This in spite of the fact that at the time Obama was championing his healthcare legislation as being “historic” (as is everything he recites from his teleprompter or the media reports) a majority of his own party did not like it (though granted most of them for it not being liberal enough). In addition to the Progressive wing of his party disapproving of it, an overwhelming majority of the American electorate disapproved of the mandate to purchase it.
Even more recently Obama took the opportunity to personally mark his place in history when he sang his own praises as being one of the most influential and effective Presidents of not only our time but in our history by stating: “I would put our legislative and foreign policy accomplishments in our first two years against any president — with the possible exceptions of Johnson, F.D.R., and Lincoln — just in terms of what we’ve gotten done in modern history,” (Barack Obama on 60 Minutes, December 2011).
Wow, quite an accomplishment by any measure. And he hasn’t even finished his first term.
Obama’s claim the only Presidents to have accomplished anything of real social value comparable to his own historic achievements were Lincoln, FDR and LBJ appears on the surface mind boggling given the many events that have occurred in our history under other Presidents. That is unless of course you take a moment to contemplate why he chose them in the first place. Did these men make Obama’s short list for the Political Hall of Fame because they were pragmatic idealists ahead of their time, possessors of insight far beyond mere mortal men? Were these elected public servants gifted with divine compassion for the masses not seen or experienced since our Savior hung on His Cross?
Hardly. Obama chose these men because they shared one common trait, one that drove their ideology and his narcissist personality. These men were motivated and subsequently acted on their self-perceived, humanistic doctrine of “fairness”.
Obama’s respect for Lincoln is understandable. Lincoln has been credited (rightfully so) for removing the immoral, unconstitutional practice of slavery in our country. There is probably no greater sin (except abortion) this country should be more ashamed of ever allowing. Lincoln ran almost his entire campaign for office on the platform that slavery needed to be abolished. What few people know though is how Lincoln went about forcing his ideology on the rest of the nation. And the risk he ran in dividing the nation because of it.
We all know that because Lincoln moved to abolish slavery that the South rebelled and seceded from the Union. On June 19, 1862, endorsed by Lincoln, Congress passed the First Confiscation Act, which banned slavery on all federal territory. In July 1862, the Second Confiscation Act was passed, which set up court procedures that could free the slaves of anyone convicted of aiding the rebellion (secession from the Union). Although Lincoln believed it was not within Congress’s power to free the slaves within the states, he approved the bill in deference to the legislature. Lincoln felt such action could constitutionally only be taken by the commander-in-chief using war powers granted to the president. Lincoln was planning to take that action. In that month, Lincoln discussed a draft of the Emancipation Proclamation with his cabinet. In it, he stated that “…as a fit and necessary military measure, on January 1, 1863, all persons held as slaves in the Confederate states will thenceforward, and forever, be free.”
So in essence Lincoln went against his own knowledge and understanding of the Constitution to accomplish something driven by personal his ideology in spite of the fact he knew the potential consequences for making such a decision. Lincoln’s reasoning? It is revealed in a letter to Horace Greeley, then editor of the New York Tribune who objected to this ploy believing it to be a stumbling block to peace and reunification. Lincoln wrote:
“My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. . . . I have here stated my purpose according to my view of official duty; and I intend no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men everywhere could be free.”
Sound familiar? How many times have we heard our Narcissist-In-Chief rationalize his socialist agenda by simply saying, “It’s the right thing to do.” Radical ideology moved Lincoln to act as he did. I can only believe that divine Providence saw his radicalism as godly and thus brought the potential destruction of our nation to a favorable resolve. Certainly we are a better nation because of it. Unfortunately this is not the case when we look at the other two of Obama’s top 3.
Roosevelt, the creator of the “New Deal”, established the beginning of real socialism in this country based on Keynesian economical theory and then legislated it through judicial activism. From it we were given Social Security, one of the most controversial issues today given that it faces bankruptcy because no one wants to reform it or replace it. Presented as his campaign platform to the Democratic National Convention in 1932 upon his nomination Roosevelt summed the “change we needed” this way:
“There are two ways of viewing the Government’s duty in matters affecting economic and social life. The first sees to it that a favored few are helped and hopes that some of their prosperity will leak through, sift through, to labor, to the farmer, to the small business man. That theory belongs to the party of Toryism, and I had hoped that most of the Tories left this country in 1776.
But it is not and never will be the theory of the Democratic Party. This is no time for fear, for reaction or for timidity. Here and now I invite those nominal Republicans who find that their conscience cannot be squared with the groping and the failure of their party leaders to join hands with us; here and now, in equal measure, I warn those nominal Democrats who squint at the future with their faces turned toward the past, and who feel no responsibility to the demands of the new time, that they are out of step with their Party.
Yes, the people of this country want a genuine choice this year, not a choice between two names for the same reactionary doctrine. Ours must be a party of liberal thought, of planned action, of enlightened international outlook, and of the greatest good to the greatest number of our citizens.
Now it is inevitable–and the choice is that of the times–it is inevitable that the main issue of this campaign should revolve about the clear fact of our economic condition, a depression so deep that it is without precedent in modern history. It will not do merely to state, as do Republican leaders to explain their broken promises of continued inaction, that the depression is worldwide.
That was not their explanation of the apparent prosperity of 1928. The people will not forget the claim made by them then that prosperity was only a domestic product manufactured by a Republican President and a Republican Congress. If they claim paternity for the one they cannot deny paternity for the other.”
Do you find yourself wondering if this is déjà vu? Lastly, there is LBJ. In his speech introducing his “Great Society” on May 22, 1964 Lyndon Johnson proposed:
“The purpose of protecting the life of our Nation and preserving the liberty of our citizens is to pursue the happiness of our people. Our success in that pursuit is the test of our success as a Nation.
For a century we labored to settle and to subdue a continent. For half a century we called upon unbounded invention and untiring industry to create an order of plenty for all of our people.
The challenge of the next half century is whether we have the wisdom to use that wealth to enrich and elevate our national life, and to advance the quality of our American civilization.
Your imagination, your initiative, and your indignation will determine whether we build a society where progress is the servant of our needs, or a society where old values and new visions are buried under unbridled growth. For in your time we have the opportunity to move not only toward the rich society and the powerful society, but upward to the Great Society.
The Great Society rests on abundance and liberty for all. It demands an end to poverty and racial injustice, to which we are totally committed in our time. But that is just the beginning.
The Great Society is a place where every child can find knowledge to enrich his mind and to enlarge his talents. It is a place where leisure is a welcome chance to build and reflect, not a feared cause of boredom and restlessness. It is a place where the city of man serves not only the needs of the body and the demands of commerce but the desire for beauty and the hunger for community.
It is a place where man can renew contact with nature. It is a place which honors creation for its own sake and for what it adds to the understanding of the race. It is a place where men are more concerned with the quality of their goals than the quantity of their goods.
But most of all, the Great Society is not a safe harbor, a resting place, a final objective, a finished work. It is a challenge constantly renewed, beckoning us toward a destiny where the meaning of our lives matches the marvelous products of our labor. So I want to talk to you today about three places where we begin to build the Great Society – in our cities,in our countryside, and in our classrooms.”
From Johnson we were given Medicare, another entitlement program on the verge of collapse, it’s only real purpose being the fear mongering among the aged it provides during election cycles.
Yes, in these three men we find the common thread that Obama uses to tie himself to history…the expansion of government by any means possible, at any cost driven by radical ideology that takes no prisoners because there is no where to house them. It is said that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. 2012 will certainly settle this belief once and for all either to our restoration or to our destruction. God help us.
Jon Matthews posts his bi-weekly column on Thursdays. He is the President of Terra Productions in California. He produces and hosts the weekly conservative talk show “Right & Wrong Radio” which broadcasts live every Friday at 12 PM (PST) from Puka Shell Studios in Garden Grove, California. View his website for information and show archives at: http://www.rightandwrongradio.com/. You can contact Jon at firstname.lastname@example.org.