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Was George Washington ‘Paranoid’ Too?

A question for Michael Medved and other “moderates.”

by
Mary Grabar

Bio

February 22, 2011 - 12:00 am
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Does our president hate us?

That, sadly, is an appropriate question to ask on this birthday of our first president, even though esteemed “moderate” conservative talk show host Michael Medved says it’s “paranoid” to even entertain the question.

George Washington’s famous “Farewell Address” — too little read these days — offers a stark contrast to Barack Obama’s view of the presidency. Washington offers words of caution that we would do well to heed. Referring to himself as a “dutiful citizen” and “old and affectionate friend,” Washington writes:

In looking forward to the moment which is intended to terminate the career of my public life, my feelings do not permit me to suspend the deep acknowledgment of that debt of gratitude which I owe to my beloved country for the many honors it has conferred upon me; still more for the steadfast  confidence with which it has supported me: and for the opportunities I have thence enjoyed of manifesting my inviolable attachment, by services faithful and persevering, though in usefulness unequal to my zeal.

Washington opens and closes with such expressions of humility. He attributes any successes he may have had as president to the “constancy of your support.”He calls for a unity rooted in an American allegiance and identity, respect for the Constitution, and a morality based on religious belief.

But Barack Obama, with his conquering calls to “fundamentally transform” America and repeated proclamations that “we won” — before his 2010 “shellacking,” of course — has proven himself to be the antithesis of the “dutiful citizen” Washington. Obama’s policies and associations show a distinct desire to “transform” the republic into a socialist state. His statements and actions demonstrate contempt for the American people and the American form of government.

First, Obama has demonstrated his contempt for free elections, beginning with his association with ACORN. His Justice Department ignores voter intimidation, dismissing the contentious New Black Panther case from the 2008 election. Most recently, Obama has used his political arm, Organizing for America, to organize anarchists from various states of the union to protest against lawmaking in Wisconsin’s capitol. He has inserted himself into a state issue by opposing the lawful actions of a freely elected Republican governor.

What would George Washington — who cautions against factions rooted in the “strongest passions of the human mind,” and warns of forces that agitate “the community with ill-founded jealousies and false alarms,” kindle “the animosity of one part against another,” and foment “riot and insurrection” — think of such behavior?

But this is not the first time that our “community organizer” president has used mobs to intimidate. Remember his warning about the “pitchforks” in his meeting with bankers? Remember his groups that mobbed a bank president’s private home? (Now they are going to the homes of Wisconsin lawmakers.) Remember the imperious claims of “we won” to the Republicans he was supposedly going to “negotiate” with — over the unpopular health care bill that never did get the public airing he promised, which was passed with unprecedented legislative maneuvering in the dead of night?

Barack Obama’s contempt for Americans became apparent as early as the campaign itself. Remember the haughty reference to a “plumber” after a citizen dared ask an honest question when the microphone was put before him? When commentators noted the distinctly Marxist flavor of Obama’s response of “spreading the wealth” to Joe the Plumber’s concerns about taxes, Obama decided to attack the commentators and vilify the one cable news station that dared to criticize him. Obama supporters then released the personal records of Joe the Plumber.

And who can forget Obama’s condescending statements about Pennsylvania primary voters who “cling” to their “guns and religion”?

Contrast such contempt with George Washington’s words: “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensible supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them.”

Meanwhile, Stanley Kurtz was doing research showing Obama’s connections to the terrorist Bill Ayers and laying bare the archives that would prove Obama’s socialist ties. Obama’s henchmen organized to overwhelm the phone lines at a Chicago radio program when Kurtz was a guest. But even though Kurtz’s 2010 book Radical-in-Chief is painstakingly footnoted, using information already reported upon by Cliff Kincaid and Trevor Loudon, and concludes “Obama is a socialist,” Medved insists that Obama is not a socialist. “Moderate” conservatives choose to ignore such information for fear of being smeared a “red-baiter.”

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