Yes, We Can. But Do We Want To?
Asking the right questions about Barack Obama.
August 7, 2008 - 12:00 am
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
— C.S. Lewis
Can we adopt a more socialist approach to government and transform America into a state not of equal opportunity for individuals to create their own happiness, but a state where a nanny bureaucracy operates for the supposed “good” of its citizens?
Can we accept tyranny by a rainbow proletariat of minorities and special interest groups who wish to mandate permanent entitlements for themselves?
Can we, as Americans, vote to hand over a huge chunk of our national sovereignty to international consensus and global taxation?
Can we adopt the Marxist cause of the class struggle, the utopian fix for all that ills us, and become part of a unified coalition of socialist countries around the world, in the hope that mankind can find Obama’s “collective redemption”?
That’s not the question.
We’re Americans. We are our own government, and we, the electorate, decide what course we will take. No change whatsoever is necessary to effect our own national will. Our Constitution guarantees us this right through the ballot.
We are a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. Always have been. Since the beginning.
Obama answers the wrong question with his now banal statement: Yes, we can.
Because the question before Americans has never been, Can we become socialists?
The real question, therefore, is: Do we want to?
And America’s answer, it would seem, is completely up for grabs at the moment, without a single ounce of certainty.
Media wants Barack-style change; voters are uncertain
Despite the bubble of inevitability that the Obama campaign and its in-the-tank media have blown around this candidate, he is slipping now in the polls. He was holding onto a scant lead prior to his grand foreign tour, but now even that is slipping away.
The inevitable candidate is anything but.
USA Today published a poll last week that showed Barack Obama actually trailing John McCain by four points, among likely voters. Obama still has a slight lead among all registered voters, but on most polls it’s within statistical-tie territory. In early June Obama had a nine-point lead. Now he’s ever so slightly up, statistically tied, or down, depending upon one’s choice of poll and how much additional error margin one allows for what pollsters are calling the Bradley Effect.
Not only is Obama slipping in the national polls, but he received no discernible bounce from his highfalutin, very expensive trip abroad. Candidate Obama used campaign funds to take himself, the press, and a retinue of 700 — count them, 700 — campaign aides, first class all the way, on a trip that was luxurious by any standard, and at a time when many Americans could not even afford a small summer vacation due to very high gas prices. Even the most cursory observer might wonder whether reliable American campaign contributors aren’t just a bit resentful over their hard-earned dollars being spent to rally Europeans, when Europeans cannot even vote here.
Rasmussen polling now indicates that half the American electorate sees press bias in favor of Obama, and a quarter of us have stopped trusting the media to paint a clear picture of the candidates. The press may indeed want Obama elected, but their overly favorable coverage, which may have aided Obama’s claim to the Democratic Party nomination, has now become a negative in the home-stretch general election. Viewers will now discount nearly every positive they hear regarding Obama, while giving extra weight to every good thing reported about McCain. That’s what bias does; it negatively influences weight given to its arguments.