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Works and Days

The Un-Midas Touch

August 10th, 2014 - 7:06 pm

“Tell me, doc. Why do all these bad things keep happening to me?”

Everything that Barack Obama touches seems to turn to dross. Think of it for a minute. He inherited a quiet Iraq (no American combat deaths at all in December 2009). Joe Biden bragged of the calm that it would be the administration’s “greatest achievement.” But by pulling out all U.S. peacekeepers — mostly for a 2012 reelection talking point — Obama ensured an ISIS wasteland. He put his promised eye on Afghanistan at last, and we have lost more soldiers there than during the Bush administration and a Taliban victory seems likely after more than a decade of lost American blood and treasure. The message seems to be that it is better for Obama to have his eye off something than on it.

Remember those threats to Syria? After the U.S. threatened and backed off, the violence only escalated and spilled into Iraq.

Libya was no paradise under Gadhafi, but it is now Mogadishu on the Mediterranean. Not even the president’s supporters believe that he told the truth about Benghazi. Reset with Russia green-lighted Putin, as he sized up Barack Obama as a lamb waiting to be eaten. The Bowe Bergdahl-for-five-terrorists swap (likely illegal) is not headline news only because dozens of scandals since have eclipsed it, and the likely deserter is apparently still kept incommunicado, lest he speak in the fashion of his father at the earlier White House press conference. I don’t think Bergdahl is a model for future negotiations with the Taliban.

Israel? We never have been more estranged from the Jewish state. Open mic outbursts against Netanyahu define our true policies. The terrorist state run by Hamas is now a partner for peace – tunnels, missiles, syringes, handcuffs and all. Did outreach to Hamas lessen or spike violence?

Did the “special relationship” with the Islamist Recep Erdogan lead to regional calm, and does it still exist?

The war on terror? Obama has derided most anti-terrorism protocols, even as he kept some Bush-Cheney policies — to the incoherent point that no one has any idea what the U.S. is doing. Jihad a personal odyssey? Muslim Brotherhood largely secular? Major Hasan’s murdering mere workplace violence? Outreach to Islam NASA’s primary mission? Remember overseas contingency operations and man-caused disasters? In the Obama war on terror, waterboarding three architects of 9/11 is our “folks” torturing their “folks”; but judge/jury/executioner drone strikes that blow up 2,000-plus suspected (not confessed) terrorists — and anyone in the general vicinity when the missile hits — are far more moral. Out of sight, out of mind.

When CIA Director John Brennan speaks, we all assume he is not telling the truth, as in the past. Whatever the DC dictate is at the present, Brennan makes the necessary immoral adjustments.

Past cabinet heads? No one knows exactly the circumstances under which Lisa Jackson, Hilda Solis — and even David Petraeus — left their offices.

Iran and the bomb? Look to red lines in Syria for an example of how our Iranian threats will work out. One cannot distinguish parody from Obama’s Iranian policy. We worried more about sanctions hurting Iranians than forcing them to comply with non-proliferation promises.

The world sort of likes the new reduced profile of the U.S. This is especially true of Russia, China, and Iran, as they fill the regional voids. The weaker we become, the more likely Obama is popular overseas, and the more likely the Left applauds his new global likability.

In the Obama view, millions do not like Israel, Britain, or any pro-American Western democracy, and so applaud his new corrections.

At home? Obama has wrecked our healthcare system. Every promise about the Affordable Care Act proved an outright lie. No one can define Obamacare or explain how it is supposed to work. In fact, no one really even tries any more.

The budget? Obama’s legacy is $8 trillion more in debt, chronic 6% to 7%-plus unemployment as the new norm, and the idea that trillion is the new billion, as a $600 billion annual deficit is proof of fiscal responsibility and sermons on “growing inequality” reflect Obama’s record of creating record inequality. Zero percent interest rates ensure Wall Street zillionaires, the impoverishment of the once thrifty middle class — and the idea that saving money is stupid, owing it and not paying it back smart.

Students and college? One trillion dollars in collective debt buys a politicized college education to put twenty-somethings in a job market where 60% of newly minted BAs find jobs. Student debt is the new housing bubble, but at least a roof is more valuable for a time than a sociology degree.

The Border Patrol? It no longer exists. No one believes crossing illegally into the U.S. is a crime, and so there is no need for a law enforcement agency. Everyone is a DREAM-er; doubt that and you are a racist. To the extent the Border Patrol is not a parody of itself, it is a social services agency designed to facilitate illegal entry into the U.S. La Raza and the Chamber of Commerce, not Congress, set immigration policies.

The IRS? It too is ruined. It has become a Third-World extension of a partisan regime that hounds out political enemies. Ditto EPA, which mostly finds ways to circumvent Congress to punish successful companies and to pursue green statutes that Congress has no desire to pass.

NASA? We beg our enemy Putin to ferry us into space, as the director brags that the chief mission of the agency is now Muslim “feel good” outreach. Eric Holder has so politicized the Justice Department that we nonchalantly assume that racial matters determine to what extent Holder decides to enforce or ignore a law. Holder’s legacy is that John Mitchell now looks moral in comparison.

And the law? In some sense, we are in French revolutionary times. The ACA, immigration statutes, environmental laws — they all simply no longer exist. The law is what the president deems the public wants or what he believes is socially useful.

Race? We have become so inured to Trayvon Martin as Obama’s might-have been son, the stereotyping police, the “typical white person,” “my people,” “a nation of cowards,” “punish our enemies,” etc., that such polarization from on high is normal. Divide and conquer is the new old politics. After Obama won a decisive victory in 2008 that transcended race, we were suddenly told the world of the old white guy was over — ad nauseam — and race became essential, not incidental, to those who had proclaimed a need to go beyond race. In truth, the race fixation was not about justice, but raw power, the pathway to obtaining it and the mechanism for keeping it.

The presidential style? We assume that every Obama speech is an exercise in the use of the first-person pronoun. Every tired emphatic (“let me be perfectly clear,” “make no mistake about it,” “in point of fact,” “I’m not kidding”…) is proof of just the opposite. Equivocation, not clarity, is the goal of an Obama speech. In lieu of candor, there is always a macho brag that proves empty; always a straw-man, Emmanuel Goldstein-style enemy whom we are supposed to hate collectively; always some clueless clinger, devious capitalist, old Tea Party guy, or carbon polluter who is the source of all our problems. We assume that when the president gets off the teleprompter his speech will be incoherent and laced with “uh uh uh” — as the press gushes that it is Lincolnesque.

Obama is a community organizer in endless search of a war to distract from the reality that he is Icarus falling with melting waxen wings. Without drumming up an old white guy war against women, against Latinos, against children at the border, against the environment, against gays, against blacks, against mom and apple pie, our Obama is what he always was — a smooth version of Rev. Wright, a community organizer whose bullhorn could not deliver a crowd.

The press? But there is no press. Long ago it became a ministry of information and decided that Obama was the rare gift to enact a so-called progressive agenda. If or when there is a non-liberal president, we will be told golf is aristocratic time-wasting, that mention of race is hatred, that tampering with the IRS, NSA,  or any other agency is an impeachable offense, that ignoring enforcement of the law is treasonous, that $300 billion deficits are ruinous, that junketing to resorts is frivolous, that bombing without the approval of Congress is amoral, and that the teleprompter is proof of vapidity.

Our culture? Cool is all that matters. Outsource, offshore, speculate, crony capitalism — just do it with Birkenstocks and shades. If you are hip, rules melt. Nerds like Al Gore are cool and so seek to dodge new capital gains taxes, profit from oil-rich dictatorships, and offer snake-oil nostrums to the crises they hype as they lecture us about our selfish carbon-spewing sins. The key to understanding a John Kerry, Al Gore, Warren Buffett, or Bill Gates is that they are cool, and thus seek to avoid the property, capital gains, or inheritance taxes that they urge be hiked on everyone else. The Obama cultural legacy is that it does not matter what you do, only how coolly you do or describe it. Appear hip, and greed is forgiven. Buy a ticket to a $35,000 Obama fundraiser, wear something hip, and sound cool, and you are a progressive egalitarian. Silicon Valley, Hollywood, and Wall Street learned that con long ago.

The president enjoys a 40% popularity rate and thus has institutionalized a new facet of American political life: redistributionist policies such as Obama’s guarantee that 4 out of 10 Americans will always stay supportive and that abroad most will like what the U.S. is becoming. That is the real Obama legacy: there are no politics any more, just an endless class war between patriotic progressives and counter-revolutionary clingers.

Everything our un-Midas touched turned to stone.

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Top Rated Comments   
When millions of dupes bowed to the altar of Styrofoam columns and the "profundity" of meaningless platitudes like YES WE CAN!, the writing was on the wall.

America's days were numbered.

As I stood aghast in 2008, it was not Obama that sent a shiver down my spine. It was the thought that millions of Americans could be so easily manipulated, hoodwinked, and frankly had become....stupid.

And after four miserable years of failure, America chose to double down on stupid.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
I patrolled the East German and Chechozlovak borders during the Cold War. Apparently, I was wasting my time, looking in the wrong direction, as the real enemy was worming its way into our institutions behind my back - into the schools, into the media, into the judiciary and taking over the Democratic Party. We've been taken over by the very people we were guarding against and they never even had to build a landing craft or create the invasion forces necessary to assault our beaches and take over our country. Jeez Looeez. All they had to do was elect a black guy that knew how to read a teleprompter. Unbelievable.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Protest Culture took the reins and kept right on protesting against their out of power foils.

They ONLY know how to protest. The critic who never takes the now called on to pitch. And he throws like a little girl.

The "faux warrior hero turned Winter Protestor", is called upon to show us how to lead men...from pink Barbie bike.

When the hippie girl is given the reins over essentially a "hit" on the Libyan leader, she turns into a hiding, tantrum throwing,lying, shrew.

If all you know how to do is protest and slander...your worst nightmare is to be called in from the faculty lounge bullpen. All your theories about how the way things "should have been done", get exposed for what they really are

And why calling it a bullpen is the perfect description.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (97)
All Comments   (97)
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"Everything that Barack Obama touches seems to turn to dross."
Well, it's turning into something... Darned netiquette!
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
I had the Midas touch. I now have a garage full of mufflers.
28 weeks ago
28 weeks ago Link To Comment
What are the las Vegas odds of this nation surviving this blithering idiot?
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Somehow I don't think anyone thought that "dross" was the word to use here. At least I thought of a more appropriate one.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
When I saw your picture caption at the top of the article, I could not help but think of the wise observations of the famous social commenter, "Wierd" Al Yankovic:
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Agree with other first and apt word choice discussion and posts

"Mommy, Mommy, Grandpa is saying army words in the work shop again" - ratted out by a linear thinking 4 year old ...

An intermediate alternative would be something like taint, contaminate, or the stinky additives they add to natural gas.

What really frightens me now is that there are literally no events detrimental or destructive to our country that he would NOT do or enable.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Or that the American people could accept / ignore.
28 weeks ago
28 weeks ago Link To Comment
Nope it was that other five letter word, shyte.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Dear VDH
I'm a great admirer of your works, and appreciate the restraint required for ciilvized discourse. However a more apt word comes to mind to describe what occurs when Obama touchs any thing, Obama is the Midas of shite!
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
He favors the Shiites.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
So in other words, we have a king.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Entitlement Mentality of the Right

Some are thinking, “What is that you say? Entitlement is only for the left, the lazy, the hippy, the professional student, and OWS. They refuse to work. They ignore reality. They expect things to be given to them. They demand things be given to them. They don’t lift a finger, and they will yell, scream, deflect and finally accuse, anything other than get up off the couch and work, all in order to get what they want without working for it. Especially they accuse. That way they figure someone else will eventually give them what they want.” All true.

So we lament, and we cry out in frustration, angst and agony: “They break the rules, break the law, break the constitution, break the ethical fabric of our Republic, and break the laws of God.”

But what do we lament? We lament the loss of liberty. We lament the loss of freedom.

But how did we get those things in the first place? Did we work for them, or did we inherit them from our parents, grand-parents, and great-grandparents? We are entitled to our liberty. We are entitled to our freedom, right? It is our birthright, isn’t it? No it is not.

Like a lefty hippy in the park holding his hand out for choom change, we are ANGRY that no one is giving us our liberty! But we refuse to fight for it. We ignore reality. We expect liberty and freedom to be given to us. We demand that liberty be given to us. We don’t lift a finger to get it for ourselves, and instead we yell, scream, deflect and finally accuse (those damn RINOs!), anything other than get up off the couch and fight, all in order to get what we want without working for it. Especially we accuse. “Someone else SAVE ME d@mn it! We are owed this. We are Americans. We are entitled to our liberty and our freedom.” Tell that to our fore-fathers . Just like a boomer parent waiting for reality to hit their hippy son, they are watching and wondering “Will the man ever wake up and rise from the boy?”

When the inheritance runs out, reality comes crashing in. Some rise above the crash, but not everyone. All agree however, that the task of creating our own inheritance is far easier achieved if we begin before the old inheritance runs out.
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29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
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