I was too young and too obscure to make Richard Nixon’s enemies list back in the day. Not yet out of my teens, my attendance at subversive rallies against the Vietnam War and my contributions to a wildly anti-Nixon publication at my high school we bravely called The Truth just weren’t enough to bring me to the attention of Charles Colson. Thus, I never had a chance to get my name listed along with other great Americans like Ted Kennedy, Paul Newman, and Joe Namath.
I was a good little radical back then, mouthing all the idiocy we heard our elders spouting about evil corporations, evil conservatives, and the evil, evil military. Alas, the world passed me by and the one great opportunity of a lifetime to be recognized as an enemy of the state was lost.
Having since grown up, gotten a job, and been disabused of the idea that there is, in fact, such a thing as a free lunch — along with other magical ideas liberals hold — you can imagine my delight when I heard that President Obama is going to be starting an enemies list of his own.
This time, I am absolutely determined to make the grade. Nothing will stand in my way. Come hell or high water, I am going to get my name on that list if I have to camp out in front of the office of Linda Douglass, communications director for the White House Office of Health Reform, until she slaps my moniker on that list just to get rid of me.
Douglass, who used to spout liberal agitprop for ABC News, now does something very similar for President Obama. Concerned that opponents of health care were disseminating information about the bill that fell outside the official White House-approved talking points, she made a nice little home video priming her charges for the work ahead. Then she had one of her flunkies ask the millions of Obamabots who still think their Dear Leader can do no wrong to report fellow citizens to the White House who weren’t making approved statements about the president’s plan:
Hi. I’m Linda Douglass. I’m the communications director for the White House Office of Health Reform, and one of my jobs is to keep track of all the disinformation that’s out there about health-insurance reform. And there are a lot of very deceiving headlines out there right now, such as this one — take a look at this one. This one says, “Uncovered Video: Obama Explains How His Health Care Plan Will Eliminate Private Insurance.”
Well, nothing can be farther from the truth. You know the people who always try to scare people whenever you try to bring them health-insurance reform are at it again. And they’re taking sentences and phrases out of context, and they’re cobbling them together to leave a very false impression. The truth is that the president has been talking to the American people a lot about health-insurance reform and what is at stake for them.
This was followed up with a note posted on the White House website from director of new media Macon Phillips:
On Monday, White House director of new media Macon Phillips posted a note on the White House web site complaining of “disinformation about health insurance reform.” “These rumors often travel just below the surface via chain emails or through casual conversation,” Phillips wrote. “Since we can’t keep track of all of them here at the White House, we’re asking for your help. If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to [email protected]”
Whoa. “Casual conversation?” That covers a lot of ground, doesn’t it? Of course, writing a blog and having articles published here on the Pajamas Media website already gives me an advantage over other opponents of health care reform. My problem will be finding a way to drop anti-health care reform bombs during the right kind of casual conversation so that I am reported to the White House with agreeable alacrity.
I suppose I could report myself, but where’s the fun in that? Nope, I must seek out the most rabid Obama supporter I know and, during the course of a typical casual conversation, let loose with some doozies about how senior citizens are going to be marched off to euthanasia facilities under ObamaCare. Or how born babies will have to undergo a Spartan ritual examination to determine their fitness to survive under our nationalized health care system. Are they worthy of being included in our ObamaCare utopia? If not, it’s over the cliff with them.
Better yet, I should tell the truth. That’s scary enough for anyone. Perhaps I should casually mention that if you have private insurance under the new system, chances are very good that you won’t have it for very long, that you will be forced onto the public plan eventually. Or maybe let drop the idea that under ObamaCare we will have “intelligent” rationing, so that if you are too sick or too old you will have to pay for lifesaving treatment on your own if you want it.
But I’m wondering, will that be enough to make the coveted new enemies list? Maybe I should throw in a little gratuitous Obama bashing for good measure. Something really memorable like “Obama’s ears double as airplane hangars.”
Regardless, if I do get lucky enough to make the list, there’s a real good chance my name will live in infamy forever, as Byron York explains:
Senate Judiciary Committee lawyers studying the proposal say that although there is no absolutely settled law on the matter, the White House plan is likely not covered by the Privacy Act, which prohibits government agencies from keeping any records “describing how any individual exercises rights guaranteed by the First Amendment unless expressly authorized by statute or by the individual about whom the record is maintained.” Therefore, it appears the White House can legally keep records of the emails and other communications it receives in response to Phillips’ request.
Those lawyers also point out that the White House is not covered by the Freedom of Information Act, which means it would not have to release any information on the plan to members of the public who make a request.
In addition, the lawyers say the collected emails likely will be covered by the Presidential Records Act, which requires the White House to preserve and maintain its records for permanent storage in a government database.
Wow. I bet Nixon would have been green with envy.
The only problem is that there are some real GOP party poopers out there who don’t want to see our fellow citizens put on a list that may be slipped to the IRS so that some friendly audits can be performed on administration opponents. Me? I have nothing to hide. But John Cornyn wants to throw some cold water on the entire plan:
“I am not aware of any precedent for a president asking American citizens to report their fellow citizens to the White House for pure political speech that is deemed ‘fishy’ or otherwise inimical to the White House’s political interests,” Cornyn writes today in a harshly worded letter to President Barack Obama in which he asks the president to immediately halt the effort.
“As Congress debates health care reform and other critical policy matters, citizen engagement must not be chilled by fear of government monitoring the exercise of free speech rights.”
Noble sentiments, I’m sure. But what about experiencing the sheer joy of being an enemy of the people in Obamaland? Cornyn is seeking to rob us of our God-given, all-American right to get under the skin of our opponents and drive them nuts, to the point that they feel it necessary to act more like Big Brother than the Nanny State nuisances they have proven to be under normal circumstances.
I’d like to make a suggestion to President Obama: why not simply have a national enemies list sign-up day? Instead of relying on your hypnotized minions for the names of regime opponents, those of us who would wear the title “Enemy of the President” with honor would have a chance to make sure you don’t overlook us in your search for those who oppose your radical policies.
It would be efficiency married to practicality. And that sounds like something of which this president would approve.