The State of Our Union Rendered in a Fractured Bizarro Lens
The state of our union is weak and fraying. This president has launched attacks on faith and is going out of his way to divide our people. Our economy is not growing, it contracted in the final quarter of 2012. Our economy is not growing jobs. On the international front, North Korea greeted President Obama's 2013 rendition of Give Me More Money with a nuclear test -- a sure sign that his strategy of engagement, which his soon-to-be defense secretary supports, is a failure.
But like with all of his other failed policies, Barack Obama declared that he will just keep on doing them all.
So he declared that he wants to hit the wealthy with more taxes. This will not create jobs or grow the economy. He just raised their taxes a month ago. How much will be enough? Liberals never answer that question. Barack Obama pretends that it is never asked.
He wants to "ask more of our wealthy seniors," a line that Sen. Obama and his speechwriter, who once penned lines for Ted Kennedy, would have dubbed a "war on grandma."
He called on getting arguments out of politics, which really is a call for duly elected Republicans in Congress to forget who elected them and why, and just do what he wants.
He called for a new revolution in manufacturing in America, through some government-centered hub system. And he called for a hike in the minimum wage, which will keep pricing American labor higher than many of our competitors around the world. In Barack Obama's way of telling, he was not calling for bigger government, even though he was. The economic consequences of his ideas are less relevant to him than the sound of his voice.
Barack Obama is like this: incoherent. He calls for new government "investments" while claiming that they will not increase the deficit. His plans to pay for them appear to rest on magic.
Barack Obama has no economics background. Upon what basis does he make his claims about creating jobs or growing the economy? It's all entirely political, not based on any sound reality. He is addicted to spending other people's money. For the sake of our country, he needs an intervention.
Shortly after declaring that he wants our economy to grow, he called for more action on "climate change." This "action" will come in the form of more regulations on our industries. The science has left him and his party on this, but he does not care. He also does not care that his "action" on "climate change" will kill American jobs, as his previous regulatory actions have done. His war on coal has already wiped out thousands of jobs across America. How many jobs will he kill before he is satisfied?
How can America become a manufacturing powerhouse again, when our president is systematically shutting off the power?
If Congress won't act soon on climate change, the president said, he will. This was a threat. Plain and simple. A threat to override the Constitution, sideline the Congress, and ignore the will of the American people.
But threats from a president who seated an illegal alien at his grand speech should come as no shock. To Barack Obama, the law is an obstacle, not a guide or a limit. He has swept Congress aside before via executive orders, and he intends to do so again.
His actions amount to a hacking of the US.. Constitution. Under our system, the two houses of Congress serve as checks on each other, and together, they serve as checks on the president's power, and the three branches check and balance one another. But this president has the Senate in his back pocket through its leader, Sen. Harry Reid. Reid renders Obama impervious to congressional and court action against him. Thus, when his recess appointments were judged illegal by the courts, he simply ignored the courts. Harry Reid has his back.
Obama called for the federal government to "redesign high schools." Does he not know that schools are creatures of local and state, not the federal, governments? Does he care? Does he see no limits at all on the things that should occupy a president's time?
And again, on what basis does the president who cannot even submit a budget make the claim that he is qualified to redesign high schools?
It's all absurd. Barack Obama is the absurd president. He makes no attempt to make any sense, yet the media will pretend that he is a visionary.
The reality is, Barack Obama is just a very powerful crank.
From there he moved on to pressing for "comprehensive immigration reform." He claimed that he believes in stronger border security, which simply is not credible when his homeland security chief claims that the border has never been safer while there is a civil war raging in Mexico. He called on people of faith, whom he has attacked via the ObamaCare abortifacient mandate, to help him "get it done" on immigration reform. He hits you with one hand, then wants you to help him with the other.
When he turned to calling for a raise to the minimum wage, he made no sense. He called for a raise in the minimum wage to $9 an hour, decrying the possibility of anyone working full time on minimum wage living below the poverty line. Isn't that why it's a minimum? It's not supposed to be a full-time living wage. No one is supposed to spend their career on the minimum wage. Workers should want, and work for, more. Raising it outside normal economic forces will kill, not create, jobs. Tying it to the increasing cost of living was one of the few ideas he proffered that made any sense, in that it would at least pull some of the politics out of raising the minimum wage by government fiat. But there is a basic question here that politicians pretend does not exist: Should the federal government even set a minimum wage at all?
When Obama turned to the war, his aim was as simple as it has been for years: End it. Whether we win it or not is not his primary concern.
Obama declared that he will stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. But North Korea is getting them and blew up another one this morning. He has no strategy for dealing with them at all.
Then he said that he will work with Russia to reduce our nuclear arsenals. Russia just backed out of a bilateral relationship to fight crime. Putin has shown no interest in reducing Russia's arsenal. Is Obama planning to use his promised "flexibility" to reduce ours anyway? Is he, in other words, going to just drop our guard based on his faith in a man who spent most of his life in the KGB?
Reality never seems to intrude on this president's world. He has his ideology and he is sticking to it.
Case in point: Obama mentioned women in combat and gays in the military, but never mentioned Chris Kyle. Kyle was the most successful sniper in U.S. military history. He was laid to rest in Austin, TX, today. Could the president not spare one word for a genuine hero who saved countless lives? He could, but his ideology gets in the way.
Another case in point: Obama railed against any American having to spend three hours to vote, saying that it "betrays our ideals." But he and his Justice Department militate against voter ID. So voter fraud does not "betray our ideals," but having to wait in line because of healthy voter turnout does? How does this even make any sense, other than as political statements devoid of logic and depraved of any understanding of right and wrong?
Then he called for gun control, without calling it gun control. "Each of these proposals deserve a vote in Congress," he said. But none of his proposals would have stopped any mass shooting. Why then do they deserve a vote? They don't, but he tried distracting us from that fact by name-checking some victims of violence. He never name-checked anyone who has used a firearm to defend themselves. To Barack Obama, they do not exist.
Near the blessed end of his speech, Obama hailed the idea and ideals of the citizen. But this president is working to water down the legal meaning of the word. Again, incoherent.
The consequences of Barack Obama's loose grasp on the real world are just going to have to work themselves out now. He will win some and he will lose some. Hopefully he will lose more than he wins.
"The evil that men do lives after them," Shakespeare wrote of ambitious men centuries ago. So it will be with Barack Obama, who has done much evil to the Constitution, to the country, and to the concept of truth. He will continue to do more evil to them all for the next four years.
America, you were warned but you re-elected him anyway. And that's the state of our union.