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The Sleight of Hand Behind Obama's Agenda

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The Great Non Sequitur

 

The Sleight of Hand Behind Obama's Agenda

 

By Charles Krauthammer

Friday, March 6, 2009; Page A15

 

Forget the pork. Forget the waste. Forget the 8,570 earmarks in a bill supported by a president who poses as the scourge of earmarks. Forget the "2 trillion dollars in savings" that "we have already identified," $1.6 trillion of which President Obama's budget director later admits is the "savings" of not continuing the surge in Iraq until 2019 -- 11 years after George Bush ended it, and eight years after even Bush would have had us out of Iraq completely.

 

Forget all of this. This is run-of-the-mill budget trickery. True, Obama's tricks come festooned with strings of zeros tacked onto the end. But that's a matter of scale, not principle.

 

All presidents do that. But few undertake the kind of brazen deception at the heart of Obama's radically transformative economic plan, a rhetorical sleight of hand so smoothly offered that few noticed.

 

The logic of Obama's address to Congress went like this:

"Our economy did not fall into decline overnight," he averred. Indeed, it all began before the housing crisis. What did we do wrong? We are paying for past sins in three principal areas: energy, health care and education -- importing too much oil and not finding new sources of energy (as in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the Outer Continental Shelf?), not reforming health care, and tolerating too many bad schools.

 

The "day of reckoning" has arrived. And because "it is only by understanding how we arrived at this moment that we'll be able to lift ourselves out of this predicament," Obama has come to redeem us with his far-seeing program of universal, heavily nationalized health care; a cap-and-trade tax on energy; and a major federalization of education with universal access to college as the goal.

 

Amazing. As an explanation of our current economic difficulties, this is total fantasy. As a cure for rapidly growing joblessness, a massive destruction of wealth, a deepening worldwide recession, this is perhaps the greatest non sequitur ever foisted upon the American people.

 

At the very center of our economic near-depression is a credit bubble, a housing collapse and a systemic failure of the banking industry. One can come up with a host of causes: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac pushed by Washington (and greed) into improvident loans, corrupted bond-ratings agencies, insufficient regulation of new and exotic debt instruments, the easy money policy of Alan Greenspan's Fed, irresponsible bankers pushing (and then unloading in packaged loan instruments) highly dubious mortgages, greedy house-flippers, deceitful home buyers.

 

The list is long. But the list of causes of the collapse of the financial system does not include the absence of universal health care, let alone of computerized medical records. Nor the absence of an industry-killing cap-and-trade carbon levy. Nor the lack of college graduates. Indeed, one could perversely make the case that, if anything, the proliferation of overeducated, Gucci-wearing, smart-ass MBAs inventing ever more sophisticated and opaque mathematical models and debt instruments helped get us into this credit catastrophe.

 

And yet with our financial house on fire, Obama makes clear both in his speech and his budget that the essence of his presidency will be the transformation of health care, education and energy. Four months after winning the election, six weeks after his swearing-in, Obama has yet to unveil a plan to deal with the banking crisis.

 

What's going on? "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste," said chief of staff Rahm Emanuel. "This crisis provides the opportunity for us to do things that you could not do before."

 

Things. Now we know what they are. The markets' recent precipitous decline is a reaction not just to the absence of any plausible bank rescue plan, but also to the suspicion that Obama sees the continuing financial crisis as usefully creating the psychological conditions -- the sense of crisis bordering on fear-itself panic -- for enacting his "Big Bang" agenda to federalize and/or socialize health care, education and energy, the commanding heights of post-industrial society.

 

Clever politics, but intellectually dishonest to the core. Health, education and energy -- worthy and weighty as they may be -- are not the cause of our financial collapse. And they are not the cure. The fraudulent claim that they are both cause and cure is the rhetorical device by which an ambitious president intends to enact the most radical agenda of social transformation seen in our lifetime.

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...51.html?sub=AR

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I heard some criticism of O today. They said that he is doing so much so that we can't follow what he is doing. Then he will slip stuff past us like reparations.

 

Just got a new appraisal on the house, which is 1 year and 6 days old to me. Went up 5%. Wooo hoooo.

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The entire article by Charles Krauthammer is interesting, and his first paragraph is especially so...

 

Forget the pork. Forget the waste. Forget the 8,570 earmarks in a bill supported by a president who poses as the scourge of earmarks. Forget the "2 trillion dollars in savings" that "we have already identified," $1.6 trillion of which President Obama's budget director later admits is the "savings" of not continuing the surge in Iraq until 2019 -- 11 years after George Bush ended it, and eight years after even Bush would have had us out of Iraq completely.

 

More smoke and mirrors the Obama way. Unbelievable.

 

It's like saying that I'm going to save $35,000 over the next few years because I'm not going to take out a loan on a new car.

 

kooky.gif

 

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View PostThe entire article by Charles Krauthammer is interesting, and his first paragraph is especially so...

 

Forget the pork. Forget the waste. Forget the 8,570 earmarks in a bill supported by a president who poses as the scourge of earmarks. Forget the "2 trillion dollars in savings" that "we have already identified," $1.6 trillion of which President Obama's budget director later admits is the "savings" of not continuing the surge in Iraq until 2019 -- 11 years after George Bush ended it, and eight years after even Bush would have had us out of Iraq completely.

 

More smoke and mirrors the Obama way. Unbelievable.

 

It's like saying that I'm going to save $35,000 over the next few years because I'm not going to take out a loan on a new car.

 

kooky.gif

 

 

I prevented a rape today.

I changed my mind and took a cold shower instead.

I'm a hero.

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I don't think that people realize just how serious of a message this is.

For me, crux of the whole Obama fiasco/Socialist takeover is spelled out loud and clear in these paragraphs. How this is not treason I can't imagine. Purposeful, willful destruction of our economy and capitalist system. This is not the stupidest President ever. Obama and his group are the most destructive and biggest threat to America in our lifetimes, and his blind lemmings share the blame:

 

And yet with our financial house on fire, Obama makes clear both in his speech and his budget that the essence of his presidency will be the transformation of health care, education and energy. Four months after winning the election, six weeks after his swearing-in, Obama has yet to unveil a plan to deal with the banking crisis.

 

What's going on? "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste," said chief of staff Rahm Emanuel. "This crisis provides the opportunity for us to do things that you could not do before."

 

Things. Now we know what they are. The markets' recent precipitous decline is a reaction not just to the absence of any plausible bank rescue plan, but also to the suspicion that Obama sees the continuing financial crisis as usefully creating the psychological conditions -- the sense of crisis bordering on fear-itself panic -- for enacting his "Big Bang" agenda to federalize and/or socialize health care, education and energy, the commanding heights of post-industrial society.

 

Clever politics, but intellectually dishonest to the core. Health, education and energy -- worthy and weighty as they may be -- are not the cause of our financial collapse. And they are not the cure. The fraudulent claim that they are both cause and cure is the rhetorical device by which an ambitious president intends to enact the most radical agenda of social transformation seen in our lifetime.

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View PostI prevented a rape today.

I changed my mind and took a cold shower instead.

I'm a hero.

 

 

See can't we all follow this fine citizen's example? Say no to rape, but yes to roofies...kooky.gif

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View PostI heard some criticism of O today. They said that he is doing so much so that we can't follow what he is doing. Then he will slip stuff past us like reparations.

 

Just got a new appraisal on the house, which is 1 year and 6 days old to me. Went up 5%. Wooo hoooo.

 

John McLaughlin quoted Krauthammer's "...brazen... sleight of hand..." broadside.

Obama is starting to lose confidence.

Confidence in himself and his advisors.

The ramifications of deepening recession are frightening him.

I can sense it when I watch him.

He is a skilled rhetorician.

Rhetoric, aspiration and hope cannot remedy our troubles.

"HOPE AND CHANGE" are nothing but ephemeral sloganeering when they come up against current realities.

"HOPE AND CHANGE" are not remediative.

And "HOPE" is not an activity; it traps people in stasis.

Obama knows he is out of his element now.

He knows his rhetorical skills are unavailing.

Any leader would be worried.

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View PostJohn McLaughlin quoted Krauthammer's "...brazen... sleight of hand..." broadside.

Obama is starting to lose confidence.

Confidence in himself and his advisors.

The ramifications of deepening recession are frightening him.

I can sense it when I watch him.

Any leader would be fearful.

 

lichum,

this is a bit off topic and maybe a bit conspiracy theory but it brings me to discussions held earlier.

 

Is Obama actually in control, or is he a front man?

If this is all his plan, and the plan is to drag the system down, then he will be confident as its happening, as its all according to plan.

 

If he's the front man, then he may be getting fearful. As the public unrest heightens, he will be the one they will try to lynch and he may be realizing this.

 

Just something to think about.

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View Postlichum,

this is a bit off topic and maybe a bit conspiracy theory but it brings me to discussions held earlier.

 

Is Obama actually in control, or is he a front man?

If this is all his plan, and the plan is to drag the system down, then he will be confident as its happening, as its all according to plan.

 

If he's the front man, then he may be getting fearful. As the public unrest heightens, he will be the one they will try to lynch and he may be realizing this.

 

Just something to think about.

 

Obama is a front man in the sense that he is the leader who proposes solutions and uses rhetoric to sell them.

Obama has a direction in which he wants to take the country.

He proposes and Congress legislates; "builds the roads" that will take us in that direction.

 

After listening to a spectrum of economic advice he will make a decision; he has that control.

 

Obama understands that acceleratng deterioration in the markets, economy and financial complex make people fearful.

These chaotic and uncertain conditions create a "do something" mindset.

These "something must be done" circumstances make people more accepting of legisaltion and government actions that depart from the more established ways; such departures can amount to radical shifts in the way things are done in the US. New rules, regulations and programs, along with increased taxation, can change the way we live our lives.

And not for the better.

 

 

Obama wants to change the relationship between government and the citizenry. The huge mess confronting us, and the world, in all its variety, affords Obama and his Democrat majority the chance to install this new relationship.

 

I believe Obama is knowingly saying things that will engender market reactions and citizen mindset that facilitate installation of the aforementioned new relationship between government and the people.

 

His aides and other Democrats go along with him when he makes those statements.

So I can understand how someone might think of this collaboration as a "conspiracy" to cause more uncertainty.

 

If Obama tries to go too far with his radical agenda there could be a backlash.

The US is borrowing and spending almost unimaginably huge sums of money for stimulus and other programs.

This new debt is heaped upon an already massive pile of debt.

Those expenditures will not bear fruit in proportion to their amount.

 

Obama and the Democrat majority can be blamed for a fruitless boondoggle and held to account for it in the next election.

They might get "lynched" in the next election by angry and disappointed voters.

 

Obama said that if his program fails he will be a one term President.

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Would trillions being spent by the Pentagon chock full of hidden budgets and the old switcheroo of multibillion dollar weapons systems qualify as sleight of hand?

 

Just curious.

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Obama wants to change the relationship between government and the citizenry. The huge mess confronting us, and the world, in all its variety, affords Obama and his Democrat majority the chance to install this new relationship.

 

Here is the problem though. We have a Constitution. He has no right or mandate to change the relationship between government and citizenry. His policies are throwing the system of checks and balances out the window.

 

If you accept that premise, then we are no longer a Nation founded on the principles of the Constitution. That makes him Tyrant Obama, supreme leader Obama. Public manipulator Obama. How is this any different than Chavez, who is making up rules as he goes along. Whats next? Since they control all 3 branches, they pass a bill saying Dems stay in power for life? President Obama can run for indefinite terms?

 

He, as President represents all the people in America and the Constitution, not just the Democrats.

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View PostHere is the problem though. We have a Constitution. He has no right or mandate to change the relationship between government and citizenry. His policies are throwing the system of checks and balances out the window.

 

If you accept that premise, then we are no longer a Nation founded on the principles of the Constitution. That makes him Tyrant Obama, supreme leader Obama. Public manipulator Obama. How is this any different than Chavez, who is making up rules as he goes along. Whats next? Since they control all 3 branches, they pass a bill saying Dems stay in power for life? President Obama can run for indefinite terms?

 

He, as President represents all the people in America and the Constitution, not just the Democrats.

 

 

Your talking crazy extremes which will never come to pass in the near future.Far right conspiracy drivel to scare the masses. Luckily there is not many who believe such falsehoods.

 

Now....... did president Bush and Co. do anything that Americans did`nt like and was unconstitutional? Just curious.

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View PostYour talking crazy extremes which will never come to pass in the near future.Far right conspiracy drivel to scare the masses. Luckily there is not many who believe such falsehoods.

 

Now....... did president Bush and Co. do anything that Americans did`nt like and was unconstitutional? Just curious.

 

Pot, meet kettle.

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View PostI prevented a rape today.

I changed my mind and took a cold shower instead.

I'm a hero.

 

 

View PostSee can't we all follow this fine citizen's example? Say no to rape, but yes to roofies...kooky.gif

 

Yo DO understand that was a parable I used to bring the people in the cheap seats up to speed on the lunacy of Obama's plan to save trillions of dollars by merely not adding those trillions to the budget over the next ten years. I was afraid if I said it straight out some people wouldn't get it. I guess I'll have to dig a little deeper.

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That partisan hack Charles Krauthammer. He just wants President Obama to fail. Oh and speaking of Rush Limabaugh have you heard what that fat stupid jerk has said now. He said Ted Kennedy....see how easy it was to get off topic? Don't let BHO pull a Jedi Mind Trick on you.cwm27.gif

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