Views on the News – 6/30/2012
By: David Coughlin
Most of what we know about Barack Obama comes from his two autobiographies, but his literary fabrications are now being revealed as huge embellishments or completely fictional. It’s becoming increasingly clear that President Obama is not burdened with too heavy a commitment to honesty. This is hardly a shock about any politician, but revelations of dishonesty hurt some more than others. Announce that Bill Clinton has been speaking falsely, and it hits the ears with as much force as the news that birds fly, fish swim and dogs lick their own nether regions. Obama was supposed to be different, a “lightworker,” an ocean tamer and cynicism slayer. In short, he was supposed to be too good to be true, as it turns out he was. Obama has been less than honest about many things: he lied about his cancer-stricken mother being denied coverage for her pre-existing condition, he was close to the Reverend Jeremiah Wright and former terrorist Bill Ayers, he was a member of the socialist New Party. In the spirit of charity, some of the lies can be chalked up, at least in part, to fanciful family narratives: his maternal grandfather fought in Patton’s army and liberated Nazi death camps, his paternal grandfather was tortured by the British imperialists in Kenya, and his Indonesian step-grandfather was killed by the Dutch while fighting for independence. Unfortunately none of that is true. What I find more interesting are the lies Obama tells not so much about himself, but about society. In “Dreams from My Father,” Obama tells readers that he struggled with racism and racial alienation all his life. When Barack Obama wrote “Dreams From My Father,” he probably never dreamed of becoming President of the United States. He was a product of campus culture, at Harvard, Columbia and the University of Chicago, and his vignettes of racial struggle were in some respects the coin of his realm. Later, when he entered the national political scene, he discovered this currency was accepted by much of the mainstream media as well. No doubt Obama experienced racial animosity in his life, but not enough to fill a memoir with true examples. No doubt life had been unfair to him, but not so unfair as to keep him from Harvard, the Senate, or the White House. He has lived a charmed life in almost every regard, but the truth is not as compelling as the legend. One pattern holds from beginning to end of the tale: When things go wrong for the young Barack, the truth must be bent to show that it’s somebody else’s fault. Young Barry Obama had the right stuff as a basketball player but he claimed he was denied by the smallness of his coach’s vision. Older Barack Obama, likewise, has the right stuff, but voters, or the Republicans, or maybe the Europeans, are too small to recognize his greatness. The truth of the matter has nothing to do with it since his record can’t be hidden and it does not meet his inflated expectations.
(“Obama’s Truthiness” by Jonah Goldberg dated June 22, 2012 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/jonahgoldberg/2012/06/22/obamas_truthiness )
The left feeds on fear since it does not try to persuade, but rather to excite or to terrify, but over the last couple of decades, conservatives have learned that the left is a toothless predator which relies upon its snarls and roars more than any real power to punish. The maledictions of leftism are familiar and suggest racial prejudice, misogyny, religious fanaticism, anti-social greed, indifference to pollution, etc. In the two decades since then, conservatives have increasingly fought back directly against those institutions of leftism which are used to shut us up or compel us to say and to do things we do not believe. It is high time that we see leftism as a toothless tiger which is slow, self-centered, and silly. The latest Gallup Poll showed that conservatives outnumber liberals in every state except Massachusetts. The left tried to keep Fox News out of cable markets, even though it was wildly popular with viewers, and then tried to blame Fox News for being biased. The profound absurdity of three or four notional “competitors” all accusing in unison a single other competitor of being unfair honestly seems to have missed leftists. Now the dwindling pool of committed leftists who still watch establishment media news or read its shrinking body of magazines and newspapers are increasingly ignored by ordinary Americans. In the last few years, this resistance to leftist bullying has extended directly into the political arena. Sarah Palin shrugged off the left’s noxious venom and proceeded with her message. Chris Christie ran a campaign for governor of New Jersey which shrugged off the angry attacks of public employees’ unions, and then Christie proceeded to do what he promised to do. Scott Walker has taken these unions on every more directly, taking away the automatic deduction of union dues by public employees’ unions and so likely ending their power forever in Wisconsin. The salient fact is that we need fear the left no more and we don’t need to listen to their media to get our news. As states pass laws to end voter fraud, we have forced leftist into solemnly warning that requiring a photo I.D. to vote is racist. We must, of course, undo the damage of eighty years of leftism run amok: we must stop the momentum of collectivist statism, restore the Judeo-Christian values which form our national culture, restore power to state governments, reduce the mountain of government debt, and fix the other myriad disasters of leftism. The key point is we should not view leftists today as a wolf which makes us afraid, but rather as a babbling parrot which make us laugh.
(“Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Left?” by Bruce Walker dated June 24, 2012 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/06/whos_afraid_of_the_big_bad_left.html )
I hope Barack Obama lives to a very old age so he can look back at the wreckage of the Democrat Party and the senility of Liberalism that has wreaked such havoc on the world stage. Liberalism is a zombie philosophy, devoid of any connection with reality, but still able to cause great harm. The ranks of Liberals have continued to thin over the decades. The Reagan Presidency in the 1980s gave momentum to the rise of conservatism that had begun in the 1950s but, no matter whether a Republican was in office or not, the politics of the nation still reflect Liberal ideas and agendas. The government and the debt continue to grow. Obama is the ultimate culmination of the “Infantile Leftists”, reflecting the immaturity of the 1960’s generation of whom the Occupy Wall Street children are the latest pathetic gasp of a failed political movement. The “Occupiers” tried to grab center stage to demand free everything as if working for a living does not matter. The mainstream media quickly lost interest in their antics along with the rest of the nation. Al Gore, John Kerry, and John Edwards are all examples of the “Infantile Leftists” whom the Democrat Party put forth to lead the nation. Bill Clinton was an example of “Sophomoric Exhibitionism” along with Hillary Clinton in her bid for the Presidency. In time, Clinton left a legacy of welfare reform, free trade, and balanced budgets, all Republican policies. The reality is that the Clinton Presidency was saved by the 1994 election that returned the power in Congress to the Republican Party. Even then, Clinton’s womanizing got him impeached for the trail of lies he left in its wake. He beat the rap and, in true Liberal fashion, has gone on to be one of Democrat Party’s “elder statesmen.” While both Clintons created false biographies of their lives the penultimate of such autobiographical excess is Barack Obama, the “Stealth Socialist.” Obama’s narcissism is impossible to ignore. He accepts responsibility for nothing that has happened on his watch. It was “George W. Bush’s fault” until that line became a joke, along with his dependence on the ever-present tele-prompters. Politically, Gallup, Pew Research Center, and Harris polls have documented that the number of Americans who self-identify as conservatives or right-leaning moderates, often called independents, is in the ascendancy. Every Liberal program introduced prior to and since World War II in response to the Great Depression and as part of Lyndon Johnson’s “War on Poverty”, is now in some stage of failure. Only conservatives can reform these broken programs to ensure solvency. In Obama’s first term, he has engineered the near collapse of the nation’s economy and only his defeat will offer an opportunity to draw back from that cliff. Now, with the exception of the hardcore thirty percent of true believers, one can only hope that Liberalism has been sufficiently destroyed by the feckless hand of Barack Obama. Obama must live for many years to watch his legacy emerge and to reap the same well-earned derision that, until now, has been Jimmy Carter’s, but Liberalism will not be declared dead, because zombies will continue to pop up where you least expect them. (“Why Liberals are Like Zombies” by Alan Caruba dated June 21, 2012 published by Canada Free Press at http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/47533 )
The Supreme Court decision upholding ObamaCare only galvanizes the opposition to repeal by Governor Romney and the Republicans, so now we need the proper healthcare bill to replace it. There are many possible solutions to alleviate our health care dilemma. It is time to reiterate them, with some adjustments. The basic mantra for health care reform is “Keep it simple, stupid:”
· Abolish all state mandates. Let the market dictate what is covered.
· Allow health insurance coverage to cross state lines.
· Allow affinity groups to offer insurance to their members. This would allow churches, synagogues, AAA, AARP, and even Costco to offer health care insurance to their members and the sheer numbers from membership will bring competition from the different carriers to provide the most coverage for the least cost.
· Allow catastrophic or major illness insurance. By removing forced state mandates, you will allow very reasonable catastrophic insurance policies.
· Allow physicians to be just that. If a physician is a “provider” for a particular health insurance plan, then whatever he or she orders must be accepted by that plan.
The above five constitute the “easy” solutions, but there are also the hard ones:
· We must remove the Vegas-style gambling on medical law suits. The simplicity of the English system, the “loser pays” system, would be best for America. Accountability must be forced, but if you sue and lose, you pay the cost.
· Allow re-importation of drugs. It is simple and it is safe.
· Shorten medical school to six total years. Offer state medical schools scholarships in return for two to three years of service: two years if served after basic training (general practice), or three years after specialty training.
While these steps may not “cure” what ails all of health care, they will allow the freedom of choice that Americans are entitled to because there is no one-size-fits-all answer, and now the election is on the critical path to deliver enough Republicans to repeal ObamaCare and replace it with something that addresses the real healthcare problems.
(“If ObamaCare Dies, What’s Next for Health Care?” by Peter Weiss dated June 26, 2012 published by PJ Media at http://pjmedia.com/blog/if-obamacare-dies-whats-next-for-health-care/ )
The Supreme Court decision on Arizona’s most recent immigration law is a welcome endorsement of what is already a standard best practice among many local law enforcement agencies around the country; namely, checking the immigration status of offenders or suspects if they can’t promptly show they are present in the United States legally. The Court ruled unanimously that requiring local officers to take this step is not necessarily “mandated racial profiling” nor a civil rights violation, as critics had claimed, thus upholding a key part of the state’s effort to restore the rule of law and deter illegal settlement in the face of federal neglect. Arizona did not get a green light from the court, however, to prosecute minor immigration offenses as state offenses, which would have enabled them to step into the vacuum of enforcement created by the Obama administration’s minimalist enforcement policies. Eleven of the 14 sections of SB 1070 are left standing, clearly a win for Arizona. This latest ruling, together with last year’s blessing of Arizona’s requirement for every employer to use E-Verify to check the status of newly hired workers, should encourage other states to act. Legislators now have the guidance they’ve been waiting for to write bills that will be effective in this arena and survive legal challenges from anti-enforcement groups. The part of the law that most observers had focused on, melodramatically dubbed by journalists as the “show me your papers” provision, is the part that the court endorsed. It requires Arizona law enforcement officers to make a reasonable attempt to determine a person’s immigration status during a “lawful stop, detention, or arrest” if there is a reasonable suspicion “that the person is an alien and is unlawfully present in the United States.” Arizona has enormous crime problems and violence that relate to illegal immigration, and inadequate border control, including alien smuggling, drug trafficking, kidnappings, vehicle theft, and money laundering. Now, with local officers checking on status, criminal aliens are much less likely to slip through the cracks and much more likely to be sent home. This will prevent future crimes, spare future victims, and save taxpayer money. Immigration enforcement critics have insisted that the law “mandates racial profiling,” but the law explicitly forbids racial profiling and it permits the status checks only in the context of a legitimate law enforcement encounter. They must have detained them for another infraction, and must have “reasonable suspicion” of illegal status before they can make the immigration inquiry, which is even more stringent than what federal law already allows. It affirms that police and sheriffs may, and may be required, to ask offenders about their immigration status, and that immigration status is not something that anyone is entitled to keep secret, like your religion or your favorite color. Now many more illegal aliens will not want to risk arrest and removal by driving without a license, breaking traffic laws, or using false documents. Arizonans will not have to wait for federal agents to find and remove them, because the illegal immigrants will continue filtering home on their own. Now that the Supreme Court has provided a road map for permissible state immigration legislation, other states are sure to try to replicate this successful formula.
(“SCOTUS Decision Will Help States Chart Course on Immigration Enforcement” by Jessica M. Vaughan dated June 26, 2012 published by PJ Media at http://pjmedia.com/blog/scotus-decision-will-help-states-chart-course-on-immigration-enforcement/ )
Gold is valuable because of its singularity and its scarcity, because of where it’s located and the struggles that must be undertaken to reach it, and marriage is like gold since it too is rare and hard to find. Because of these factors, we buy gold bracelets, rings, and necklaces. Some investors even buy gold bars and coins, as there is intrinsic value in the genuine article. Of course, there are gold imitations, made to look and shine like gold, and they are used to cover the outside of bracelets, rings, or necklaces in order to make them look real, but in time, the imitation gold begins to tarnish or fade, or a jeweler who knows the real McCoy from an imposter takes a look at it and immediately recognizes that it’s not the real thing. My point is simple: gold is gold and we’re willing to pay sometimes exorbitant prices for it because nothing else compares to it. In this same way, marriage is marriage, and there isn’t anything else like it. Western Civilization has defended and promoted it for millennia because of its singularity and its scarcity: singular because it is between a man and woman and scarce because it represents the most fundamental earthly relationship into which two human beings can enter. Marriage produces families and as a man and his wife procreate and raise children who benefit beyond measure from the presence of a mother and father, the genuine article pays dividends that have upheld our culture till now. Like gold, marriage has it imitators and although these imitators pretend to be families, to procreate, and to nurture children in a way that a man and his wife have nurtured them for millennia, experience and close examination quickly demonstrate the difference between imposters and the real McCoy. The imposters cannot procreate, nor do children benefit from being raised by a man and a man or a woman and a woman as they benefit from being raised by husband and wife. Like imitation gold, these attempts to duplicate marriage both eventually and immediately reveal that they are not the genuine article. Which brings me to my last point: As efforts are exerted to convince more and more people that the imitation gold is as good as the real thing, the value once derived from the singularity and scarcity of real gold is necessarily diminished (if not in reality, at least in practice). This same diminishment takes place with marriage when the real McCoy is reworked and redefined so as to include the union of a man and a man or a woman and a woman. As these imitations are accepted as “real,” they necessarily reduce the singularity and scarcity of the real article, of marriage, and therefore harm its value. Not everything that glitters is gold, nor is every relationship that shares a house a “family,” but in either case, if we trade the genuine article for an imposter, we end up with nothing but fool’s gold.
(“Like Gold, Marriage is the Genuine Article” by Alan Sears dated June 26, 2012 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/alansears/2012/06/26/like_gold_marriage_is_the_genuine_article )
David Coughlin is a political pundit, editor of the policy action planning web site “Return to Common Sense,” and an active member of the White Plains Tea Party. He retired from IBM after a short career in the U.S. Army. He currently resides with his wife of 40 years in Hawthorne, NY. He was educated at West Point (Bachelor of Science, 1971) and the University of Alabama in Huntsville (Masters, Administrative Science, 1976).