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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Obama Is Temperamentally Unfit For Office

I've had a chance to read Obama's budget speech, and have seen clips on television.

I was right in my anticipation that Obama would play the blame Bush game, and that he would demonize the "Top 2%," and he did.  With gusto.

But even I could not have expected the coarse tone of the speech. More than anything, it reminded me of Alan Grayson's speech about how Republicans want people "to die quickly."

Obama set up a series of outrageous arguments that trying to restructure failing programs which are bankrupting the nation reflected a desire By Republicans to leave multiple tens of millions of people "to fend for themselves."

This was a fundamentally dishonest speech, as Paul Ryan, tha author of the plan attacked by Obama, explained (h/t HotAir):

Barack Obama is temperamentally unfit to be President, someone who is incapable of getting out of campaign mode even on issues of great national importance.

(added) This was a moment when Obama could have proven that he was the uniter he claimed to be not a divider, when he could have set forth an alternative plan without demeaning Republicans.  No one could have expected Obama to stand there and say that he would agree to the Ryan plan, but no one should have expected a full frontal assault on the motives and humanity of those with whom he has policy disagreements.  If Obama had signaled a readiness to reach across the aisle, to seek common ground without guaranteeing an outcome, he would have been presidential.  Instead, there were just a few throw away lines about compromise at the end of a long screed.

If ever there were a time we needed someone able to act presidential, this was the moment, when everyone agrees we face a debt crisis.  Yet instead of hearing a President, we heard a candidate.

Obama did what he did on health care; he not only closed the door to serious compromise, he slammed it shut and double-locked the door.

Update:  Charles Krauthammer's reaction:
“I thought it was a disgrace,” he said. “I rarely heard a speech by a president so shallow, so hyper-partisan and so intellectually dishonest, outside the last couple of weeks of a presidential election where you are allowed to call your opponent anything short of a traitor. But, we’re a year-and-a-half away from Election Day and it was supposed to be a speech about policy. He didn’t even get to his own alternative until more than halfway through the speech. And when he did, he threw out numbers suspended in mid-air with nothing under them with all kinds of goals and guidelines and triggers that mean nothing. The speech was really about and entirely an attack on the [Rep. Paul] Ryan plan.”
And Clive Crook (who does not like the Ryan plan) in The Atlantic:
The speech was more notable for its militant--though ineffectual--hostility to Republican proposals than for any fresh thinking of its own. It was a waste of breath.
And none of this should come as a surprise, as I have been documenting for over two years:

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  1. He is such a nightmare, he is completely incapable of doing his job unless his job description is to demonize anyone and everyone who does not shill for him or fall in lockstep behind him.

  2. Correct me if I'm wrong but didn't the Democrat Health care bill CUT medicare and medicaid by 500 billion dollars?

    Why are the Conservatives so silent about the lies these people tell.

    They should go in for an interview and then go off on the Reporter/reporterette and the lies that they have/will/are told/telling.

    This gallant and genteel attitude on the part of Republicans has got to stop or they will find themselves as done and dead as chivalry. (dead as in over, kaput, no longer in existence. Not a threat of bodily harm.)

  3. Well Jakee, Ryan took the gloves off in his response to the speech. We need more like Ryan.

  4. That's how ALL community organizers talk. It just sounds better out in the street using a bullhorn.

    And if you've never watched one of Hugo Chavez' Sunday yakathon "Alo Presidente", you should. He uses the same tactics of blaming his own ministers and politicians for all of his failures while lecturing the country about the obvious that they already understand but wish Chavez did.

    The main difference is Obama is lazy and needs a teleprompter (still misspeaks or gets lost as happened again today) while Chavez can speak extemporaneously for hours never missing a beat and often breaking out into song. And all of Obama's speeches follow the same structure of lecturing about the obvious, demonizing his opponents and reading a letter from a citizen to make a point.

  5. The President’s proposal is a trap meant to ensnare the gullible and ignorant. It is baited with altruistic mush and Marxist fantasy. It is reminiscent of the proposal offered to steel-maker Hank Reardon in “Atlas Shrugged” by bureaucrat Tinky Holloway (“a slim, slouching man who looked like a rat-faced tennis player”):

    “Our Plan Is really very simple,” said Tinky Holloway, striving to prove it by the gaily bouncing simplicity of his voice. “We'll lift all restrictions from the production of steel and every company will produce all it can, according to its ability. But to avoid the waste and danger of dog-eat-dog competition, all the companies will deposit their gross earnings into a common pool, to be known as the Steel Unification Pool, in charge of a special Board. At the end of the year, the Board will distribute these earnings by totaling the nation's steel output and dividing it by the number of open-hearth furnaces in existence, thus arriving at an average which will be fair to all-and every company will be paid according to its need. The preservation of its furnaces being its basic need, every company will be paid according to the number of furnaces it owns.”

    You need only a modicum of economic common sense to understand that Tinky’s proposal is a recipe for society-wide poverty, Soviet Union-style. Yet, this is the “progressive vision of our society” that Tinky Obama “truly believes in.”

    “Tempermentally unfit?” "A disgrace?"

    How about "Marxist delusional?"

    (Does anyone else believe that Tinky delivered this speech to an audience of college kids so its tone could be evermore paternalistic, arrogant and condescending?)

  6. "Tinky" Obama. President Tinky. I wonder if that could catch on?

  7. I don't think I have ever been so worried for my country. I wonder how far away do I need to move, but which civilized country will be safe from the impending disaster. Yes Obama is bad, the repubs are only a small fraction better. How could a patriotic congressmen vote for the Ryan plan, when it's only a third of what's needed to stave off disaster??? Yet they vote the obama/bohner budget?? Don't these people love their country? Why would they heave such poisonous debt down our throats? Doesn't our country exist for the benefit of everyone not just the elderly and the poor?

    it's amazing it's like they want to be the last congress of the first american republic.

  8. Obama was throwing out some red meat to his radical leftist base in anticipation of the next presidential election cycle. Considering Obama has been in perpetual election campaign mode since early 2008, it can never be too early to feed the followers some tasty tidbits to keep them hungry for more of the same in the months to come.

    However you wish to label Obama, he is, at the very least, a statist determined to expand the roll of government in all aspects of human endeavor. Politicians that support that concept become part of the growing elitist class in America and Obama's narcissism leads him to seek the very pinnacle of such as commander-in-chief of all elitists. Obama would be king if he could only give another momentous speech of epic proportions to the peons so they could really understand his magnificence to lead us all to his promised land.

    As 19th-century economist Frederic Bastiat put it: "Government is that fiction whereby everybody believes he can live at the expense of somebody else."

  9. BHO = MOMMO (Man of Many Missed Opportunities)

  10. Obama is losing moderates and independents by the state load and with speeches like this one will continue to do so.
    At this rate the GOP candidate will be able to campaign as "I'm not Obama" and win.

  11. It is the verbal tactic used on ghetto streetcorners by rabble rousers to fire up their listeners. My question is, why does it play so well with so many of better educated Americans.

    What scares me is that so many Americans don't reject his diatribes out of hand.

    He will continue with the politics of divisiveness because it works.

  12. I come here just for the laughs.

    1. Torture is Constitutional

    2. Government provied health care Unconstitutional

    3. Indefinite Detentions Constitutional

    4. Child Labor Laws Unconstitutional

    Amazing how all these interpretations fit a certain political ideology.


  13. So accurately describing the likely practical effects of a policy proposal that would gut a key piece of the social safety net for seniors while cutting taxes for the wealthy once again is a "full frontal assault on the motives and humanity" of the people proposing the policy?

    This is an especially rich complaint given the "full frontal assault on the motives and humanity" of President Obama on this site and from conservatives generally.

    In any event, I would be curious to know in what way the Ryan plan does not qualify as "campaign mode" and "red meat to his radical [right-wing] base" given that it has less than zero chance of every being enacted.

  14. There is no way to politely describe what happened to US finances between 2000 and 2008.

  15. "Amazing how all these interpretations fit a certain political ideology."

    Why do you find that amazing? I came up with three theories how that can happen, and I wasn't even trying.