Style Over Substance

Full Disclosure: I am a conservative Republican. I do not like Barack Obama. Mainly because he supports a lot of liberal policies that I disagree with. So far, on some issues, he’s not as much of a train wreck as I thought he would be (see Iraq, Gitmo – his actions, not the rhetoric – and his education secretary). On others he’s worse (see the Stimulus, the Omnibus bill, his budget and “not letting a crisis go to waste”).

Here’s the thing; all politicians are hypocrites to some extent. They make promises that they know they won’t be able to keep. They say one thing to one group of voters and another to the next group. And sometimes politicians aren’t hypocrites but have to go back on a promise for practical, pragmatic reasons (see George H W Bush on “read my lips” and Obama on upholding a lot of Bush’s War on Terror policies). But Obama seems to pursue hypocrisy in such an outrageous and unapolagetic fashion. Allow me to provide some examples.

Obama says that the country is facing the worst crisis the US has seen since 1932, the Great Depression. We must act now or face the collapse of the US and world economies. Then his advisers take him aside and tell him to cut the doom and gloom rhetoric. Now Obama says that we’ll see 4% growth by the end of this year? That (Is this Obama channeling McCain?) the “fundamentals of the economy are strong”. Hmmm. Sounds like maybe old Rahm wasn’t kidding about that “take advantage of a crisis” thing. Seems like Obama was using fear to drum up for the Stimulus that doesn’t actually stimulate anything so that he could get all his New New Deal shit passed.

Under Obama, the federal deficit will increase in his first two years more than it did in Bush’s eight. And yet we have to hear him pontificate about fiscal responsibility and how we can’t spend money we don’t have anymore.

Larry Summers, Obama’s chief economic adviser, on Sunday said “we are a country of law, the government can’t simply abrogate the contracts” about AIG handing out bonuses despite the fact that it just took over $170 billion from the taxpayers. And yet apparently the Obama administration has no problem “abrogating” thousands of mortgage contracts with their little mortgage cramdown scheme.

When Obama was Candidate Obama he was all about helping veterans. In fact he said the following:

“When soldiers return from fighting, they deserve nothing but the best in medical care, he said. More needs to be done, he said, to understand the effects of post traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury on soldiers returning from war. We’ll have to keep our sacred trust with our veterans and fully fund the (Veterans Administration). We’ll have to look after our wounded warriors, whether they’re suffering from wounds seen or unseen.”

Now it appears that part of fulfilling that sacred trust is sticking veterans for the medical expenses on injuries they incurred while defending their country in Iraq. Wow!

The list goes on and on but I won’t. I will mention finally the fact that despite all his campaign rhetoric about a new kind of politics, Obama, when looking for people to appoint to his cabinet and other top government positions, appears never to have met a tax dodger, Washington insider or lobbyist that he didn’t like.


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