Obama says anything that sounds good -- but there are some consistencies
Over the last few weeks, indeed since his victory at the polls, I have been listening to President Obama’s speeches quite regularly. I wasn’t surprised one bit at his ready exploitation of the Connecticut schools shooting. As one of his hacks, Emanuel Rahm, said a few months ago, “You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”
And more government control of the lives of American citizens is, as I can figure it, the priority of this president. He believes we are a tribe that he rules and whatever chance he finds he will use to make sure everyone does what he envisions is the proper thing to do. Give up your weapons, let the feds be the sole armed group in the country! Treat all wealth as public, collective, and basically abolish private property rights, mostly by way of the constant increase of taxation. Don’t respect anyone’s right to use and dispose of resources but assume full authority over these and set the priorities for what to do with them.
I suppose there is still some semblance of liberty left in the country–mostly having to do with the free flow of opinion and the permission to engage in a great variety of artistic expression (although judging by what kind of works seem to gain the approval of the elite media even this may reasonably be doubted).
If you check the president’s inauguration speech accepting his election to a second term as president of the country, there is in it evidence of a decisive tone of postmodernist political thinking, the road to confusing the public. That is to say, no rhyme or reason can be found in the political ideas Obama has chosen to lump together. There is in the pile a bit of this, a bit of that, a bit of yet something else–socialism, capitalism, fascism, authoritarianism, welfare statism, feudalism, and nearly every other identifiable political viewpoint.
It is almost as if he and his team is deliberately advancing an incoherent agenda, one that will leave the American people with no guide to what to expect from his administration of the American government. There certainly is no loyalty to the central element of the American political tradition, namely the doctrine of individual rights. Indeed, if anything, that is one feature completely missing from Mr. Obama’s political stew. We must all comply with his vision of a human community, a vision the centerpiece of which is that “we are all in it together,” that we are one huge tribe or hive of people who individually are hapless and indeed worthless. But even this collectivist political alternative is buried in mishmash so it’s hard to identify it and so it certainly doesn’t commit Mr. Obama to having to defend it with a coherent political argument.
The philosophical guidance to this kind of political thinking has had serious proponents, don’t get me wrong. There is nothing original about it. Indeed, it is a kind of chicken coming home to roost situation–the founders being the likes of the ancient sophists featured in Plato’s dialogues and the more recent irrationalists such as Paul Feyerabend (check his book Farewell to Reason) and Richard Rorty (whose essay “The Priority of Democracy to Philosophy” is very helpful essay for grasping Mr. Obama’s way of thinking in which the population’s unavoidably hotch potch viewpoint is endorsed as against the aim to forge a rational public philosophy).
I do not know if Mr. Obama has read all these and other irrationalist and post-modernist thinkers and consciously follows them but as a self-proclaimed (but much disputed) radical “pragmatist” the way he presents himself in his most recent political proclamations suggests very strongly that he is being deliberately obscure. Why?
My guess is that his goal of top down control of American society is taken by him to benefit from leaving his audience, indeed the entire American public, baffled as to just what is best in political matters.
The only explicit school of politics this approach comes close to is fascism in which the society’s leadership if left in the hands of a charismatic ruler, like Mussolini or Hugo Chavez. Do Mr. Obama’s supporters realize this about him and his ideas? I do not know.
The Collectivist Mind Game: Demonizing the Opposition
Most modern-day leftists in Western countries have abandoned the idea of a violent revolution, having replaced it with "the long march through the institutions" as part of the culture war to transform the society through cultural hegemony. Instead of commanding firing squads, they play mind games of manipulative illusions, in which the demonization of dissent plays a crucial role. The basic premise hasn't changed: as much as the statists want you to love them, they want you to hate their opponents even more.
Until a time when political opposition can be eliminated completely, having opponents can still be useful: you can steal their ideas, take advantage of their desire to help the economy, and blame them for any of your own failures. In the meantime, certain rules must be followed to control the public opinion and, through it, the opposition itself.
Maintain the perception of being constantly under attack. Don't examine the opponents' beliefs, nor answer their arguments. Discredit any media channels that offer them a platform. Enforce the following media template: the opposition is evil, treasonous, unfathomable, and psychotic. They can't be reasoned with. They are inspired by fascism and financed by a conspiracy of shady oligarchs. Defame their donors. Whatever the mischief you're planning to pull off, accuse them of doing it first; then proceed as planned, describing your actions as a necessary intervention. And ridicule, ridicule, ridicule!
This is what made it easy for Stalin to purge his opponents: by the time he charged them with treason, the orchestrated media coverage had already made them universally hated. Having purged all of his enemies, Stalin continued to manufacture the evidence of their presence. There came a time when even the true believers were being rounded up and forced to confess publicly about one or another fabricated "crime" against the people and the Party. Some did it to avoid torture, some to save their families, and some even cooperated out of the altruistic desire to support the illusion and keep everyone else's beautiful dream alive. Unfortunately for them, that beautiful dream required human sacrifice.
At the same time, Stalin used the only remaining high-ranking Jew in his government, Lazar Kaganovich, as a perpetual scapegoat. Himself a ruthless henchman who organized a number of purges, Kaganovich ended up serving in the capacity of an unpunishable bumbling idiot, a "token Jew," and a darkly comic relief. Implicitly blamed for one government blunder after another, this Joe Biden of Stalin's regime was moved from ministry to ministry only to be blamed again and reassigned to yet another top-level position. As expected, the people's reaction was a universal loathing and bewilderment: how can Comrade Stalin be so soft and trusting of this evil Jew? Kaganovich outlived them all; he died in 1991, among friends and family, at the age of 97.
Across the ocean, years later, the same rules still apply. The perception of a relentless struggle with the opposition must be permanent and persuasive. Even in the times of calm and prosperity the people must think that the opposition is holding them hostage and only the firm, wise guidance of the People's Leader is saving them from imminent ruin. When the opponents are too few, too weak, and too disoriented to put up a real fight, their power and influence must be exaggerated.
Ever since "crybaby" John Boehner became the GOP House Speaker, the media grotesquely overstated the effectiveness of his fruitless, anemic leadership. Among other things, this patent exaggeration allowed Obama to maintain his saintly image while shifting the responsibility for the staggering economy onto "Republican obstructionism."
The following quotes by "citizen journalists" exemplify the public outrage created by the media template of demonizing the opposition. Unlike the honed professionals who can mask their agenda with superficial objectivity, these amateurs let their emotions run wild without realizing that they are being played. Like children, they connect the preprinted dots and eagerly tell us what they see:
Opposition is anti-American: The Republican leaders have remained consistent with their agenda of obstructing the President clearly putting their party ahead of the American people.Just like painting by numbers doesn't make one an artist, actors or singers who are good at articulating prepared lines don't automatically become articulate thinkers. Being in the business of selling emotions rather than rational arguments, they connect the same old media dots as any other amateur -- but do it with extra flair and aplomb. Extrapolating the lines allows them to see horns on the head of the opposition. Voilà! They can't shut up about such an amazing insight.
Opposition is racist: How far do you think Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner and his cohorts in the House will go in their campaign to defeat America's first black President?
Opposition is grotesquely absurd: The clowns - Boehner and McConnell - ignored the needs of the nation to do what they thought was best for themselves . . . to solidify their positions of power and secure their own political futures by tearing down President Obama and America in the process.
Opposition is deceitful: In their effort to make President Obama look weak, Republicans played a dangerous game with the debt ceiling and in the process threw away America's triple-A credit rating... Those Republican obstructionists really know how to twist the facts to support the anti-Obama political campaign.
Opposition is undemocratic: They have essentially fought to block anything and everything the Democrats have proposed and offered nothing in the way of alternatives. So egregious is their barricade of democracy that they have no defense against charges of deliberate sabotage at the expense of American citizens.
Opposition is mind-boggling: Missing from President Obama's acceptance speech in Charlotte last Thursday is one potent argument: An attack on obstructionist Republicans in Congress. ... It's a mystery because a major reason the economy has not done better under Mr. Obama is that Republicans have blocked virtually every initiative he has proposed, even when the president, especially in the early months of his administration, tailored many of his proposals to attract Republican support.
Opposition is guilty of treason: If an enemy declared war on the American economy, the United States would spare no effort to remove that threat to its prosperity and national security. So it was with Osama Bin Laden... But when the Republican Party threatens ... to sabotage the U.S. economy if its debt ceiling demands are not met, the media instead calls that treason a "debate." ... And that's not politics as usual. That's treason.
Harry Belafonte even went as far as suggest that Obama should "work like a third world dictator and just put all these guys in jail" -- because, obviously, since the Republicans "are violating the American desire," the "only thing left for Barack Obama to do" is to pull a Stalin: praise Barack and jail the opposition.
Even if he said this in jest, Belafonte's call for political repressions is a logical extension of the ideas shared by many celebrities who have been swayed by and are now promoting the leftist cultural hegemony. That includes Woody Allen, who said this in an interview to a Spanish-language magazine: "It would be good... if [President Obama] could be dictator for a few years because he could do a lot of good things quickly."
This begs a question: if Obama is not a socialist, why do his supporters interpret his reelection as "the American desire" to establish a totalitarian dictatorship -- and think this would be a good thing? So much for "socialism with a human face."
No wonder the "hegemonized" Hollywood filmmakers (starting with Charlie Chaplin in The Great Dictator), can never truthfully depict either the Soviet or Nazi totalitarian regimes. Unable to fathom the motives of their fictional villains, they wind up supplanting the collectivist realities of socialism (be it national socialism or international socialism) with grotesque caricatures of improbable monsters, uncultured brutes, neurotic sociopaths, or sadistic, sexually repressed perverts. It never occurs to them that unspeakable crimes could be committed in the name of "the common good" by very ordinary, altruistic people -- out of an all too familiar desire to "do a lot of good things quickly" through dictatorial powers. Such a notion would be too terrifying, of course, because they might just recognize their own reflection in the mirror.
Though many of them may have seen this quote by C.S. Lewis, it is doubtful that their conditioned minds are capable of grasping its meaning: "Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive... [T]hose who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."
Their young audiences, deprived of adequate education and learning about history and current events from Hollywood movies and TV shows, will not recognize the symptoms of an encroaching totalitarianism either. Upon hearing a dissenter who disparages the benevolent guidance of the state, they will immediately recognize a stereotype that is being relentlessly demonized and dehumanized on their screens: the ignorant, close-minded, right-wing nut job. Chances are they will smugly ridicule him with the jokes they heard from their favorite media personalities. In another generation, they may as well feel morally obligated to report the dissenter to the authorities -- and be thrilled at the chance to partake in the historic mission of crushing the remnants of the evil reactionaries, even if they happen to be their parents.
Today's American intellectuals are retracing the steps of their Soviet predecessors in the early days of the socialist dictatorship. Having had hopes to see the workers' paradise in their lifetime, many came to regret their misguided enthusiasm, as they themselves fell victim to the popular illusions they helped to induce, when a mere slip of a tongue, a drunken remark, or an accusation by someone in the new generation of socialist intellectuals who wanted to take their job, wife, or apartment, led them to be lumped with any of the large assortment of the thoroughly demonized and dehumanized "enemies of the people."
There is only one way to redistribute wealth: human sacrifice, with optional variations of manipulative mind games to ease the pain and maintain control over the population. All those who claimed they can do it differently were doomed, sooner or later, to retrace the same path.
Phil Isn't the One Who Needs to Apologize
Please tell me this is some sort of a sick joke: Phil Mickelson is a professional golfer. He makes boatloads of money. Millions. What’s more, he makes boatloads of money for a lot of other people in the process, including generating massive contributions to charity. He’s a jobs creator and an engine of economic growth, as are many other pro golfers and athletes.
So Mickelson takes a look at his income tax burden, and is displeased. First we have Obama and the Democrats riding roughshod over the GOP and enacting a 4.6% tax increase on the evil rich. Then we have the voters of California doing what the voters of California have been doing – shooting themselves in the foot – by passing a ballot measure to raise state income taxes on the dastardly rich by another 3.32%. Now Mickelson is facing an income tax burden somewhere between 62 and 63%.
Mickelson is a smart guy, and he hires other smart guys to help him make economic decisions. These other smart guys undoubtedly told Phil to put his clubs in a bag and get the hell out of California. Do what most of the other pro golfers have done, more to Florida. No state income tax. Right there his tax burden goes down by 13.3%, not to mention the advantages in estate taxes and ad valorem property taxes. Trust me. I know.
So Mickelson suggests that he is going to have to make some “drastic changes” due to “what’s gone on in the last few months politically” and being “targeted both federally and by the state.” And now – guess what? Phil Mickelson is the personification of evil for suggesting he’s going to do what tens of thousands of Californians have done … cast his next vote with his feet. Mickelson gets hammered by the ObamaMedia and finally sidles up to the microphone and apologizes. He apologizes --- please sit down for this – to anyone he might have “upset or insulted.”
Whisky Tango Foxtrot!
How upside down can things be in America? Mickelson is being called “greedy.” Really? So now we define “greed” as wanting to keep more of the money you earn? If that’s greed, what do you call the moochers who go to the poll to vote for the politician that’s going to take that money away from you and give it to them? Oh wait! I know! Obama voters!
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