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Friday, April 13, 2012

Who Is This Guy Pretending To Be President?

By Andrew Malcolm


Has anyone seen Barack Obama recently?

You know, the optimistic hopeful fellow with the charming smile who promised so many positive things four and five years ago, how he was going to change the harsh, partisan tone of our nation's capital and bring the country together as its first African American president.

Even allowing for political hyperbole, his empty resume and the invisible witnesses from the past, Obama was such a Real Good Talker that even some who didn't vote for him still had hope that he could change some things for the better in what seemed a sadly-splintered society.

WTH did that Obama go? Have you listened recently to this Chicago Doppelganger who's replaced him? This 2012 Obama is strident and mean, even deceitful, divisive, telling half-truths after half-truths. He's using Air Force One as his personal Brinks truck with wings to collect cash all over the country, disguising the trips as official.

He tries to intimidate the Supreme Court, an equal branch of government, when its thinking might stray from his. He distorts history, and if no one calls him, then it's true. If he's caught, this Obama says you obviously mis-heard. Because, as everyone knows, he could never mis-speak.

The economy, like everything else adverse, is someone else's fault. But if only we borrowed and spent a trillion dollars, unemployment would stay beneath 8%, Obama promised. It soared far above. It's still above. No apology. No acknowledgment. Now, he hails any dip as proof of progress when, in fact, it comes because so many just give up seeking work.

He chastises House Republicans for their draconian budget when his Senate Democrats haven't written a single one in three years; so, the fiscal drift abides. And wait till he exaggerates the frightening things the GOP wants to do, instead of presenting his own ideas.

Obama claims credit for the bottom half of a pipeline he had nothing to do with, when he killed the top half. He brags that domestic oil drilling is up when the part he's responsible for is down.

He says no one should ever go to Las Vegas on the taxpayer's dime. Then his wife, daughters and entourage do just that.

This year's Obama talks of the importance of windmills, algae and green energy, but he takes a 17-SUV motorcade to a photo op with an electric car. He lambasts oil companies for getting the same legal tax incentives (he calls them "subsidies") that other companies receive, hoping to aim anger at them so voters won't notice that gas prices have doubled since his inauguration.

Take this Tuesday. The 2012 Obama flew to Florida for an official presidential speech on the economy, then three fundraisers. That way his campaign only pays a fraction of Air Force One's $182,000 per flight hour cost. All presidents do that, though none have done near as many.

But read the four speeches. You can't tell which is official and which is political. They're all political. He can't be a real president for one lousy speech? Why the phony presidential fig leaf? To chintz the United States of America out of a few thousand bucks when he plans to raise a billion?

The Buffet Rule? Americans have always admired the successful. The only thing wrong with rich people is we're not one of them -- yet. But now he's pitting most of us against rich folks, which is him, come to think of it. The only way he's bringing us together now is to resent their paying a smaller legal rate because theirs is a different kind of income.

And speaking of taxes, whch are due Monday, how can the president of the United States allow 36 of his own White House aides to fall $833,000 behind in their tax payments?

How is that what the first Obama offered, making him an example of American success? (Hint: His GOP opponent is far richer than Obama and earned it the old-fashioned way through work, not fronting books.)

OK, Obama wants political skirmishes all over on any petty thing so people won't notice the absence of any conceivably positive record to run on. Risky when Americans start paying attention. But if that's his only card. It's all the Republicans' fault, of course. That's the candidate in him, the one that prefers performing for adoring crowds instead of performing Oval Office duties.

But whatever happened to the president part? The leader. The principled man who through his personal story, skills and charm was going to inspire, convince, cajole Americans as diverse as himself to work together for a common national success? That official part has merged with the political, like the four Florida speeches. Now, he's just trying to fool everybody about everything.

In a way, this could be good news for Republicans. The duplicate Ernst Blofeld makes Mitt Romney look like Mr. Rogers.

But without real presidential leadership, Obama's hand-picked harpie atop the Democratic National Committee feels empowered to assign a hired gun to dismiss his opponent's wife, the cancer-surviving mother of five sons, as someone who's never worked a day in her life. Are they that scared already?

Seriously? We're going to pit now one kind of working woman against another? The guy who talks about having so many women in his life isn't going to fire the women responsible for that? He thinks American women will buy this stuff?

OK, Obama was raised by grandparents because he didn't always have a stay-at-home mom or dad. But this is a nation, not a dysfunctional family or a windy city party where factions are left to their own wards and Solyndras.

Obama is the guy who said his own wife was off limits politically, the guy whose mother-in-law has resided since Day One in the White House at taxpayer expense as a live-in nanny so the first lady can campaign for money and healthy foods? But a woman who stays at home with her kids at no public expense can be trashed because of her party?

We were never exactly fond of the Original Obama. But we'd take him any day over the twilight character that inhabits the Oval Office now.
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