Saturday, May 9, 2009

From the Politics of “Hope” and “Change” to a Culture of “Fear”

Remember the rhetoric of the 2008 Presidential campaign? Barack Obama was all about “Hope” and “Change,” something or someone you can “Believe” in. And Obama’s opposition was not so much John McCain as it was about no more George W. Bush. But Barack Obama will forget the past; he is all about the future. He would bring a fresh perspective to Washington, no more bitter partisan wrangling.

My how soon we forget our campaign promises and rhetoric. Even before Obama took the Oath of Office, he was telling Congressional Republicans that he had “won” the election and wasn’t going to take “no” for an answer. And he has taken this same approach several times since taking office. His Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, was even more direct telling Republicans they could go you-know-what themselves. Yes, we were warned, and now it has come true; we do indeed have Chicago-style politicians running the country. So much for the promise of “Hope” and “Change.”

Our first serving of Obama “Hope” was an endless diatribe about the economic catastrophe this country would face if Congress did not pass the stimulus bill, the contents of which no one knew. A bill that in fact today is still full of discoveries.

Another promise in the 2008 campaign of “Hope” was that our government would be more transparent. Obama said the American people would be given 48 hours to review the content of every piece of enacted legislation before President Obama would sign it into law. We are left still hoping for any opportunity to review any enacted legislation!

Throughout the campaign and after his election was secured, Obama talked about moving the country forward and not dwelling on the past. At least, until he decided to selectively release memorandums with the express purpose of impugning the Bush/Cheney Administration. What about the “high road” you ask? Well I guess they missed that fork in the road that would lead to “Change” and took the path more easily traveled.

Despite all the rhetoric of “Hope” and “Change,” what Obama knows all too well is that “Hope” doesn’t sell and “Change” is hard. But, “Fear” is a commodity that enables extraordinary things to happen and provides the opportunity to foist a tired old socialist agenda on an unsuspecting population. Jamie Whitten, long time Democrat Chair of the House Appropriations Committee, was known for having said (and I paraphrase), Every disaster presents an opportunity. In essence, if you want to make sweeping change or spend inordinate amounts of money on things nobody would normally support, then you need a disaster, preferably a natural disaster, and an emergency aid bill.

Despite all the fearful rhetoric and doom and gloom, the current “Recession” does not even begin to compare to the Great Depression. In fact, it doesn’t even measure up to several recessions experienced by the US since the seventies. And when the banking industry is on the verge of recovering and wants to pay back the US Treasury, then the Administration whips up a Stress Test, tells Americans their banks are still too weak to survive on their own, and quickly tries to convert the non-voting government stock to common stock. I can hardly wait to hear the dower view from on high when the White House reacts to the fact that many experts believe the housing market may have bottomed out and could be on the upswing. But, if you want to hood wink the American people and Congress into passing a record breaking deficit spending packages of unknown content and make policy changes under the cover of darkness, “Fear” wins over “Hope” and “Change” every time.

And when you can’t whip up enough economic frenzy, then shift the attention back on the evil Bush/Cheney Administration. Or throw in a pandemic influenza virus, or hope for some spring flooding, or a really extreme tornado season. And don’t forget, hurricane season is right around the bend.

In matters not that we never have seen the “Annual” Katrina event the global warmists predicted disturbingly after the 2005 hurricane season. And, even though most Americans don’t believe in global warming, or if it exists that humans are the cause of climate change, the Obama Administration is working overtime to build up the “Fear” of global warming, or climate change which conveniently gives the alarmists an opportunity to blame any weather anomaly or disaster on mankind.

All of these man-made crises, whether the economy, the climate, or global conflict, present ripe opportunities for mischievous, even devastatingly bad policy and law. But, when one has an agenda to dramatically expand the roll of government and move the country closer to socialism, “Hope” and “Change” won’t get the job done. So I guess FDR was right, maybe even prophetic, when he said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Be afraid, very afraid. And “Hope” the young people who voted for “Change” in 2008 will see through the charade and have an equal appetite for real “Hope” and “Change” in the 2010 and 2012 elections.

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