A.J. DiCintio
Obama's most important record
By A.J. DiCintio
April 30, 2011

The controversy over the president's birthplace may finally be settled. But that news doesn't in the least diminish the importance of Benjamin Shapiro's "About the Birth Certificate," a commentary that analyzes why so many citizens have so many questions about Barack Obama's past.

Basically, Shapiro asserts that in its quest to understand the source of Obama's "un-Americanism" — for example, his perception of capitalism as "selfish and evil," religion as "dangerous and oppressive," the Constitution as "antiquated," and entrepreneurialism as "exploitative" — the public looks to two places.

One group, Shapiro argues, naively believes Obama had to acquire his ideology abroad.

The other "more realistically" maintains Obama picked it up right here in the U.S., especially in our institutions of higher learning that for more than half a century have been dominated by ideologues who preach a social/political/economic philosophy constructed from "Hegelian utopianism and Marxist classism."

Now, I agree that domestic tutors of various kinds have played the more important role in shaping the president's true-believing liberalism — an ideological reality, by the way, that standard-issue politician Obama has cleverly hid by puffing an endless stream of invocations to the fraudulent god of amorphous hope and change.

But except in extreme cases, inferences based upon a politician's life experiences can easily be attacked by those who decry them either as unwarranted, amateurish speculation or cheap, partisan propaganda that refuses to acknowledge the politician has "changed."

It is best, therefore, to maintain a strict focus on a politician's actual behavior, his most important "record" which is wide open and thus undeniable.

Here, then, are essential facts about Obama's presidential record, commencing at the beginning, which, as The Sound of Music reminds us, is always "a very good place to start."

So, let's review what the newly inaugurated self-professed "change agent" Obama did and didn't do regarding the ravaged economy he inherited.

What he did was to engage in the worst kind of politics-as-usual by lending his full, enthusiastic support to power-starved congressional Democrats whose idea of never allowing "a crisis to go to waste" meant dropping on the American people the biggest pork bomb the nation has ever seen — $800 billion of rotten pork, to be precise.

What he didn't do was use his powers and bully pulpit to promote the kind of common sense, brave, innovative change Main Street America has long been demanding.

For instance, Obama should have exercised the leadership required to allow for the immediate development of the nation's vast reserves of natural gas as well as its wind corridors, a serious, rational act aimed at putting an end to the profound ills that arise from America's dependence on foreign oil.

But he didn't.

Too bad, because if Obama had displayed smart, courageous leadership that put the world on notice America would soon be importing its last drop of oil, gasoline prices wouldn't be crashing through the $4/gallon mark now, on their way to truly disastrous levels as China, India et al. continue to increase energy consumption at a tremendous rate.

Moreover, the American middle class and thus the entire nation would be enormously better off today as the result of tens of thousands of good jobs created in the multitude of industries associated with energy production and energy conversion.

There is much more to be said of the perversity that characterized Obama's behavior in early '09 — for instance, his commencement of and support for an apparently unending welfare program for big banks — but we move now to the summer of that year and Obama's false and lying "reform" of the nation's healthcare system.

Yes, "false and lying" because the truth is that the 2,000 page federal-government-engorging monstrosity Obama championed has nothing to do with honestly reforming healthcare so that citizens can receive excellent care without bankrupting the nation but everything to do with the politics of centralized control.

The truth is that some of the most rotten aspects of that centralization lie in the lavish favors the bill bestows upon Democratic constituencies (including the trial lawyer industry) and the astoundingly unfair exemptions it grants to many of those same groups (unions especially).

The truth is that Obama and his congressional allies not only lied about the bill's true cost but also pushed that cost, much of it laid on the states, into the future, specifically, after the very convenient date of 2016.

And the truth is that Obama was all too eager to engage in political chicanery and megalomaniacal posturing on the crucially important life and death issue of medicine and medical care. "Without discussion or debate, I, Barack Obama, will reform the nation's healthcare system in less than three short months!"

Last, we come to the fact that the president who inherited an unconscionable $10.6 trillion national debt not only has increased it to $14.3 trillion in his first twenty-seven months in office but also has failed to hold an honest discussion with the American people about the profound dangers posed by Washington's rampant profligacy.

Consider more of Obama's shockingly unconscionable behavior regarding the fiscal morass in which the nation finds itself.

He appointed a debt commission whose courageous members made thoughtful recommendations in a report titled "The Moment of Truth" (December, 2010).

But as soon as liberals railed against the suggestions, he behaved as if the commission never existed.

Just two months after the commission issued its report, he issued his 2012 budget, which contains a 10 year fiscal plan that adds at least $7 trillion to the nation's current $14 trillion debt, a budget immediately criticized by the CBO for understating spending by $2 trillion.

To those insults of failing to exhibit serious, intelligent leadership, he added a grievous injury two stunning months later when, rushing expediently to react to a Republican plan for saving the nation from fiscal disaster, he offered an alternative that cuts little from the sickeningly bloated federal bureaucracy, depends mostly on tax increases, and magically finds further huge savings in Medicare.

(Recall that without a single specific detail about how, his healthcare law already promises to find $500 billion in Medicare "savings.")

To conclude —

Speaking of the Hegelian/Marxist ethos that has insinuated itself into so much of American culture (we can also refer to it simply as "liberalism"), Ben Shapiro makes this observation:

"We have an ideological problem in our midst, and no amount of digging in Kenya and Indonesia is going to solve [it]."

That is true; but with thanks to the accomplished, youthful author, so is this:

We have an extremely serious ideological problem in the White House, and no amount of digging in Kenya, Indonesia, or college transcripts is likely to solve it.

However, the "stubborn things" John Adams called facts stand a very good chance of solving it.

Thus the Obama record presented above, which ought to be of crucial importance to every common sense American, especially independents who will decide the next election.

© A.J. DiCintio


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

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A.J. DiCintio

A.J. DiCintio posts regularly at RenewAmerica and YourNews.com. He first exercised his polemical skills arguing with friends on the street corners of the working class neighborhood where he grew up. Retired from teaching, he now applies those skills, somewhat honed and polished by experience, to social/political affairs.


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