Friday, May 31, 2013

Obama Is In Charge; This Is on Him - David Limbaugh - Page full

Obama Is In Charge; This Is on Him - David Limbaugh - Page full
David Limbaugh
Recommend this article 
Well, let's see. Obama promised to get the economy moving, greatly improve our health care system and reduce its costs, give us the most transparent government, and usher in a new era of bipartisanship and racial harmony.
Some 4 1/2 years into Obama's presidency, his economy is still as lethargic as a basset hound, and we're seeing disastrous developments on Obamacare. A smorgasbord of major scandals is unfolding, and we've got record levels of partisan angst and heightened racial tensions stoked by this administration.
So many shocking stories are emerging that we probably miss half of them. Did you see the Washington Post report about how Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius personally asked health industry groups to contribute to Enroll America, a pro-Obamacare front group that is, according to The Heritage Foundation, working to "educate" the public about the law's supposed benefits?
Obama and his band of fellow liberal ideologues have an agenda of fundamentally transforming America, and they're sticking to it -- no matter what kind of problems it creates, corruption and lies it entails, or disharmony it generates among Americans.
Perhaps this is another reason Obama never bothers to admit, much less apologize for, his failures. In his mind, his agenda is moving forward and that's what matters. The plethora of scandals and the myriad economic and health care failures may be an annoyance to him, but in the end, he's getting his way. If things don't change, we are moving rapidly toward statism overall and toward a single-payer health insurance system. To paraphrase him, "it may take 15 years, but we'll get there."
Meanwhile, the "What, me worry?" president is, yet again, busy fundraising and campaigning in his hometown of Chicago, insisting to his adoring die-hard fans that "Washington is not broken" and that he could not be more eager for Democrats to recapture control of the House in order to have Nancy Pelosi back as speaker. Not only is Obama not contrite but he wants more authority.
Obama seemingly has endless time to play golf, take vacations and hopscotch the United States on Air Force One to fundraise and campaign, but he's too busy to know or even be bothered about an unfolding crisis in Benghazi, the deliberate alteration of talking points to mislead the press and public about the cause of the consulate attack, the selective targeting of conservative groups by an unscrupulous Internal Revenue Service (which just so happened to do his bidding in successfully suppressing Republican voter turnout), and the criminal investigation of innocent journalists.
It's one thing for Obama not to be a details man, but how about a little focus -- or even a superficial awareness -- on very serious matters?
What we are seeing from Obama (and his administration) is what we should expect from a person who has been mostly a political agitator and activist for his entire adult life, without any experience in rolling up his sleeves and getting his hands dirty in actually solving the problems.
His style of governance is best-depicted by his frustrated utterance at the failure of BP to plug the Gulf oil leak fast enough to suit him: "Just plug the damn hole."
Obama doesn't really understand how business or even government works, but it doesn't keep him from making specific promises he doesn't know he can keep.
He repeatedly asserted, unequivocally, that Obamacare would bend the cost curve down and wouldn't infringe on religious liberty. He told us that if we liked our insurance plan, we would be able to keep it.
Have you been reading the headlines lately? "Obamacare Is Driving Some Doctors To Stop Taking Insurance Altogether." "In California, Obamacare to Increase Individual Health Insurance Premiums by 64-146 Percent." "ObamaCare to trigger health insurance cancellation notices." "Like your health care policy? You may be losing it." "Obamacare's Liberty-Crushing Mandate in Court."
Could it be that the public is finally waking up and at least willing to reconsider its foolish blindness to this administration? A new Quinnipiac University poll finds that American voters say -- by a 76-17 percent margin, including 63-30 percent among Democrats -- that a special prosecutor should be appointed to investigate charges that the IRS targeted conservative groups.
Further, voters aren't keen on Attorney General Eric Holder's investigating the matter himself, and he has only a 23-29 percent job approval rating. As Holder is President Obama's alter ego, this is significant.
But what we've yet to see is Obama himself being held accountable for his fraudulent promises, his policy failures and this staggering corruption.
Like it or not, these things are his doing. He is in charge; he is the one who made the false promises; he established the policy goals that are to be achieved at almost any cost; and he has created the climate leading to this lawlessness. In the modern vernacular, this is on him.

DoJ May Come After You For Trashing Muslims on Social Media

DoJ May Come After You For Trashing Muslims on Social Media

DoJ May Come After You For Trashing Muslims on Social Media

In its latest effort to protect followers of Islam in the U.S. the Obama Justice Department warns against using social media to spread information considered inflammatory against Muslims, threatening that it could constitute a violation of civil rights.
The move comes a few years after the administration became the first in history to dispatch a U.S. Attorney General to personally reassure Muslims that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is dedicated to protecting them. In the unprecedented event, Attorney General Eric Holder assured a San Francisco-based organization (Muslim Advocates) that urges members not to cooperate in federal terrorism investigations that the “us versus them” environment created by the U.S. government, law enforcement agents and fellow citizens is unacceptable and inconsistent with what America is all about.
“Muslims and Arab Americans have helped build and strengthen our nation,” Holder said after expressing that he is “grateful” to have Muslims as a partner in promoting tolerance, ensuring public safety and protecting civil rights. He also vowed to strengthen “crucial dialogue” between Muslim and Arab-American communities and law enforcement.
Evidently that was a precursor of sorts for an upcoming Tennessee event (“Public Disclosure in a Diverse Society”) that will feature the region’s top DOJ official, who serves as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee, and an FBI representative. The goal is to increase awareness and understanding that American Muslims are not the terrorists some have made them out to be in social media and other circles, according to a local newspaper report. The June 4 powwow is sponsored by the American Muslim Advisory Council of Tennessee.
Over the years the Obama administration has embarked on a fervent crusade to befriend Muslims by creating a variety of outreach programs at a number of key federal agencies. For instance the nation’s Homeland Security covertly met with a group of extremist Arab, Muslim and Sikh organizations to discuss national security matters and the State Department sent a controversial, anti-America Imam (Feisal Abdul Rauf) to the Middle East to foster greater understanding and outreach among Muslim majority communities.
The Obama Administration has also hired a special Homeland Security adviser (Mohamed Elibiary) who openly supports a radical Islamist theologian and renowned jihadist ideologue and a special Islam envoy that condemns U.S. prosecutions of terrorists as “politically motivated persecutions” and has close ties to radical extremist groups.
The president has even ordered the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to shift its mission from space exploration to Muslim diplomacy and the government started a special service that delivers halal meals, prepared according to Islamic law, to home-bound seniors in Detroit. Who could forget Hillary Clinton’s special order allowing the reentry of two radical Islamic academics whose terrorist ties have long banned them from the U.S.?

Read more at 

What happened to SEAL Team Six? The most serious scandal of all | World Tribune

What happened to SEAL Team Six? The most serious scandal of all | World Tribune

What happened to SEAL Team Six? The most serious scandal of all

Special to
The media is now consistently referring to three scandals engulfing the Obama presidency, even using a shorthand expression such as a “trifecta” of troubling incidents. Yet, there is a scandal brewing that is worse than the Department of Justice violating freedom of the press, the Internal Revenue Service abusing its power and four Americans left to die at the hands of jihadists in Benghazi, Libya.
A Chinook helicopter in Helmand province, Afghanistan. Anja Niedringhaus / AP
A Chinook helicopter in Helmand province, Afghanistan. Anja Niedringhaus / AP
Navy SEAL Team Six, the heroic unit that killed Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan in May 2011, is in grave danger due to the reckless actions of the Obama administration. The parents of three SEALs recently said the government bears criminal culpability in the deaths of their sons.
They are calling for a congressional investigation into the Aug. 6, 2011 helicopter crash in Afghanistan that resulted in 38 deaths, including 7 members of the Afghan National Army, an Afghan interpreter, 15 SEAL Team Six members, 2 members of West Coast SEAL and other U.S. troops. A rocket-propelled grenade struck the helicopter, causing the fatal crash. It was the deadliest day for America in the Afghan war.
Were the SEALS targeted in retaliation for killing Bin Laden? The elite SEAL Team Six is a special operations unit whose actions are supposed to be classified. They uphold a strict code of secrecy. As a result, it is not publicly known which specific SEAL Team Six members were involved in the killing of the world’s most wanted terrorist, nor how many of those who participated in the raid were on the helicopter that was shot down.
We now know, however, that the elite group and their families were shocked when Vice President Joe Biden publicly identified them on May 3, 2011, two days after the raid. He was speaking at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Washington D.C. at the 50th anniversary of the Atlantic Council, an international affairs think tank. It was a speech laden with praise for the intelligence and military community.
“Let me briefly acknowledge tonight’s distinguished honorees: Adm. Jim Stavridis is a — is the real deal; he could tell you more about and understands the incredible, the phenomenal, the just almost unbelievable capacity of his Navy SEALS and what they did last — last Sunday,” said Mr. Biden.
In that moment, the vice president revealed to the world the name of the unit that had tracked down and killed America’s foremost enemy. Every jihadist seeking to avenge Bin Laden’s death was given a clear target.
Even more astonishing, in that speech, Mr. Biden waxed eloquent on the fact that the whole mission had remained secret prior to the raid.
“And what was even more extraordinary was — and I’m sure former administration officials will appreciate this more than anyone — there was such an absolute, overwhelming desire to accomplish this mission that although for over several months we were in the process of planning it, and there were as many as 16 members of Congress who were briefed on it, not a single, solitary thing leaked. I find that absolutely amazing,” said Mr. Biden. Ironically, he was praising the team’s ability to work in secret while he had just carelessly leaked classified information — arguably one of the greatest leaks in American history.
As a result of the actions “of those brave professionals who tracked and killed Osama Bin Laden,” Mr. Biden said, “the world is a safer place today, not only for the American people but for all people.“ Yet, his very words that evening terrified members of SEAL Team Six who had just been betrayed by their government and immediately began to fear for their lives.
In a May 10, 2013 interview on Fox News’ America Live with Megyn Kelly, the parents of deceased SEAL Team Six member Aaron Vaughn revealed their son’s angst following Mr. Biden’s blunder: “As soon as Joe Biden announced that it was a SEAL Team who took out Bin Laden, within 24 hours, my son called me and I rarely heard him ever sound afraid in his adult life,” said Karen Vaughn.
Mrs. Vaughn described his tone in that conversation as “extraordinarily serious.” “‘Mom, you need to wipe your social media clean. You need to get everything off of it now.’” When she asked what was wrong, he explained:  “’Mom, there is chatter and your life is in danger. Our lives are in danger. So clean it up right now.‘”
The chilling effect was widespread. “The community was very unnerved by that unveiling. So yes, a target got put on their back and it got put on the back of every group that would work with SEAL Team Six,” said Mrs. Vaughn. And indeed, three months after Mr. Biden made the announcement, a helicopter carrying SEALS in Afghanistan was shot down under mysterious circumstances. Aaron Vaughn’s worst fears were realized.
Family members of the slain are not satisfied with the military’s report on the incident. They have many questions, including why the Afghans who were on the helicopter were not the ones on the flight manifest. Why was there a last-minute change? Did the Taliban infiltrate the helicopter?
They also believe the U.S. government was derelict in its duties by putting such a large group of SEALS on one aircraft. In addition, they want to know why the troops were using outdated equipment and were not permitted to return fire when under duress. The families believe the rules of engagement the troops are currently using serve to aid the enemy in easily killing Americans. Finally, they are incensed that at the funeral held in Kabul, a Muslim cleric recited a prayer over the bodies of the fallen that confined them to eternal damnation as” infidels.” This, they contend, is Mr. Obama’s “Muslim Outreach” strategy gone wildly wrong.
The Obama administration has tried to defend its snooping on reporters by citing the pressing need to identify and stop the leakage of classified information that endangers the lives of those in the field. But, the second in command, Vice President Joe Biden, himself did so, in full public view. This was a colossal breach of trust and resulted in the reckless endangerment of the very bravest amongst us. Why has he not been held accountable?
We must stand with the families of the slain, demanding answers and that justice be duly served to all those responsible for these deaths.
Dr. Grace Vuoto is Editor of Culture and Politics at and the founder of the Edmund Burke Institute for American Renewal.
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Thursday, May 30, 2013

FBI terrorism task force wants to question national crisis pregnancy center director |

FBI terrorism task force wants to question national crisis pregnancy center director |

Works and Days » Our ‘Make No Mistake About It’/’Let Me Be Perfectly Clear’ President

Works and Days » Our ‘Make No Mistake About It’/’Let Me Be Perfectly Clear’ President
If only Barack Obama had something to say…
After all, we have never had a president who descended the steps of Air Force One with such catlike agility, hands almost as paws lightly bouncing in synchronization with each elfish footstep. Never has a commander in chief so casually, so confidently approached the podium as if he were popping open his own laptop, his jaw almost in Mussolini style thrust out, with eyes fixed three feet above the heads of the audience — all with just the right mixture of self-assurance and canned humility. No wonder that after all that we expect a “four score and seven years ago” that will match the perfect choreography.
Never has a president so mastered the teleprompter — no easy task in itself — with just the right pauses, followed with a timely ratcheting up of passion, punctuated with a half-smile, a grimace, a laugh. Never has a president mastered both the art of empty bluster and the art of bowing. Never has a president so mastered the patois and cadences of an intended audience: with corporate CEOs, he sounds like a Ivy League Citibank exec; with foreign-policy types, he can out-authenticate the multicultural experts with accentuation like “the Taleeeban” and “Pakeeestan.” Among African-Americans, he drops his g’s, affects the slight drawl of the South, inserts an old-time Southern colloquialism, and follows the mannerisms of a Rev. Wright thundering at Trinity Church. Among Latinos, the “r” is rolled, and accent marks fall in the proper places, better than any third-generation Latino evening-television newsreader.
In short, Obama is the most impressive sophist of his age. In classical rhetoric, when the speaker was about to equivocate, he added an emphatic adjective or parenthetical that he was never more candid and sincere. Sometimes he inserted “on the one hand / on the other hand” to show his awareness of every point of view other than his own. Rhetoricians often projected their own base motives onto others, using straw men like “some will say” or “there are those who…”, as if illiberal enemies were so ubiquitous that there was no mundane need to name them all.  Obama has mastered all that and more.
He excels especially in the expression of dramatic anguish. His attorney general is “upset” that he had to resort to tapping the phone records of reporters. Barack Obama is torn because his drones sometime kill those beyond the four thousand intended. Obama is so bothered that his subordinates have gone after journalists that he wants Congress to stop him from himself, by passing a law to prevent his own team from doing what he finds politically advantageous. It is outrageous, Obama thunders, that the IRS is monitoring his political enemies — and so outrageous that the person who oversaw the illegal program had to be promoted to enforce the fiscal protocols of Obamacare. Benghazi really was a terrorist act, because the president right after the killings jailed a filmmaker for it, blamed the attack on spontaneous demonstrations — and yet in passing said he opposed generic terrorist acts. Presto — he could post facto claim that he meant all the time that Benghazi was just one of those preplanned acts of terror.
Sophists tip their hand in jest — and none better than Barack Obama. Beware when he jokes that he will send the IRS after you, or that Predators will guard his daughters. And be even more vigilant of the preemptory denial. Barack Obamacan brag ad nauseam about killing Osama bin Laden, because he first swore that he would never “spike the ball” by referencing the hit.
To get things done, first-person pronouns breed to show both concern and control where there is often neither: I just appointed my new team that reports to me about my concerns that I share with advisors of mine. In the world of rhetoric, the more “I,” “me,” “my,” and “mine” appear in the abstract, the more we suspect that the over-referenced speaker has been usually absent in the concrete. There is no “us” or “we” or “our” in Washington these days — although lots of “they” and “them,” the existential enemies of “I” and “me.”
Barack Obama has used executive orders for everything — amnesties, dismissal of the Defense of Marriage Act, recess appointments, the shutting down of coal plants — except the closure of Guantanamo Bay. After five years, we appreciate that Obama really, really does not wish this Bush artifact left open, and yet really, really cannot close it. “They” (fill in the blanks: the right wing, the Republican Congress, the neo-cons) won’t let him. Ditto renditions, tribunals, drones, preventive detentions: Bush did it, and Obama really wants to undo it. The problem is that he just can’t: he’s not a king, tyrant, or dictator, after all — as he reminds his more zealous supporters who, he infers to the rest of us, demand him to be just that. He is our modern-day Caesar who must majestically defer when the people thrust the crown in his hands.
When bad things happen, they just happen. Like Henry II, he wants relief from the Tea Party and reactionary wingnuts; and like the English king, he cannot help it when overzealous knights occasionally and quite wrongly take him at his word, and go a bit overboard. Big government is wonderful as it hires the needy and serves the poor — and yet becomes so big that when bad things happen the president simply could not possibly monitor such an octopus. Federal workers are public servants when they disperse food stamps and disability insurance, only to become unbridled, overzealous clerks when your politics earn a letter from the IRS. Obama professes that he is merely competent and not ideological when he wishes to promote his ideological agenda from gay marriage to blanket amnesty; but he is incompetent and bullied for his ideology when the IRS, or the Justice Department, or the State Department on its own commits the most recent partisan outrage.
Lightning always strikes twice with Obama and his team. His opponent in a senatorial primary had his sealed divorce records leaked — and mysteriously the same thing happened again with his general election opponent. Eric Holder just once went after AP, and, lo and behold, he happened to go after Fox News too. A Cincinnati IRS office went rogue, and — guess what? — so did another one or two elsewhere. Harry Reid mentioned the private tax returns of Mitt Romney — and so did Austan Goolsbee inform us of the Koch Brothers’ 1040s, and so by chance did the IRS go after hundreds of other conservatives.
Obama in Zen-like fashion helped us reach record levels of gas and oil production — by so stopping such new development on public lands that he forced the private sector to work as never before in looking for energy on private lands. Apparently by subsidizing losing green solar and wind companies, Obama somehow made it possible to reach record levels of gas production. Gasoline use per driver is down and that is wonderful — but it has more to do with inflating our tires and getting “tune-ups” than near record level gas prices the last five years that curbed driving.
Teachable moments are everywhere: yes, it is regrettable about tapping phone records, but the slip at least offers occasion to revisit the shield laws. Yes, the IRS has gone rogue, but just maybe some of these right-wing organizations are not really organizations at all. Yes, Benghazi was full of miscommunications, but that is what happens when David Petraeus’s CIA and Hillary Clinton’s State Department work at cross-purposes.
Obama intended to halve the deficit in his first years (remember his charge that George W. Bush on his “lonesome”charged our debts to the bank of China?). Obama still feels terrible that those who started “two wars” prevented his debt-reduction plan. Iran was supposed to shut down its centrifuges at the end of the year, before the G-20 meeting, before the multiparty talks began, in front of the UN meeting. There are red lines in Syria — let’s be perfectly clear about that — and, make no mistake about it, they are not to be crossed. Obama is not mysterious, unpredictable, and sometime dangerous in what he might do and might not; instead he is perfectly clear that there are definite red lines that are neither red nor lines.
We were almost at the forefront of the Google version of the Arab Spring in Cairo, but then made up for that tardiness by rushing into Libya to lead — from behind. We reset something with Russia, and then reset that something reset. Mexico, Obama warns, has good reason to be angry that NRA-types are selling them guns, but perhaps not as many guns as the Obama Department of Justice itself sold them.  The War on Terror cannot go on forever, and so it will not. Who won and who lost, we do not yet know, but apparently someone must have. Obama “ended two wars,” but how and under what conditions we are not told. (The easiest way to end a war is to lose it, as George Orwell once said: Ask France about May 1940.)
Why is such rhetoric routine? Nothing is what was advertised. The deficit doubled rather than was halved. There was no summer of recovery. The Affordable Care Act will soon spike rather than reduce health care costs. Shutting down the Bush-Cheney anti-terrorism protocols meant expanding the drone kill list by a factor of ten and embracing the once hated war on terror. My God, who knew that the world was that bad even before George W. Bush took office? In a perennial rebound, unemployment remains high, growth weak, and borrowing massive. Joe Biden must have made it clear that the stimulus trillion-dollars would not be wasted.
How to square that circle?
By making ourselves perfectly clear and making no mistake about …. nothing much at all.

WND » Obama to Muslims: Tell me what you want » Print

WND » Obama to Muslims: Tell me what you want » Print



'Outreach summits' launched, 1st stop Chicago

A series of Muslim Outreach Summits are planned coast-to-coast by the Obama administration to get feedback from Muslims on how the government can better serve them and their specific desires.
The president’s adopted home town of Chicago will be the first stop.
WND initially discovered documents referring to the Muslim summits while examining a U.S. Department of Education procurement of data-gathering and report-writing services.
The services are specific to information being assembled by the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, or WHIAAPI, which Obama created viaexecutive order in 2009.
Upon closer inspection, however, WND learned that the Education Department explicitly will direct the selected contractor to chronicle findings and recommendations gleaned from the Muslim Outreach Summits.
The White House views this year’s venues as an extension of a previous outreach to “new immigrants and refugees – some of the most underserved in the AAPI community,”according to a document titled “WHIAAPI 2013 Faith-Based and Community Engagement.”
Complementing the prior effort will be the three “regional convenings,” tentatively scheduled June 15 in Chicago, June 22 in San Francisco and June 29 in New York City.
“These cities are main AAPI immigrant hubs and entry points for new immigrants/refugees,” according to a related document, “Questions Received from Vendors: Development and Preparation of the AAPI Annual Report to the President.”
“Each convening with [sic] include panel discussions/workshops with federal officials on key issues impacting the community and also an open-dialogue session to hear directly from the community about issues of concern.”
One vendor submitted a question to the Education Department asking, “Is there separate authorizing legislation for the Muslim Outreach Summits, or is it included in the AAPI EO [Executive Order]?”
The department, in response, acknowledged that separate authorizing legislation does not exist.
Rather, it says that Obama crafted the initiative solely through executive order, which it justified because the endeavor’s goal is to “improve the quality of life of AAPIs through increased participation in federal programs in which AAPIs may be underserved.”
The vendor-question document further states that Obama’s “faith-based outreach summits” will help the government to provide federal resources to “underserved AAPIs” while determining their ongoing needs.
When Obama signed the executive order Oct. 14, 2009, he also launched a separate President’s Advisory Commission on AAPI as well as a Federal Interagency Working Group.
The groups work collaboratively with the White House Office of Public Engagement and federal agencies “to increase Asian American and Pacific Islander participation.”
“The initiative seeks to highlight both the tremendous unmet needs in the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities as well as the dynamic community assets that can be leveraged to meet many of those needs.”
It hopes to address the needs of those communities by increasing participation in a broad swath of programs, such as those involving art, business, education, environmental and justice programs.
Sometime after the three Muslim Outreach Summits, the chosen contractor will develop and then present its summary report to the president and to newly appointed WHIAAPI commissioners.
The contracting action – the first of its kind since its inception in 2008 – will help lay the foundation for the initiative’s future work, the document says.

Barack Obama: even the mainstream media has given up on the hopey-changey stuff – Telegraph Blogs

Barack Obama: even the mainstream media has given up on the hopey-changey stuff – Telegraph Blogs

Tim Stanley

Dr Tim Stanley is a historian of the United States. His biography of Pat Buchanan is out now. His personal website is and you can follow him on Twitter @timothy_stanley.

Barack Obama: even the mainstream media has given up on the hopey-changey stuff

There was a time when Obama couldn’t get a bad headline in this town. Now he’s the new Nixon. I dropped out of writing about US politics three weeks ago to finish a book and, on my return, I discover that everything’s changed. The President has been hit not by one Watergate but by three – Benghazi, the IRS, the DOJ phone records scandal – and even the mainstream media has stopped treating him like the bringer of hope and change predicted in the Bible. He's not a Messiah, he's a very naughty boy.
It’s important to remember that Obama’s second term blues began long before the scandals broke. Although he won the 2012 election, the Democrats failed to take the House, and the Senate remained vulnerable to filibuster. That might not have been such a roadblock to legislation had the Prez not spent the election trashing his opponents, calling the Republicans everything from heartless SOBs to enablers of rape. The result was that he entered his second term despised by much of the Congress and so unable to get much done. Yes, he hardballed the GOP into accepting nominal tax increases but he failed even to pass even the slenderest of gun control bills. His political capital was exhausted within weeks.
That left Obama with an aura of lonely moral authority. The media could’ve continued to love him for that alone, imagining him to be the last line of defence against the Neanderthal conservatism of the Tea Party. But the scandals have undone that moral superiority. Everybodywas outraged by the IRS and phone records stories,including the Washington Post, the New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, NBS and CBS. A lot of the anger came from the fact that their industry had been targeted (the head of the Associated Press wrote Eric Holder, “We regard this action by the Department of Justice as a serious interference with AP's constitutional rights to gather and report the news.” Even dear old Helen Thomas compared Obama to Nixon). Josh Meyer, a former national security writer for the Los Angeles Times, opined, “There's a red line that no other administration has crossed before that the Obama administration has blown right past.” It is true that none of the shenanigans have been linked directly to the Oval Office. But while we’ve yet to find the smoking email, there’s a growing consensus that Obama set the tone of his administration by the trademark brutality by which he fought his opponents. Journalists suddenly know what it must have felt like to be a conservative activist for the past four years, to be treated with a mix of contempt and ruthless discrimination. Obama’s administration has been the most hostile towards investigative journalism in history: its DOJ has filed more leak-related investigations than all the other administrations combined.
So, Obama has evolved in the eyes of press and public from the brave man who stands above the crowd to someone who exists in self-imposed isolation – very Nixonlike in his obsession with opponents and his total removal from the lives of ordinary Americans. When Nixon was stuck in Watergate he used to escape to friendly territory to meet with his few remaining admirers and console himself with their loyalty. On Wednesday the President of the United States took time off work to visit two Chicago Democratic fundraisers – the cost of flying aboard Air Force One to his home town was an astonishing $180,000 an hour. He met with 70 friends at the home of longtime supporters Bettylu and Paul Saltzman, the kind of fans prepared to spend $32,400 per head to have dinner with the Prez. He “obviously likes giving speeches more than he does running the executive branch,” observed Chris Matthews, a disenchanted liberal journalist who once said that those speeches sent “a thrill” up his leg.
What the mainstream media has yet to do is to connect the authoritarianism of the administration’s personnel with the authoritarianism of its policies. The two are inseparable. An administration that spies on opponents is also an administration that tries to socialise healthcare, kill US citizens with drone strikes, force churches to compromise their moral consciences, make it harder to purchase firearms and run up unimaginable levels of debt. Obama is the latest in a long line of wannabe emperors to inhabit the Oval Office, and if his presidency resembles Nixon’s then it’s because both share the view that the complexities and dangers of modern life require the executive branch and the federal government to assume levels of authority not implied by the Constitution. The only antidote to this imperialist trend is a president who willingly gives up his power – and you’d struggle to find any politician in either party who would be happy to do that.
Those of us who inhabit the Right are left with some small satisfaction that we saw all this coming and were crying “crook” long before the mainstream media did. But the tragedy is that the undressing of the emperor didn’t occur before the election, which means we are stuck with him for another four years. Perhaps that's a tragedy for Obama, too. So consumed by fury and conspiracy has his administration become that he seems sadly isolated. If Obama's going to go the full Nixon route, it would probably be quicker for him to write a friends list than an enemies one.