Markets are conducive to evolutionary improvement. Government empowers those who want to resist change.
ObamaCare has become big business for an elite network of Washington lobbyists and consultants who helped shape the law from the inside.
More than 30 former administration officials, lawmakers and congressional staffers who worked on the healthcare law have set up shop on K Street since 2010.
President Obama has failed to deliver on few promises as miserably as his vow to create a more transparent and open government. Shortly after being sworn into office, he sent a memo to federal agencies promising, “We will work together to ensure the public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration.”
Has any previous president devalued his words quite so much, in quite so many ways? Perhaps, but I rather doubt it.
In order to support my claim, it’s worth taking a stroll down memory lane, to compare what Mr. Obama has said with what he has done. The sheer bandwidth of his broken promises and empty claims is quite extraordinary.
For example, there was his promise not to allow lobbyists to work in his administration. (They have.) His commitment to slash earmarks. (He didn’t.) To be the most transparent presidency in history. (It’s not.) To put an end to “phony accounting.” (It started almost on day one and continues.) And to restore trust in government. (Trust in government is at near-historic lows.) Think, too, about his pledge to seek public financing in the general election. (He didn’t.) And to treat super-PACs as a “threat to democracy.” (He embraced them.)
. . .
And let’s not forget Mr. Obama’s promise to bring us together. (He is the most polarizing president in the history of Gallup polling.) Or his assurance to us that he would put an end to the type of politics that “breeds division and conflict and cynicism.” (All three have increased during the Obama presidency.) And his counsel to us to “resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long.” (Remind me again whose campaign allies accused Mitt Romney of being responsible for the cancer death of a steelworker’s wife.)
I’m sure people could add to this list, but there’s enough here to establish a pattern. Even if you stipulate that politicians often make claims they can’t keep–that some are the product of cynical deception and others the product of unforeseen circumstances–Mr. Obama is in a category all his own.
Forward! (What a bunch of rubes.)
Barack Obama helped lead the way when he identified himself with the parents of Trayvon Martin, shot by George Zimmerman in the neighborhood-watch catastrophe with which all are familiar. Stepping out from his usual duties of drawing meaningless red lines in the Syrian sand, the president splashed red paint across the American landscape:
“If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.”
In so saying, he essentially gave permission for all to identify themselves by race with the victim or the accused. How sad, as we approach the 50th anniversary of the march Martin Luther King Jr. led on Washington, that even the president resorts to judging not by the content of one’s character but by the color of his skin — the antithesis of the great dream King articulated.
. . .
Victim in chief is no role for a president.
Unfortunately, it seems that the future Aldous Huxley predicted in 1932, in Brave New World, is arriving early. Mockery, truculence, and minimalist living are best, then enjoy the decline. However, we do need a Revolving Door Tax (RDT), learn what Members of Congress pay in taxes, and prosecute politicians and staff and their “family and friends” who profit from insider trading. Oh, and pay “public servants” what they are worth.