Taking advantage of a public grown weary of the Bush presidency, an economic meltdown that left financial markets in freefall, a weak opponent in John McCain and a complicit press that refused to publish anything of substance about the man seeking the most powerful office in the world, on November 4, 2008 Barack Hussein Obama was voted the 44th President of the United States. A couple months later he took the oath of office and his place as the first President in U.S. history of African American decent.
In his inaugural address Obama continued his habit of saying one thing with the intention of doing the complete opposite. Using words and images that seemed inspiring then, and yet ring so hollow now, he pledged to remain “faithful to the ideals of our forebears, and true to our founding documents” (except when those documents say he isn’t eligible to be President), end the “petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our politics” (demonizing his political opposition not withstanding) and act “not only create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth” (a glance at today’s unemployment figures show what a joke that promise was).
Obama continued with the laughable commitment that “those of us who manage the public’s dollars will be held to account, to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day.” There was no mention of the trillion dollar deficits that would come to define his presidency or the outright bribery – Cornhusker Kickback, Louisiana Purchase, etc., etc. – that would mark the passage of ObamaCare.
“Know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity”, unless of course that nation is Israel.
Obama couldn’t help but make at least one dig at America: “To those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to the suffering outside our borders, nor can we consume the world’s resources without regard to effect”, because that’s what the U.S. is best known for: taking advantage of indigenous populations the world over.
Didn’t Bush just save millions of lives by sending anti-HIV drugs to Africa? Weren’t we the “arsenal of democracy” that saved the world from fascism? Aren’t we the most generous nation in the history of the world? I guess not.
It would take a couple years of incoherent foreign policy for Forbes writer Dinesh D’Souza to suggest that Obama’s motives were primarily driven by anticolonialist fevor. How else to explain his bizarre actions like funding offshore oil exploration in Brazil while opposing the same at home? Support for the release of the mass murdering Lockerbie bomber? Assigning Muslim outreach as a primary mission for NASA?
Anticolonialism as defined by D’Souza is “the doctrine that rich countries of the West got rich by invading, occupying and looting poor countries of Asia, Africa and South America. As one of Obama’s acknowledged intellectual influences, Frantz Fanon, wrote in The Wretched of the Earth, ‘The well-being and progress of Europe have been built up with the sweat and the dead bodies of Negroes, Arabs, Indians and the yellow races.’”
According to Obama all the worlds’ problems have little to do with endemic corruption in Africa, violent Islamic ideology in the Middle East or socialist rule in South America. It’s greedy white Americans who are really to blame.
The second day of the Obama era was no better. His issued a politically motivated executive order that repealed Bush’s 2001 directive governing the release of presidential records. According to the Presidential Records Act of 1978, a former President can restrict access to “any of his records that fall within certain specified categories” for up to 12 years after leaving office. With an eye towards Ronald Reagan’s Alzheimer’s disease, Bush included a clause that in the case of incapacitation, a former president’s family or executer could block the release of records on his behalf. A reasonable enough proposal that like most things Bush did, earned the ire of liberals for no good reason.
Obama probably figured that he was young enough that illness wouldn’t be an issue for him after his one term in office. Besides, the repeal would earn him brownie points on the left, so he signed the order and magnanimously declared “transparency and rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency” – tell that to the victims of Operation Fast and Furious.
Obama wasted no time jumping into the deep end of the hypocrisy pool with his second executive order that set tough new standards restricting the hiring of lobbyists, an order that was ignored practically from the moment the ink was dry. Within two days Obama appointed Raytheon lobbyist William J. Lynn as Deputy Secretary of Defense. Even Obama cheerleader Huffington Post incredulously described the action as “you can’t let what you say get in the way of what you do.” By 2010 over two dozen waivers have been granted to lobbyists hired by the administration.
The final act on his 2nd day in office was to institute a pay freeze on White House employees making more than $100,000 a year, a standard Obama has bypassed dozens of times with a simple change in job title or description. From 2009 to 2010, while the rest of the country was suffering through an economic calamity, 74% of White House employees got an average pay raise of 9%.
On Jan 22, 2009 Obama ordered the closure of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp within one year. In true bipartisan fashion, Democratic and Republican politicians alike resisted having terrorists transferred to their backyard. Even the detainees themselves didn’t want to leave Gitmo. Apparently the idea of moving from an island paradise where they can play soccer in the yard and smell the sea to a supermax prison in Illinois wasn’t popular among the prisoners.
A frequent campaign promise of Obama’s was to post all non-emergency legislation on the whitehouse.gov website for five days prior to signing to “allow the public to review and comment”, a commitment to transparency that he broke with the first bill he signed into law, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.
He issued an executive order banning enhanced interrogations, even though only three terrorists had been waterboarded by the Bush administration including the mass murderer Khalid Sheik Mohammad who deserved a whole lot worse than what he got. When Osama bin Ladin was finally located and brought to justice by Seal Team 6, intelligence gathered from KSM while he had his head stuck under a faucet played a prominent role in the success of the operation according to CIA Director Leon Panetta. While Obama has been going around the country telling folks about how he killed Osama with his own bare hands, he never seems to mention this minor detail.
Obama wasted no time destroying our international credibility. Within days he unceremoniously shipped the Winston Churchill bust back to England and got to work on undermining Israel’s legitimacy. At his direction the U.S. formally joined the racist UN Durbin II conference, a venue Arab states frequently use to accuse the Jewish state of nonexistent genocidal policies against the Palestinians while ignoring the widespread human rights abuses in their own countries.
Republicans didn’t fare any better than the Israelis. Showing his thin skin during the stimulus package negotiations, John McCain and the rest of the Republican Party was given the timely reminder “I won”. Obama then jammed the nearly $1 trillion giveaway to public sector unions and Democratic special interests groups through Congress with the promise that unemployment wouldn’t go over 8%. We now know how well that worked out.
Tax cheats were appointed to his cabinet, Obama was awarded the Noble Peace Prize by European socialists and Wall Street bankers were warned that he was the only thing standing between them and the “pitchforks”.
The Obama era had officially begun.