Saturday, November 10, 2012
Victory of the Demagogue
Our newly re-elected, incompetent President is good at one thing: Chicago style politics. Kill your opponent by character assassination and promise freebies to your base. That's exactly how he beat Mitt Romney, a good and decent man, a man of substance, who would have been a great president to turn our economic mess around.
Instead the community organizing, empty-suit incumbent won by pandering to the Democratic base and defaming and distorting Romney into an evil caricature. His simple plan of dividing and conquering through fear, envy and class warfare trumped all else, barely. Appeals to race, gender and emotion triumphed over economic reason and self-interest and the good of the country.
What is that Democratic base? It's quite simple, a cobbled, bare majority of "victims" comprised of blacks, browns and women. It didn't matter to them that their unemployment was at record highs and their communities and lives devastated the last four years. It didn't matter that the President deliberately killed the oil, gas and coal industries and hundreds of thousands of jobs, or supported the teachers' unions over the right of their children to get vouchers to go to quality schools of their choice, or supported the auto unions over the mom and pop shareholders who owned stock, or that he crushed the middle class. It didn't matter to young people that they are personally bankrupt before they start out in life, already burdened by over $200,000 in national debt per person in their generation. And Obama ain't done yet.
Why? The external world is not real to them. What is real are their feelings and emotions. And why not? The modern American message to minorities and women is well learned by now. It's what our public schools have taught for fifty years. The most important thing about you is the color of your skin and what's between your legs. Don't believe it? Look at any high school American History or Civics book. Ten pages on the slave-holding, Founding Fathers and the American Revolution, thirty pages on FDR, the New Deal and Big Government saving America from the evils of capitalism and endless pages devoted to glorifying, heroic, victimized "Native Americans," and other minorities and, of course, demonizing our, evil white, imperialist, ancestors who exploited them and the earth itself. Such endless, sophomoric, guilt-ridden, pabulum has consequences, to wit, the blindness of navel-grazing.
Yes, Obama is the master of the "basic instincts" of his self-centered, narcissistic base. It's not complicated once you understand the con. To blacks he was one of their own and that was really all that mattered. They were in the bag from the start, 95% plus. To Hispanics, he bought their vote with his illegal, dictatorial, but hugely popular, to them at least, executive order for amnesty to young illegals. Result? 70% plus from a community that is Catholic, church-going, hard working, anti-abortion and generally conservative. To women he trotted out the classic Democrat ploy, the fear of losing control over their bodies and even added a new wrinkle, the "right" to free contraceptives even if you're a law student on the cusp of making $150,000 a year to start. Result, a margin of some 9 points, especially in the suburbs. Yes, pandering to the self-absorbed pays.
Toss in a little scapegoating and blame-gaming through envy and class-warfare, just to make the base feel even more self-righteous, and you have a country divided almost fifty-fifty, but more importantly, a winning electoral strategy despite being the worst president since Jimmy Carter, perhaps the worst in modern history.
Such is the vapidity of the American people today. Iran going nuclear? Libya what? Muslim Brotherhood, is that a new rap group? Israel who? Hey, Obama killed Osama! I saw it on Nat Geo! He's the guy I trust on foreign policy. Amazing.
Four years of disastrous failure at home? No big deal. 47 million on food stamps, 23,000,000 unemployed, robbing Medicare to pay for Obamacare, death panels, trillions of dollars wasted, gas doubled in four years, energy and food prices rising like crazy, entitlement spending out of control, no budget in four years -- not to worry. Just tax the rich and fuggedaboudit. Problem solved. Damn Republicans. Don't they know it's all Bush's fault? Plus they only care about whites, right?
Romney shares some blame, too, for losing, barely, an easily winnable election. He coasted when he had a five point lead. He played not to lose. He allowed himself to be defined early by attack ads. He let Obama off the hook for Libya, his blind support of the Arab Spring and his obeisant, appeasing foreign policy that helped set our embassies afire across the Muslim world. Instead, Romney's third debate on foreign policy was like a group, me-too, hug.
But Romney's biggest mistake was to try and turn this into a technocrat, tunnel-vision campaign on the economy alone and not to focus on where Obama was truly vulnerable, on character, trust and integrity, because of the latter's many, many lies and distortions, especially after Benghazi. Two weeks of "Why should you trust a President who won't tell you the truth about Benghazi?" could have gone a long way towards putting the President on the defensive and maintaining Romney's momentum. Instead, like Senator McCain four years earlier, he let Obama off the hook without a swing. Why should Americans care about character if Romney doesn't?
So now we have the spectacle of blacks, browns, young people and many women screaming in ecstasy at the man who has bankrupted them and generations to come by making empty promises paid for by trillions of dollars we don't have. They won't know their betrayal until it's too late, until the Piper has to be paid, when inflation is out of sight, our credit rating is downgraded, when the entire coal industry is shut down and fracking banned, when China stops buying our worthless debt, when the dollar standard is discarded and we can't delay disaster by printing more worthless money or buying our own treasury bonds with money borrowed from China, when we finally, inevitably, fall off the cliff into a truly great depression and/or World War III breaks out, only after anti-Semitic, Holocaust-denying Iran has nuclear weapons and Israel is possibly incinerated. What a great second term we have coming.
These epochal issues were what was really at stake in this Presidential election, but Mr. Romney, good man that he is, wouldn't go there. On the contrary, he praised Obama's good intentions, refused to dramatize the real danger, apparently out of fear of being labeled a warmonger, and lost the true battles of character and ideas to the shameless, craftier, demagogue.
If only Romney had chosen Marco Rubio, the obvious, ethnic choice for his Vice-President. Crass, yes. Racial politics, yes. But Rubio was equally or more qualified than Paul Ryan, and sometimes you have to fight fire with fire, to win Florida, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and more, and save your country from itself.
If the Republicans get that, maybe they can win in 2016, if we survive the next four years. It's going to be touch and go. We have an unrepentant, unaccountable, scapegoating, leftist demagogue in the White House with all the "flexibility" in the world and worse, the mastery of how to pull the wool over the eyes of his base whenever and however he wants. Honey, you ain't seen nothing yet, plus four Supreme Court nominees to rewrite our "deeply flawed" Constitution of "negative rights only" that Professor Obama despises.
You get the government you deserve. Pray for America. We have let the dogs loose.