2014 SOTU: The MO BO Show
The Sword Is Mightier Than the Pen
“Every man who loves peace, every man who loves his country, every man who loves liberty ought to have it ever before his eyes that he may cherish in his heart a due attachment to the union of America and be able to set a due value on the means of preserving it.” –James Madison (1788)
For those of you who were unable to “enjoy” the latest feature length episode of The MO BO Show* last night, let me say that Barack Obama’s serial sequel satire, a.k.a. his 2014 State of the Union, deserved the highest accolades for recycled statist rhetoric in the tragicomedy category.
Actually, as I promised you again this year, I listened to every word Obama regurgitated in the hope that I could spare you of his droning drivel.
Obama vowed to make 2014 a “year of action,” which can only mean more mischief undermining the Rule of Law enshrined in our Constitution. So, before getting to my list of Tuesday night’s most egregious deceptions, let’s take a quick look back at last year’s platter of promises and proposals from the BO Show.
Energy: “Now, in the meantime, the natural gas boom has led to cleaner power and greater energy independence. We need to encourage that. And that’s why my administration will keep cutting red tape and speeding up new oil and gas permits.” Nope, and Obama has yet to approve the Keystone XL pipeline.
Manufacturing Networks: “I’m announcing the launch of manufacturing hubs, where businesses will partner with the Department of Defense and Energy to turn regions left behind by globalization into global centers of high-tech jobs … a network of 15 of these hubs and guarantee that the next revolution in manufacturing is made right here in America. We can get that done.” Nope.
Smarter Government: “It is not a bigger government we need, but a smarter government that sets priorities and invests in broad-based growth. That’s what we should be looking for.” Nope.
Depressed Urban Centers: “And this year, my administration will begin to partner with 20 of the hardest-hit towns in America to get these communities back on their feet. We’ll work with local leaders to target resources at public safety, and education, and housing. We’ll give new tax credits to businesses that hire and invest.” Nope.
Families: “We’ll work to strengthen families by removing the financial deterrents to marriage for low-income couples, and do more to encourage fatherhood – because what makes you a man isn’t the ability to conceive a child; it’s having the courage to raise one.” Nope.
Syria: “We’ll keep the pressure on a Syrian regime that has murdered its own people, and support opposition leaders that respect the rights of every Syrian.” Nope.
Iran: “The leaders of Iran must recognize that now is the time for a diplomatic solution, because a coalition stands united in demanding that they meet their obligations, and we will do what is necessary to prevent them from getting a nuclear weapon.” Nope, and double nope!
ObamaCare: Who can forget this rhetorical jingle from BO’s 2013 SOTU: “Our government shouldn’t make promises we cannot keep – but we must keep the promises we’ve already made.” Enter the serial liar: “If you like your plan, you can keep your plan. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. I can tell you, as the father of two young girls, I would not want any plan that interferes with the relationship between a family and their doctor.” Indeed, it is that colossal lie which has irrevocably undermined “Obama’s credibility with the public,” according to The Washington Post. Five million insurance policies have been cancelled under ObamaCare and 92 million are subject to cancelation in 2014.
$3,671: This is the average increase in family health care premiums under Obama. And yet, according to The Great Prevaricator, as far back as his 2008 campaign, “If you’ve got health insurance, we’re going to work with you to lower your premiums by $2,500 per family per year.”
Income Inequality: Obama has repeatedly called “income inequality” the “defining issue of our time,” but the net effect of his economic policies has been and remains income inequality.
This divisive and destructive class warfare appeal was, once again, the centerpiece of the Community Organizer in Chief’s SOTU. And Obama was, once again, taking a page directly from his political mentor Saul Alinsky’s socialist guidebook, “Rules for Radicals”: “The organizer must first rub raw the resentments of the people of the community; fan the latent hostilities of many of the people to the point of overt expression. He must stir up dissatisfaction and discontent.”
So, five years into the “Obama Malaise,” what does the data tell us about the failure of his economic policies?
By the numbers:
31%: Number of Americans who believe the nation is better off now than in 2009.
10.4 million: Americans unemployed – not counting three million more Americans who have given up looking for work.
7.8 million: Americans working part-time who would like to work full-time.
46%: 18- to 34-year-old Americans unemployed under Obama (many of whom voted for him).
63%: Labor force participation rate as of January 2014 under Obama.
1978: The last time the labor force participation rate was this low.
46.5 million: Americans now living in poverty by U.S. standards.
6.7 million: Americans who have fallen into poverty under Obama.
47.6 million: Americans receiving food stamps.
19.4 million: Americans added to food stamp rolls under Obama.
$3,827: Decline in median household income under Obama.
721,000: Construction jobs lost under Obama.
528,000: Manufacturing jobs lost under Obama.
44%: Recent college graduates in jobs that do not require a college degree.
$54,688: Per capita debt for every man, woman and child in America as of January 2014, an increase of $19,661 under Obama. After five years of promising debt reduction, that burden is now $17.3 trillion – more than $6.6 trillion added since Obama’s 2009 promise not to leave “a mountain of debt,” and his calling the $4 trillion in debt added during the previous eight years while recovering from 9/11 and containing Jihad on a two-front war “irresponsible” and “unpatriotic.” Obama added 63% to our national debt load.
And now, though it was very difficult to choose just a handful of examples, here are the most egregious dezinformatsia deceptions from Obama’s 2014 SOTU:
1. Obama’s list of “achievements”: “The lowest unemployment rate in over five years. A rebounding housing market. A manufacturing sector that’s adding jobs for the first time since the 1990s. More oil produced at home than we buy from the rest of the world – the first time that’s happened in nearly 20 years. Our deficits – cut by more than half. And for the first time in over a decade, business leaders around the world have declared that China is no longer the world’s number one place to invest; America is.” (All of this has been accomplished due to private sector resilience and adaptability despite Obama’s oppressive economic policies. And about that deficit “cut,” given that he presided over five consecutive budget deficits that are the highest in U.S. history, now that he is projecting cutting his record deficits is not much consolation.)
2. “For several years now, this town has been consumed by a rancorous argument over the proper size of the federal government. It’s an important debate – one that dates back to our very founding. But when that debate prevents us from carrying out even the most basic functions of our democracy … then we are not doing right by the American people.” (Actually the American Revolution, “our founding,” was in rejection of an oppressive central government – one far less oppressive than the central government today.)
3. “I’m committed to making Washington work better, and rebuilding the trust of the people who sent us here.” (This from a proven – and pathological – liar, the most disingenuous executive branch occupant in our nation’s history.)
4. “What I believe unites the people of this nation, regardless of race or region or party, young or old, rich or poor, is the simple, profound belief in opportunity for all – the notion that if you work hard and take responsibility, you can get ahead. Today, after four years of economic growth … inequality has deepened. Upward mobility has stalled. The cold, hard fact is that even in the midst of recovery, too many Americans are working more than ever just to get by – let alone get ahead. And too many still aren’t working at all.” (This sums up the “Obama economy.”)
5. “Wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do. … Citizenship means standing up for the lives that gun violence steals from us each day. … I intend to keep trying, with or without Congress…” (This was a thinly veiled threat to use executive orders to overstep the Second Amendment proscription on government interference with “the right of the people to keep and bear arms.”)
6. “Let’s do more to help the entrepreneurs and small business owners who create most new jobs in America.” (As a small business owner, I can assure you that Obama has done more to oppress job creation than any president in my lifetime.)
7. “America is closer to energy independence than we’ve been in decades. … The debate is settled. Climate change is a fact.” (Well, yes, we are closer to energy independence, but no thanks to Obama. And as for climate change, we agree that the climate is changing – it’s getting much colder.)
8. “Finally, if we are serious about economic growth, it is time to … fix our broken immigration system. Immigration reform will grow our economy and shrink our deficits by almost $1 trillion in the next two decades.” (Obama has expanded our national debt by almost $7 trillion in just five years. And by “fixing” immigration, Obama means to open the floodgates for legions of potential Demo voters.)
9. “We also have to prepare tomorrow’s workforce, by guaranteeing every child access to a world-class education.” (Then we ought to get the unions out of the way and implement every school choice opportunity.)
10. On Income Inequality: “Today, women make up about half our workforce. But they still make 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. That is wrong, and in 2014, it’s an embarrassment. A woman deserves equal pay for equal work.” (This disingenuous argument has already been thoroughly debunked.)
11. “In the year since I asked this Congress to raise the minimum wage, five states have passed laws to raise theirs. … I will issue an Executive Order requiring federal contractors to pay their federally funded employees a fair wage of at least $10.10 an hour.” (It should be noted that under the principles of constitutional federalism, this regulation is reserved for the states. Obama’s executive order will not change many wages, but it will set up a class warfare debate going into the 2014 midterm election.)
12. “For decades, few things exposed hard-working families to economic hardship more than a broken health care system.” (And it has never been more broken than under ObamaCare!)
13. “I know that the American people aren’t interested in refighting old battles. … We all owe it to the American people to say what we’re for, not just what we’re against.” (Oh, but we will refight old battles, especially those to take down oppressors and preserve Liberty. We are most assuredly for Liberty.)
14. “When I took office, nearly 180,000 Americans were serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.. Today, all our troops are out of Iraq. More than 60,000 of our troops have already come home from Afghanistan. … [W]hile our relationship with Afghanistan will change, one thing will not: our resolve that terrorists do not launch attacks against our country. … Syria and Iraq [blah, blah, blah.]” (And the world is safer? Obama has greatly emboldened al-Qa'ida and that folly will cost our nation much more blood and treasure in the coming years. And with a straight face, Obama had the audacity to mention Syria and Iraq, and even the security of Israel.)
15. “[R]emaining true to our constitutional ideals…” (Obama has not remained true to his oath “to support and defend” our Constitution on any day since he took office.)
Finally, and more offensive and inexcusable than anything else in this year’s SOTU, Obama used the courage and sacrifice of a wounded warrior, Sergeant First Class Cory Remsburg, a severely disabled Army Ranger, as a metaphor for his political agenda. In doing so, he disgraced every current and former American Patriot.
Given Obama’s abysmal domestic and foreign policy record, now that he can’t “blame Bush” in his second term, he intends to blame congressional Republicans, and where he can’t gain acquiescence from Republicans, he vows to use “the pen,” a metaphor for his lawless executive orders. (For the record, a CNN poll of State of the Union viewers, which oversampled Democrats by 19 points, found that 67% said Obama should compromise with Congress.)
His chief advisor Dan Pfeiffer claims, “We need to show the American people that we can get something done, either with Congress or on our own.” Obama spokesman Jay Carney added, “The president sees this as the year of action, to work with Congress where he can and to bypass Congress where necessary to lift folks who want to come up into the middle class.” And according to DNC Chair and Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, “The president is going to use his executive authority.”
*Footnote: The audience for Obama’s SOTU was the lowest in 14 years, but more interesting is the breakdown of who viewed it. Fox’s audience jumped 28% from last year, but MSNBC’s ratings were down 24% and CNN’s ratings were down 43%. This spread would indicate that conservatives are more invigorated about near term political prospects than liberals – given that Obama has broken trust with the latter. As my colleague Peggy Noonan put it, “No one’s really listening to the president now. He has been for five years a nonstop windup talk machine. Most of it has been facile, bland, the same rounded words and rounded sentiments, the same soft accusations and excuses.”
Pro Deo et Constitutione – Libertas aut Mors
Semper Fortis Vigilate Paratus et Fidelis