Thoughts on the Current State of the Union

I was just sitting here on the computer Tuesday night, Twittering and Facebooking while President Obama made his 1000th speech this month. It was an interesting experience. Everyone was writing their reactions to his speech in real time.

For several years I worked at one of the largest banks in the Southeastern United States. I looked at the mountains of bad mortgages, and the incredible huge black holes of financial debt Americans were happily piling onto their futures in order to 'live the dream'. I saw all of this, along with the reports of how alongside the debt was a near complete lack of money in savings, simply so they could drive a BMW SUV and wear something with 'Prada' written on it, and I wondered, has the average American really become this reckless, this foolish, this superficial, this low class, this blind to the consequences of the path we're on?

Tonight I saw a glimpse into my answer.

For twelve years, former President Roosevelt insisted that the incredibly long, drawn out Depression wasn't his fault. Oh no, it was the fault of the previous administration, President Hoover's administration. Yes, for twelve long years. And people bought it. Enough Americans believed that horseshit to reelect him more times than any other president in U.S. history. Roosevelt loved making speeches and was an expert at bullshitting his way free of blame, relying heavily on his charisma. Today, President Obama and the Press regularly compare Barack and his policies to President Roosevelt. And this despite the fact that economists looking back at Roosevelt's policies and their impact have concluded that he didn't solve the Depression at all. He made it worse. He made it much, much worse.

Historians defend President Roosevelt from the economists by saying "he didn't know. No one knew back then. He did what seemed like the best idea at the time."

Fine, he did what they thought was best at the time, lacking any better information to go on. I'll give them that, even though it isn't entirely correct. It most certainly isn't true anymore. We know why it was a mistake and specifically what aspects of Roosevelt's ever-expanding Federal Government were the worst mistakes of all. We know, but we've learned nothing from it. We're doing it again, only this time we're doing it on a much larger scale, and in response to a much smaller crisis.

Yes, we have a big crisis. But the Depression was dramatically worse than this. Rahm Emanuel spelled out Obama's strategy clearly when he said "don't waste this crisis." Everyone who knows who Rahm Emanuel is knows exactly what he meant:

'While Americans are emotional, while Americans are enjoying the soap opera and the drama and not thinking clearly, logically, objectively, let us build the Socialist Dream that Saul Alinsky envisioned. Let us complete the castration of the West and turn the Shining City on a Hill into the biggest Nanny State in Western history.'

And so we shall.

Sure, France and Germany have been slowly moving away from this model for a Nursery Nation because it has been such a huge failure, sucking them down into obscurity with the resulting mass temper tantrums and utter lack of masculine character that it inspires, but so what? If there's one thing we know about Progressives, it's that Progressives are slaves to the power of Denial. Failure is not simply ignored, it's denied violently. And so, even as we move to 'Universal Health care', which must be paid for by an ever-shrinking body of American workers who already can't afford health care, we are simultaneously rebuilding the Welfare State that was partially dismantled in the 1990s by Bill Clinton and the Republican Congress. How ironic to see a day when Republicans might wish for Bill Clinton to return. And yet, that day is here.

I watched a documentary the other night on Venezuela's Hugo Chavez. I watched the people, all dressed in red, cheering with tears in their eyes for their 'great leader' while he gave an emotional rah rah speech. I watched as he strutted around, steadily growing accustomed to the power and the adoration. I listened to excerpts from several of his speeches in which he lectured the nation like a mother hen, pecking at them for buying things which he didn't feel they needed, things like Prada purses and SUVs, finally making it illegal to do so. His arrogance grew steadily and noticeably in the clips they showed, stepping from one year to the next so that you could easily see the progression in his ego and his arrogance and most of all, in his power and control over The People. He made lots and lots of speeches. The longer he remained in power, the more speeches he made, rambling on and on about what everyone should and shouldn't do, should and shouldn't want, like a drunken man who simply enjoys the sound of his own voice.

At the end of the documentary, they showed some of the younger generation of Venezuelans. They showed how they were disgusted with their parents who blindly worshipped and followed Chavez despite the glaring failures of socialism and all his empty, emotion-driven broken promises. They rolled their eyes as their mothers praised Chavez for his ability to bring them to tears with his words of hope and 'yes we can'. The old ladies didn't care that his policies had brought a rich and prosperous nation to ruin. All that mattered to them was the fact that his words were like a Hallmark card, making them cry with emotion.

The more I learn about the roots of the current financial crisis, the angrier I get. Bill Clinton himself, in an incredibly uncharacteristic statement, admitted his share of the blame for the subprime mortgage crisis. He even called on the rest of the Democratic Party to do likewise. They, of course, refused. Still, the subprime mortgage crisis isn't the whole crisis. It's just one piece to a much larger puzzle.

Barack Obama's own Black Congressional Caucus, working hand-in-hand with ACORN, a political racketeering organization known to openly and illegally stuff ballot boxes and blackmail financial institutions, in blatant violation of the law, also bears a large portion of blame.

George Bush and the Republican Party, increasing spending on socialist programs that they knew damn well their supporters did not support, bear a share of the blame, too. And for the Republicans part, they were kicked out by those same former supporters. But so far they have been the only ones to suffer any punishment for these abuses of power.

The feeding frenzy in Washington, D.C. has been growing out of control for decades. My father once gave me a book written by a former member of the House of Representatives. In the book the author warned about the "pigs at the trough" who were growing in number and in power in Washington, sucking the blood out of our nation's economy. The former Congressman warned that if they weren't stopped, they would grow and grow until they brought the entire economy to its knees. It was an old book, written around 1980. Things weren't even half as bad then as they are today.

Barack Obama's speaking abilities are excellent. He's as good as any televangelist I've ever heard, and far better than either former Presidents named Bush or any of the current Republicans. But the emotional response to his empty rhetoric by The People in this country is disturbing. It's also dangerous. I wish I could believe that Americans are too smart to be taken in by the likes of Nancy "raging ego" Pelosi, Joe "vagina" Biden, Rahm "don't waste this crisis" Emanuel, or any of the host of other scam artists who perpetually surround our new President like a dark shadow. But the statistics on the steady rise in personal debt willingly embraced by the average American citizen over the past many years following the stock market crash of 2000, so strongly contrasted with the near complete absence of savings, tells me otherwise. I'm not talking about debt taken on out of necessity. I'm talking about enormous personal debt taken on in order to buy, buy, buy without ever stopping simply because shopping is fun and exciting and feels good. I'm talking about a nation of shopaholics who buy things because Oprah recommended it, because it's shiny, because the ads for it appealed to their "strong, independent" ego, or simply because the feeling of buying something new was the only good feeling left in their empty, me-first and me-only lives.

Many years ago, Osama bin Laden and his Oxford-educated Muslim jihad advisers, very intelligently and correctly surmised that a terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York City, if successful, would bring the Western financial world to its knees. They hit it in 1993 using a truck bomb, hoping that by blowing up the base of one of the two tallest towers, they could cause it to fall into the other of the tallest towers, bringing both towers crashing down. The bomb exploded successfully, but it didn't bring either tower down. For eight years the White House under Bill Clinton, did very little about the attack. They let Osama go without giving him any trouble at all.

And then, on September 11th, 2001, Osama's soldiers tried again. They had studied and planned for eight additional years why their initial attack had failed and what sort of attack would be necessary to succeed. Despite the political cartoons depicting them as towel-headed morons, the reality is that despite their emotion-laden, tear jerking, "Yes-We-Can" jihad speeches, the men leading them are not fools at all. They are generals. And they knew what they were doing when they successfully brought down both Tower One and Tower Two of the World Trade Center. It was an enormous rock thrown into the center of a sea of trade, and the ripples kept right on flowing across the oceans of trade for years after, building into a tidal wave.

Couple the terrorist destruction of the financial trade center of the Western World with the housing crisis made infinitely worse by the Democratic Party, Barack Obama's Congressional Black Caucus, and the ACORN-pirates, and you have major disaster on your hands. Add to that the dramatic expansion of Government under the Clinton White House and Republican Congress of the late '90s, and later continuing under the Bush White House and formerly Republican Congress in the early 21st Century, and you begin to see more causes of the current unraveling of our economy.

Throw in Bernard Madoff and his hedge fund, stealing over $50 billion from the world's richest few, add a dash of other crooks just like him, but on a smaller scale, and it's like gasoline on an already huge raging fire.

No, it wasn't a failure of capitalism that created this mess, as Barack Obama claims. It was corruption, massive out-of-control corruption at the highest levels of government.

Still, the fire could be put out. The worst has hit us and we know who and what our enemy is. We know what has to be done. We also know what the worst possible thing we could do is. The worst possible thing we could do is to allow politicians, the very same politicians whose faces are still covered in golden pork from having their heads buried deep in the trough of taxpayer money for so many years, to exploit this crisis, their crisis for which they bear so much personal blame. To allow these pigs to exploit the emotion and the fear of the American people in order to explode the size of the Federal Government into the single largest entity in the nation, producing nothing while devouring everything, including the Constitution and all the rights and powers of The People, is nothing short of treason. And if the word 'treason' bothers you, then replace it with 'suicide'. The end result is the same.

I'd like to believe that Americans are too smart to allow our nation to be transformed into one of the most ineffective lumbering socialist regimes in the Western hemisphere. I'd like to believe that we're smarter than the people of Venezuela, smarter than the people of Cuba, smarter than the people of China with its infamous purges of which our history books say virtually nothing. I'd especially like to believe that Americans today are smarter than the people of Germany in the 1930s, where socialism's greatest emotional orator of the 20th Century rose to power amid a sea of worshipful tears, screaming fans, and enthusiastic chants of "social justice" and "hail the victory".

I'd like to believe it. But I've just read that President Obama is doing away with President Bush's tax cuts, the only thing proven to effectively stimulate the economy. I've just read how he is rebuilding the Welfare State, bigger and badder than it was before, with states being rewarded not for encouraging the disadvantaged to work and become self-sufficient, but instead for dragging as many citizens as possible onto the roles of welfare, adding as many as possible and receiving Federal Money in return for each and every one. In other words, if the States are able to sign up every single formerly working citizen for welfare, Obama's new policy rewards them for all of them. Not even Roosevelt envisioned this.

Some call it 'hope'. Some call it 'change'. Some call it 'yes we can'. I'll be curious to hear what they're calling it 4 years from now.


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