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B-O Fiddles While the World Burns

October 3, 2009

President Obama has declared by his actions that such initiatives as radically reforming America's health care system, dramatically reducing our so-called "greenhouse gas" emissions, closing Club Gitmo, and lobbying for Chicago to host the 2016 Olympic Games are at the top of his priority list. In the meantime, he temporizes on a decision about troop levels in Afghanistan, despite the fact that American soldiers are increasingly at risk in that unstable war zone, and he falls back on a strategy that has proven to be a non-starter with Iran while that country comes rapidly closer to having the capability, not only to attack our ally Israel with nuclear weapons but to shoot down Israeli warplanes in the event of their launching a pre-emptive strike against Iranian nuclear facilities.

Not only are Obama's priorities nonsensical, they are immoral. Indeed, the rationale used to justify them is contradictory to the stated aim of transparency of his presidency. His hand puppet, Robert Gibbs, is increasingly required to mouth logical absurdities in order to explain the administration's actions and policies.
Nicolas Sarkozy, said to be furious that Obama's handlers didn't want to "ruin" the President's UN debut by confronting Iran about its newly-discovered nuclear plant during his "nuclear-free world" speech, has reportedly said that Obama is so naive and so egotistical - to the point of being pathologically narcissistic - that the French President fears the American president will be unable to learn the way things work in the real world, as opposed to the "virtual world" Sarkozy indirectly accused him of living in in his own UN address following Obama's. This from a Frenchman, for God's sake!

As he jets off to Copenhagen this week on a mission to permanently bankrupt his adopted home town, Chicago - the city is already closing governmental offices several days a week because of budget shortfalls, and hosting the Olympic games in almost every case causes its host city to lose hundreds of millions of dollars or more - the President leaves a situation in which he has spoken to General McChrystal only once in the more than two months since he appointed him to command American forces in Afghanistan. So much for the "good war" tag Obama put on that conflict during the campaign, and so much for his administration's actually having a "strategy" in Afghanistan, as he announced in March of this year. A star turn in Denmark calls; the war can wait.

And speaking of rationalizing the President's Olympic trip, we learned, again from Robert Gibbs, that "the prospects for health care legislation are much improved," and so the President feels he can take the time for a jaunt to Copenhagen. The real surprise is that Mr. Obama didn't choose ACORN to pimp Chicago for Olympic host city, given how experienced the group has demonstrated it is at that activity. One has to imagine that despite his protestations to the contrary, the President has represented ACORN legally enough to know just how the pimping process should be handled and just how effective ACORN would be at twisting arms at the meeting of the International Olympic Committee.

In the meantime, health care legislation, to which the President devoted an inordinate amount of time in the past several weeks, languishes (happily) in committee in the Senate, with two "public option" amendments defeated soundly there only days before the President's northern European sojourn. This defeat comes as the administration seems to be admitting that the prison facility at Guantanamo Bay will not be closing on schedule this coming January. Along with the announcement of this delay comes the dictum that reporters will no longer be allowed to tour the detention facilities there as they have in the past, during the Bush Administration.

Indeed, so disorganized and leaderless is the current administration that they've had to revert to type: in addition to denying the press access to Gitmo, the Democratic Congress has voted down an amendment that would have required the health care bill be posted on-line for 72 hours to give the American public a chance to read it before it was voted on. Senator Max Baucus claimed it would take up to two weeks to do that, time the urgency of the legislation wouldn't allow. This while the President can't find two minutes to talk with the general he appointed to command our troops in Afghanistan, demonstrating precisely where his priorities lie. Transparency be damned.

As Obama dithers, America is left politically and morally rudderless. Our president has chosen priorities that are precisely the opposite of what America has demonstrated it knows they should be, and his indecisiveness, coupled with an arrogance born out of narcissistic naiveté, has left us with no choice but to watch as he fiddles while the world burns.

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