Fear and Loathing

Suzann Darnall

There is much talk of Obama's message of hope and change being converted into a message of fear and loathing. For some of us, Obama's messages have always been about fear and loathing. Our fear of what he would do next, while he spouted additional words of loathing for America, Conservatives, guns, religion, and much else held dear by the majority.

I for one am not surprised whenever what Obama says turns out to be about a 180 degree direction change when it comes to what Obama does. Take for instance transparency, lobbyists, and politics as usual.

Obama talked a lot about how his administration would be the most transparent in history, but I think we all know how that has turned out. Deals being done behind closed doors. Records being sealed to avoid embarrassment and/or prosecution of high-ranking officials. Passing legislation in the middle of the night. Often legislation that had to be passed before we would find out what was in it.

Transparency is the quality of being transparent which means to be free from pretense or deceit, to be readily understood, and characterized by visibility or accessibility of information especially concerning business practices. I am so not seeing anything in those definitions that fit our current presidential administration.

It is the same thing with Obama and lobbyists. Obama said he would not take money from lobbyists, yet he relies on fund-raisers with Washington lobbying ties. Hmmm … not seeing the difference there. Of course Obama also said lobbyists wouldn't run his White House, but they seemingly have free run of the White House.

Despite his vows to ban lobbyists, Obama has appointed lobbyists to numerous positions, allowed them virtually unlimited access, and taken their advice in setting policies. Just look at who was in and out of the White House prior to the Solyndra loan guarantee, which turned into such a debacle. Documents show that billionaire and Obama fund-raiser George Kaiser, a Solyndra investor, visited the White House 17 times prior to the loan guarantee and did discuss Solyndra during at least some of those visits.

So, the fact that Obama is going to fight down and dirty, despite his occasional calls for more civil discourse, comes as no surprise to me. In spite of his classy little "hope and change" sound bites, his disclaimers of not being about politics as usual, Obama has always been about politics as usual. The really dirty Chicago Democratic political machine politics as usual. The kind of politics that allow a man who lived in Washington, DC to be elected mayor of Chicago.

Y'all remember Rahm Emanuel, Obama's former White House Chief of Staff. Despite a residency requirement for running for mayor of Chicago, which he did not meet due to living in Washington, DC for the majority of the time, Emanuel's name was allowed to stay on the ballot. As one newspaper put it, "Only in Chicago could someone who did not live there be allowed to run for a local office . . ."

So, one promise Obama has fulfilled is that he changed from the usual Washington politics, to make them a little more like Chicago politics. Not a lot of hope for a change for the better in that, though.

Without anything but a dismal, unsuccessful and unpopular record to run on, Obama and his minions must rely on the old standby of negative campaigning. He will therefore be preaching the gospel according to the Progressives: fear of what a Republican takeover would mean, and loathing of whoever the Republican nominee turns out to be.

© Suzann C. Darnall, NOVEMBER 2011

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