Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Unlimited Reckless Stupidity


Since taking office over a year ago, President Obama has declared war on just about everyone except for our real enemies. He has gone after the CIA and their terrorist interrogation policies, the Cambridge police, the Bush Administration, the Health Care System, Guantanamo, the military, the Supreme Court, the Bush Administration, the banks, highly paid corporate executives, the economy, the Bush Administration, the town-hall-tea-party crowd and, therefore, the average American citizen and, finally, the Bush Administration. We are pummeled with despair at every turn of the TV dial. Soaring unemployment. Sagging GDP growth. 9-11terrorists being granted constitutional rights by our own Attorney General. Rising taxes.

For my part the President has advocated a great deal of, well--it simply can't be sugarcoated--a great deal of stupid things. Turning the health care system upside down, spending a trillion dollars to insure somewhere around 30 million people is not only bad business, it is certainly not the kind of policy one would expect to be advocated by the "smartest president" to sit in the Oval Office. But I digress.

What really has me going is his posture on American security. After signing an executive order, day two of his presidency, declaring the closure of Guantanamo Bay within one year, the prison (thankfully) remains open. In a May speech, President Obama said the following according to the Wall Street Journal, "The record is clear: Rather than keep us safer, the prison at Guantanamo has weakened American national security."

What does that mean? Does the statement make any sense? And if true, why is Guantanamo still open?

Then there is this business about trying the so-called 9-11 mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in a civilian trial in New York City. Another thoroughly ridiculous decision. Like Guantanamo the president seems not to have considered the implications and far reaching ramifications. Instead he gives us platitudes and ill-advised ones at that. Read the exchange below from an editorial in today's Wall Street Journal.

"When NBC's Chuck Todd asked him in November to respond to those who took offense at granting KSM the full constitutional protections due a civilian defendant, the President replied: "I don't think it will be offensive at all when he's convicted and when the death penalty is applied to him." Mr. Obama later claimed he meant "if," not "when," but he undercut his own pretense of showcasing the fairness of American justice."

I know there has been much made of the President's remarkable dependency on teleprompters when speaking to groups large and small. For me it doesn't make much difference. Whether he is declaring the "record is clear" on Guantanamo, or predicting the guilty conviction of KSM or mispronouncing corpsmen by calling the "corpse-men" I see reckless stupidity at every turn.

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