Obama Violates The Constitution Several Times a Day!
With the passage of the Cliff Fix, Obama has completed the de facto abrogation of the Constitution. In that document, Congress holds first priority: Article One, Section 8, Clause 1 confers upon Congress - specifically the House of Representatives - the taxing power. Moreover, under Article One, Section 7, Clause 1, bills raising revenue must originate in the House. But in this case the Senate passed the "Fix," sent the bill to the House, thumbed its collective nose, and left town.
Obama doesn't like Congress. He is accustomed to giving grandiose teleprompted orations, and disdains discussion (other than discussing himself, a vicissitude which he employs even more gaily than Chuck "The Schume" Schumer does). As the "Cliff" deadline quickly approached, and with Obama in Hawaii, the "Cliff Fix" emerged as the handiwork of a Republican Senator, Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and the President of the Senate, Vice-President Joe Biden. Obama was intentionally AWOL. He was above it all - not an engaged president, but our beloved and supreme "Great Leader."
McConnell undoubtedly caved because he could no longer bear Biden's bug-eyed banalities, but the fix was in: the ghost created by Speaker Boehner in 2011 came back to mock him on New Year's Eve, and House Republicans recoiled as the monstrosities poured out of the "fix." The 154-page cornucopia lavished forty billion dollars' worth of goodies on rum producers, NASCAR fans, motorcycle manufacturers, algae growers, wind energy black holes, Samoan tuna companies, and other taxpaying entities that could afford high-priced lobbyists and lavish campaign donations (alas, your humble Rubble, bereft of such liaisons, never turned in "The Shenandoah Sodbuster Relief Act of 2013 " to recover the loss of our cornfield that the deer destroyed last summer).
Obama's absence conveys a rich symbolism: Biden had already played Howdy Doody with Paul Ryan during the debates. Sending him out to "negotiate" with McConnell conveyed Obama's abiding contempt for both sides of Congress. We are not surprised: in 2009, Jill (Mrs. Joe) Biden told Oprah that Obama had offered Joe his choice - Secretary of State or Vice-President. Mrs. Biden said she voted for VP because the Secretary of State has to travel a lot, and she wanted to see more of Joe (apparently she wants to work off all her Purgatory in this life). Joe undoubtedly accepted because State was too much work, and too little smirk. In any case, he has apparently enjoyed the job that his predecessor, the 32nd Vice-President of the United States John Nance Garner, said "wasn't worth a warm bucket of" (ahem) - well, let's just say "saliva."
Listen To The Mockingbird
Obama's mocking mien relies on dictating, not negotiating. Moreover, he lives by the dialectic, constantly reinventing himself and finding new ways to demean his critics. Surprisingly, their response is often dramatically supine. Like Bill Clinton, Obama breezily violates the Constitution several times a day, which actually confers an advantage. One is not supposed to compare Obama to Hitler, so permit me to quote Stalin, another hero of the Left: "One death is a tragedy. A million is a statistic." Well, one Oval Office crime is a national disgrace requiring impeachment, but a million crimes quickly become business as usual.
Given Chief Justice Roberts' acquiescence to Obamacare, the only Constitutional obstacle to rampant and unlimited Obamanism is the Republican House of Representatives. Hence, with his snide and cavalier demeanor, Obama was mocking not only Speaker Boehner, but the Constitution. Which brings to mind Thurgood Marshall's remarks honoring (sic) the Bicentennial in 1987, speaking of the Founding Fathers:
The government they devised was defective from the start, requiring several amendments, a civil war, and major social transformations to attain the system of constitutional government and its respect for the freedoms and individual rights, we hold as fundamental today.
As Knute Rockne, the beloved Notre Dame Chemistry professor who coached football on the side, once observed, "You don't spit on a man's head if you're standing on his shoulders." Yet, 84 Republican representatives joined Speaker Boehner in trashing the Constitution and the Founding Fathers, raising the question, why they ought to be in the majority at all. Richard Viguerie helpfully observes that Boehner's senior staff comprises a passel of tony retreads from the Bush Administration, which goes far to explain the Speaker's obdurate arrogance regarding the Tea Party (Hey, so what if they made him Speaker!).
And so, while Obama uses the Cliff to rub Boehner's nose in his defeat, Boehner is using it to rub our collective nose in it as well. The painful, petulant drama adds a new act: the GOP Establishment uses conservatives to get elected, and then abuses them again, and again, and again. And now, again. The practical consequence of this bipartisan charade is pretty clear: If you're rich (and not a crony), the government will attack you. If you're not, the government will take care of you. That in a nutshell is the "US Citizenship Incentive Package."
But enough of this hilarity. My mind's eye drifts again to the Founding Fathers, and to their age's notion of patriotism versus ours. Consider: "patriotism" derives from patria: it's called "Fatherland" for a reason. We are an extended family, and every family loves its home, its neighbors, its church, its farm, and its God. The same deep-seated sentiments are reflected when we invoke our love of our "mother country."
Unfortunately - disgracefully, in fact - President George W. Bush's unfortunate wars debased patriotism until its tattered remnants came to mean not love of country, but love of government - and obedience as well. Like a runner collapsing at the end of his relay lap, Bush handed off the battered baton to Obama, who waltzed on stage to finish it off. Today, patriotism is love of Obama: after all, isn't the rest of the government irrelevant anyway? And once all limits on power are destroyed, your home, your neighbors, your church, your farm, and, with breathtaking speed, even God Himself, are suddenly subject to omnipotent government.
Curiously, the perverse pretense of tradition, principle, morality - and yes, family - must still be showcased by totalitarian government: why do you think Orwell called it "Big Brother"?
A sagacious friend observes how Obama routinely shrinks from the opportunity to make his case, and shifts instead to assertion - in classical rhetoric, the least persuasive form of argument. Obama behaves as though he ought to be* above* argument - indeed, he is the nation's source of morality itself. Hence, he incessantly mouths his majestic mantra, "it's the right thing to do."
One might wonder just what this man's ground of morality might be. Like President Bush, his public appearances permit entrance only to gushing supporters. But at least Bush had a hostile press corps; Obama's lapdog media treats him like Fox treats Rupert Murdoch - which is to say, they cavil and salivate so salaciously that it never occurs to them to ask. It's difficult for a person to be in a position where no one dares challenge even his most ridiculous ruminations, and the difficulty intensifies, the more power the individual possesses. My daughter the classicist reminds me that even the Roman emperors on triumphal parade had a companion in their chariot whispering constantly in his ear,* Respice te, hominem te memento*: "remember, you are only a man."
Alas, one more salutary tradition bites the dust.
Hot Shots Vs. Has-Beens
Strange, isn't it, that the last three Democrat presidents were virtual unknowns when they decided to run? What we did know wasn't very impressive: Jimmy Carter was a peanut farmer; Bill Clinton was a common cad; and Obama was a lazy legislator with virtually no paper trail. To run against them, the GOP selected a herd of tired old goats who had been around forever: Gerald Ford, Bush 41, Bob Dole, John McCain, and Mitt Romney. They all boasted long public records, complete with plenty of baggage in the ball-and-chain department. ('tis the season: think of Marley's Ghost, moaning, and rattling his shackles in woe).
Apparently the American voter prefers the devils we don't know. And we got'em.
From Under the Rubble is copyright (c) 2013 by Christopher Manion. All rights reserved. This column is distributed by Griffin Internet Syndicate and FGF Books, www.fgfBooks.com.
* The views of Opinion writers do not necessarily reflect the views of NewsBlaze
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