Punishing His Enemies: It’s What Tyrannical Dictators Do

In 2010, Obama told a Latino audience:  “We’re gonna punish our enemies and we’re gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us.”  We, in the conservative blogosphere were horrified.  This sounded Nixonian, it sounded banana republic unethical.  Yes, the president sounded petty and self-important, but he was also proud in a bizarre way–as if, punishing enemies and rewarding friends was something that was not beneath him, as we might expect from someone in a position of such power, but was instead something that he actually relished.  It was mind-boggling, really, to think that the president’s political “enemies” (not “opponents,” not “loyal opposition,” but “enemies”!) were going to be labeled by the head of state as essentially “‘enemies’ of the state.”

Even those of us who heard it and understood the implications didn’t know how, exactly, these punishments would be doled out, what form they would take.  Perhaps, we hoped, he’d just keep calling us names, mocking and deriding us, sneering down at us from his Styrofoam pedestal.  Maybe he’d lie about us more than usual, urge his sheeple in the tabloid media and regressive groups to attack and attempt to discredit us more often.  Maybe he’d set up another version of “Flag the Fishy” and “Attack Watch” to get our fellow citizens to turn us into the state . . . for some reason, to locate all the “enemies” he has?  And to what end?  After all, this is America, you can’t “punish” Americans for political dissent or on the whim of a president.

You can’t, right?

Wrong.

This president has taken punishing his enemies (and often simultaneously rewarding his friends) and elevated it to an art form that would make history’s worst tyrants and dictators drool with envy:

His DOJ: in addition to suing Arizona for violating federal immigration laws (while ignoring violations of immigration law in “sanctuary” states and cities, of course–after all, what petty tyrant doesn’t pick and choose which laws he likes best?), also has a well-known policy of never prosecuting blacks for crimes against whites.  0’s DOJ also went after Gibson guitar on bogus “wood” crime allegations.

His TSA: in addition to gross abuses of power and zero ability to actually detect an actual terrorist, the TSA considers anyone who “opts out” of their porn scans and gate rapes to be “domestic extremists.”

His DHS: in addition to the unprecedented (and frankly bizarre) stock-piling of ammunition about which they decline to comment, issued a memo in April 2009 telling various law enforcement agencies across the country to be on the lookout for dastardly “. . .. groups that reject federal authority in favor of state or local authority [i.e. that pesky 10th Amendment which protects citizens and states from a too-powerful central government]. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single-issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration,’ the warning says.” I.e. conservatives, TEA Party groups, patriots.

His military: in addition to forcing its pastors to perform gay “marriages,” has also targeted Christians in a special effort to silence their free speech.  And the army has been told not to consider actual terrorists (Nidal Hissan, for example) as terrorists, but instead to focus on Christians, Jews, and Islamaphobes.

His press secretary: tried to exclude the “enemy” network Fox News from an interview.  Yes, it was one interview, but if they had succeeded, it would have been the end of Fox in the WH press pool.  It was a baby step to see how far they could go in ending the freedom of the press.

His NLRB: targeted Boeing in a bogus lawsuit in an attempt to bully them into opening a new plant where the administration (and its union thug friends) wanted it.

His DOE joined with his DOJ to effectively revoke the First Amendment on all college campuses receiving federal funding (the majority of them, in other words).

His IRS: the recent revelations that the IRS was intentionally and methodically targeting TEA Party, “patriot,” and those groups or individuals “educating on the Constitution and Bill of Rights,” has created deep concern on the right–leftists, not being the targets this time, are perfectly happy to see this gross abuse of power to intimidate and silence opposition.  This isn’t that surprising; after all, if we’ve learned nothing else over the past four years, we’ve learned that leftists are perfectly happy with tyranny and oppression . . .  as long as they are the tyrants and oppressors.  Too bad for them that totalitarian takeovers historically end badly (very very badly) for the regime’s early supporters and apologists.

Not only are we, justly, concerned that political dissent will make us a target of IRS (or FBI, CIA, FDA, DOJ, or any other executive branch agency–keep in mind that the videographer 0 falsely blamed for Benghazi is still in prison.  Sure, he did something unrelated to the video wrong, but odd how he was only picked up after the attack in Benghazi when the president and secretary of state needed a scapegoat.  And believe me, every single person out there is guilty of some crime or violation of some regulation–there are so many that we don’t even know about. You could be harassed for collecting rain water, for growing vegetables or herbs on your porch, for who knows what else. So we are not only concerned about the IRS targeting us as taxpayers), but we also are concerned about what this means with the new role that the IRS has as the 0Care enforcers.  They now have, granted by the 0Care monstrosity, access to our personal bank accounts (actual access, not the power to freeze them–they’ve had that for ages), free reign to monitor our purchases and income, access to our personal medical files, and a list of other means by which to “enforce” the 0Care mandate.  These things could all be used to intimidate, bully, silence, even imprison any person “guilty” of political dissent.

And now we know, for a fact, that 0 is not only willing but actually relishes wielding the power of the presidency to “punish” his “enemies” (no, I won’t rant about his insistence that he can use drones to kill American citizens on American soil because he thinks them an “enemy,” but . . . well, not so tinfoil hatty now, huh?).  We, that is anyone who opposes this administration, are 0’s “enemies,” and no abuse of power, no strong-arm tactics, no bullying thuggery is beneath him.

These are the times that try men’s (and women’s) souls.  Luckily, we are Americans, and this tyrant wannabe will not intimidate, cow, or silence us.  We are not Germans defeated in spirit and nation, we are not Russian or Chinese peasants–isolated and disarmed, we are not, in other words, easy pickings.  And for that, I am forever grateful.

Judgment Passed on Tea Party: Guilty As Charged (Crime TBA)

This past week has been eye-opening for many conservatives, many of whom were dumbfounded and not a little hurt by the accusations and attacks from the left.  We thought we were used to the strange mindset of leftists, that we understood that they not only disagree with us but actively loathe us.  We sure had plenty of evidence of that from the ridicule that followed the advent and rise of the Tea Party, so we were used to being called RAAAACIST and have come to ignore it or even to smile a little at that accusation’s baselessness.  We know they think we’re rubes, rednecks, hicks.  That we bitterly cling to our guns and religion because we are too mindless to do anything else.  We know that they kept saying things that, to us, made no sense: that the Tea Party was astroturfed, that we are “anti-government,” that we are violent.  None of which is true, of course, but we sort of chalked that up to their being rather stupid, or at least I did.

What I think none of us was ready for or have even yet fully processed was the vehement and shocking allegations that started within hours of the Arizona shooting.  Popping up all over the internet were “reports” and musings about how those violent Tea Partiers, led by that unscrupulous accessory to murder Sarah Palin (and maybe Glenn Beck, and quite possibly Rush Limbaugh, and almost definitely Michele Bachmann), had finally crossed the line.  The barely-restrained . . . well, it was glee, wasn’t it?  A thrill of self-righteous . . . yes, glee that they were right all along, it was only a matter of time before the Tea Party went off the rails, gave into their seething, malevolent natures and started shooting people in cold blood. 

I was in shock, to be honest.  I mean it’s one thing to have ideological differences, and it’s quite another to accuse someone, or multiple someones, not only of being capable of but of actually carrying out murder.  It’s one thing to have two different visions for the direction of our country, and quite another to so easily, so readily, so happily believe that our fellow citizens are not only capable of but actually keen on committing murder.  It’s mind-boggling, if you think about it.  And we all thought about it, I’m sure.  What in the world could we have said or done to make these people believe, really truly deeply believe that we are a second, a moment, a metaphor away from committing not only a major crime and sin but a soul-destroying act like murder?

Now, as many of you know I used to be a liberal, but I was never a leftist. Never.  I’ve always believed in our country, its Constitution, and ultimately, in the good of the American people.  So these devastating accusations and the ease and delight with which they were levied was truly shocking to me.  I just don’t understand how so many people can honestly, sincerely, in their heart of hearts believe that so many Americans are on the verge of perpetrating violent crimes, of mass murder.  I couldn’t believe my eyes as I was reading post after post, op-ed after op-ed, article after article about how this tragedy was the fault of, the result of, in any way related to the Tea Party movement.  Like many of you, I got defensive, I got angry, but at bottom, I was mostly stunned.

So it was with great interest that I read Daniel Henninger’s Why the Left Lost It.  Henninger posits that the sprogs reacted on two levels, for two reasons:  “calculation and genuine belief”:

The stakes for the American left in 2012 couldn’t possibly be higher. If then, and again in 2014, progressives can’t pull toward their candidates some percentage of the independent voters who in November abandoned the Democratic Party, they could be looking in from the outside for as many years as some of them have left to write about politics. A wilderness is a terrible place to be.

Against that grim result, every sentence Messrs. Krugman, Packer, Alter, the Times and the rest have written about Tucson is logical and understandable. What happened in November has to be stopped, by whatever means become available. Available this week was a chance to make some independents wonder if the tea parties, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and Jared Loughner are all part of the same dark force.

Who believes this? They do.

The divide between this strain of the American left and its conservative opponents is about more than politics and policy. It goes back a long way, it is deep, and it will never be bridged. It is cultural, and it explains more than anything the “intensity” that exists now between these two competing camps. (The independent laments: “Can’t we all just get along?” Answer: No.)

The Rosetta Stone that explains this tribal divide is Columbia historian Richard Hofstadter’s classic 1964 essay, “The Paranoid Style in American Politics.” Hofstadter’s piece for Harper’s may be unfamiliar to many now, but each writer at the opening of this column knows by rote what Hofstadter’s essay taught generations of young, left-wing intellectuals about conservatism and the right.

After Hofstadter, the American right wasn’t just wrong on policy. Its people were psychologically dangerous and undeserving of holding authority for any public purpose. By this mental geography, the John Birch Society and the tea party are cut from the same backwoods cloth.

“American politics has often been an arena for angry minds,” Hofstadter wrote. “In recent years we have seen angry minds at work mainly among extreme right-wingers, who have now demonstrated in the Goldwater movement how much political leverage can be got out of the animosities and passions of a small minority.”

Reading through some of the terrible articles this past week, it does seem that the leftists who made those allegations, who eagerly, gleefully, jumped on the idea that the Tea Party is chock-full of violent “extremists” fueled by anger, even rage, wanted–even needed–it to be true.  That there is no reason to believe this, that it speaks a great deal more to their own mindset than ours is irrelevant.  At rock-bottom–or actually, just skimming the surface, socialist progressives honestly see us as nothing more than barbaric animals who are apt, at any moment for any or no reason, to start murdering our fellow citizens.

Henninger parenthetically makes the point that for those independents (and I would add for even moderate liberals and conservatives) who ask “can’t we all just get along?”, the answer is, simply, “no.”  With socialist progressives running the Democratic Party, there is no hope of “compromise” or of “bipartisanship.”  That it turned out that the murderer in Arizona was mentally unstable and not politically motivated does not matter one whit.  Leftists may be forced to acknowledge that in this case it wasn’t the rage-fueled, on the brink of violence Tea Party, but they seem to believe, truly believe, that it’s just a matter of time.

In all, I think this is the saddest statement about the current political climate in this country, a statement that will not be answered by (one-sided) “civility” nor by mixing up the seating at the SOTU.  Their minds are made up, and nothing will change that because socialist progressives have already passed their judgment, drawn their conclusions, and pronounced the Tea Party guilty as charged.  All they are doing now is waiting for someone, anyone, to commit the crime of which we’ve all already been convicted. 

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Out Barnuming P. T. Barnum

He’s So Smaht, So Intellectual, So . . . So

Liberals and progressives love to trumpet BO’s thoughtfulness, his ability to gather facts, ponder them (seemingly endlessly), and then come to a reasoned, balanced, unemotional conclusion.  They think that this is a large improvement on what they saw as President Bush’s knee jerk reactions, his (to their “minds”) thoughtless and uninformed responses to everything from 9/11 to Hurricane Katrina.  There’s a bit of a problem with this, however.

BO has established a rather alarming pattern of dithering about things that need a strong, decisive and quick response and making pronouncements from on high . . . without the facts and without any evidence that he’s even interested in the facts.  Three examples of this reactionary, irresponsible modus operandi are his uninformed (he stated, clearly, that he didn’t “know all the facts”) condemnation of the Cambridge police, his response to the Arizona illegal immigration law, and his bizarre waffling response on the terrorist flotilla and Israel’s response to that threat against their nation.  In none of these situations did he “know all the facts,” yet he spouted off as if he were downing a few beers with his buds at a local pub, having just caught the “story” on MSNBC.  He’s the president (more’s the pity), and what he says, unfortunately, matters not only in this country but around the world (though he’s quickly showing that the world will simply ignore him, mock him, and loathe and/or celebrate and take advantage of his weakness, so who knows how much longer anyone will listen to him).

Where is the balanced, rational, and reasonable man that the left seems to see in him?  Where?  I honestly have no idea how anyone can look at this angry, petty little tyrant and see anything other than . . . well, an angry, petty little tyrant.

He’s So Coolly Reserved, So Calm (er, I think you mean detached and self-involved)

When they’re not busy basking in his measured and informed responses to events, the left are exalting in his cool reserve.  Such an improvement, they burble happily, over President Bush who was known to show anger at attacks on America and Americans, deep pain and sadness, steely resolve, and abiding love of his country.  How horrible!  All BO can manage is an aloofness, a detachment that seems rooted in some kind of psychological problem (sociopathy and “malignant narcissism” seem to be at play).  The man is not cool as a cucumber, admirably regal; he’s a self-involved, supercilious twit whose only thought is about himself and furthering his agenda, boosting his own image.  Everyone else–the entire country–be damned.

“We Are Not A Collection of Red and Blue States, We Are the United States of America” Says the Great Uniter

When BO made the above declaration, the people cheered.  People on both sides of the aisle were enthusiastic about a “post-partisan” politician (heh, savor the oxymoron), and that should have been a clue to BO that his deeply partisan, deeply divisive, deeply polarizing worldview would not work with the American people.  But it didn’t.  That was a political lie, a statement made to fool the masses into believing him something that he is not and never was.

His relentless attitude of contempt and even disgust that he has for this country and its people is no where more evidenced than in his response to Governor Jan Brewer and Arizona’s illegal immigration law.  The president of the United States of America went out of his way to condemn one of these united states, to bash, belittle, and denigrate it.  He refused to meet with the state’s governor until forced to do so by the public backlash.  This is a man who hugged Hugo Chavez, bowed to dictators, scraped at the feet of Ahmadinejad . . . but he wouldn’t meet with a governor of one of the fifty states over which he presides as president?  And why not?  Race.  Race-baiting.  Politics beyond “usual” and into inciting civil war. 

BO has done nothing, nothing at all, to bring this country together.  Indeed, he seems to be working overtime to ensure that there is great division, that the people of the country he leads are at each others’ throats (all the better to give him room to maneuver, no doubt).

This Way To the Egress

BO, aka the greatest show on earth, has out Barnum’d the wily P. T. Barnum who played on the public’s naivete with his “this way to the egress” signs . . . the public eagerly followed the signs, expecting a great and fascinating exhibit, only to find themselves outside the “big tent.”

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Stirring Up Racial Tensions, Polarizing a Nation . . . Without Reading the Law

Hi, my name is Eric Holder, and I’m the Attorney General of the United States of America.  That’s a really important job, and if I make a declaration about a law, it’s rock solid because I’m the Attorney General of the United States of America.  So when I stir up racial tension and pit Americans against other Americans, on the verge of violence, I always make sure I know what I am talking about.  For example, I love to make my decisions about what lawsuits I’ll file, like the one I mentioned I might file against Arizona, based on what I read in the newspaper and see on the news.  I also go by what others say, you know, “things I hear.”  And then I just run with it!  Weeeeeeeeeeeee!

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See?!  My very favorite places to research my legal opinion are HuffPo and MSNBC.  Did I mention that I’m the ATTORNEY GENERAL of the United States of America? 

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Arizona, Civil Rights, and the Worst President in American History

Okay, I’ve been listening to this Arizona law debate for a few days now, and I’ve finally had enough. Boycotts?  Demonstrations?  All these RAAAAACISST accusations . . . before anything has even happened?  I’ve mentioned before that I am over (and I mean OVER) all this PC nonsense.  And I am.  So here’s the deal:  Arizona is a dangerous place to be/live.  It’s being overrun with gangs, drug cartels, violence, rapes, robberies, kidnappings, and murder.  Before this law, the Arizona police could not deport anyone, and after this law, they cannot deport anyone.  All they can do is report the illegal status to the federal authorities, who will doubtless do just what they’ve always done . . . nothing at all.

As the New York Times op-ed (yes, that NYT) explains, this law “takes a measured, reasonable step to give Arizona police officers another tool when they come into contact with illegal aliens during their normal law enforcement duties.”  Got that?  “Normal law enforcement” duties.”  The law does not allow the police to randomly stop people and interrogate them for no reason:  that is against the law now, just as it was before this law was passed.  The police cannot stop anyone for no reason, that’s illegal, a violation of a citizen’s rights (and until it is established that someone is not a citizen, they are presumed to be here legally).  How many cops do the lefties imagine are so racist, so boiling over with seething hatred for Latinos, that they will throw away their pensions, their careers, and their freedom in order to violate the law to “catch” illegals?  My guess would be about none, though there may be . . . oh, maybe one, and he or she will pay dearly for breaking the law he or she has been sworn to uphold and enforce.

The police are being trained (which I think is a waste of money, they are already highly trained, but that has to be done to try to appease the leftie loons, I get that), and they are already aware that they cannot violate someone’s civil rights.  So what, I ask, is all the outrage about?  We know the answer to that one, and it’s not hard to figure out.  BO and his traitorous horde want to create racial tension where there was none and foster it where it already existed for political ends. There isn’t much that a president can do that is more vile, more disgusting than ripping a country apart to pursue a political agenda.  But it’s what the left has been doing for decades and what this sorry excuse for a “uniter” is doing.  And he’s getting away with it.  Minorities are being fed bogus information, told that conservatives (and apparently 70% of the Arizona population!) are all RAAAACISTs, and they are expected to gobble that up and fall in line behind black Americans to blindlessly (blindly + mindlessly) follow the democratic party, who, let’s face it, haven’t done a damn thing for black Americans except expand welfare rolls and demand substandard education–all to grow their voting base, those dependent on big government.  It’s disgusting.

Luckily, I don’t think this plan will work in the long run, not with Latino/a immigrants.  But it’s the short-run we need to be worried about–that’s all BO cares about, creating as much civil unrest as he possibly can so that he and the other two who make up his triumvirate of tyranny can stay in power.