For Country A Crisis; For Obama A Generational Power-Grab Opportunity

To reference the Chinese curse, we are living in interesting times.   First we had the $700 billion TARP bailout (of which $78 billion was literally pissed away and of which $350 billion has been reserved for Obama).  Then we had the largest spending package in the history of the world – euphemistically referred to as “Porkulus” because even the most blatantly obvious pork projects were defended as “stimulus.”  This bill came in at an incredible $787 billion; but when the interest and the social programs – which everyone knows will continue on – are factored in,  it will actually cost $3.27 TRILLION.

And believe it or not, the liberal socialist spending choir is only just now beginning to warm up.  Right on the heels of Porkulus comes the introduction of another massive $410 billion earmarked-stuffed spending bill even as President Obama hypocritically praised himself for his fiscal responsibility.

And there may well be a “Porkulus 2” package, given the special interest-benefiting uselessness of the first one that conservatives railed against.

We’ve also got another bank bailout plan that “Turbo Tax Tim” Geithner says may cost taxpayers as much as $2 trillion.

And there’s the $275 billion housing bailout that promises to subsidize the worst behaviors.  $75 billion will be spent to essentially bribe lenders to modify loan terms for people at risk of foreclosure – all subsidized, of course, by those who have been paying their bills on time.

I may have forgotten one or three multi-billion spending packages.  But seriously, what’s a few hundred billion dollars with this Congress and this president in this day and age?

And you would probably think the government is done spending yours and your children’s retirements, but not so fast: now Obama is proposing another $634 billion so he can socialize everyone’s health care (which will lead to elderly people dying for lack of care to save scarce resources).

Are you kids at home adding all these stats to your national debt score cards?

Sane people would think, “We can’t afford to do that right now,” but that’s just not the mentality of liberals.  As Bloomberg described Obama’s position, “President Barack Obama framed the U.S. economic crisis as an opportunity to solve some of the nation’s most intractable issues and signaled that more taxpayer money would be needed to end the credit crunch.”  But I prefer Obama’s chief of staff’s description:

EMANUEL:  “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.  What I mean by that is it’s an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.  This is an opportunity. What used to be long-term problems — be they in the health care area, energy area, education area, fiscal area, tax area, regulatory reform area — things that we had postponed for too long that were long-term are now immediate and must be dealt with.  And this crisis provides the opportunity for us, as I would say, the opportunity to do things that you could not do before.”

In other words, this economic crisis may be a bad thing for YOU; YOU’VE lost half your 401k, your home equity nest egg has tanked, and you might lose your job.  But don’t think that the White House is rubbing their foreheads and staying awake nights desperately trying to figure how to get us out of this crisis.  Because it is giving a socialist the opportunity to massively transform the American way of life.

Obama has been fearmongering the economy – even as he drives it down further and further – into a naked power grab.  Obama – who clearly understands the effect of language on people – used the “crisis” more than 25 times in a single speech to pitch the Porkulus bill to a fearful nation.  Desperate people are willing to turn to the government to save them in desperate times.

To quote from Jonah Goldberg’s book, Liberal Fascism: “Crisis is routinely identified as a core mechanism of fascism because it short-circuits debate and democratic deliberation.  Hence all fascistic movements commit considerable energy to prolonging a heightened sense of emergency” (page 43).

I couldn’t help but think of that passage when I heard Obama pronounce, “The time for talk is over, the time for action is now.”  He didn’t want the American people or their elected representatives to debate – or even read – his Porkulus bill.  And in the generated crisis rush to vote for the bill, no one did.

And now even Democrats are beginning to understand this frightening development:

Byrd: Obama in power grab
By JOHN BRESNAHAN | 2/25/09

Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), the longest-serving Democratic senator, is criticizing President Obama’s appointment of White House “czars” to oversee federal policy, saying these executive positions amount to a power grab by the executive branch.

In a letter to Obama on Wednesday, Byrd complained about Obama’s decision to create White House offices on health reform, urban affairs policy, and energy and climate change. Byrd said such positions “can threaten the Constitutional system of checks and balances. At the worst, White House staff have taken direction and control of programmatic areas that are the statutory responsibility of Senate-confirmed officials.”

While it’s rare for Byrd to criticize a president in his own party, Byrd is a stern constitutional scholar who has always stood up for the legislative branch in its role in checking the power of the White House. Byrd no longer holds the powerful Appropriations chairmanship, so his criticism does not carry as much weight these days. Byrd repeatedly clashed with the Bush administration over executive power, and it appears that he’s not limiting his criticism to Republican administrations.

Byrd also wants Obama to limit claims of executive privilege while also ensuring that the White House czars don’t have authority over Cabinet officers confirmed by the Senate.

“As presidential assistants and advisers, these White House staffers are not accountable for their actions to the Congress, to cabinet officials, and to virtually anyone but the president,” Byrd wrote. “They rarely testify before congressional committees, and often shield the information and decision-making process behind the assertion of executive privilege. In too many instances, White House staff have been allowed to inhibit openness and transparency, and reduce accountability.”

It’s a power grab when Obama goes for this kind of massive and historically-unprecedented generational social spending.  It’s a power grab when he appoints czars who unconstitutionally seize power from Congress behind the scenes.  And it was most certainly a naked power grab when Obama took the politically sensitive census into his office so he could use the enumeration to grab still more social spending powers.

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8 Responses to “For Country A Crisis; For Obama A Generational Power-Grab Opportunity”

  1. Wellsy Says:

    The dollar amounts being thrown around are breath-taking and heart-wrenching. We are exploding the debt by several orders of magnitude, and it’s simply unsustainable to keep spending money you don’t have, especially such large amounts of it. One needs only to look at California to see the effects of reckless government spending. No, the massive growth of government along with the vindictive class-warfare tax increases will rip this country away from the populist ideas of economic freedom it was founded on.

  2. Michael Eden Says:

    California is the federal government under Obama with a single exception: California can’t print more money for itself to bail itself out in the short run by sacrificing its wealth in the long run. In every other respect, this giant California economy is the liberal federal government in 1:8 scale.

    It’s an interesting question: what’s going to happen after this belly flop into socialism fails? Will the country reject liberalism and swing WAAAAAY to the right? Or will it be so desperate that it keeps drinking the Kool-Aid due to the continuing typical “We are working to solve all your problems” promises from big government liberals?

    One thing for sure is this: we ARE heading for a very hard collision with reality.

    The problem is that we have forfeited the Judeo-Christian worldview that allowed us to understand the world as it really is. You can have all the evidence and all the facts, but if you are arguing with someone who has a warped and perverted worldview, they simply cannot see the light. And there are now fewer and fewer Americans who have the ability to “see reality.”

    My fear is this: if we continue going to the left, we’re doomed. But even if we react to the coming massive Democrat economic failure and go to the right, it will in all likelihood be the result of the same emotionalistic reaction that caused us to elect the most leftist president and most leftist Congress in history. In other words, I have no confidence in the wisdom and goodness of Americans as a people. We are quickly becoming a bad people, a stupid and ignorant people, an apathetic people. And such people are capable of anything bad, but little good.

  3. hl Says:

    Hi Michael,
    Have you heard anything about this???

    http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2009/02/obama-grants-eminent-domain-rights-to-american-land-to-china.html

  4. Michael Eden Says:

    I don’t have time right now to give that article the attention it deserves, HL. I copied and pasted it for later reading.

    I DO know that Chinese nationals are swooping into California (and presumably other states) to buy up distressed real estate. So one way or another, China is pocketing our country.

  5. hl Says:

    Thanks!

  6. Michael Eden Says:

    I did read through your article, and it IS an interesting discussion. We can’t say what is going on (because so much is done by elites in secret) and we can’s say for sure how China will try to “leverage” us on issues regarding their ownership of our debt.

    We know it will hurt them to bankrupt us. And so we say they would never do it even as we go deeper and deeper in debt to China. But the fact remains that they can topple our economy whenever they want. And they are NOT our friends.

  7. hl Says:

    Thanks for taking the time to read the article and your comments.

  8. Michael Eden Says:

    It’s an interesting article. China will be a major part of the ultimate undermining of the late great USA, I have no doubt.

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