The New York Times just ran an article talking about the “painful and stupid” sequestration. If the NYT is going to talk about the “painful and stupid” sequestration, maybe they should also talk more about whose “painful and stupid” sequestration it is, i.e., President Obama’s.
It was his idea in the first place and he’s the one who signed it into law to give him leverage over Republicans in the 2011 debt ceiling negotiations, which worked.
After campaigning for reelection on wanting $800B in taxes (which, unlike Team Obama, is what I call them, instead of using the euphemism “revenues”), the Republicans gave Obama that increase in taxes right after he won reelection. But then, in typical Obama fashion, he moved the goal posts again and wanted almost double that, or about $1.3T in taxes, and offered no substantive cuts in federal spending in return.
Obama tried to use the threat of the sequester a second time to extract even more taxes from Republicans, while still offering no cuts in return, and went on another campaign tour (because campaigning is his strong suit, not governing), acting like Chicken Little and predicting gloom and doom, in addition to having his minions (Lying Ray LaHood from Transportation, Janet “Big Sis” Napolitano from Homeland Security and Arne Duncan-the-Dunce from Education) all come out with dire predictions of the Armageddon that sequester would bring, all of whom since have had to either recant or severely modify their initial comments after some fact checkers did their work and revealed teachers and first responders weren’t going to be laid off, school children would not be running naked in the streets with nothing to eat, our borders would be no more porous than they already are, Y2K never happened, the Mayans were wrong, and the sky was not really falling.
And, of course, the most egregious thing which happened, allegedly in response to or in anticipation of the sequester, was the release of hundreds, if not thousands (hard to get straight info from the DHS), of already locked up illegal aliens back onto the streets of America — and this was even before the sequester went into effect.
It’s alleged by Team Obama that some career, unknown and faceless, mid-level manager at ICE ordered this and then almost immediately either resigned or retired. As Dana Carvey’s Church Lady would say, “How con-veeeen-ient.” Besides, if that’s the case, instead of the White House ordering it as another scare tactic about sequester, then take your pick between (a) the Obama Administration really being behind it to scare people over the sequester and lying to the American people about how it happened (a la Fast & Furious and Benghazi), or (b) the Obama Admin not knowing what one of its major agencies was doing, and possibly illegally, until after it happened. So, lying to us or just incompetent? Choose one…..or, in the case of the Obama Amateur Hour Administration, possibly both.
But it’s also odd, don’t you think, that DHS’s Janet Incompetano (I just changed her last name to reflect her incompetence) claimed she had insufficient funds, or would have had insufficient funds if ICE hadn’t jumped the gun, for enough beds for illegal aliens at the same time she ensured a $50M contract for 50,000 new TSA uniforms made it under the wire before the sequester took effect? That’s $1,000 per person for uniforms for our airport shakedown artists, while when I served in our military, I had to buy my own uniforms. Just sayin’.
Obama, recently doing what’s called “walking it back” (read: politi-speak for telling something closer to the truth only when you must), has since admitted that the sequester was not the fearsome fiscal cliff and scary scenario he and his handmaidens and henchmen had tried to frighten the American people with but was more like a “tumble.” I would suggest, Mr. President, that sequestration is not a “tumble” but instead your “stumble.” You used it first as a cudgel to get your way on the 2011 debt ceiling, you never thought it would really happen, yet you tried to use it again to get your way on more taxes — and the first time it worked but the second time it didn’t.
And, for once, and to their credit, Republicans didn’t blink and so here we are. I guess, dealing with a president who would rather play political poker and bluff to get his way on taxing the 1% while millions of Americans are out of work and our economy is still suffering, instead of leading and meeting with congressional leaders to mange the sequester of his own making, the Republicans realized Obama was overplaying his hand and called his bluff, deciding to at least take what they could get, which is merely an $85B (a near rounding error compared to overall federal spending) slow down in government spending and not even a real cut at all — and it’s spread out over months and years, to boot.
Oh, but, again unlike Team Obama, in all fairness, I misspoke. Obama did meet with congressional leaders over the sequester — but it was not until after he finished his latest campaign tour and on the day on which it was to go into effect. Much too little, much too late, Mr. President. Leading from behind obviously makes one trip over one’s own feet sometimes.
Anyone who doesn’t see what’s really going on is simply not paying sufficient attention, or they’re just drinking too much liberal Kool-Aid. Now, five years into a presidency for which he campaigned in 20o8 that he knew how to fix the economy and, after being elected, said he would do so by the middle of his first term or be a one-termer, and after blaming Bush for everything under the sun, especially the economy, time and time again, it is now not only Obama’s sequester but also Obama’s economy. There is a point of diminishing returns, when it cannot plausibly still be all Bush’s fault any more. Obama has to finally, and for once, take some responsibility for his own bad choices — and there have been many, from the stimulus which didn’t stimulate, to Solyndra, et al., to the sequester.
And, make no mistake, some of the really scary stuff is that what you have going on now is a president more willing to continue to play politics rather than join in the hard work of fixing a broken immigration system, reforming a burdensome and loop hole-ridden tax code, helping create jobs for a flagging economy, or cutting federal spending or its ever-epanding size and who, seeing some splits among the House Republicans, is more hellbent on being a demagogue and destroying the Republicans’ chances in the 2014 mid-term elections than he is on fixing the economy, or anything else, for the benefit of the American people.
Obama is a lousy president, has never been a president for all the people and is as worse about cronyism as any in modern times, but he is sometimes a masterful politician. And if he can split the Republicans enough to retain the Senate majority and regain the House majority, he will have what he had during his first two years in office — him in the White House and Democrats in charge of both chambers of Congress. Liberals will once again “own” the federal government and the most liberal (and unaccountable) president in our history will be even more unleashed and unfettered than ever, not having to worry about reelection again, having that “flexibility” he whispered to Medvedev to tell Putin about, and if ObamaCare is the hallmark of him and Democrats being totally in charge for his first two years, one can only wonder — and worry — what else might be forthcoming after 2014 in his last two years.
And THAT, my friends, not the sequester, is the seriously scary stuff you should really be worried about.
Well, that and whatever Janet “Big Sis” Incompetano’s DHS is up to — but that’s for another article. Stay tuned.