01 May 2009

All Obama, All the Time

I have been feeling a bit woozy lately, without a smidgen of temperature, none of your typical flu symptoms; but, I have been squealing unexpectedly and at inappropriate times. I think it's a new strain of the Swine Flu -- Swine Tourette's, perhaps? (Note: ancient cave drawings of this strain from Mesopotamia were possibly found, see right.) I'll be playing catch with my sons, telling them about my recent trip to Austin, and then, Wham!, I'm squealing with head back, deep throaty squeals reverberating through the neighborhood, and then a final and triumphant snort at the end with piggie flotsom flying about. My two saucer-eyed boys look at me with mouths agape, gloves at their side, and I utter these comforting words to them: "Don't worry, President Obama is going to fix this. He's already got a bead on the Swine Flu, he can fix this, too!" We return to playing catch, I wiping my mouth, they with worried looks on their faces about my showing up to their school this Friday for chapel.

Now that we are officially at the first 100 days for the Obama Administration, I find many things to talk about in regard to where BHO is attempting to steer this giant ship called America. However, let's focus like a laser, dear reader, on the biggest problem I perceive with BHO: Obama has become the "Ubiquitous American President" who puts his imprimatur on every economic crisis, business scandal, or inconvenient viral outbreak. Where Bush's Uncle Sam was percieved on the world stage as "bully," Obama's Uncle Sam if he's not careful will be perceived as the "daddy state." We as Americans have been a hardy lot, with do-it-yourself skills, and an indefatigable ability to overcome and prosper throughout our 300+ year history. We in the blogosphere are living examples of this. We feel like voicing our opinions, and we start blogs, websites, and even Internet companies. Obama, unfortunately, is ignorant of the business and entrepreneurial side of Americans. He, as an academic for a time in the ivory tower, and then as a politician in the marbled halls, was not inculcated with what it means to run a business or think like an entrepreneur. He is familiar with passing laws and making policies (and discussing them in the classroom) that regulate businesses. Which is partly why BHO is so quick to get in front of scandal, crisis, and TV cameras. (He reminds me of Tony Villaraigosa, Mayor of L.A., in this regard. To borrow from Will Rogers, the man has never met a camera he didn't like.) He wants to discuss, talk, opine, and then stroke a check while arrogating business unto himself (witness his refusal of several banks who wish to return TARP money and rid themselves of the harsh terms accompanying the bailout).

While some call this leadership (the preternatural ability to find an issue and wax eloquent with teleprompter at the ready), I say it weakens Americans to have a "daddy state." Our kids don't become better athletes, students, or citizens by having mom and dad do the work for them. We rear great citizens, and watch our brood become self-disciplined students by allowing our kids to fail. Letting them stumble at times, and then providing direction, mentorship, and a loving parental shoulder when needed. Struggle is good for us Americans. The butterfly must struggle out of the cocoon; the diamond must have pressure; the David sculpture must be chiseled and hammered and sanded with coarse paper. Eventually we shine. On our own, with appropriate boundaries (read, limited government), we succeed and lay a foundation for future generations. Cutting multi-trillion dollar checks to "solve" problems only lays a quicksand trap for our grandchildren, a millstone that will keep them from prospering and inheriting what has from our foundation been a birthright: the ability to succeed.

Who keeps kicking my soapbox? All right, all right. I'm done. Sheesh.


lbwDESIGN said...

oh my goodness...I SOOOOO respect and agree with what you are saying. You took the words out of my head and stated them in such an eloquent manner....so happy that someone out there thinks this way also and itisn't just me. I loooove the idea of limited government. love it!!!

JGregg said...

exactly! (totally agree with your agreeing with me, :) ha!) if folks (viz., policy wonks, politicians, talking-head hacks) could remember the "enumerated powers" in the Constitution are there for a reason, the quality of life in America would go up a great deal (IMHO).

Dirk Voetberg said...

Mmmm. I'm going to disagree. People expect presidents to provide public leadership in once-in-a-lifetime issues. I mean, if a president doesn't get in front of the constituents, when? There just happens to be at least 4 once-in-a-lifetime issues occurring right now. (Auto industry going down the tubes, banks going down tubes, jobs/homes situation, Taliban in Pakistan.) I can't think of one thing he's spoken about that I wouldn't have wanted him to speak about. When he tried to stay silent ("I'm not president yet") during the economic strife at the end of Bush's term, people from both sides of the aisle demanded he take part and speak up on what he wants to happen.
And, no, he's not been an entrepreneur, but he's from U of C, so I'm thinking he will always have some strain of understanding of free markets to temper any regulatory reforms.
And, I think him being (I hope he does this) the first president to really make public education a priority will just lift more and more kids to have the skills to be entrepreneurial and a "hardy lot."

John, maybe we'll talk about such things more this weekend after next?

JGregg said...

So appreciate your comments, Dirk. I'll take the blame for our disagreement b/c of my lack of clarity. I am not saying that the president doesn't have the bully pulpit at his beck-n-call (in fact, one reason why I'm so wonky is b/c I appreciate strong leadership from a president); what I am saying is that govt. ownership/entanglement/onerous req'ts are not good, and that this admin has stumbled upon a pretext for moving us hard left.

I look forward to seeing you weekend after next!