The Man Who Would Be King

President Obama is creeping steadily toward his re-election campaign as Mitt Romney essentially wraps up the Republican nomination. What are we to make of this now-seasoned Chief Executive? Or should we say, King?

Let’s start with his temperament on matters political. There seems to be no disagreeing with the President, despite his sanctimonious admonitions to us four years ago that we should not be a nation divided between Red and Blue. His response to disagreement now is to lie, and then to attack the other’s character. He is not the first politician to do so, of course, but he does so with an air of superiority rarely seen in sane people.

When it became clear that the Supreme Court just might have an issue with Obamacare’s reliance on the Commerce Clause, our esteemed President lied about a fundamental process within our government–the overturning of legislation by the courts. In his words (we can only guess as to whether he actually believes them) for the Court to declare the act unconstitutional would be something new and extraordinary, a statement which even the least politically active among us find bizarre.

That particular target, the Supreme Court, has been denounced before by Obama. He once used his State of the Union address to lie about the Citizens United case, an act which prompted one Justice to mouth, “That’s not true” and shake his head. Let’s remember that these nine people do not get animated over anything short of an invasion of extraterrestrials. For a President of the United States to scold members of the highest court during his yearly speech to Congress is embarrassing. For the offense to rate an on-the-spot reply is almost beyond belief. Who does he think he is? Oh, I forgot. King?

Distracted momentarily from making himself look quite unkingly concerning the balance of power in our government, Obama is now attacking Mitt Romney, with a drive-by grenade tossed at Paul Ryan. Ryan actually wants to attack the deficit in a meaningful way, while Obama wants people to believe that Paul Ryan is lining up wheelchairs at the edge of a cliff. In the first instance, we can thank the President for finding something in Romney well enough defined to criticize. In the second, we can discern what this man is really all about–raw power masked as “fairness.”

I have always found it irritating when people appeal to fairness, as it is usually a thin veneer for a sense of entitlement. Invoking fairness can mean a belief that each person has the right to try. You’ll rarely hear those kinds of people bellyaching about the rules of our economic playground, though. They are too busy trying. You’ll hear it constantly from the ones who cannot stomach someone surpassing them. They have plenty of time to invent different rules, as they are not trying to do much–except make new rules.

This is the core of Obama’s world-view, judging from his increasingly hateful rhetoric as it dawns on him that re-election is far from certain. It is not enough for him to ding the rich with more taxes–he must convince us to be indignant about them. And what better way to aggrandize power than to convince people that the rich have been mean to them? What is needed is someone who can impose fairness–without hindrance.

For Obama, though, fairness is what he says it is, discussion closed. I have seen any number of politicians who are firmly in an identifiable ideological camp, but I don’t think I have ever seen one so royally assured of his own rightness. Firmness of belief is a virtue for the wise, who paradoxically are wise because of their fair consideration of opposing viewpoints. It is a vice for fools and would-be monarchs, who avoid the whetstone of civil discourse like the Plague. Thinking through the views of others forces us to sharpen ours. Obama apparently considers his own never to have been dulled.

Fairness to the President is more government, period. More precisely, it is his view of government–his rules, his way, his country. Thus his campaign is set to offer a stark contrast between his vision of liberals righting every wrong and conservatives wronging every right. And starving old people to boot. To the gullible, his rhetoric sounds like the call of a powerful political savior, a man who has the strength, and yes, needs the power to make things right.

Take his campaign against millionaires. By his camp’s own reckoning, the so-called Buffet Rule will do next to nothing to address the deficit. He doesn’t care, because it’s “fair” to soak the rich. It’s “fair” to tax small business “millionaires” whose business income is reported on their personal income tax statements and whose only crime is to create wealth and jobs. It’s “fair” to make sure no one has too much or the wrong kind of fun. It’s “fair” to force people to buy insurance.

It is pathetic that Obama thinks this is a constructive way to campaign. It is absolutely galling that his quest for taking down the “rich” will end up destroying the poor. We are going to find it a bit hard to feed the hungry and clothe the naked after his imperial government has finally bled the country dry.

Barack Obama would rather see the calamity of collapse than admit that his world-view is in need of adjustment. He would rather kiss Rush Limbaugh on the mouth than see the private sector succeed at anything. He will stop at nothing to impose his lofty vision of an all-encompassing government on the rest of us, for our own good. Is it a strain to call him a man who would be King? Nah…sounds fair to me.

About Terry Noel

I am an Associate Professor of Management and Quantitative Methods at Illinois State University. My specialty is entrepreneurship.
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2 Responses to The Man Who Would Be King

  1. Diane says:

    To nice a title! Better stop before I’m audited or worse.


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