Politics: Just How Presidential Is Barack Obama
As President Obama embarks upon his quest for re-election, one must evaluate exactly how “presidential” he has been in his first term. I am going to attempt to compare him to just a few of our nation’s past inhabitants of the Oval Office.
Let’s begin with Lyndon Baines Johnson and a quick glance at The Great Society. Its primary purposes were to implement social reforms that sought to eliminate the captivity of poverty and unchain the shackles of racial injustice. In all actuality, it was a clever political mechanism installed to keep minorities voting Democrat in every election. Liberal supporters argued that this benefited the poor and less fortunate by assisting their needs. But the opposite was true: it made sure the poor and minorities were unable to circumvent their problems, elevate their class status and be productive in the workforce, and ensured that they were enslaved to the dependency of government.
Barack Obama epitomizes LBJ in the way of promoting big government and class warfare. The two biggest examples from the current administrate are the stimulus bill and what is affectionately known as “Obamacare.” Instead of allowing the free markets to take their course, Obama decided that government was the solution to creating jobs. He was wrong. Unemployment remains high and Obamacare is a monstrosity that intrudes on individual liberties and freedoms, and violates the Constitution with the individual mandate. Jason Stanford of The Huffington Post shows the parallel between Johnson and Obama, particularly regarding gay marriage. He compares Obama’s support of gay marriage as changing the political landscape just as when LBJ supported the Civil Rights Acts.
However, the truth of the matter is that LBJ was a southern segregationist and he realized that his support for civil rights would be appealing to the minority sector. Obama’s support for gay marriage came at the helm of wavering and dwindling support from the black community. Like LBJ, Obama made a political maneuver that was expedient and beneficial for the short-term, if at all.
The next President of comparison is Jimmy Carter. Michael Francis of The Examiner took a look into the Carter-Obama parallel. He points out that both Presidents were insufficient in dealing with the energy crisis. Carter did not know how to deal with OPEC and Obama has failed to allow for offshore drilling. The rejection of the Keystone Pipeline is another mindboggling example of how Obama not only rejected an opportunity for jobs to be created, but also clung to the idea of depending on international sources for oil.
Both presidents saw a spike in gas prices due to incoherent energy policies that weakened the private sector. They also witnessed tax hikes on energy companies. It must also be pointed out that both Obama and Carter had financiers that were indebted with corruption: Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) was Carter’s threshold of deceit and dishonesty and Solyndra has become not only Obama’s burden, but a travesty at the sake of the taxpayers.
The final comparison is the infamous Richard Nixon. President Obama recently invoked and inserted executive privilege in the “Fast and Furious” case, notoriously known as the case in which the U.S. Justice Department allowed the smuggling of nearly 2,000 firearms into the country of Mexico. This “gun-walking” program resulted in the death of US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in December of 2010.
Attorney General Eric Holder has refused to comply with Congress in their request for all of the documents in relation to Fast and Furious. A congressional committee decided to hold the top legal representative of the United States in contempt of Congress. President Obama, who originally claimed to be unaware of the operation, decided to exercise his power in applying executive privilege. This has sparked curiosity and raised questions from several House Oversight Committee members. “He’s either part of it or he’s not,” said Rep. Trey Gowdy, Republican lawmaker from South Carolina.
Richard Nixon inserted executive privilege in the Watergate scandal, and he resigned from office 15 days later. Nixon’s involvement in Watergate revealed lies and deceit.
Will Obama’s involvement reveal the same? Does Obama have something to hide from the American people?
While Operation Fast and Furious can be compared to Watergate as far as being an escalated government scandal, one thing is vital to the discussion: There was not a body count in Watergate, unlike Fast and Furious.
So for those wondering if Obama is “presidential”, sure he is. However, being in the company of the aforementioned presidents doesn’t exactly put him in the most elite category.