The refrain started many weeks, even months, before the election, but its frequency and intensity has increased nearly exponentially since Nov. 6.
"I don't know if we can survive another four years of this," people say. Or, "do you think we can survive four more years of this?" Even Bill Kristol, not prone to defeatism, speculated on what might happen "even if America can survive the next four years of Obama." [Emphasis added.] The words aren't coming from alarmists. They come in face-to-face conversations, or in emails, or on the phone. They come from Washington, from New York, from New Jersey, from Minnesota, from Alabama, from New Orleans -- from all over. Serious, ordinary people, some of whom live and breathe politics and some of whom pay almost no attention to current affairs, aren't panicking or exaggerating. They are really worried about what this man in the White House will do now. And they're really worried about whether America as we know it can survive.
It is not an idle worry. Barack Obama and his minions play for keeps. And they are playing for a vastly different America than the one with which we have been accustomed for 224 years of this constitutional republic. Fight a war in Libya without even asking for a congressional resolution? No problem. Appoint executive officers without Senate approval, when the Senate is still in session? Sure. Issue executive orders directly contrary to law, on multiple occasions? Of course. Refuse to enforce duly constituted laws? Check. Repeatedly question the very legitimacy of the Supreme Court? Check. Refuse to honor congressional subpoenas and legitimate Freedom of Information requests? Ignore court orders (about offshore drilling) so flagrantly that you are found officially in contempt of court? Insult or even abandon allies? Whisper to foreign leaders of traditionally adversarial lands that you will have "more flexibility" after re-election? Deliberately cover up deadly mistakes on the Mexican border and in North Africa? Check, check, check, check, and check.
This man runs a vote-fraud-enabling, military-vote-suppressing, domestic-energy-destroying, debt-exploding, credit-limit-undermining, defense-gutting, abusive-regulation-promulgating, power-centralizing, religious-liberty-attacking, crony-corporatism-expanding, Constitution-trampling administration. He politicizes everything and demeans politics and the presidency simultaneously. His opponent (according to his closest political associates) was a "felon." The opponent was proximately responsible for a woman's cancer death, deliberately outsourced jobs, and led a "war on women." Women, meanwhile, should look to government for sustenance from cradle to grave, should vote as if giving up their virginity, and should "vote like [their] lady parts depend on it." Attack, attack, attack; demean, demean, demean; trivialize, trivialize, trivialize; and never once outline a second-term agenda other than demonizing the wealthy and confiscating their wealth. This is a man using the presidency to serve his own power, no matter what the cost, rather than honoring the power of the presidency by the restraint inherent in treating the office as greater than the man who holds it.
Obama discards promises with astonishing regularity, prevaricates about the past with impunity, uses race as a cudgel while claiming to unite us, taxes the middle class (e.g., on medical devices) while saying he would never do so, and guts welfare reform while claiming he's strengthening it. His mentor was a Communist; his top aide's in-laws and grandfather were major Communist activists; his chief political strategist worked for Communist-linked journalists; he started his political career with a fund-raiser at the house of domestic terrorists; he repeatedly and enthusiastically said the man who most deeply influenced his faith was a preacher in whose pews he sat for 20 years while the preacher spread racial hatred and anti-American venom (after which, according to the preacher himself, a close Obama associate offered to "buy" the preacher's silence); he got a sweetheart deal on his mansion via a financial alliance with a crook named Rezko; and he himself wrote that he made a conscious decision while still a very young adult to embrace racial grievances and hang out with hard-left counter-culturists.
Is there the slightest thing in that background to suggest that he loves the same America most Americans love?
"Voting is the best revenge," he said. How instructive. Revenge for what? Is it revenge against "bitter," middle class Americans who "cling" to "guns and religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them"? Is that why we need to "spread the wealth"? Or why we must not reform America but "transform" it?
And that's just Obama's person. His policies are worse. This nation absolutely cannot survive much more of his deliberately created debt. Our economy is being stifled by 68 regulations per day -- 6,125 regulations or regulatory notices in just the 90 days leading up to Nov. 12. Our medical system cannot survive Obamacare -- with doctors retiring at record rates, or refusing to accept Medicare or Medicaid patients, with premiums rising through the roof, with medical-device companies already cutting back on research and development, and with increasing numbers of companies dropping insurance coverage of their employees.
And that's not even to mention the horrifying dangers of a desperately weakened defense force, a refusal to call terrorism by its name or fight it accordingly, and a betrayal of allies combined with kowtowing to powers antagonistic to everything about the American nation.
Can we survive all this? Well, as Ronald Reagan would say, we are, after all, Americans. We are a rather hearty people, and an inherently decent people too. But never, ever, not even under Jimmy Carter, were we led by a president who thinks the United States has been anything but an overwhelming force for good in the world. Until now. And that should frighten us.
In my first post-election column four years ago, I warned that Obama's Alinskyites would first find a way to steal a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate (check), eventually try to undermine the filibuster entirely (check), liberalize laws and practices against vote fraud (check), abuse the power of the Justice Department (check), tilt the playing field in favor of unions, use regulations like a cudgel, inspire radical "street demonstrations" (check-check-check), and incrementally but steadily erode our civil rights (HHS mandate, anyone?).
All of that is child's play compared to what Obama can do now that he no longer faces re-election, now that he can appoint more and more judges to rubber-stamp his abuses, now that he can issue more executive orders and administrative fiats, now that he can use the full and awesome power of the federal behemoth he has so assiduously expanded in size, scope, and authority. Unless we watch out, one fears, columns such as this one will be described as seditious, and our speech rights will be as threatened as the religious liberties of Catholic charities and Baptist hospitals already are.
These things can happen, though, only if we don't fight back. If this be sedition (which it isn't), let the Obamites make the most of it. At some point the sleeping American public will rouse itself and insist that we are indeed Americans, and we are better and freer and stronger than the Eric Holders of the world think we are. The Obamites will not succeed. We will not let them.
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