Political Hay

Chaos Theory

To Buffett and Grove, Obama has gone from idealistic to imprudent.

By 3.12.09

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"Mr. President, Time to Rein in the Chaos," reads the headline on Andrew Grove's obtuse op-ed. Grove attributes the chaos not to the intrinsically disordered character of Obama's liberalism but to the speed and manner of its application.

Applying a bad idea gradually doesn't make it any less bad. But it might save the Buffetts and Groves billions of dollars. Go ahead and break a lot of eggs in your grand experiment at some point, Barack, just not ours now. That's essentially their advice to him.

Wall Street's second thoughts about Obama are tiresome. Cowed by their pro-abort trophy wives, View-watching mistresses, and PC philanthropic peers, financiers and CEOs helped elect a class-warfare-using president and now have the gall to whine about him.

The "revolutionary" over whom they once cooed is suddenly reckless and oblivious to the existing order of things.

Says Buffett: "you can't expect people to unite behind you if you are trying to jam a whole bunch of things down their throat."

A little more gingerly, Grove says the same: "Our health-care system may well be ripe for a major overhaul, as are our energy and environmental policies. Widespread recognition that all of these reforms are overdue contributed to Barack Obama's victory in November. But if the chaos that resulted from initiating such an overhaul were piled on top of the unresolved status of the financial system, society and government would become exhausted."

No global warming tax and socialized health care just yet!

Apparently, Obama's glibness is grating on dilettantish moneybags. Clearing their throats at inaugural cocktail parties, they called it "idealism"; today, they call it imprudence. How dare he compare our bouncing stock prices to political polls, a few have been heard to say.

The liberalism of the Groves and Buffetts is basically parasitic; it feeds off the lingering order of conservatism. Were Obama to devour the conservative host whole, they'd have to close up shop.

One would think this parasitic arrangement might stimulate deeper thoughts in them about the nature of liberalism. But it never does. As soon as the crisis that makes them cling to conservatism passes, they resume their ideological intoxications.

The full-blown, pure application of liberalism would expose the country's reliance on this parasitic arrangement and discredit liberalism politically. Obama, in his own way, grasps this point, making sure to weaken the existing host but never kill it.

For example, he nationalizes banks (in the sense of majority government ownership of stocks in them) but doesn't run them, not because he thinks that undesirable but because he thinks it impractical. For now. But what if he had a more robust federal government and prepared proletariat? That glorious day in his mind is coming.

Grove quotes Machiavelli at Obama -- prefacing his column with "There is nothing more difficult… than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things" -- but Obama seems plenty Machiavellian already.

Look at the outright lying disguised as thoughtfulness in his presentation earlier in the week about embryo-destructive stem cell research. At it he called cloning "dangerous" and "profoundly wrong," which a dutiful media blasted to readers uncritically, even as he locked in place a policy that guarantees it.

After all, many of the extracted cells will come from clones. For those scoring at home, the "moderate," science-over-politics position in the debate, according to the fine print in the administration's policy, isn't to oppose cloning but to oppose "reproductive" cloning; "therapeutic" cloning, then killing the clones, is just fine.

It is no wonder that even a studiously nonpolemical columnist like Robert Samuelson has taken to calling Obama a "great pretender." 

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About the Author
George Neumayr, a contributing editor to The American Spectator, is co-author of No Higher Power: Obama's War on Religious Freedom.