Last month Thomas Nelson, Inc. published my twelfth book, After the Hangover: The Conservatives' Road to Recovery, and I have now spent several weeks on the campaign trail talking about it on radio, television, and at our conservative think tanks. The book tour today is very much different from those I undertook in previous years. So allow me to take a break from my monthly frolic with "The Continuing Crisis," and reflect on the state of books in American life and of what George Jean Nathan in the 1920s called "the reading mind." It is fitting that I do so here in The American Spectator, because the conservative movement is a movement of ideas, and those ideas were first advanced in books such as F. A. Hayek's The Road to Serfdom and in intellectual reviews, first and famously William F. Buckley Jr.'s National Review, and over the years in such intellectual reviews as Commentary, the Weekly Standard, and, as Ben Stein puts it, "this very own American Spectator."
The Continuing Crisis
March witnessed the realization of one of the Liberals' oldest and most cherished goals, the national takeover of American health care. If you plan to get sick, do it now before any further damage to American medicine is achieved. The measure passed the House of Representatives by seven votes. Curiously, no national commentator noted that the health care monstrosity passed just days after the Postmaster General John E. Potter announced his intention to end Saturday mail delivery in 2011. The deficit-ridden Postal Service cannot afford it. We can only speculate as to how long it will be before the federally controlled health care system announces the closing of hospitals on Saturday and perhaps the inauguration of "Sick-Free Sundays" -- days on which it would be unpatriotic to become ill and possibly felonious. We can say for a certitude, however, that if you are going to get sick it is best to get sick immediately and before your doctor joins a right-wing militia.
February was Winter Olympics month. It concluded with Canada winning the most gold medals while the United States accounted for the largest overall medal haul with 37. Curiously, America's Nobel laureate, President Barack Obama, was awarded no medal at all. Not even in the giant slalom, despite the fact that no one this year has gone downhill faster. According to the Rasmussen Daily Presidential Tracking Poll, on February 22 Our President rated a negative 19, equaling his lowest rating since coming into office. Fully 41 percent of those polled strongly disfavor the president. Only 22 percent strongly favor him, and many of them would not reveal their names.
January brought gratifying news to Hindu skiers living in the economically vibrant Indian subcontinent and for that matter to the elusive Abominable Snowman (Yeti), wherever he might be hanging out. The predicted meltdown of the Himalayan glaciers contained in the United Nations' 2007 report from its Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has been exposed as the work of mental defectives. Among the Nobel Prize-winning report's colossal errors is its claim that the Himalayan glaciers "will likely shrink from the present 500,000 to 100,000 square kilometers by 2035." The nitwit UN scientists' measurement of these delightful ice lumps is off by 467,000 square kilometers! The glaciers actually cover only 33,000 square kilometers. Yet Hindu skiers continue to have a hell of a good time, skiing up and down the slopes in their loincloths. Many continue to top off their après ski with a frosty seidel of human urine, à la former Indian prime minister Mr. Morarji Desai, now deceased.
December entered the history books and took all of 2009, much to the relief of a grateful nation. What an Annus Horribilus 2009 turned out to be, despite the haloed presence in the White House of America's first postmodern president. The Prophet Obama came to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue promising in his signature Solomonic argot that "We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek."
October passes and the presidency of the Prophet Obama continues on its whirly-whirly course. The Telegraph of London reported that the Prophet's popularity decline is now the most precipitous for any elected president at this stage in a presidency in 50 years -- this despite efforts by a Norwegian gang to halt the deterioration, which at the end of the month had him significantly below 50 percent in the Rasmussen Poll. On October 9 the Norwegian Nobel Institute conferred the Nobel Peace Prize on the American president, making him the first American president to receive the award since Mr. Jimmy Carter, not a precedent the Obamamaniacs welcome. Nor did the award have an irenic effect on Washington. Several hours after the award was announced NASA bombed the Moon! The official explanation was that the bombardment was to raise clouds of dust for experimentation, but one cannot rule out that the Obama administration would rather search for terrorists on the Moon than in Afghanistan. Or possibly members of the Prophet Obama's National Security Council have confused the Moon with Afghanistan. The terrain does share similarities.
July has been put in a jar and placed on a shelf, the same fate that might befall the Obama administration presently. The Prophet, who began his presidency in January with an approval rating of 70 percent, has seen it plummet to 54 percent at the end of the month, while his disapproval rating, which began at 11 percent, has soared to 40 percent, not counting members of the Cambridge, Massachusetts, police department. Nonetheless the Prophet continues to sermonize about education, energy, and, most parlously, his health care monstrosity. In fact, he is the most garrulous president in history, appearing on television more frequently than the weatherman, albeit with less good news. In Paris, France, no sooner was a waxwork statue of him unveiled than it began to melt, causing panicky employees of the Musée Grevin to open umbrellas to protect the waxen Obama's dripping face, supposedly from the sun, more likely from changing public opinion even in France. As for the Cambridge police department, it found itself embroiled in a controversy, pitting one of its officers, Sgt.
And so ends the month of May, the fourth full month of the Obama Dizziness. In a Memorial Day weekend interview on C-SPAN, the 44th president, having burned through $4 trillion, announced laconically: “We are out of money.” Then he vowed to pass into law the most ambitious and expensive health care revision in American history, perhaps to be paid for with Mongolian money. The Chinese are visibly apprehensive about him. Thus goes the mad presidency of Barack H. Obama or Kcarab H. Amabo. It all depends on the way one looks at him, front to back or back to front. He calls himself Barack Obama, but he could just as easily be Kcarab Amabo. Either way, his incoherent policies will end with the same oncoming train wreck. He claims he hails from Chicago, but he could just as easily come from Ogacihc. Where the hell is Ogacihc, you ask? Perhaps it is somewhere in Kazakhstan or Kyrgyzstan. Again, it just depends on the way one looks at it. After four months of this bizarre dervish in the White House he looks like President Amabo from Ogacihc to us at AmSpec, and we shall not be surprised if he trades in his presidential limousine for a magic carpet with governmentmandated airbags.
The first March of the Age of Obama has passed, and with it another Obama innovation in government is confirmed. The federal government is now using the congressional confirmation process, rather than the Internal Revenue Service, to catch tax cheats, and in March the confirmation process caught another one. She is Mrs. Kathleen Sebelius, Democratic governor of Kansas and the Prophet Obama's nominee to head the Department of Health and Human Services. In preparing to appear before Congress, Gov. Sebelius discovered that she owed $7,000 in back taxes. That makes her the fifth Obama nominee to be exposed as a tax cheat by the confirmation process (and the second Health and Human Services nominee, ex-senator Tom Daschle was $240,000 in arrears!) and possibly the sixth. Sec retary of Labor Hilda Solis's husband was revealed to have tax problems during her confirmation hearings. Otherwise March was a very good month for our 44th president, though toward the end of the month, as he prepared to go to London for the G-20 meetings, there was a scare at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. What if the president does not have a passport?
As April bid adieu, and our 44th president continued to swank across the country and around the globe, it began to appear that he is not so much conducting a presidency in the conventional sense as a world tour. His travels took him to Europe, the Middle East, Mexico, and the Caribbee. Abroad, he sounded his basic theme that America had been a failed state until he, the Prophet, rose up from the 4th Aldermanic Ward of Chicago to bring Good Government to Amerika. At home, his theme is that the last three decades of unparalleled economic growth were a hallucination. He will replace the hallucination with European social democracy, using as his economic model the U.S. Postal Service or possibly an ant colony.