Monday, February 2, 2009

"Change" by Kent Felder

This is the first contribution by one of my friends and readers.

"Change" by Kent Felder

“CHANGE WE CAN BELIEVE IN” has to be the most disingenuous catch phrase of any presidential campaign.  The reality of the new Obama administration belies that promise.  Suspicions confirmed?  That slogan seems to be just another mindless platitude among the loads of empty rhetoric swallowed by the drooling multitudes with blind gusto.  What change?  The Chosen One has surrounded himself with supporters from the Clinton administration plus a few friends from Chicago.  Same old self-promoting professional politicians.  Same old snake-oil salesmen.  Same old knowing people in high places.  Thus far it appears to be the "same old, same old" bullcrap in Washington, and we’re stuck with it for a long time folks. 


Don’t get me wrong, I fervently want the new Administration to succeed!  You might ask, “If I’m not exactly an Obamaniac, why would I hope that the Pope of Hope is the most successful leader to date in American history?  Why?  Well, because I’m not crazy, that’s why.  We have problems – huge problems that must be solved if we are to continue living the types of lives we have always taken for granted.  There are thousands if not millions of nut cases out there who want to attack and kill as many of us as possible.  We have several hot wars going on.  We have several cold wars going on.  We have an economy in a downward spiral and those bills don’t stop coming in.  And we depend on China for everything except oil.  So, yeah, I hope he succeeds, but so far I don’t see much different in D.C.


The Christian bible tells us that Jesus fed the masses with a few fish.  Well, the biased Obamedia, left-wing bloggers, and Barack’s brain dead zombie followers are feeding the masses with baloney.  They are telling everyone that his appointment choices are “smart” since they represent experienced Washington insiders who know how to work in the system (read manipulate).  Obviously I misunderstood those campaign speeches about transcending red-and-blue politics, ending partisan ideological wars, and building a less polarized type of politics.  Certainly there is something to be said for experience.  You wouldn’t want an inexperienced surgeon doing your vasectory or your breast implants, for example.  But, it might be a good idea to have fresh faces and fresh attitudes in the Capitol, since business as usual hasn’t proven to be the most successful formula in the past.  So far I don’t see much different happening in Washington or Chicago.  Granted, Barack and Michelle seem to be very intelligent, but give me a break on Biden.  Joe is definitely not the sharpest knife in the drawer. 


Shall we examine this Great Change a bit more?  Let’s see… first Bill Richardson was nominated to rejuvenate our crumbling economy as Barack’s new Secretary of Commerce.  After all, he had experience as Energy Secretary and ambassador to the U.N. under President Clinton.  Unfortunately his new gig didn’t happen because of the “alleged” and very inconvenient timing of a corruption scandal that cropped up in New Mexico.  So that ended that story. 


Next in this Era of Change came the unsettling realization that, in addition to all the crappy products that come from China, America has a plethora of incompetent tax accountants advising our politicians and Wall Street financial geniuses!  After chubby Bill Richardson slinked out of the limelight, along came slim Tim Geithner whom the Messiah nominated for Secretary of the Treasury.  Timothy, too, has experience under Clinton, and not in the sense that Monica had experience under Clinton.  More specifically, Tim worked in the Treasury Department under Lawrence Summers who was one of Clinton’s Treasury Secretaries and who was a mentor to Tim.  (It also didn’t hurt that Tim Geithner’s father once oversaw a Ford Foundation microfinance program in Indonesia, something being developed at that time by Ann Dunham-Soetoro, mother of President Barack Hussein Obama.)  Now once again, another inconvenient truth reared its ugly head in the Geithner nomination, tainting the moment.  It was Timmy’s silly and temporary lapse of memory regarding unpaid back income taxes.  Seems he forgot about some pesky documents he signed when working for the International Monetary Fund which reminded him he would be liable for paying taxes on salaries they paid him.  Additionally, it seems he also claimed a few child deductions that were not too proper, either, but all that has been straightened out now.  Thank God he ‘fessed up to the fact that his tax accountant had erred and his TurboTax program didn’t warn him about the oversights.  I guess that’s just the way it is for these genius, absent-minded professor types.  So old Timmy was allowed to pay those back taxes in the nick of time for his confirmation to the Chosen One’s Cabinet. 


During his recent two-year-long campaign Obama spoke of his beliefs about social and economic justice, especially from his days as a Community Organizer when he was dispensing Alinsky theories.  But what about legal justice?  That brings us to Barack’s nomination of Eric Holder as Attorney General to head the Department of Justice.  Eric is yet another ex-member of Clinton’s legal team.  Although Holder’s appointment is not yet approved, it is expected.  Holder will come to us as the nation’s top law enforcement officer, and as some like to remind us, the nation’s first black holder of that office.  I’d prefer to be told, instead, that he is the top candidate with the sharpest legal mind, capable of independent and objective administration of justice, and not someone’s political favor or favorite color.  Since black is one of my favorite colors, the only things I really find objectionable about Holder are his record on gun control and his role in recommending a pardon Marc Rich.  Just how fair and balanced and objective was the justice in Holder’s recommendation to Clinton to pardon Rich?  It allowed Bill to justify giving full a pardon to Rich on slick Willy’s last day in office.  Maybe you remember Marc Rich?  He was the billionaire who fled the United States in 1983 to live in Switzerland while being prosecuted on charges of tax evasion and illegally making oil deals with Iran during the embassy hostage crisis.  Marc Rich's wife and mother of his three children, socialite Denise Eisenberg Rich, had made large donations to the Democratic Party and the Clinton Library during Clinton's time in office.  Clinton critics have alleged that Rich's pardon had been bought.  Eric Holden was instrumental in the machinations to acquire the pardon.  Pardoned or not, Rich has never returned to the States, thus avoiding legal problems and civil suits.  Let’s Hope justice will prevail over political favors in a Holder system. 


And, weren’t there to be no lobbyists working for an Obama administration?  Well, maybe just a few, okay?  But The Messiah definitely puts his foot down when he says they won't be allowed to deal with government matters where their former lobby employer is involved.  Hey, that makes me feel relieved, especially since Tom Daschle is Obama’s Cabinet nominee for Secretary of Health and Human Services.  The Chosen One expects Daschle to help overhaul our national healthcare system, knowing that since old Tom left the Senate he has become a multi-millionaire by giving “advice and counsel” to firms and special interests that will be lobbying that Department.  Last year alone the law and lobbying firm Alston & Bird paid Daschle $2.1 million in wages and also provided him a 401k and profit sharing plan worth between $100,000 and $250,000.  That firm made more than $16 million lobbying before the HHS Department for powerful health industry clients during the three years since Daschle has been there.  Of course Daschle is not a lobbyist, just an advisor to several lobbying firms; therefore he didn’t have to register as a lobbyist.  Sound familiar?  Sound like the same old semantics game that politicians love?  Remember when Bill Clinton redefined the word "is" while lying under oath about the Monica Lewinsky scandal?  Daschle is not a lobbyist because he calls himself an advisor, only giving counsel to companies who lobby.  Oh, now I see the difference.  Tommy has advised many companies and been on their boards since being defeated for his Senate seat, and he has leveraged his political influence to earn himself many millions in just the past few years.  But no lobbyists will be working for the Chosen One!  Riiiiight....  Do as I say, not as I do. 


Although Tom Daschle hasn’t yet been confirmed for his Cabinet post, every Democrat that’s been asked says he will be.  Once again, though, there is an inconvenient thingy about some unpaid back income taxes.  With that same bad luck that plagued Tim Geithner, poor old Tom had another of those incompetent tax specialists, so he didn’t declare and pay income taxes on his full earnings for the several years since leaving the Senate.  To compound that bad situation, his incompetent accountant also declared some charitable deductions without documentation to prove them, so they were disallowed.  Fortunately for Tom, he was permitted to repay over $140,000 in back taxes.  So, that shows America he is obviously an upright and honest fellow after all, one who will work once again in the best interests of our nation.  Riiiight. 


Transparency?  Don’t forget about the campaign promises of transparency and doing all our governing in the antiseptic light of day.  The Chosen One and his fawning minions still have not chosen to release the data on all the sources of his campaign contributions, especially the illegal foreign ones.  That’s not so transparent and well lit.  Oh well.  But really, what's up with Geithner and Daschle, those highly touted geniuses picked by the Chosen One to help lead us out of the recession, and who conveniently are too dumb (or smart) to pay their own taxes, until they're caught?  Maybe that’s the transparency Barack was talking about?  Their actions are transparent to me.  Or are they apparent?  Honest mistakes?  It wasn’t their fault.  It was their tax accountant’s fault, or the computer’s fault.  Gimme a break.  If you and I did that, the IRS would own us, and we'd be in Guantanamo wearing orange suits, at least until the Chosen One closes it and releases all the bad guys back upon the world.  


No more "pork" or “earmarks” in legislative giveaways?  Gimme a huuuge break!  No pork?  In a pig's eye!  The Pope of Hope’s latest so-called stimulus package is nothing more than a hog-sized, waste-laden, gov't-dependence-building, socialism-strengthening, giveaway of our tax monies in order to cement support for Democrat, socialist, entitlement-mentality policies.  How can billions of dollars for keeping the California state government functioning help unemployed workers in the other 49 states?  How can billions for more food stamps help stimulate industry, or stimulate anything that will create jobs?  It will definitely provide more welfare to current handout recipients, but it doesn’t fix anything or employ anyone, especially not any taxpayers.  How can $4.19 billion for "neighborhood stabilization activities" (read low-income advocacy groups, i.e. ACORN) stimulate manufacturing or stimulate anything except the pockets of ACORN leaders. Uh, yeah, ACORN associates are real titans of industry, magnates of manufacturing, tycoons of technology, guys who unquestionably spur economic growth and generate jobs…riiiiight.  I saw them on the streets registering voters during the campaign. Sharp dressers.  Hey, here’s an idea!  If those ACORN workers would make charitable donations of the gold in their mouths to help feed millions of low income unemployed citizens, we wouldn’t need so many more billions for additional food stamps!  You get the point, though, without the sarcasm.  There are way too many of the package’s plans that have more to do with paying off supporters and funding politicians’ pet projects than with putting money into the business areas of the economy which can actually strengthen our country’s economy, create jobs, and put people back to work.  Those billions of our tax dollars should be going into the areas of the economy which CAN be stimulated to expand and provide employment.  Helloooo!  And how might they help businesses expand?  Cut taxes so they have an incentive to grow.  The “stimulus package” is fraught with enormous dollar waste that has nothing to do with stimulating our economy, but has plenty to do with political payoff.  Change you can believe in?  Not so much.  I till see Pelosi, Reid, Biden, Daschle, and now Geithner, Barack, et al.  Same old, same old, just a different group in charge.  If there’s any consolation to be had, at least we know Blagojevich won’t be among them.   


I suggest we all start praying for real change.

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