Never pass up a chance to sit down or relieve yourself.
-old Apache saying
Monday, February 22, 2016
Come ON, Obama!
We're running out of time!! Obama hasn't destroyed America yet! The GOP has been warning about Obama ever since he was elected President. Surely all those old, sclerotic, overly-religious white geezers cannot be all wrong!?
America! Something is amiss. We are in the final throes of a desperate situation, and the numbers just aren’t adding up. What can be done?
The facts are almost too dreadful to discuss: No matter how you slice it, spin it, or openly lie about it like Ted Cruz on a ketamine bender, it’s become officially impossible to find any true and tangible evidence that President Obama – AKA Kenyan Comrade Nazi Socialist Obama – has utterly destroyed America, as promised.
Worse still, there is very little time left. The months are ticking away until Obama leaves office and becomes something altogether more terrifying: One of the most effective, lauded, sought-after ex-presidents in American history, next to Bill Clinton. Calamitous!
Ergo, the question is getting more urgent by the day: Can he still do it? Is there enough time for President Obama to undo all the undeniable improvements and socioeconomic progress that President Obama hath wrought? Let us pray.
The signs, regrettably, are not good. Unemployment just hit an eight-year low, down to 4.9 percent. Wages are (finally) ticking up, keeping better pace with all the new jobs, another 150,000 in January alone, officially joining Obama’s nauseating string of 71 straight months of consecutive job growth.
That’s downright shameful. Reports suggest the economy is so robust, many people are actually quitting their jobs, confident they will easily find another, thanks to the Obama-led economic recovery. Dude must be mortified.
It gets worse. It turns out the Affordable Care Act, which every Right-wing politician and pundit, bar none, swore on his mother’s dead Medicare would devastate the economy and cause what was already the worst, most expensive, least effective health care system in the modern world to implode completely, has instead added another 13 million to the roster of the newly insured, most of them younger people.
Uglier still? Minimal adverse effects. It’s doing pretty great, actually. Insurance companies have not collapsed. Rates, for most, have been dinged only mildly. Doctors are not jumping out of windows. And of course, millions now have insurance who would otherwise have been prevented from getting it before, and you can’t be turned down for pre-existing conditions, and… oh, hell, you know the rest. Blah blah blah, good news many improvements everybody’s mostly pretty happy.
Perhaps a bit of gratitude is in order? Because truly, it could have been a lotworse. What if those early liberal visions for true health care overhaul – single-payer, for example – hadn’t been so brutally beaten down by the Right? What if real reform had taken place? Or, for that matter, real environmental legislation? What if the GOP and the late Justice Scalia weren’t so helpfully, openly partisan and grossly obstructionist?
Disaster, that’s what. Pharmaceutical lobbyists would almost certainly be less obscenely powerful. Exxon’s donations to GOP SuperPACs would slump. Hospital executives would struggle to buy a third Range Rover. Ghastly!
So I ask again, with extra ominousness: Why aren’t we suffering more? Why aren’t the vast majority of Americans far worse off? I mean, is this it? When will this nightmare of imperfect growth, recovery and undeniably improved overall health finally end?
Look, it’s been nearly eight years. The mellow intellectual socialist black dude has had forever to make good on the GOP’s fanatical demand that he ruin the nation and impregnate their terrified white daughters. Shouldn’t the rich be much less rich? Shouldn’t the stock market have collapsed by now?
Why is America’s standing in the world so much better than a decade ago? Why are gay people so goddamn happy? Why are women becoming increasingly powerful and omnipresent? Why is the Republican party mocked and derided the world over? What happened to the ruinous supremacy of the Angry White Christian Male?
The answer, of course, is obvious: You’ve been duped.
Don’t you get it? Everything is actually far worse than it seems. There are no jobs. You are not healthy. Your stock portfolio has not exploded in the past decade. CNN Money is lying when it says “Obama is shaping up to be one of the best presidents for the stock market in modern history, even with the recent pullback in 2016.” It is not likely you reading this column right now on a beautiful, technologically marvelous digital device paid for, in sum, by the overall economic recovery. North is actually south. Progress is actually failure. Women and black people and Muslims and immigrants are actually destroying the country.
All part of a monstrous liberal hoax, you see, this “recovery,” this “robust economy,” this “historic resurgence,” exactly like climate science and organic bananas, electric cars and feminism. Don’t you see?
Here’s the real truth: We are, each of us, floating inside a strange, mystical eight-year Obamabubble made of thoughtful rejoinders, Zen-like calm and effortless three-pointers from the perimeter. It’s a bubble that’s about to pop any second to reveal that the Dow is really at 3,000, ISIS has taken over the Freedom Tower and we’ve all been speaking German and just didn’t realize it.
It’s the onlyway to explain it. How else to vindicate the curdled Republican Establishment, every member of which has been so egregiously, so laughably wrong, and so consistently, for eight years straight? How to excuse the fact that every one of them has been promising us the exact same thing: a face-melting Obamacalypse, any second now?
And yet… nothing. Just the opposite, in fact. The poor dears.
Surely, some underwhelming charts exist. If you tweak the metric a little, unemployment isn’t all that great – it’s only, uh, moderately great. And many of those new jobs cited by the DOL are low-wage and service sector. And employment participation rates aren’t quite as strong as they could be. So, you know, take that.
Also, military spending is actually up. And the truth is, Obama’s health care reform is pretty weak on the actual reform: Insurance companies are still making billions. Big Pharma has never been so powerful. Most hospitals are still for-profit. Wall Street could not be more happily coldblooded.
Wait, isn’t that good news? Obama’s policies have only made the rich richer, the military machine more bloated, the stock market explode, oil companies mostly quite happy? I’m getting confused.
But never mind that now. Because it appears Obama hasn’t given up just yet.
Behold, his administration’s final, $4.1 trillion budget. It’s packed to the brim with all sorts of nation-killing initiatives, soul-destroying taxes and hope-obliterating spending plans, a gruesome pile of mostly good ideas, a few fairly lousy ones and a handful of truly great ones that, should some of them actually make it through, would almost certainly leave the country much better off… all by destroying us completely.
Good luck, Mr. President! We’re all pulling for you. You monster.
Redford: I'm not sure I do. I've explored every religion, some very deeply, enough to know there's not one philosophy that can satisfy me. Problems can't be solved with one way of thinking. If anything is my guide, nature is. That's where my spirituality is. I don't believe in organized religion, because I don't believe people should be organized in how they think, in what they believe. That has never been driven home as hard as with the Bush administration. If God is speaking to the president, he's speaking with a forked tongue, because the behavior of this administration doesn't seem very godlike or spiritual....Is there an afterlife? As far as I know, this is it. It's all we've got. You take your opportunities and you go for it.