From Barack Obama at OFA to me: a militant email

Inauguration Day 2009

Inauguration Day 2009 when hope and change seemed possible. President and First Lady Obama (left) with vice president Joe Biden and his wife wave from the viewing stand in front of the White House. (Carol M. Highsmith Collection, US Library of Congress)

Back in the day when hope and change floated through the political atmosphere like beautiful balloons, I signed up for the Obama campaign’s email list. I do that for candidates on both sides of the aisle. There’s no better way to gauge how things are going than a campaign’s messaging.

A recent mail effort from Organizing for Action reads like an attempt to rally the troops, especially the youth, and to continue to raise money which is the end goal of all political groups on a 24/7 basis. This mail effort, however, illustrates what helped cause the great November loss leftists are still struggling to accept.

The president is perhaps struggling more than anyone. The email signed “Barack Obama” ends on a militant tone, and that actually presents an advantage for Republicans. 

As Americans try to make ends meet in an economy not very friendly to middle income families or debt-laden college grads, the president’s email prioritized issues in this order: the minimum wage, fixing “our broken immigration system”, gun violence prevention, marriage equality, women’s rights, and “fighting climate change.” He mentioned “health care reform” near the end of the letter.

Are American voters really “stupid”?

Now I know politicians might privately say American voters are “stupid”, but yesterday’s news featured Obamacare guru Jonathan Gruber coming right out and saying it publicly. If I compare the list in the email to concerns of everyday Americans, I’d have to say maybe Gruber should ask if his party leaders are “stupid.”

I think most of us want the same things—jobs, the ability to hang on to more of our own money, and a federal government that protects our country from attacks whether they’re lone wolf or otherwise.

Those of us who pay attention to government want the federal bureaucracy reformed. We see daily examples of agencies engaged in fraud, corruption, and ineptitude. We pay for it either way and it needs to be fixed.

Most of us want the federal government to stop intruding on our daily lives. The Constitution should be the compass for government’s actions and spending. The GOP should make note of this too because neither party has a perfect record on this issue.

The PPACA/Obamacare tax bill

We’d also like to know when health insurance costs will either come down or stabilize because most of us expect sizable premium increases and maybe even deductible increases just like we saw last year because of the left’s decision to have the federal government control the US healthcare sector via a massive tax bill.

There’s one truth Democrats buried about healthcare even though many of us who actually read the bill attempted to warn you. The PPACA/Obamacare bill is not a healthcare reform bill. It is a healthcare tax bill designed to remove money from the pockets of those who pay for insurance and put it into the pockets of those who do not.

Had Dems been willing to redirect budget dollars from totally unnecessary and/or duplicative programs, or the outrageous amounts of fraud the taxpayer unwillingly funds, healthcare reform may have been possible. They weren’t and they refused any input from Republicans who attempted to influence the legislation. The result will be a narrow pool of happy recipients who get freebies vs. the rest of us who don’t.

Democrats reconfigured the market to the disadvantage of most insured Americans.

Mr. Gruber was well paid by you and me the taxpayers to help craft the PPACA. The outcome suggests Gruber should self-test because he is either stupid or the wickedest academic to walk the planet. He does deserve some credit, however, for admitting we were lied to about the tax bill.

Immigration meme needs replacing

As for our “broken” immigration system, please. Get a new slogan. After all, the federales broke the system courtesy of politicos past and present refusing to enforce laws on the books.

We should not forget Democrats had three years to do whatever their hearts desired on immigration. They controlled the House, the Senate, and the White House (2007-2010). They chose to avoid change. Why? Because the left loves the “broken immigration system” as a political tactic.

I remember that “broken” meme from the era of President Ronald Reagan, sparking rhetoric and outright lies about the deceptive 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act. That bill helped lead directly to the out of control situation we have now and our president and his party, if they push a sweep instead of incremental approach, will make it even worse.

Our welfare systems and our vulnerability to fraud are magnets for foreign nationals who are not here to seek the American Dream, but for other reasons including criminal enterprise.

By refusing to address the issues of non-enforcement of immigration laws as well as matters like the porous borders and completely inept bureaucracy, politicians may well be able to provide select large corporations with cheap labor. Doing so will make the real problems worse, not better, considering double digit unemployment among blacks and stagnant employment opportunities in a country where regulations squeeze out the small players.

Immigrants, by the way, face the same challenges natural born citizens face. There’s a basis for unity there if you permit yourself to see it.

What does Obama’s fix for immigration look like in budget terms? Why have congressmen and senators refused to tell us the true costs in terms of impact on the Social Security Trust Fund and Medicare via chain migration, Medicaid, school districts, healthcare including Obamacare, and the criminal justice tab?

Is immigration on the top of your list? Probably not. It is a top issue for racialist and ethnic groups intent on increasing the size of a population that can deliver power to candidates seeking the “gimme” vote. The groups get a quid pro quo in terms of power and potential federal largess.

The current “immigration” debate is about money and power. If a politician expounds on those who “live in the shadows”, homogenizing all foreign nationals as victims, he is opting for theatrics not reality, and certainly not what is best for the country.

Disconnect from the real climates

Climate change? We’d be smarter to talk real environmental concerns and preparation for natural disasters that have plagued humans since the beginning of our species. Among critical concerns are federal land management moving to conservation practices instead of pure preservation, global deforestation and habitat encroachment, and diversion of waterways.

The Obama camp’s laundry list reflects how his party has niched US voters into micromanaged interest groups. The list also indicates an abandonment of federal powers for the “general welfare”, a confirmation of the nanny approach directing feds to stick their noses into every facet of our lives.

Democrats have managed to disconnect from the real climate down here on Main Street, the social and economic climate each of us deals with in our daily non-insulated lives.

The president seems to struggle with the division of powers our government has comprised since its inception. He has never been comfortable with Congress, perhaps because he spent so little time there himself after coming to Washington from his state’s legislature. The end of the message bears a militant note that suggests ideological battles will rage ahead of the 2016 presidential election:

“With or without help from Congress, I’m not done making real change for the American people.”

That letter ending on such a defiant note did not include a single mention of national security despite recent beheadings and alleged threats from terrorist groups.

How tone deaf to voters can a party get? Or, with a nod to Mr. Gruber, how “stupid”?

Featured Photo: Inauguration Day 2009 when hope and change seemed possible. President and First Lady Obama (left), and vice president Joe Biden and his wife, wave from the viewing stand in front of the White House. (Carol M. Highsmith Collection, US Library of Congress)

(Commentary by Kay B. Day/Nov. 11, 2014)

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About Kay Day

Kay B. Day is a freelance writer who has published in national and international magazines and websites. The author of 3 books, her work is anthologized in textbooks and collections. She has won awards for poetry, nonfiction and fiction. Day is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors and the Authors Guild.
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