Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Bad Paintings of a Bad President and Thoughts of Our Future

Despite the mounting evidence of his breathtaking incompetence, there are still people who want to make a personality cult out of Barack Obama. Now it is possible to view a collection of Obama Icons on, a site featuring really bad paintings of a really bad president. Here are some highlights.

The art of the personality cult has always fascinated me. From Kim il Sung to Chairman Mao, from Saddam Hussein to Papa Doc, egotistical autocrats have long attempted to project their images onto canvas. At the bottom of this posting I have included below portraits of Kim Il Sung, Josef Stalin and chairman Mao.

Bad paintings are only the most comical aspect of the suspension of disbelief that made Obama possible. Far more insidious was the rigged coverage in the media of the Obama campaign and the completeness with which he was sheltered from scrutiny.

There is a great temptation in the American media to create heroes and to then destroy them. Obama through his dazzling incompetence seems to circumvent this trend by destroying himself politically. His "stimulus package" has been a corporate welfare giveaway that buys time for the banks while leaving millions of homeowners with no relief in sight. He has proposed to make veterans pay for medical care out of their own insurance before the government will pay. This offends not only millions of veterans but those who honour their dedication and sacrifice. Aside from the complete disregard this shows for America's veterans, it shows a political tone deafness that is likely to erode Obama's popularity in the upcoming months.

Obama is way over his head. He is ignoring and offending America's long term allies even as he seeks friends among our most determined enemies. What is Obama thinking? Who is he listening to? The one redeeming feature of inexperienced leaders is the ability to seek out and heed good advice. Obama seems to lack even this.

The Obama administration needs to have Congress and a critical media looking over its shoulder. Sensible economic proposals and foreign policy are badly needed. Any president that was endorsed by Jimmy Carter needs an extra dose of scrutiny and distrust.

Democracies have an amazing ability to heal themselves, even from a presidential election that resembles nothing so much as a train wreck Las Vegas wedding and the throbbing headache the morning after. Obama has served us notice that we will need to make good use of the checks and balances built into our political system.

An assertive Congress as well as a vigilant media can mitigate some of the damage Obama might otherwise inflict on our country. With talk radio and blogs, this is to a considerable extent a grass roots proposition. For the sake of the nation's future, we should not shirk this important task.

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