The quintessential question of Watergate was "What did the President know, and when did he know it?" Obamagate, the vast scandal that encompasses an entire presidency, offers a preemptive answer.
Obama didn't know anything, and he never knew it. At least, not until, like smuggling weapons to druglords, bugging journalists, IRSing his political enemies, and killing vets, his right hand found out about what his left hand was doing from the morning paper.
After skipping 58% of his daily intelligence briefings in Term 1 and 59% of them in Term 2, he went on 60 Minutes and blamed intelligence agencies for being caught by surprise by ISIS. The intelligence had been there all along, but Obama wasn't just missing his 3 AM phone calls, he was also skipping the 3 PM phone calls while golfing with the CEO of Comcast, friendly hedge fund managers, and assorted lobbyists.
When the media, in the person of loyalist New Yorker editor David Remnick, tried to do its newfound duty by briefing him on the ISIS takeover of an Iraqi city, Obama snarked back by calling ISIS a jayvee team. Snark had proven to be an effective national security strategy for him before when he won a presidential debate by dismissing Mitt Romney's concerns about national security with lines like, "The 80s called, they want their foreign policy back," and "We also have fewer horses and bayonets."
The media cheered the spectacle of a real life version of a Saturday Night Live or a Daily Show skit, while licking its lips at the thought of a President Stewart or Colbert ruling through pre-scripted quips. And the problem was solved until ISIS took over much of Iraq.
The ISIS version of a snappy comeback was to call Obama "a White House slave" and a "mule," which sounds really racist and doesn't translate well.
What the ISIS standup act lacked in comic timing, it made up for by besieging Baghdad, bringing back slavery, and taking selfies with severed heads. Between his golf games and vacations, Obama finally penciled in a war, declaring, "The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force."
And it only took him 6 years to figure that out. Talk about an intelligence failure.
Obama botched his own disastrous ObamaCare program, turning it into an even more expensive mess than it already was. Once again, he claimed that he only found out about the problem from the media. Just like he found out that his VA turnaround was killing more vets than Al Qaeda was from that same media.
Let's take Obama at his word for a moment and assume that he really is a clueless dilettante who doesn't know anything about anything until it appears in bold type on the front page of the New York Times. But then what exactly does he do besides give speeches at fundraisers, golf, vacation, and blame Congress for not passing some gimmick bill that even his own party loyalists wouldn't touch in an attempt to divert attention from the latest disaster he only found out about through the media?
He tried to force amnesty through Congress and instead caused a border crisis. After blowing a billion dollars on a contractor with a top family friend executive, the ObamaCare website went 404. His stimulus funds went into the trash. His Green Energy recipients went into bankruptcy court. He's still claiming credit for fixing unemployment by convincing the unemployed to drop out of the economy.
And now, he's stuck being a third-rate Bush, bombing Iraq while trying to explain that the Al Qaeda he's bombing now is not the Al Qaeda he claimed to have defeated when he was running for reelection.
There's no doubt that he did a great deal for the left by stewarding an expansion of the regulatory bureaucracy and scoring lots of points in the culture war, but he could have managed to achieve the former by sticking to his old career of filing frivolous lawsuits and pulled off the latter by becoming one of Jon Stewart's Comedy Central second bananas before graduating to his own spinoff show.
No one needed him in the White House. If the Democratic Party was that desperate to dodge every gaffe, scandal, and criticism with cries of racism, it could have gotten some other black guy. There are twenty million of them, and any one of them would have done a better job and played a lot less golf.
And now, after running for office as the "Smartest guy in the room," the Nobel Prize winner has chosen to become a born-again idiot.
Nixon could have pretended to be a moron barely capable of tying his own shoes. Instead, he chose to let Americans think of him as a crook instead of as an incompetent idiot. Obama has taken the other road with his wartime latte salutes and his post-war announcement golf games. Instead of being seen as Nixon, he's desperately trying to convince the voters that he's really Chevy Chase's Gerald Ford.
Obama is willing to be seen as an amiable, incompetent idiot to preserve his likability rating, the only part of his rating that isn't deeper underwater than Jimmy Hoffa, but that's only half-true. There is nothing amiable about his incompetence or his idiocy.
The roots of both can be found in his arrogance.
Obama claimed, "I'm a better speechwriter than my speechwriters… I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors … I'm a better political director than my political director."
It went without saying that he also understood legislating better than Congress and the Constitution better than the Supreme Court. He understood website programming better than the programmers, which is why the ObamaCare website testing and redesigns happened inside the government.
He even insisted that he was a better ISIS Jihadist than the actual Jihadists, offering his advice as "an adviser to ISIS" to a coterie of big media types. And yet, if ISIS ever did make him its Caliph, it would be reduced to two guys hiding in a kebab shack in Yemen before the month was out.
Obama can do everything better than everyone else, which is why he can never get anything right. He assumed that he would rule as a genius surrounded by incompetent idiots. And he was half right.
The HHS and VA secretaries were purged over failures of leadership that came from the top down. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton resigned half a year after Benghazi. After six years of running his mouth, the Attorney General was finally forced to resign after a U.S. District Court judge began applying serious pressure on the Justice Department over Fast and Furious docs. If we begin listing the top generals, defense and security officials who were forced out to cover up for Obama's incompetence at all things military, we would be here all day.
Having thrown everyone else under the bus, Obama is gently climbing under it for a short nap. Then he'll be back to change the subject from his latest failure to a proposal that is doomed to become a failure while urging Americans not to be cynical about all his past failures.
It's what makes him such a perfect man of the left.
The left never understood that its policy failures emerge from its bad intentions. It's incompetent because it's malicious. The only variations are in the ruthlessness with which it pursues its agenda. That is what distinguishes a tinpot EuroSoc like President Hollande, who is busy turning the French economy into the toilet bowl of Europe, from the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, the Coryphaeus of Science, the Father of Nations and the Great Genius of Humanity, Uncle Joe Stalin.
Stalin was tremendously incompetent and compensated for that incompetence with extreme ruthlessness. The industrial accomplishments that were the toast of the left were achieved through a combination of massive fraud and mass murder. When faced with an invasion by his Nazi allies, he used his own population and territory to soak up the damage until America once again bailed the USSR out.
The left succeeds only when it acts so ruthlessly and sacrifices so many lives that eventually some kind of result is achieved. The result is achieved inefficiently and is lacking in every way, but it's there.
Obama's ruthlessness isn't Stalinesque; it is Stewartesque and Colbertesque. He's willing to violate the law while reading from a teleprompter. And that won't intimidate anyone except the occasional RINO. His policies kill people, but not on enough of a Stalinesque scale to outpace their basic inefficiency. Socialized medicine won't work unless you kill a whole lot more people. Just ask its architect or the NHS.
The failures of Obama are those of the left. Its ideologues equate ideology with ability and empathy. They assume that a policy will work because history is on their side. They don't bother with the niceties of following the law or listening to anyone. Instead they move on to the next big thing while ignoring the big disaster already underway. And when it all blows up, they lie and deny until they realize the people in whose name they have been acting aren't buying it anymore. And then they blame someone else.
Obama is blaming the intelligence officials for not giving him the briefings on ISIS that he wouldn't attend. But he knew all about ISIS. He chose not to listen to avoid exactly what is happening now.
As a born again idiot, Obama maintains a layer of plausible deniability over his incompetence that allows him to blame his own people and claim ignorance. But it's an ignorance of choice. Obama chooses not to contemplate the consequences of his actions. He chooses to implement the bad ideas of the left without questioning them the way that he would have if they were being proposed by George W. Bush. And he chooses to listen to the media because it shares those same filters and acts as a warning system that the crisis has become so severe that not even his backers in the media can continue to ignore it.
The left chooses not to know what it doesn't want to know. It chose not to know what the USSR was doing. It chose not to know what ISIS was up to. It chooses not to know about the people suffering under ObamaCare. It remains calculatedly ignorant of the human cost of its own policies because it doesn't care about those who are harmed by it. It chooses not to know because then it would have to do something. And it doesn't want to.
When those in power are ignorant and incompetent in all things, it is because they lack empathy. The policy failures of the left are symptoms of deeper human failures. Their skills of taking power by manipulating, smearing and deceiving stand in contradiction to the humane skills that are needed to apply that power in meaningful ways. Like all evil, the left is doomed to destroy itself from the start.
Obama didn't want to do anything about ISIS. He didn't want to do anything about the VA. He didn't want to acknowledge knowing anything about the IRS targeting, and he didn't care about how well or how badly the ObamaCare website would work until he realized its impact on his approval ratings.
Obama's incompetence and ignorance are expressions of his contempt for the people beneath him. His policies implode because he never bothered to understand how they would impact real people. He chooses not to know, because he chose not to care.Facebook, Google Plus, & Twitter. You can also get Freedom Outpost delivered to your Amazon Kindle device here.