About two weeks ago, someone who knows Washington politics – I believe in The Wall Street Journal – made a prediction about the White House political strategy. If you recall, the headlines weren’t going President Barack Obama’s way.
The “red line” insistence that we would use force if the Syrians used poison gas on their own people turned out to be an empty threat. Bashar Assad, according to reports, gassed 1,200 civilians, and when some of the shrouded corpses were shown on our news programs being thrown into mass graves, there was nothing but stumbling and mumbling double-talk from the White House.
If you recall, our president wagged his finger at Vladimir Putin, warning him not to send troops into the Crimea. Putin, obviously shivering in his Cossack boots, seized control of the Crimea and moved Russian troops right up to the Ukrainian border. Dozens of Ukrainians were killed when they tangled with armed soldiers in unmarked uniforms.
Apparently Obama gave Putin the benefit of the doubt, and realistically, there was not much we could do there, anyway. But if Putin were measuring Obama’s backbone, he would have X-rayed a wet noodle.
But the president’s perceived weakness in foreign policy – and I grant that his strategies may work out better than some of us think – paled in significance next to the roll-out of the Affordable Care Act. Even members of his own party – many of them – did not want to be associated with the president or his health care plan. The White House hope that the “Obamacare” would “smooth out” after the initial glitches proved unrealistic.
After this series of public relations disappointments, the White House needed a new, bold, important plan and they decided on the two-step “climate change” strategy. First, re-emphasize how dangerous global warming – excuse me – climate change is, and then, after blaming Republicans, reveal the Obama plan to save the planet. If you think “saving the planet” is not the heart of Obama’s plan, recall his inauguration speech when he claimed – this is true – that the oceans would stop rising now that he was in charge.
The Obama eco-freaks also had a pair of villains on which they could blame global warming. They were named boldly and pointedly on the floor of the Senate by Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada. Reid claimed that climate change – worldwide – was the fault of Charles and David Koch. They had large holdings in the energy business, and they had pledged $100 million to help elect Republicans. That was enough for that worm, Sen. Reid, to very specifically blame them for the destruction of the planet. No kidding – you could look it up.
Who knows what kind of taxes (fees!) and regulations the White House will impose without congressional approval under the guise of “saving” the planet?
Bud Stevenson, a retired stockbroker, lives in Fairfield. Reach him at [email protected]