Cold Fury

Harshing your mellow since 9/01

Back to the future, forward to the past

The irony just never stops with this ‘tard.

Delivering his big speech on energy at Prince George’s Community College, he insisted the American economy will be going gangbusters again just as soon as we start running it on algae and windmills. He noted that, as with Wilbur and his brother, there were those inclined to titter:

“Let me tell you something. If some of these folks were around when Columbus set sail – [Laughter] – they must have been founding members of the Flat Earth Society [Laughter]. They would not have believed that the world was round [Applause]. We’ve heard these folks in the past. They probably would have agreed with one of the pioneers of the radio who said, ‘Television won’t last. It’s a flash in the pan’ [Laughter]. One of Henry Ford’s advisers was quoted as saying, ‘The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a fad’ [Laughter].”

The crowd loved it. But President Algy Solyndra wasn’t done:

“There always have been folks who are the naysayers and don’t believe in the future, and don’t believe in trying to do things differently. One of my predecessors, Rutherford B. Hayes, reportedly said about the telephone, ‘It’s a great invention, but who would ever want to use one?’ [Laughter]. That’s why he’s not on Mount Rushmore – [laughter and applause] – because he’s looking backwards. He’s not looking forwards [Applause]. He’s explaining why we can’t do something, instead of why we can do something.”

It fell to Nan Card of the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center in Ohio to inform the website Talking Points Memo that the quotation was apocryphal. Hayes had the first telephone in the White House, and the first typewriter, and Edison visited him to demonstrate the phonograph.

But obviously Rutherford B. Hayes isn’t as “forward-looking” as a 21st century president who believes in Jimmy Carter malaise, 1970s Eurostatist industrial policy, 1940s British health care reforms, 1930s New Deal-size entitlements premised on mid-20th century birth rates and life expectancy, and all paid for by a budget with more zeroes than anybody’s seen since the Weimar Republic. If that’s not a shoo-in for Mount Rushmore, I don’t know what is.

A shoo-in for his empty, oblated head on a pike, more like. More debunking of the silly idea that our intellectually threadbare Emperor is actually fully clothed follows, and it’s the Saturday Steyn, so you’ll want to read all of it, natch. The executive summary:

So let’s see. The president sneers at the ignorance of 15th century Spaniards when, in fact, he is the one entirely ignorant of them. A man who has enjoyed a million dollars of elite education yet has never created a dime of wealth in his life sneers at a crippled farm boy with an eighth-grade schooling who establishes a successful business and introduces electrical distribution across Michigan all the way up to Sault Ste Marie. A man (who) sneers at one of the pioneering women in broadcasting, a lady who brought the voices of T.S. Eliot, G.K. Chesterton and others into the farthest-flung classrooms and would surely have rejected Obama’s own dismal speech as being too obviously reliant on “Half-A-Dozen Surefire Cheap Cracks For Lazy Public Speakers.” A man whose own budget officials predict the collapse of the entire U.S. economy by 2027 sneers at a solvent predecessor for being insufficiently “forward-looking.”

A great nation needs successful self-made businessmen like George Peck, and purveyors of scholarly excellence like Mary Somerville. It’s not clear why it needs a smug over-credentialed President Solyndra to recycle “Crowd-Pleasing For Dummies” as a keynote address.

It doesn’t really need useless pricks like Pretend pResident Jughead at all, in any capacity. A better-ordered, more achievement-oriented society would tolerate them at most, and that only out of charity. It’s only in ass-backwards tar pits like the US has slowly become that they’re elevated far beyond their abilities, and not pitied instead.

Multi-metaphorical update! Reality bites–and the law of supply and demand has a few teeth of its own too, and knows how to use ’em:

Yet for all the rhetoric about flat-earthers who believe in strange things like supply and demand, Obama himself knows that increasing oil supply does matter. Why? Because he is pondering again tapping the strategic oil reserve, while Democratic senators keep reminding us that the U.S. is begging the Saudis to increase their own production. So why would increased oil from a reserve or from Saudi Arabia matter in a way that increased domestic production heretofore has not?

Because it suits His Royal Majesty right now, that’s why. No other reason. Just ignore the Gods of the Copybook Headings on their way back into town, ‘kay? And ignore those chickens coming home to roost, too.

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