Oh, the angst and hand-wringing on the part of the global liberal-media establishment: they couldn’t rid themselves of an embarrassment like Marion Barry, and now this. Even some very smart conservatives are worried:
A CNN/ORC survey conducted between November 18 and November 20 reveals that the American people do not think that Obama is capable of doing his job, nor do they really trust him to try. Less than half of Americans (40 percent) think President Obama can manage the government effectively, the poll shows, while 53 percent said that the phrase “honest and trustworthy” “does not apply” to the president. Meanwhile, 56 percent of the public say that he does not inspire confidence, the very same percentage has noticed that the president does not agree with them on issues that are important to them, and only 44 percent profess to “admire” him. His approval ratings, meanwhile, are hovering around the 40 percent mark — and moving in the wrong direction to boot.
But here’s the kicker: Americans are still fond of him anyway. Seven in ten Americans affirmed in this same poll that they like Barack Obama personally, and slightly more than half agreed with the statement that he “cares about people like you.” We thus seem to be living in a country in which a majority of the people deem the president incapable of managing the government that it is his job to manage; think him untrustworthy; suppose that he doesn’t inspire confidence or admiration; and know full well that he doesn’t agree with them on political issues — and yet still like him quite a lot.
Now, competence and likeability are by no means synonymous virtues, and it is the people’s sacred prerogative to distinguish between traits in any way they wish. Indeed, I feel similarly split about, say, the actor Zach Galifianakis. I do not think that Galifianakis would be especially capable of managing the executive branch of a sprawling federal government, and I’d hesitate before trusting him with my belongings, and yet I have a generally warm feeling toward him. But it all becomes a bit trickier when the person in the scenario is the most powerful man in the world and not merely a figurehead or one-off talent.
Ahh, but there’s the rub: he IS merely a figurehead, and our “elections” are now a dumbshow, a circus–or bread and circuses, take your pick. The people who really run things don’t ever come up for re-election, and with a permanent-politician class firmly lodged in the craw of the former Republic and slowly choking it to death, the people seem to innately get what’s really going on, and have, as Wodehouse used to say, gotten it thoroughly up their noses and settled down to really enjoy themselves. Thus:
“Democracy never lasts long,” Adams famously said. “It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There was never a democracy that did not commit suicide.” For liberal regimes, a very common starting point on the road to serfdom is the over-delegation of legislative powers to the executive. France very nearly ended up in a permanent dictatorship as a result of that error, and was spared that fate mostly by good luck and Charles de Gaulle’s patriotism. Long before she declared her infamous state of emergency, Indira Gandhi had been centralizing power in the prime minister’s office, and India was spared a permanent dictatorship only by her political miscalculation and her dynasty-minded son’s having gotten himself killed in a plane wreck. Salazar in Portugal, Austria under Dollfuss, similar stories. But the United States is not going to fall for a strongman government. Instead of delegating power to a would-be president-for-life, we delegate it to a bureaucracy-without-death. You do not need to install a dictator when you’ve already had a politically supercharged permanent bureaucracy in place for 40 years or more. As is made clear by everything from campaign donations to the IRS jihad, the bureaucracy is the Left, and the Left is the bureaucracy. Elections will be held, politicians will come and go, but if you expand the power of the bureaucracy, you expand the power of the Left, of the managers and minions who share Barack Obama’s view of the world. Barack Obama isn’t the leader of the free world; he’s the front man for the permanent bureaucracy, the smiley-face mask hiding the pitiless yawning maw of total politics.
Williamson calls it “an intolerable state of affairs,” and so it would be for a truly free people in a truly free country. But we haven’t been that for a long, long time. Annnnd thus:
More than 40% of Toronto voters still approve of the job Mayor Rob Ford has done and one-third of them would vote for him again, even after he admitted smoking crack cocaine and city council stripped him of much of his authority.
A Forum Research survey of 1,049 Toronto voters released on Friday showed that 42% of respondents approve of the job Ford has been doing as mayor.
That’s down from 44% in a similar poll two weeks ago, but up from 39% in late October, just before Ford admitted he smoked crack cocaine while in office.
And why the hell not? In the Western world, politics is now more about entertainment than governance. The people know it. It’s been popular among the more concerned, edumacated chin-waggers to lament the Low Information Voter syndrome, to wring hands over the dumbing-down of the populace and the consequent debasement of politics generally; I’ve done plenty of it myself. But what if those LIVs are really the smart ones here? What if they have a firmer grasp of the reality of the situation–and of the extremely remote likelihood of their ever being any sort of agent for changing it–than the supposedly Smart Set do?
The Constitution is a dead letter, wholly useless in guaranteeing the freedom of a people who care less for that than for security and ease. They know that mentioning the Constitution as anything other than a “living” document which is now mostly obsolete anyway will get them dismissed as hopeless anachronistic fuddy-duddies at best, or potentially dangerous radicals at worst.
They know they are under 24-7 surveillance by a micro-managing Superstate: they carry around mini-computers in their pockets all day, every day, and they know that those computers are beaming their location, activities, and communications to whatever Superstate agency cares to take a semi-clandestine peek at them for whatever nefarious purposes they deem necessary. They know that there are surveillance cameras mounted on every urban street corner and plastered all around intersections and interstates all over the rest of the country.
They know local police forces have drones buzzing their homes and recreational areas equipped with thermal-imaging cameras to monitor them, unreliable “drug-sniffing” canines who light up on command when the cops want to pretend to find something illegal in their cars or on their persons, and complete carte blanche to do anything they like to them at any time they choose. They know the cops have tanks and SWAT teams for the express purpose of breaking down their doors and hauling them away on any pretense, or on none at all, or by mistake.
They know they can’t trust the cops, they can’t trust their “elected” “leaders,” and they can’t trust their neighbors not to rat them out should the mood take them–for anything, or for spite, or for some imagined petty grievance, or for nothing whatsoever. They know they may eventually beat the bum rap, but only after years or decades of torment and life-altering expense.
They know the IRS and other bureaucracies are now routinely used to suppress dissent, and that the very idea that they have either any meaningful influence over those entrenched and calcified institutions, or any real right to voice disagreement without repercussions most dire, is little more than a bitter-tasting joke. They hunker down–“shelter in place”–instead, preferring just being able to get along to being placed on some bureaucrat’s list of potentially dangerous troublemakers.
So why not have a laugh at the system’s expense whenever they can? Why not elect the most amusing and entertaining buffoons, boors, frauds, and felons available, whenever one is allowed on the ballot?
At this point, what difference does it make? I say we import Rob Ford and run him for president. He can’t do any more harm than the worthless douchebag we have infesting the Oval Office already, and waiting for him to piddle himself in public again would be way more amusing and a more productive use of our time than listening to yet another droning, insomnia-curing scolding from a deceitful moron with no experience at anything other than taking himself way too seriously.
The fix is in update! Via Insty: “Just evil genius. They friggin’ thought of everything.”
Since the passage of Obamacare, all fifty state Medicaid agencies have been forced to create a new standalone database that contains nothing besides the contact information of Medicaid applicants who used Healthcare.gov.
Some of these new databases mail out voter registration forms automatically. You cannot refuse them.
No worthwhile verification occurs before the forms are mailed. Apply for Medicaid and the form will be mailed to you, be you a verifiable citizen or Ayman al-Zawahiri on a computer in Pakistan.
Further, these new databases are accessible by groups like Organizing for Action, the reconstituted ACORN, and malevolent figures like Chris Tarango.
And no reasonable purpose exists for creating the databases besides making them available to the aforementioned Democratic activists.
No voting our way out of this, folks. This is just one of many reasons why. Like I said, might as well amuse ourselves while we wait for the collapse. BRING ON THE CRACKHEADS, WHORE-HOPPERS, AND OTHER ASSORTED REPROBATES!