Obamelet is an apt metaphor for the President’s transformation of the economy. It recalls Vladimir Lenin’s statement, made 75 years ago in reference to the Great Famine in Ukraine: “If you want to make an omelet, you must be willing to break a few eggs.” Let’s be clear: I am not labeling the President a murderer or a communist like Lenin. Nor am I implying that he is intentionally hurting people.
I am instead suggesting that in doggedly pursuing the “transformation” of America, he is harming most Americans. Moreover, he realizes what is happening and, though perhaps saddened by it, he nevertheless accepts it as an unavoidable consequence of pursuing his goal.
In other words, he is willing to “break the eggs” in order to make the “omelet.”
Despite the careful qualifications in my assertion, some will consider it irresponsible. So here, as supporting evidence, are just a few of the many examples of the President’s acting in ways that hurt Americans.
He continues to support alternative energy initiatives such as solar energy and oppose fossil fuel industry initiatives such as clean coal mining and “fracking,” even though what he supports is demonstrably impractical and what he opposes would provide thousands of jobs for American workers.
He has shown disdain for immigration laws, most notably by instructing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to refuse custody of illegal aliens arrested by local police, and by instituting “Deferred Action” to allow 2 million illegals to remain and work in the U.S. The first action jeopardizes public safety; the second deprives citizens of jobs.
He has failed to address several government scandals in a meaningful way. The scandals include the government’s illegal “Fast and Furious” gun operation, the IRS’s targeting of conservative political groups for punitive treatment, the NSA’s warrantless eavesdropping on American citizens, and the Benghazi affair. (In the Benghazi matter he actually helped disseminate the false story that the attack was caused by an anti-Muslim video.) In all these cases, the President’s failure to take meaningful action undermined the rule of law.
Despite his promise not to raise taxes on those earning more than $250,000, he has introduced new taxes and tax increases that will do just that, including the Obamacare individual mandate tax and capital gains and dividend tax increases. Taken together, these taxes significantly increase the financial burden on taxpayers.
He has raised the nation’s debt even more than did George W. Bush, whom President Obama criticized for raising the debt to an “irresponsible” and “unpatriotic” level. The responsibility for paying this enormous debt will rest not only on today’s citizens but also on their children, grandchildren, and beyond.
Despite his promise that people could keep their own doctors and have lower premiums with Obamacare, it has become clear that few Americans will be able to do either. From the earliest stages of the President’s proposed plan, it was clear that adding 30 million people would raise costs considerably rather than lower them. And it soon became equally clear that the regulatory structure of the plan would force employers to cut employees’ hours. Not only has the implementation of Obamacare been a nightmare of difficulties, according to many medical practitioners the program itself will reduce the quality of health care for most Americans, increase the cost to taxpayers, and cause millions of people to be reduced to part-time employment status.
Most responsible Obama supporters acknowledge the accuracy of these points, but some continue to argue that he should not be held responsible. They point instead to the carelessness of his subordinates or the zeal of rogue operators within the government. “These things are unfortunate, but they aren’t the President’s fault,” is the standard talking point. (Interestingly, Obama excuses himself and his subordinates. The real villains, he argues, are Republican congressmen, Tea Party members, conservative talk show hosts, and the Bush administration.)
The supporters’ desire to defend the President is understandable, and their argument would make sense if he were unintelligent and out of touch, or deficient in rhetorical skill, or unskilled in managing people. But he has no such deficits.
In fact, President Obama is an intelligent, educated man, with degrees from Columbia and Harvard. And as a lawyer and former adjunct professor of constitutional law, he knows when his policies follow the law and when they challenge it. For example, he knows that government confiscation and redistribution of private wealth makes a mockery of the Constitution. And he certainly can perceive when this and other policies do more harm than good.
He is also unusually articulate, his apparent dependence on the teleprompter notwithstanding. He knows what he is saying no matter what technological aids he employs in saying it, and his frequent references to “redistributing wealth” and “transforming America” must be regarded as accurate descriptions of his goals and not as slips of the tongue.
Furthermore, as a former community organizer—a role requiring skills in coordinating and managing ideas and people—the President is certainly not unaware of what is happening in his administration. To believe that he has to consult news reports to learn about the major actions of his subordinates is as much an insult to him as it is to common sense.
In light of these facts, political loyalties notwithstanding, reasonable people must acknowledge that the President’s policies and programs have been purposely designed to achieve his goal despite the harm they are doing to millions of Americans. That harm is no less deplorable for being an effect of his intentions rather than a specific intention.
Reasonable people must also acknowledge that those who oppose the President’s policies of transformation or “Obamelet” because of the harm they do are not “racists,” “extremists,” “extortionists,” “saboteurs,” “anarchists,” “arsonists,” or any of the other varieties of demon imagined by Obama’s followers. They are, instead, courageous people to whom we owe gratitude rather than derogation. The sooner the public embraces this perspective, the sooner America’s restoration can begin.
Copyright © 2013 by Vincent Ryan Ruggiero. All rights reserved
VINCENT RYAN RUGGIERO, M.A., is Professor of Humanities Emeritus, State University of New York, Delhi College. Prior to his twenty-nine year career in education, he was a social caseworker and an industrial engineer. The author of twenty-one books, his trade books include Warning: Nonsense Is Destroying America and The Practice of Loving Kindness. His textbooks include The Art of Thinking and Beyond Feelings, both in 10th editions and available in Chinese as well as English, Thinking Critically About Ethical Issues, and A Guide to Sociological Thinking. His latest book, Corrupted Culture: Rediscovering America’s Enduring Principles, Values, and Common Sense, is available at Amazon and in bookstores. Professor Ruggiero is internationally recognized as one of the pioneers of the Critical Thinking movement in education. Earlier in his career, he published essays in a variety of magazines and journals, including America, Catholic Mind, The Sign, The Lamp, and Catholic World.