Other than about a billion things, I'm feeling pretty upbeat about the current state of our nation under the leadership of those whose worldview and priorities I simply cannot fathom.
I would prefer not to be negative — even less so to be pessimistic and, still less, cynical — but current trends warrant serious concern. In the end, it's not negative, pessimistic or cynical to point out egregious conditions, especially if your aim is to alert your fellow citizens to the gravity of the problems and help ignite conditions that would put in place a plan to reverse this insanity.
Let me just give you a few things currently in the news that have me shaking my head.
President Obama has no coherent or rational foreign policy and is almost behaving as if he has no interest in containing the Islamic State group or global radical Islam, much less driving it back. The Islamic State has just captured the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra and reportedly now controls 50 percent of Syria. A few days ago, it took control of Ramadi, Iraq, a city hundreds of U.S. service members died or sustained injuries to protect.
Responding to questions about this disaster, White House press secretary Josh Earnest said, "Are we going to light our hair on fire every time that there is a setback in the campaign against" the Islamic State? Earnest went on to assert that Obama's overall strategy against the group is working. On reflection, though, it certainly doesn't feel out of place for an Obama spokesman to have this attitude when you consider Obama's bizarre non-strategy against this global menace. It doesn't seem that odd when you recall Obama's stunning remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast comparing the current atrocities committed by the Islamic State to the "terrible deeds" that occurred during the Crusades a thousand years ago and were justified "in the name of Christ." Nor does Earnest's outlandish comment seem out of phase in view of his boss's referring to an Islamic terrorist murder of people in France as a "random" shooting of "a bunch of folks in a deli in Paris."
But can you imagine the outrage, the calls for resignation, if a spokesman for a Republican president responded so flippantly, so callously, so disrespectfully toward fallen American service members about an issue so important?
In a somewhat related point, did you watch Obama's commencement remarks at the United States Coast Guard Academy? He told the graduating cadets: "The threat of a changing climate cuts to the very core of your service. ... It will affect everything that you do in your careers." I simply have no words.
Moving on, have you heard the news that immigrants applying to enter the U.S. legally — you know, the ones playing by the rules and respecting the law — are facing substantially longer wait times as a result of Obama's lawless executive order granting amnesty to those not playing by the rules or respecting the law? I suppose it is consistent with Obama's typical bias against people who play by the rules, especially if they succeed in doing so, as he casts such people as lucky or life's lottery winners against whom he must even the score.
Or how about the news (it's really no longer news under this president) that 40 percent of the 8.5 million Americans who don't have jobs in this country have quit looking for work? The labor participation rate remains at a 37-year low, yet Obama spins the job market as if his policies are reducing unemployment — and the press allows him to get away with it, day after day.
Did you read about the latest confirmation that the Obama administration, including then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, outright lied in pretending the attacks on our consulate in Benghazi, Libya, were anything other than a planned terrorist attack? With malicious premeditation, the administration blamed it on an anti-Islam video when they conclusively knew, based on recently released documents, that al-Qaida terrorists had planned the attack 10 days in advance.
Then there are the Baltimore riots. Did you hear that one of Obama's Department of Justice officials, Vanita Gupta, head of the civil rights division, reportedly told a group of lawyers in Colorado that slavery and Jim Crow had helped fuel the riots there and in Ferguson, Missouri? Here again, is this that different from Obama's saying "persistent opportunity gaps" fueled the Baltimore riots? Yet he's been in office for six years, people who share his big-government ideology have been in control of Baltimore for 50 years and this city has received a disproportionate share of federal monies, and he's still blaming anyone but himself and liberal policies?
Finally, for now, how about Obama's beloved Obamacare? Did you know that the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight chronicled 31 instances in which the Obama administration has issued regulations or guidelines that conflict with the language of the Affordable Care Act? Did you know that seven states wasted some $1.3 billion of federal money on Obamacare? That Obama's highly vaunted Obamacare exchanges are bleeding money and seeking more taxpayer bailouts across the country? That almost half the exchanges face financial struggles in the future, according to The Washington Post? Oh, yes, and though Obama always talked as if health insurance coverage would be the be-all and end-all of "compassionate" liberalism, we now learn that more than 1 in 4 adults who bought insurance for themselves or their families last year had to forgo medical care because they couldn't afford it.
I'll stop here, but could we please work hard to change the Washington climate instead of the global climate with our next president? That should be an ambitious enough goal to keep us busy.