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Jewish World Review
March 11, 2013/ 29 Adar, 5773
A President We Can't Be Proud Of
By now, you've probably heard all those allegations about how President Obama would intentionally try to make sequester as painful as possible to as many Americans as possible just so he could blame it all on those nasty Republicans and then sit back and watch while the Democrats take over the House and expand their majority in the Senate, which could clear the way for passage of all the left-wing programs he's been wanting to pass since he took the oath of office.
Now, thanks to an editorial in the Wall Street Journal, we see just how cynical this president really is. After telling us about the White House tours the president has cancelled "during the popular Spring touring season" the Journal says: "This fits President Obama's political strategy to punish the eighth graders visiting from Illinois instead of, say, the employees of the Agriculture Department who will attend a California conference sipping 'exceptional local wines' and sampling 'tasty dishes' prepared by special guest chefs.'"
So while our president is warning us about criminals going free, and long lines at airports, and delayed flights, and kids who will be thrown out of Head Start, and teachers who will lose their jobs, and meat that won't get inspected because inspectors will be laid off all because of sequester "the Agriculture Department will underwrite the 26th California Small Farm Conference in Fresno next week," as the WSJ tells us.
The organizers of the conference promise that it will be a "mouthwatering event" featuring "fine wines and exceptional micro-brews paired with seasonally driven culinary delicacies."
That this president still has an approval rating of around 50 percent is astonishing. All the Republicans have to do is tell the American people about the cancelled White House tours while the trip out to California for those "tasty dishes" and the "mouthwatering event" will still go on a perk for Agriculture Department employees that we're all paying for. Even the low-information voters (read that as not-too-smart voters) might finally catch on.
A sizeable portion of the American electorate doesn't care or can't grasp the complexity of certain issues and legislation. Many of them not only don't understand sequester, they probably never heard the word, since it doesn't come up a lot on the Kardashians. But even the not-too-smart crowd understands waste. And maybe they'll start to understand when they're being played for suckers. A president who will threaten us with massive hardship all over modest cuts in the increase in spending and does nothing to stop junkets at his Agriculture Department is not a leader. Not one any of us should be proud of, anyway.
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JWR contributor Bernard Goldberg, the television news reporter and author of several bestselling books, among them, Bias, a New York Times number one bestseller about how the media distort the news. He is widely seen as one of the most original writers and thinkers in broadcast journalism. Mr. Goldberg covered stories all over the world for CBS News and has won 10 Emmy awards for excellence in journalism. He now reports for the widely acclaimed HBO broadcast Real Sports.
He is a graduate of Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey and a member of the school's Hall of Distinguished Alumni and proprietor of BernardGoldberg.com.
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© 2011, Bernard Goldberg