Thursday, July 16, 2009

Taking Action to Heart

I don't know if any other conservatives feel this way, but for several months, I come home from work and rather than turn on the news to hear the latest, I just skip it. It all seems so predictable (or should I say predicted?) that I can hardly stand to watch it unfold.

For decades America has complained about "gridlock" in D.C., but let's face it... it is gridlock that helps prevent a lot of stupid things from happening; it is gridlock that thwarts "change" that is not for the better. It's gridlock that allows "inaction" to impede ill-advised action. And, yes, I'm including ill-advised action of past Republicans, too, back when they had a little more say in Washington.

Both parties have managed to prove what Lord Action said more than a hundred years ago: "The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern: every class is unfit to govern."

The problem we now face in America is that there is no gridlock, no checks and balances. Obama and his liberal hacks are free to force their agenda on the country even as his rating plummet. In fact, I think it is because of his falling numbers that the Democrats will act with all the more urgency. As I said a few posts ago, "Get it done now. Who cares if we get it right."

So I say Here's to gridlock! Here's to standing in the way. Here's to inaction. And who better to quote on this topic than Lord Action himself?

It was Lord Action who said:

"And remember, where you have a concentration of power in a few hands, all too frequently men with the mentality of gangsters get control. History has proven that. All power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Lord Action had several other thoughts that speak to the heart of this post. Such as: "There is no worse heresy than the fact that the office sanctifies the holder of it.” Have there ever been so many millions of blind Americans who have proven that heresy as now?

Here's another of his famous lines: "The one pervading evil of democracy is the tyranny of the majority, or rather of that party, not always the majority, that succeeds, by force or fraud, in carrying elections.”

Wisdom from the past is welcome seasoning for the present. This would be a good time to take many of Lord Actions words to heart, but I'll stop with "Socialism is slavery." Still true over a hundred years later.

So yes it is depressing to watch the news these days. Not because of the natural ebb and flow of politics as usual but because of what is grossly unusual, the gaudy parade of audacity dressed up in false hope, of "actions" that are more ill-advised than inaction.

I do not feel as though we are watching the strategic redirection of a great country but rather irreversible changes that will undo that country. Obama is not "building" with Lego blocks; he is playing with dominos and seems to be putting them in place for purposes that perhaps even he does not understand.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Since I posted the picture below, I also want to point out that I explained how it could be clarified by video even before the video surfaced. See update at the bottom of the post.

Never judge a man or woman on the basis of one snapshot. Have you ever noticed how many "unflattering" pictures were published of our former president and how so few (not including this misleading print) have surfaced of Obama? The same kind of "editing" bias occurs with photo journalism as with all journalism. The bias of the person who decides what the public sees or reads or otherwise has to live with will always influence decisions. It's true for photographers, editing managers, and Supreme Court justice nominations.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Oh Be Careful Little Eyes What You See...
President Obama and France's President Nicolas Sarkozy were waiting to take their places in a picture with junior G8 delegates for a photo in L'Aquila, Italy, yesterday, July 9, 2009.
In fairness to both presidents: we live in an age when every frame of motion is captured by rapid-fire cameras. What may look bad in a single frame may be quite innocent on video.

It's possible that both men are just making sure that the young ladies are careful with that first step onto the stage. That's a doozy!
(Wouldn't it be awful if the president had said "That's a doozy!" [referring to the step] and it was picked up by an off-camera mike? But like I said, unless the video confirms that both men forgot the admonition of that old Sunday School Song "Oh, Be Careful," I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt that this is not what it appears to be.)

Update 8:00AM Friday Morning: We now know that the girl is a teenager from Brazil. (Thank Heaven she was not wearing a black beret.) I'm still reserving judgment until I see video of this same moment. Anything can look bad in a snapshot. Remember a few months back we saw a photo of Obama "bowing" to a Saudi King when none else in the room did. He denied it. But when the video came out, it clearly was a bow or bent-knee curtsy. Likewise, the video will reveal the truth of what might be called "The Snapshot Heard 'Round the World."

I have not yet turned on the radio or TV this morning, but I predict that the talk of the day--if this story has legs (as they say in journalism)--will not be about whether or not the peek happened. The act itself will be minimized to water-cooler talk about how everybody does it, "look don't touch" is okay, etc. It will be laughingly swept under the rug by the media boys and girls and late-night jokesters in Clintonesque fashion (If the snapshot were of George W. Bush there'd be no end to it even if the video proved his innocence!)

If that's the case, working women beware. Just when you thought you were "equal," the president will have inadvertently made ogling younger models of "the weaker sex" acceptable again.

So far, the "boys will be boys" tone has come through in the articles already printed in some parts of the world. Apparently, the bum story does have legs: I hope it's cleared up as the day goes on.

Article One: "Oh là là, President Checks Out Bum"
Article Two: "Quello sguardo "indiscreto" di Obama" (which I think means "Off-guard indiscretion of Obama")
Article Three: "Tail to the Chief"

Friday Night Update: ABC did Obama a favor and showed the video that I presumed would surface, and in this case... President Obama seems to have passed the test that former President Clinton [and French President Sarkozy] failed. As I originally said, with these new cameras that let the paparazzi take countless snapshots per second, a photo can catch a misleading and or unflattering fragment of time. See video here.

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