Sorry for disappearing for the past three weeks. I have finally fixed the problem with my computer, which was not what it initially seemed, but was indeed a software issue. I’ve been sick with a cold/cough/sore throat. I’ve been building some web sites and putting together some PowerPoint presentations. I’ve written and given a paper at a conference. All this after being in Kentucky for the snow and ice storm and spending a few (very pleasant) extra days there as a result.
There is another reason I haven’t been blogging. I have been watching the Obama Presidency with a mixture of puzzlement and horror. Horror, because it seems to me that Obama has made more domestic and foreign policy mistakes in one month than any other President (including Carter!) has made in four years. Puzzlement, because I can’t decide what combination of cluelessness, incompetence, commitment to a discredited, dysfunctional ideology, and outright hostility to the United States is behind such an accomplishment.
I am convinced that Obama’s speeches are the most intellectually dishonest I’ve ever heard. Karl Rove rightly notes in today’s Wall Street Journal that they attack straw men. They also assert contradictory sentences in close proximity to each other (“We must learn to be responsible and cut the federal deficit!” “We must double the federal deficit immediately!”) and promise absurd, unachievable things (“We will stop anyone, anywhere from plotting against the United States of America!”). My overall view of politicians’ honesty is not high. But Obama doesn’t just lie when the going gets tough. He lies from the get-go. He says things that can’t possibly be true and promises things that can’t possibly be achieved. Meanwhile, he seems convinced that the Reagan-Clinton-Bush policies that took the Dow from below 800 to over 14,000 were an obvious mistake, while the 1970s policies that knocked 1/3 off the Dow in real terms are an obvious solution. I don’t know where to start.