August 17, 2009
ObamaCare and Bush League DemocratsBy J. Robert Smith
There's more than justice to the nationwide backlash against President Obama's healthcare putsch. There's a delicious irony.
The President, a down-to-his-toes rabble-rouser, has admirably roused the American rabble. Except not quite as intended. He and the rest of the statist vanguard have run headlong into a cosmic law: the Law of Unintended Consequences.
Not even the late master rabble-rouser and con artist extraordinaire, Saul Alinsky, could account for the unaccountable. But the gaping difference between the President and the rascally Alinsky is that Alinsky had sort of a genius for playing the angles. In other words, Alinsky could hit curveballs. Mr. Obama is a dead-on fastball hitter.
If all you can hit are fastballs, chances are, you won't make it to the big leagues, or, if you do, you won't last long. Fastball hitters whiff a lot.
Righteously indignant Americans weren't supposed to be carrying pitchforks and scythes to congressional town halls. Torrents of angry words weren't supposed to pour from the mouths of the little people. Healthcare reform was for the little people, after all.
Representatives of the People's Party were supposed to be showered with honeyed words of encouragement and appreciation. Grateful proletariats, with pats on their fannies, were to march on hospitals, insurance offices, Rush Limbaugh and Fox News.
Beheadings and hangings were just dandy for pediatric surgeons who cut out kids' tonsils to help pay off their BMWs. Dragging overpaid insurance execs from mahogany boardrooms for good, old-fashioned keelhaulings was permissible. After all, don't real Americans want comeuppances for rapacious achievers?
Liberation was at hand. With just one more hurried late night vote, a leftwing-dominated Congress was to pass a thousand-page plus government-controlled healthcare measure. Free, if inferior, healthcare was right around the corner. The President and his party were to get the power. Who could ask for a better bargain?
But the President's playbook is in tatters. The people's rage has turned on the provocateurs, rocking them back on their heels.
The President, at sanitized town halls, sees not the slightest glint of a scythe. Attendees, carefully screened, sit obediently, hands in laps. Questions are stilted. The President's answers sound canned.
At a recent town hall, a pretty little girl, whose mother was an early Obama supporter, read a question from a slip of paper. The President, knowing that the ball would be teed-up, swung hard and level. Bang! To the delight of his fans, a homer. But tee-ball doesn't matter, not if you can't manage the game.
The President watches TV and reads the daily rags. Not even MSNBC or The New York Times can ignore widespread popular unrest. In vivid living color, the President sees very un-Alinsky seniors and middle class Americans give the what-for to shrinking, mealy-mouthed Democrats -- daily.
Privately, this public shellacking of his water-carriers must unnerve the otherwise cool and collected Mr. Obama.
In fact, his angst poked through at the aforementioned town hall. There, he falsely claimed that AARP had endorsed a government takeover of healthcare. Not so fast, replied AARP flaks. We agreed to a kiss goodnight; not a roll in the hay.
By the strict standards of professional community organizers (isn't there a seal of approval?), hardworking folk thronging to town halls to protest a healthcare hijack are a rag-tag army. Their demonstrations are what they shouldn't be: spontaneous.
Yes, Democrats are quick to claim that the protestors are marionettes, their strings pulled by the Vast Rightwing Conspiracy. But the growing multitude of protesters gives the lie to the accusation.
No sensible American is likely to trudge to an otherwise snooze-of-a-town hall meeting on a sweltering August day or night. No amount of friendly persuasion could convince so many to drop what they're doing to listen to a windbag pol spin and apple-polish.
Something else is afoot. Here's a hint for spooked Democrats: a majority of citizens are genuinely and passionately against the President's healthcare power grab. They see congressional Democrats as aiders and abettors of a theft-in-the-making. And they have every intention of stopping the would-be thieves before they make off with their family doctors and private health insurance cards.
The thunderous sound Democrats are hearing in the distance is an electoral freight train barreling toward them. Woe unto the Democrats -- liberal or Blue Dog -- who insist on standing on the tracks. They better have dental records on file.
One of the defining features of modern liberal Democrats is their sanctimony. Despite the "For the people" claptrap, liberal Democrats are hopeless elitists. They have the right degrees from the right universities, travel in the right circles and hold the right ideas - which, as Mark Levin might say, are the stuff of soft tyranny.
Nietzsche declared God dead; Marx fancied man, God. The left has been stuck on the idea ever since. But not any commoner qualifies as a god. Just those who breathe -- or hanker to breathe -- the rarified air in San Francisco, New York, Boston, New Haven, Cambridge and Berkeley.