Like many Americans, I'd like to lose a few pounds. The diet industry in America is worth billions of dollars as Americans plunk down their money for this pill or that diet program, hoping their latest purchase will finally do the trick and the unwanted pounds will simply melt away. Barack Obama shares our pain. Not literally, of course, as the man is quite obviously fit and trim. But he took the bull by the horns in Oregon just a few days ago, giving flabby, gas guzzling Americans more of his famous prescription for hope and change.
We can't drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times ... and then just expect that other countries are going to say OK. That's not leadership. That's not going to happen.
What exactly does he mean by that? Will Americans be forced to lose weight, give up their car of choice, and have no say in how they heat or cool their homes? How will this all be accomplished? Ration cards? Personal minders? Microchip implants?
Yes I know that sounds a bit extreme, but I take umbrage when government threatens to stick its nose into how I live my life and uses the lame excuse that "other countries" don't approve of the American standard of living. I don't recall Britain asking us what we think about their growing weight problems; nor do I remember being consulted by India or China about their increased demand for fossil fuels.
Yes, modern conveniences and technological advances in the last century mean that most of us do not have to physically toil day after day to make our living, and an abundance of food (also due to modern technology) often means that we are consuming more calories than we burn off. But it's up to us to take care of that problem ourselves, not the government. Good old American ingenuity and personal responsibility, right? Right?
By all means, let's roll out the hybrids and hold the fries, but are other countries now the judges of American lifestyles? Perhaps while human rights investigator Doudou Diene is in the United States the next few weeks probing racism for the United Nations, he can take a measure of American gluttony. What would Senegal have us do?
I realize that it's quite popular in other countries to badmouth Americans for all sorts of reasons, but it bothers me that a man running for president of America would use their sour grapes on the campaign trail. Sure, he was pandering to the crunchy granolas in Oregon when he made his proclamation about "other countries" not being okay with how we live our lives. But should we really be surprised at his stance? Obama has gone beyond pandering with his support of the Global Poverty Act, which could be voted on in the Senate at any time, and with little notice by the American public. The bill, which could cost Americans hundreds of billions of dollars in order to help end poverty around the world, could also "result in the imposition of a global tax on the United States" and would make levels "of U.S. foreign aid spending subservient to the dictates of the United Nations," according to Cliff Kincaid of Accuracy in Media.
But there's more, Kincaid warns, as 0.7% of the U.S. GNP would go toward "official developmental assistance."
In addition to seeking to eradicate poverty, that (U.N.) declaration commits nations to banning 'small arms and light weapons' and ratifying a series of treaties, including the International Criminal Court Treaty, the Kyoto Protocol (global warming treaty), the Convention of Biological Diversity, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women and the Convention of the Rights of the Child.
In other words, our Second Amendment rights, along with legislation regarding energy usage, parental rights and a whole host of other issues related to American sovereignty would be at the mercy of the UN. Sounds like fun, doesn't it? Who doesn't want to give the entity that brought us the Oil-for-Food and the Congo peacekeeper sex fiascos more opportunity to bring us (and the rest of the world) under its scandal prone thumb? America already forks out nearly one quarter of the UN's budget. Should we shell out more for what results in a reduction in our rights here at home while the UN bureaucracy bloats beyond all recognition? (If you'd like to make your thoughts on the Global Poverty Act known to the Senate, click here.)
Meanwhile, Barack Obama wants you to know that real leadership means listening to other countries complain about what Americans do here at home and use that to mold and shape domestic policy. It's the nosy neighbor syndrome taken to a whole new, frightening level.
Forget the diet and pass the mashed potatoes...I could use some comfort food right about now.