A Figurehead Fiddles While America Burns
Joe Biden has ruled against the will of the people for almost two years as a straw boss who has earned the title of capo di tutti capo of human traffickers. Often exceeding his constitutional authority to circumvent congressional lawmaking, he has brought insufferable hardship to the lives of millions of illegal aliens, not to mention the deterioration of America’s southwestern border towns and urban destinations.
Taking Democrat mayors and governors to task for their all-talk sanctuary policies, Republican border governors are busing willing migrants to Democrat strongholds. In the liberal bastion of Martha’s Vineyard, where visitors arrive only by plane or boat, the arrival of fifty illegal border crossers by charter airline from Florida immediately became the rage at patio fundraisers, caused the chatty Obamas to fall silent, prompted the National Guard to mobilize, and precipitated a crisis not seen since Edgartown ran out of men’s pastels.
In September, the tourists are mostly gone from Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven. Even the mosquitoes have fled south to better bloodletting, slowly slimming the island population from a summer high of almost 200,000 down to its fighting weight of 17,000 fulltime residents. At season’s end, the island abounds with vacant hotel rooms, houses, and apartment rentals, yet it took only fifty migrants from South America to overwhelm the well-publicized hospitality of the Vineyarders, who promptly relocated them to the less bothersome setting of a military base.
It is customary for White House power brokers to go astray of their promises using Biden as a mouthpiece. White House advisors are locked into an ideology that firmly believes we can win the world over by putting flowers in military gun barrels, eliminating our carbon footprint is worth throwing the country against the rocks, and defying fundamental economic theory with spending sprees to reduce inflation. Their idealism puts America at risk with its adversaries and cuts America down to size by hogtying the middle class and bringing us all to accept taxing climate change policies that serve as a Trojan Horse for the attainment of singular government authority and power.
A recent White House garden party offers but one example. The late, great Ricky Nelson would have been better entertainment, belting out his last Top 40 hit for guests chauffeured to the South Lawn. Hidden behind his tinted-out Qaddafi shades, amidst the colorful crudité platters and backslapping of the world’s greatest gas guzzlers, Biden ambled up to the lectern with a wobbly gait characteristic of the cognitive progression of dementia, to once again wax in obedience to the teleprompter. As the stock market was simultaneously tanking from another disastrous consumer price index, he celebrated the Inflation Reduction Act, the latest misnamed law that will not reduce inflation while bringing even lower the economic welfare of all Americans. The attendant neo-Marxists could hardly contain their glee. Ruining the economic welfare of Americans is often dressed up as legislative victories for Democrats.
Days later, as keynote at a summit devoted to reducing hate and political division, Biden once again harped on his favored bogeymen of domestic terror -- white supremacists -- as the singular threat to democracy. Citing as an example the 2016 shooting at Orlando’s Pulse Night Club, the congregants were presumed ignorant of the fact that the shooter, Omar Mateen, was the son of Afghan emigrants and a practicing Muslim who had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS) and was twice a target of the Miami and Tampa divisions of the FBI for his radicalized language, threats of violence, and suspicious foreign travel to the Middle East.
We’ve come to expect such misdirection and outright lies from Biden during impromptu moments, but the rolling script before him represented a deliberate alteration of reality by West Wing custodians. Not allowing inconvenient truths to take political leverage away from a massacre, they gave the Islamist jihad a makeover as an anti-gay, white example of what evil can come from legal gun ownership.
Of all the plots and intrigues of the Biden administration, energy policy takes center stage. A national security asset, the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) is a rainy day remedy for crises such as the 1973 OPEC oil crisis, weather disasters, and other energy supply challenges. Releasing oil from the SPR requires executive authority and there is an expectation that presidents won’t play paddy fingers with the stockpile for political purposes.
When Biden went hard green, cutting domestic oil production and driving gas prices over five dollars a gallon, the SPR became the trump card to drive pump prices back down in time for the midterm elections. Demonizing oil companies for the impact of their own regulations, the White House greenlighted the release of 180 million barrels over six months, draining the Reserve to a thirty-year low. Tens of millions of barrels were sold overseas, some to a Chinese oil producer with business ties to Hunter Biden.
Biden has pledged to restock the SPR when the market price falls to eighty dollars a barrel, an unlikely drop from its current ninety-four dollars thanks to recent Saudi production cuts. That’s almost sixty dollars more a barrel than President Donald Trump’s early 2020 efforts to leverage plummeting oil prices to top off the four Reserve sites. Trump’s plan was shot down by Chuck Schumer in order to dump billions into COVID stimulus checks that would do more to buy votes than offer needy families long-term relief.
For the administration, filling the caverns of the Reserve means less oil on the street. Prices will once again increase, but not until after the midterms when it will become a problem for a Republican majority. Should the Democrats hang onto power, they simply won’t care about skyrocketing pump prices that attract more consumers to renewable sources of energy.
A recent article in the National Review, a time-honored publication that has long since stepped out of the shadow of William F. Buckley, Jr. by offering a sounding board to smart neocons, RINOs, and NeverTrumpers, foreshadowed the consequences of a sweeping Democrat victory in the midterms. Despite that improbability, particularly in the House, it is an alarm sounding that should scare the living daylights out of every voter.
According to the article, if a shift in political fortune increases the Senate Democrat majority by just two-seats to fifty-two, it would neutralize the stubbornness of party moderates Joe Manchin and Krysten Sinema. Kamala Harris has admitted as much. The aftermath would be calamitous for the Republican party if Schumer and Harris convinced the majority to eliminate the filibuster rule requiring sixty votes to end legislative debate. Revived legislation could nationalize and reshape elections to Democrat vantage. Billions more would fill the coffers of pet climate projects. Codifying abortions would lift all restrictions, and the threat of a hostile Supreme Court eliminated by adding liberal jurists. To hedge against the possibility of the gavel changing hands in 2024, statehood might be granted to Puerto Rico, putting an additional two seats in the Democrat column. Similar efforts for the District of Columbia, a federal enclave, would require a constitutional amendment. With this level of uniparty authoritarianism, America would begin to resemble a Second World country, closer in policy and practice to the Sino-Soviet axis than any likeness to a representative democracy.
The timing of recent statements by Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham over the quality of Republican senatorial candidates and the highly contested issue of abortion, respectively, doesn’t help the Republican bench of candidates. With the latest generic poll tightening to a toss-up for Senate majority, it leads many rank and file conservatives to wonder if some Senate Republicans would rather yield power than risk the prospect of a second Trump presidency.
Image: Gage Skidmore