Is Barack Obama anti-American? *UPDATED*

A couple of weeks ago, I included in a post the statement that Barack Obama is anti-American.  A dear and respected friend suggested that I was exaggerating.  Obama may have a different vision of or goal for America, he said, but that’s scarcely the same as being anti-American.  I’ve been thinking that over for a while and, after a lot of mental give and take about what it means to be “anti-” anything, have now decided that Barack Obama is indeed anti-American.

Everything has a fundamental essence, a quality that makes it uniquely itself.  Take an orange, for example.  It’s not only citrus fruit, it’s an orange colored citrus fruit.  Horticulturists can alter its size, its texture, it’s sweetness, and the purity of its orange color, but it still remains an orange because that color is its definition.  Change the color, however, and suddenly, you have the un-orange, the anti-orange.  You have something completely different that no longer contains within it the essence of the original fruit.  Lose the essence and you lose the orange.

America has an essence too, and that essence is liberty.  America since its inception has been defined by liberty, both the liberty of the individual and the liberty of the nation.  Individual liberty means that Americans should be subject to minimal government constraints.  The state exists to serve the individual (commerce, transportation, security), not to control the individual.  That’s why the Bill of Rights focuses so closely on individual freedoms:  the freedom to speak, the freedom to write, the freedom to worship, the freedom to defend oneself with arms, the freedom from searches and seizures, etc.  Liberty also extends to the nation.  Both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are replete with examples of the Founders’ absolute obsession with national sovereignty.  Just recently, we’ve been reminded of the fact that the Founders didn’t even want the appearance of impropriety and the risk of influence, since they specifically prohibited foreign emoluments for our presidents.

Despite blunders of enormous magnitude (slavery, the treatment of Native Americans, and the imprisonment of American Japanese), Americans have, for the most part, taken these freedoms with the utmost seriousness.  We are a nation “of the people, by the people and for the people.”  We have not allowed ourselves to be ruled by tyrannies, dictators or bureaucracies.  We like our taxes low and our freedoms high.  In the past 100 years, when we fight wars, we do not fight wars to conquer other people, we fight wars to free other people from tyrannies.  Those on the Left who sneer at our “imperialist ventures” implicitly side with Hitler, with the North Koreans, with the Communist North Vietnamese, and with Saddam Hussein (mass murderer of his own people).  While ordinary Americans shed blood so that others on foreign shores can live free, the Left cheers on those who would deny their own citizens (or the citizens of conquered nations) the same freedoms we unthinkingly enjoy.

All the freedoms I’ve discussed can very quickly be distilled into a single essence, an American essence:  American individuals are free from control by and fear of their own government, and the American nation is free from control by other nations.

Barack Obama is anti-American because he wants to change this American essence.  His domestic policy is directed at increasing government control in every area, which decreases individual liberty.  Here’s an incomplete bullet-point list of his anti-liberty goals on the home front:

  • He wants to remove any last vestiges of the marketplace from individuals’ control over their own health care, and put the government entirely in charge.
  • He’s willing to give government control over American businesses (i.e., Bank takeover ands Government Motors).
  • His administration, while on record as opposing the Fairness Doctrine, is aggressively exploring a backdoor regulatory scheme that would have precisely the same practical effect as the Fairness Doctrine:  it would impose government restrictions on content, rather than allowing the market (that means us, the consumers) to control content.
  • His FCC wants to control the internet, which is a humming beehive of free speech, much of it critical of Obama.
  • Although he’s mostly erased the record, his dream is to create a civilian national security force, subordinate to the administration, which would be larger than the American military.  The military, please note, is controlled by the Constitution and has traditionally existed as a separate entity from any government.
  • He wants to take away the right to bear arms.  He’ll pay lip service to supporting the Second Amendment, but his fundamental goal is to use government to remove arms from individuals.  I’ve never held a gun in my life, but I know that the Founders understood that, for individuals, their single biggest defense against an overreaching government, is the right to arm themselves.  Statists never allow their citizens to bear arms.  Indeed, the first thing the Nazis did was ban guns in citizen’s hands.
  • He wants to redistribute wealth.  Without money, people have no choices.  The more money the government siphons to itself, the fewer choices we, as individuals have, which makes us increasingly subordinate to the government.

Of course, not all these Obama dreams will become reality.  As I noted above, Obama has been trying to delete evidence that he ever dreamt about a huge civilian security force at his beck and call.  And with other dreams (for example, the Second Amendment) he’s doing a fancy dance by which he tries to hide his authoritarian impulses.  But it doesn’t matter.  This post isn’t about what Obama will actually do.  It’s about what he wants to do, what his desires are vis a vis the American people — and it’s very clear that his desire is antithetical to the American essence.  He wants to limit or destroy individual liberties.

Politically, too, Obama’s impulses are all antithetical to liberty.  Again, some examples:

  • He has turned against the only democratic nation in the Middle East (that would be Israel), in favor of the bloodied tyrannical theocracies on her borders.
  • By reversing his pledge to keep a missile defense system in place in Poland and the Czech Republic, he has favored Iran’s Muslim tyranny over these democratic nations only so recently freed from Communism.
  • Figuratively and literally, he bows to dictators (Saudis, Venezuelans, Russians, Iranians, Cubans).  They ask, he gives.  In other words, contrary to America’s hundred year history of siding with the people against their tyrants, he sides with the tyrants against their people.
  • In Honduras, he sided with the delusional Zelaya against the people and the Constitution.
  • In Iran, when the people took to the streets, he sided with the megalomaniac theocracy, against the people.
  • In his much-heralded speech to the Muslim world, in addition to grounding Israel’s right to exist solely on a Holocaust the Muslim world denies, he repeatedly and noisily trumpeted the right of Muslim men to control Muslim women, a trope he reiterated in subsequent speeches.  This goes beyond the idiocy of multiculturalism and actively supports the subordination of an eighth of the world’s population.  (If 1/4 of the world is Muslim, and half of those Muslims are women….)
  • In his speeches, he assures the tyrannies of the world that America is abandoning her century old role of America’s policeman.  They are freed from any constraint.
  • By joining the farce that is the U.N. Human Rights Council, he is lending America’s imprimatur to the most violently anti-Semitic, authoritarian, dictatorial, anti-American political body in the world.
  • As part of his belief in the increasingly discredited notion of climate change, he stands ready to cede American sovereignty to a U.N. body that can control American wealth distribution and police the American body politic.

With the exception of the last item, and unlike the list regarding Obama’s domestic goals, the above bullet-points are not made up of things Obama merely wishes he can do.  They are composed of things Obama has already done.  He has subordinated America.  America is no longer the symbol of liberty around the world.  She’s just another nation and, worse, one whose leader, by temperament and political belief, has more reverence for dictatorships than democracies.  In other words, when he deals with the world outside America’s borders, he has again denied America’s essence, which is as the symbol of and standard-bearer for freedom.

If every one of Obama’s desires and actions is antithetical to America’s core essence, then it is reasonable to say that he is anti-American.  He’s not merely making little changes around the edges, smoothing away rough spots, augmenting existing traits, or getting rid of ugly cankers.  Instead, both at home and abroad, he’s trying to destroy America’s essence, that commitment to liberty that makes her unique in this world, and that makes her uniquely American.

Given Obama’s authoritarian, anti-liberty (and, therefore, anti-American) impulses, Obama’s periodic, TelePrompter-generated professions of love for this country ring untrue.  Just as we disbelieve statements of love from the man who beats his wife to a pulp because he’s trying to “improve” her so that she can achieve some impossible standard that would re-make her in the beater’s own mind, so too are we entirely justified in disbelieving Obama’s lukewarm affirmatives, when his behavior continuously shows a profound disdain for America and her core values.

UPDATE:  Well, that didn’t take long.  Within an hour of my having written the above, I learn that the same Obama administration that took days before voicing lukewarm support for the Iranian people under the thumb of a tyrannical theocracy, took mere minutes to condemn a bombing that killed the military wing of that same dictatorship.  Obama’s every impulse is hostile to liberty.

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Comments

  1. el gordo says

    Yes, that is what I have been saying for over a year. Arguing from a different angle, it´s hard to prove that Obama loves America, her history, traditions and so on. There is nothing to go by. He never praised or defended anything about America that doesn´t have to do with himself.

    It should have been clear to everyone after the Rev. Wright scandal broke. Right there was all you needed to know about him. Why is anyone surprised that such a guy would appoint 9/11 truthers and Maoists?

    Personally I think Spengler makes a good case that Obama has “issues”:

    http://www.firstthings.com/blogs/spengler/2009/10/13/obama-in-nightmare-alley-what-asia-times-online-refused-to-publish/

  2. says

    Check this out

    The argument is difficult to counter, more difficult than you might imagine. The reason it’s hard is that all of the facts are in their favor, and the only thing against them are unprovable: questions of intention, of character, of the meaning behind observed acts.

    The facts are these:

    1) America is the most powerful nation in the world, and has set the terms of international debates for more than a decade.

    2) This power results from three basic things: military strength, the superiority of the market instead of central planning to make basic decisions, and the strength of our economy (this last to include the dollar’s position as a reserve currency).

    3) Therefore, to undermine that strength, you’d need to undercut all three things.

    4) The Obama administration has asked for deep cuts in military spending, while continuing to maintain a heavy deployment schedule in two wars. The Obama administration has also called for unilateral cuts in our strategic nuclear forces. These actions undermine both our conventional and nuclear military strength.

    5) The Obama administration has nationalized major industries and banks, not completely, but enough to give the government a controlling interest in the corporation. The argument that taxpayer money is going to these corporations, and therefore that the corporations must submit to government designs whenever the government feels it is important. These actions have vastly reduced the role of markets, and increased the role of central planners, at the center of major decisions in our economic life.

    6) The destruction of the dollar is well documented. Obama’s major remaning initiatives are health care reform and cap and trade. If successful, the first intends to result in a further government takeover of a massive part of the economy, again working against markets; furthermore, the expense of the thing will compel much higher taxes at some point. The addition of a major new entitlement adds to the fiscal crisis already expected from Medicare, Social Security, and pension funds. Cap and trade will likewise suppress US industry and call for higher taxes, perhaps passed on as “higher prices” on goods, across the economy. These actions undermine our fiscal strength, and make it more likely that the nation will be bankrupted.

    7) Therefore, the Obama administration has acted to weaken all three pillars of American strength. Its stated agenda will further weaken all three pillars, perhaps to the breaking point in the case of fiscal policy.

    Now, all of that comes from nothing more than reading the headlines. Usually, conspiracy theories are fairly easy to counter because they have some lie at their center: the famous Truther bit about how steel can’t be melted by fire(!), or the idea that a missle hit the Pentagon, or whatever. None of this is undocumented. Obama has called on the military to cut its budget while fighting two wars; he has purchased interests in major banks and corporations, and then used those interests to issue orders to the corporations; the dollar has suffered a serious undermining in world markets, to the degree that there is talk of replacing it as the world’s reserve currency; and the debates on health care and cap-and-trade both involve the eventual admission that higher taxes or prices will be necessary.

    What remains is to argue that all of this is resulting from the Obama administration’s adherence to bad economic philosophy, rather than from a secret plan to ruin America.

  3. expat says

    el gordo,

    The Spengler post was good. I do disagree with one thing: that Obama is empathetic. He surely knows how to pick sad cases and appear to empathize with them, but it is not real. He knows all the causes that work among his social set and he passes himself off as their champion, but for him, the role of champion is the motivating factor. He probably thought he was being very empathetic with his clinging remark, but that showed just how superficial his understanding of others is.

    Obama is actually more a-American as anti-American. There is simply no basic connection between him and America. He has filled the gap with the ideological and theoretical garbage he has been fed all his life, but he has never tested these ideologies against his real-life experience of America because he has none, at least none that produced an emotional bond.

    I sometimes think of people who say they have the best mom in the whole world. That person isn’t putting down anyone else’s mom. That person would probably wish that everyone could say the same about his mom. When I go home for a visit, all sorts of emotions come over me as I remember my world growing up. It is only because I have those bonds that I can understand a Bavarian’s love of the mountains or an Indian’s memories of the special mango room in his childhood home.

  4. says

    Expat…empathy…I think it’s important to understand the difference between empathy in the sense of understanding the emotional responses of others, and being able to manipulate them (whether for good or for bad purposes), and empathy in the sense of actually *caring* about the emotions & well-beig of those others. Con men, for example, are usually empathetic in the first sense but not the second.

    Re the overall question of Obama’s attitude toward American civil society, see my post he’s just not that into us.

  5. el gordo says

    expat, zhombre,

    I don´t mean to lightly say that Obama is just crazy (neither does Spengler). As one commenter at Spengler´s blog points out, he really does seem to have a healthy family life. But all the actions Bookworm summed up are not incidental or the result of inexperience. They weren´t forced on Obama. His supporters come up with explanations or defenses of this action or that, but they only work in isolation (if they work at all). The only theory that explains his choices in general is that he has absolute disdain for America, its people, traditions and constitution as it is. He is anti-American. Where the psychological makeup comes into play is the pathological ease with which he tells lies, the incomprehensible self-centeredness and also self-control. As for empathy, this line of Spengler rings true after watching Obama for almost two years:

    “He has the empathetic skill set of an anthropologist who lives with his subjects, learns their language, and elicits their hopes and fears while remaining at emotional distance. That is, he is the political equivalent of a sociopath. The difference is that he is practicing not on a primitive tribe but on the population of the United States.”

  6. Zhombre says

    I do not assume or suggest Obama is “crazy” but it nonetheless scares the bejeezus out of me that we have elected a man whose consciousness,that is to say his basic intellectual and emotional inventory, is so distant from and antithetical to the American experience.

  7. says

    Call me crazy, but it seems to me that this would make a great first draft of a New Declaration of Independence.

    Like the original, it has an excellent introduction, a thorough list of grievances, and a stirring conclusion. I suppose people will want to wait a little while longer so that the list of grievances is a little longer, but other than that, all that’s missing is a final sentence pledging lives, fortunes, and sacred honor and a list of signatories.

    Count me as the first one when the time comes. I have a pretty neat last name and I can write in large letters like John Hancock did.

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