The vision thing

Whether or not one liked him, Ronald Reagan got “the vision thing.”  He had an extremely strong sense of America and her place in the world, and was never afraid to share that narrative.  America was the shining city on the hill, the bastion of true republican democracy, and the world leader in exporting freedom and wealth.  The Communists were, simply, evil.  They were the antithesis of America because they were the antithesis of freedom.

Sophisticates sneered at Reagan’s simple, (old) Hollywood vision of the world.  To ordinary Americans, though, Reagan’s clearly and repeatedly articulated vision of this country instilled in them a deep sense of pride that ran comfortably alongside an economic boom resulting from the policies that underlay Reagan’s vision.  Just as importantly, in gulags and prisons around the world, prisoners, and dissenters, and dreamers heard Reagan’s words too.  They understood that, not only was he describing something better than their totalitarian governments had to offer, but also that the leader of the most powerful nation in the world understood and willingly articulated that truth.

Obama also gets the vision thing.  His education, career and presidential trajectory show it very, very clearly.  His vision is that America is an arrogant nation rife with internal inequities.  Domestically, his job as president is to equalize people’s status within the country, which is best done through redistributive financial policies.  On the international side of things, his job is to subordinate America to the United Nations, making it just one nation among many.  ObamaCare and the Libya War stand as hallmarks of these domestic and foreign visions.

Obama’s vision is of America as Europe — not Europe during her imperialistic heyday, but a post-WWII Europe, socialist and humbled.  Of course, what he doesn’t seem to realize is that post-WWII Europe survived only as long as it did because America footed the bill.  No America, no post-WWII Europe.  He hasn’t grappled with that economic reality as he’s pushed America out of her financier mode and into her begging socialist mode.

What’s interesting about Obama is that, while he is consistent in his vision, and unfailing in his willingness to put it in effect, he refuses to articulate that vision.  Put him in front of a teleprompter, and he simply mouths platitudes about “America is great.”  Unscripted, he slips up periodically and talks about “sharing the wealth,” and the fact that there’s nothing exceptional about America.  Overall, though, he’s coy.

Reagan braved the ridicule of the world’s intellectuals to sell his vision to the world.  Obama already has the world’s intellectuals on board.  His vision about America and her place in the world is exactly the same as their vision.  He’s coy, then, not because he fears media and Ivory Tower derision, but because he knows that ordinary Americans will not buy what he would be selling were he to speak.  How much better to skip the sales pitch and just force the product on a credulous public?  Obama also doesn’t sell his vision because he knows that, abroad, while the Euro-trash and Muslim Brotherhood eat up what he has to say, the people languishing in prisons, in China, in Cuba, in Venezuela, in Iran, etc., would recognize his vision for what it is — not even snake oil, but pure venom.

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  • Michael Adams

    I think you meant subordinate rather than “sublimate.”  If I could find an e-mail button, I’d use it. As it is, delete this comment.

    • Bookworm

      “Subordinate” is precisely what I meant, Michael. Sometimes, I get close to a word — a few sounds are right — and then I get stuck. It’s a hangover from childhood dyslexia that I call “word soup.”

  • suek

    “He’s coy, then, not because he fears media and Ivory Tower derision, but because he knows that ordinary Americans will not buy what he would be selling were he to speak. ”
    There’s a quote out there from an early socialist, but I don’t remember the specifics.  Something to the effect that “Americans will never accept Socialism as such, but progressing bit by bit, one morning they’ll wake up and discover they they’re Socialist after all”.
    No doubt someone can come up with the original…  more concise, as I remember…

  • Michael Adams

    Nah, not really dyslexia.  You think aurally, which is why you went to law school and not engineering school, and why I am a nurse and not a physician.
    There is another blogger, an attorney, also, BTW, on the other coast, who proof reads like a fiend. I won’t say who , but everyone who reads and comments here also reads that one.  I spotted one little wrong word, and e-mailed her, because the point is not to make myself out to be perspicacious, just to help a friend. So, puhleez, delete these things, or put the e-mail button where a doofus can find it!

  • Charles Martel

    Michael Adams, you are very gracious. You’re the kind of good friend every blogger needs. I agree with you that once Book corrects a minor error, she’s under no obligation to keep your gentle admonition posted.

  • Bookworm

    Michael Adams:  You’re a perfect example of the type of polite corrections I like.  No way will I delete your comment, which serves as a guide to others.

    My email address, by the way, is bookwormroom * at *  I’m trying to figure out how to get it in a more permanent sidebar location but, for now, that will have to do.