Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | December 6, 2013

Mordor falling?

Maybe that’s a tad optimistic.  Maybe we’re just starting the battle for Gondor.  Or something; you figure out what LOTR analogy you prefer.

Perhaps the moment is the much earlier one (in the trilogy) when the sword of Elendil is re-forged.  OK, OK, I’ll stop.

What I’m suggesting is that we’ve reached a turning point.  At PJ Media, Roger Simon asks, “What if it’s all true?”  He’s referring to the numerous reports of fact, large and small – some well established, some not – that added together mean “President Barack Obama” is a walking lie of such gargantuan proportions, the human mind can hardly compass it.

Simon doesn’t pretend to have a complete answer to his question, which isn’t whether all the reported facts are true (we don’t know; some seem to be, and the presence of a tower of lies is increasingly evident), but what if they are.  What does it mean?  How do we bound the proposition so that we can even start answering that?

 

Tower of Barad Dur (detail, by Paul Lasaine)...ready to fall?

Tower of Barad Dur (detail, by Paul Lasaine)…ready to fall?

It’s a good question.  We’ll come back to it, but for the moment, the headline is that Roger Simon is finally accepting what has been apparent to others for more than five years:  that Obama isn’t a garden-variety hard-left Democrat, but a more exotic and radical quantity, and one we’ve been systematically lied to about.

I say this as a policy critic who doesn’t pretend to know where Obama was born, who has no opinion on who his father was (assuming it was Barack Obama, Sr. is perfectly satisfactory to me), who has never stated it as a certainty that Obama must have passed himself off as a foreign student in college, and who has no idea how many Social Security numbers Obama has used.  I haven’t read Jerome Corsi’s book on Obama (or much of anything by Corsi, for that matter); I did read Stanley Kurtz’s Radical-in-Chief, and found it eye-bleedingly well resourced and narrowly argued.  (But it was about Obama’s radical associations as a young adult, and not about things that may have been fabrications from his autobiography.)

My point here is that I won’t insist on any particular set of disputed “facts” about Obama, and never have done so, because I simply don’t know – and the important thing is that the facts are so disputable, so ill-disclosed and shrouded in obscurity, and that that is extremely peculiar for a person as public as the president of the United States.  We know more things for certain about Vladimir Putin than we know about Obama.

For me, what’s been meaningfully wrong with Obama is this circumstance, plus his thin but telling political history – radical politics followed by Chicago-machine-style politics – plus his and his administration’s penchant for refusing to be bound at any turn by checks, balances, or any other form of accountability.  These things have all been there to be detected from the very beginning.

This leads me to one of the first answers to the “What if it’s all true?” question.  That answer would be: it means the people who did see the lies – who didn’t refuse to recognize them – were correct.  Most of those people are the ones being excoriated today by the old-school right.  It’s the “Tea Party” conservatives who saw early on, to the extent of being willing to say something about it, that there was a whole lotta lyin’ goin’ on.  Some of them, like Birthers, lost me when they insisted on particular sets of unproven “facts” about Obama.  But on the whole, regarding both Obama himself and the rhetoric surrounding public policy in the last five years, they did much better than the higher-browed on the right at recognizing when they were being lied to.

Another answer to the “What if?” question is this one: it means human government can, in fact, be hijacked and perverted – even when we’re the ones who cast the votes on it, and even when the chief executive is brought to power by the means specified in the U.S. Constitution.  Yes, we can be deceived.  The most highly credentialed among us can be the most deceived of all.  This is as good a time as any to take that to heart.

There’s no mechanism that can guarantee government never gets out of control or oversteps its bounds.  But all that means is that we’ve had to learn something our Founders already knew.  You keep government limited because Obamas happen, and they do the most damage if you’ve carelessly let government’s control over your life grow too much.

Other answers obtrude themselves.  “What if it’s all true?”  It means the bias of our mainstream media is mind-bendingly colossal.  It also means we are paying these media folks, in a voluntary market-based situation, to retail lies to us.  We hear lie after lie, and still we listen, as if the next report won’t be a lie, or at least as if it won’t be a biased interpretation of an event we would characterize differently, if we were doing the reporting.  Stalin would have marveled at the beauty of it; he had to beat people to a pulp and execute them in mass to get the survivors to do out of terror what we have come to do reflexively, out of habit.

If it’s all true, it means the common sense of too many of us has been severely compromised.  Obama isn’t a normal politician; Chuck Schumer and Lindsay Graham are normal politicians.  They annoy us because they’re so transparently from the same planet as us.  We and they have the same touchstones for fact, meaning, mendacity, excess.  Frankly, I suspected back in 2007 that this wasn’t the case with Obama – and then he went to Berlin for his Riefenstahl moment, and set up Grecian columns to frame himself in Denver, and I was sure of it.  Common sense enables us to recognize that Obama is an outlier.  We don’t have to rethink our comfortably cynical ideas about politics and politicians because of Obama.  But quite a few of us probably need to rethink Obama.

Or maybe we're still back at this stage.  The Sword that Was Broken Is Reforged (detail, by Darrell Sweet)

Or maybe we’re still back at this stage. The Sword that Was Broken Is Reforged (detail, by Darrell Sweet)

 

There will be a lot of answers to Simon’s “What if”? question.  Come up with your own; I know you will.  Some very important answers lie ahead of us, if we acknowledge the implication, which Simon alludes to, that the denouement of our march toward statism in the Obama presidency has brought us to a watershed in our national history.

The larger truth is that statist collectivism is the Thing out there that is all about lies.  In an important sense, this isn’t about Obama; it’s about what is inevitably involved when an idea of statism seeks to take over our lives.  If it hadn’t been the person Barack Obama, it would have been someone else.  A bottomless well of lies stretching all the way down to a dark underworld of fear and death is what statist collectivism offers.  Few peoples have had the warning period we have, in which to watch a lengthy, surreal panorama of lies unfolding in slow motion while we are still standing aboveground, in the light.

What if it’s all true about Obama?  It means we had better be thinking about what we really want as our next chapter.  There is great peril before us.  But there are also great possibilities.  Something is likely to happen that’s not like anything that has happened in our lifetimes.  But right, wrong, good, and bad are still the same things they have always been.  Personal responsibility and moral choice are still what make or break our lives.  A lot of people are turning to God as never before; I doubt that there is anything more important right now than spiritual certainty that He means good for us, and will not cut us adrift to suffer cataclysm without hope.

Americans who didn’t see Obama coming are all due a big dose of humility, and then it will be time to look toward the future we want, and not just the future we think we’re stuck with because of a past that has culminated in a collapsing tower of lies.  We’re it, folks.  It’s up to us.  The one thing that will guarantee failure is if we give up.

J.E. Dyer’s articles have appeared at Hot Air, Commentary’s “contentions,Patheos, The Daily Caller, The Jewish Press, and The Weekly Standard online. She also writes for the new blog Liberty Unyielding.

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Responses

  1. “Or maybe we’re still back at this stage. The Sword that Was Broken Is Reforged”.

    I’m afrad that the sword may just be breaking now. The Republican party of Ronald Reagan seems to be splitting into defense, economic and social conservatives. Meanwhile, too many Saurumans, Haradim, Wormtoungues, etc. have an interest in propping up the Tower of Mordor.

    IMHO, more “fighting the long defeat” is ahead.

  2. BHO isn’t bright enough to engineer an operation like this. Just as gangster Joe Kennedy managed to move himself and his family into the highest levels of government, the Chicago gangsters found their candidate in Hyde Park. They would have run one of their own, David Axelrod, a journalist by the way, but he was so physically and intellectually repulsive that he’d have never made it through the primary beauty pageants. Instead he lined up the media to fawn over a guy most suited to be the evening news anchor on a small city network affiliate, maybe some place like Madison, WI or Salem, OR. It wasn’t a racial thing, either. Herman Cain, a person with actual executive experience, didn’t stand a chance against the combined efforts of the Windy City fraudsters and the mindless media sycophants.

  3. Beautiful.

    Oboobi isn’t the one we have been waiting for. We have been waiting for us to step up and do what is morally right for our future generations, not to accept the Govt to take from others and give to us. Rather we take what we make, period.

    Beyond that nugget, I’m just hunkering down for the inevitable clash between self-determined men and the reaving orcs.and their conniving handlers.

  4. So many things need correction, that the odds of enough of them, never mind all of them, being corrected enough to avoid the literally ‘biblical’ in measure calamities lying ahead is quite probably impossible to avoid.

    Roger Simon asks “What if it’s all true? and he and J.E. both correctly ascertain that it matters little what percentage of Obama’s claims and assertions are lies. What matters is what is implied if Obama is a ‘manufactured’ congenital liar whose purpose lies not in personal ambition but mendacious societal ambitions.

    Many have pointed out the preconditions necessary to Obama’s success, a colluding MSM, a compliant public, etc.

    J.E. hints at what is coming when she states, “There is great peril before us. But there are also great possibilities. Something is likely to happen that’s not like anything that has happened in our lifetimes.”

    I take issue with the optimism that asserts that there are potentially ‘great possibilities’ before us, while praying she is right but that aside, we had best start planning for the perils that are not just possibilities, not just probable occurrences but are now literally certain to occur.

    They are certain because the Obama administration, elected democrats, the MSM and half the nation’s citizens are set on the left’s course and no other consequence can result from the path they pursue.

    They are certain because Congressional democrats, highly placed bureaucrats and highly placed military personnel… all place party ideology far above their oaths of office to the Constitution.

    They are certain because the MSM is and has long acted as the democrat’s propaganda organ, ensuring that Obama will continue to be protected and the low-info voter kept ignorant.

    They are certain because too many of the public have been successfully indoctrinated into the left’s memes.

    Not just in the leftist memes of socialism, nor just in the leftist meme that capitalism itself is an unjust system that allows evil to flourish but that anyone in support of capitalism, anyone on the right, anyone who is opposed to the left’s public agenda is either capitalism’s tool or its evil participant.

    The perils that are certain to unfold are two-fold and fall within the realm of domestic and foreign.

    The fiscal collapse of the West is mathematically unavoidable and politically unstoppable. Every western nation is bankrupt and the Ponzi scheme has an end date, when the politicians, bureaucrats and financial gnomes will run out of road down which to kick the economies of the west. The financial chaos that will occur can ONLY result in Martial Law. Whether it is temporary or permanent will depend upon who sits in the oval office when fiscal collapse occurs.

    Iran gaining nuclear weapons technology is now certain.

    The consequential result of that will be a regional nuclear arms race with widespread nuclear weapons proliferation into unstable, third-world nations and Jihadist States. Sooner or later, Islamic terrorist groups will get their hands on nukes and will use them.

    Attacking America with nukes is easily accomplished and the American public’s reaction to nuked cities will be a fortress America mind-set and nationwide, near-permanent Martial Law. If this occurs under a leftist administration with a evenly divided Congress, kiss America goodbye.

    The fundamental transformation of America into The United Socialist States of Amerika will be irrevocable.

  5. Copying here a response I made to GB and reliapundit over at Liberty Unyielding:

    “the policies would never have been accepted by the american people if they had been presented truthfully, honestly.

    “and deceitfulness of the magnitude perpetrated by obama could never have been perpetrated by someone who was a moderate.

    “only utopianistic extremists are willing to lie – and cheat and bribe and even ultimately kill – to achieve what they believe will be utopia.

    “this is true of islamist utopianists and collectivist utopianists.

    “those of us who saw through the phony biography of obama and accepted the meaning of his lifelong associations – associations which were absolutely central to his meteoric rise – realized we were dealing with a radical leftist and a liar.

    “the past five years have proven this to be the case.”

    Exactly, reliapundit. (And thanks for the kind word.) It was always clear, to any who had eyes to see, that mendacity and radical-left statism would go hand in hand. You see one, the other is coming too. No other set of circumstances is possible.

    A century ago, adults throughout the West saw that clearly too, while only their sons and daughters were deceived (and only some of the latter, in fact). The adults of the time didn’t know much about radical-left statism, but they knew lies and liars when they saw them, and knew no good could come of putting them in charge.

    Today, we have no excuse for not knowing about radical-left statism. And most adults do. But people’s minds and spirits have been so compromised by decades of accepting corruption on the margins that too many of us hardly recognize the “lies that matter” now.

    We have all been accepting a tale of lies about what the welfare state is doing for us, for example. We’ve been accepting it for 50 years, piously hoping that open-ended public assistance programs, administered by bureaucratic-minded third parties and zealously protected by machine politicians, are “helping” the poor, when in fact, they are making it feasible for generations of our citizens to live down to a lowest common denominator of self-destruction and hopelessness.

    We just go on mouthing the big lie about all this. Without the “Great Society” welfare programs, we wouldn’t have created a fatherless underclass to which the left now ministers by ennobling its worst pathologies in story and song. One lie has spun off another and another, to the point that we now find the intact, traditional family, the one that sustains itself prosperously with no “maintenance” programs from the state, having to explain and defend itself. That traditional family is the only thing in the whole mix that isn’t a big lie — and it is under siege.

    It’s certainly a tremendous object lesson in the nature of lies. We’ve been accepting too many for too long, and doing that really does cloud our judgment and capacity for rational thought. But the opportunity we’ve had to see the lies laid bare in the last five years has been truly unique. I don’t know of another situation in which a nation has had such an opportunity.

    That’s one reason (for GB now) that I have more hope for us. If the odds could never be beaten, there would never have been a United States of America in the first place. Either our revolution would have failed, or the nation created afterward would have become just like every other nation in less than 30-40 years. Our civil war, at the very least, would have ended in despotism and geopolitical homogenization. Indeed, Progressives would have taken down America long before now, if odds could never be beaten.

    But America is living proof that odds CAN be beaten. Personally, I believe we beat the odds because so many of us call on the one true God for our help, but I don’t suggest that everyone has to believe that for America to succeed. The whole point of America is that no one is forced to any particular belief in God. But I believe there is something other than the odds out there to rely on. The reality of this fallen world may be unforgiving and deadly, but we aren’t stuck in the world with no lifeline or hope, condemned to suffer and pay the price for the mistakes made by others as well as ourselves.

    I frankly doubt that Obama is going to be in charge of the crisis if it comes. That doesn’t mean he won’t be in office. It does mean he can’t just orchestrate a crisis and have everything go his way. There’s a whole big world out there — and no, I don’t foresee a military invasion of the US, but there are ways to put unbearable pressure on the US without a military invasion, and we are much, much closer to a situation in which other nations would see that as feasible than we were five years ago. Maybe Obama will have the unfettered leisure to be the only actor trying to destroy the rule of law in the US, but I doubt it.

    Whatever happens, I think we’ll see courses of action that aren’t apparent to us today. What’s important now is that we think hard about what we WANT. What will it look like to restore the rule of law? What will be the mechanisms and outcomes? I have ideas, although I don’t know that this is the time to write about them. But there is simply no point in saying it can’t be done. It does no good to even say the words. Might as well just stick your head in the oven and be done with it. I think our Constitution provides for everything we need to change our course in the way that’s necessary — even though the current crop of our representatives manifestly does NOT. “2014″ won’t fix everything for us, but as you say, it’s a step.

    • “the past five years have proven this to be the case.”

      Sorry I’m late to respond. I enjoyed all the comments and would like to share your optimism, J.E. But, on the other hand, I thought 9-11 would have been a definitive lesson for Americans in the dangers of isolationism, especially in a world of Khameneis and Kims w/WMD. Now the isolationism bug has even spread to the Right.

      Still, it is inspiring to remember how the nation met the challenge of the first winters at Plymouth, Valley Forge and Bull Run.

  6. […] Obama isn’t a normal politician; Chuck Schumer and Lindsay Graham are normal politicians. They annoy us because they’re so transparently from the same planet as us. We and they have the same touchstones for fact, meaning, mendacity, excess. Frankly, I suspected back in 2007 that this wasn’t the case with Obama — and then he went to Berlin for his Riefenstahl moment, and set up Grecian columns to frame himself in Denver, and I was sure of it. Common sense enables us to recognize that Obama is an outlier. We don’t have to rethink our comfortably cynical ideas about politics and politicians because of Obama. But quite a few of us probably need to rethink Obama. […]


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