Friday, August 21, 2009

The Farmer in Chief

President Obama fielded softballs on Thursday at his so called "Town Hall" titled the “Organizing for America National Health Care Forum.” Though it was tough to watch him mendaciously smother these balloons, it was far better than the national embarrassment endured by millions watching him “throw out” the first pitch at the All Star game. If we are determined to appoint Czars fully funded yet totally unaccountable to the American taxpayer and their representatives, could we please appoint someone whose sole responsibility is to make sure the President does not further embarrass this once proud nation? That is the one Czar I would be willing to approve and fund. This may actually be a two or three person czarship. In addition, can we make it illegal for Democratic Presidents or candidates to attempt to demonstrate athletic skills, especially on baseball fields or in bowling alleys?

But we digress. During this illuminating Town Hall event the President was challenged with this profound query from one of his cloying sycophants:

I have a two-part question. One is choice, the choice that we make to eat the foods that we eat and the lifestyle that we choose to engage in. And the second part, your family is very fit. What do you and the First Lady and the girls do to encourage physical fitness, and what can we—not the government, not private corporations—do to encourage activity in the public-school system and in young people?

Yes, enough with this tedious healthcare debate, lets cut right to the burning issues of the day. The President responded in kind with the typical scholarly reply we have come to expect from the “smartest guy ever to become President” (at least according to Presidential historian Michael Beschloss); and no, this is not a reference to the President's erudite description of Washington insiders as "wee weed up." While in character, that comment occurred earlier; but the audience continued to be wowed with these pedantic thoughts from our Commander in Chief:

When it comes to food, one of the things that we are doing is working with school districts. And the child nutrition legislation is going to be coming up. We provide an awful lot of school lunches out there and—and reimburse local school districts for school-lunch programs. Let’s figure out how can we get some fresh fruits and vegetables in the mix. Because sometimes you go into schools and—you know what the menu is, you know? It’s French fries, Tater Tots, hot dogs, pizza and—now, that’s what kids—let’s face it, that’s what kids want to eat, anyway (Laughter.) So it’s not just the schools’ fault.

A, that’s what kids may want to eat. B, it turns out that that food’s a lot cheaper, because of the distributions that we’ve set up. And so what we’ve got to do is to change how we think about, for example, getting local farmers connected to school districts, because that would benefit the farmers, delivering fresh produce, but right now they just don’t have the distribution mechanisms set up.

So, you know, Michelle set up that garden in the White House?

One of the things that we’re trying to do now is to figure out, can we get a little farmers’ market—outside of the White House—I’m not going to have all of you all just tromping around inside—(laughter)—but right outside the White House—(laughter)—so that—so that we can—and—and—and that is a win-win situation.

It gives suddenly D.C. more access to good, fresh food, but it also is this enormous potential revenue-maker for local farmers in the area. And—and that—those kinds of connections can be made all throughout the country, and—and has to be part of how we think about health.

The President’s reply to this inquiry, inane as the inquiry (and answer) were, offers significant insight into his larger view of the role of government, individual liberty, and the responsibility such liberty entails. In addition it portrays a staggering lack of appreciation for the potential effects of government intervention in what heretofore had been a free market economy.

After listening to the President for seven months I have to ask is there anything the man likes about this country? Am I the only one who feels this way? Does the President believe there is anything worthwhile that has ever been singly achieved by this nation? Is there any evidence that he believes anything worthwhile has ever occurred in this nation that did not result from government intervention? Does the President believe there is any redeeming value to a critical contributor to American exceptionalism, the free market?

The assumption in the President’s statement is that families cannot feed their children. If that is true, how did we get to this point? Were school lunch (and breakfast) programs considered a necessity prior to the wondrous achievements of Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society and the evolution of the welfare state? Question authority? That is a liberal privilege. Just like global warming, the fact that parents cannot feed their children is established fact; and of course, we have to do something, and who better to do something than the government. Right? Well, not so fast. According to the President, the government run school lunch programs don’t have it right…yet. Not to worry though…there is nothing that government can’t fix.

The President and First Lady are “on it” and have analyzed identified the reason for inadequate school lunches. It seems that fresh fruits and vegetables have yet to be discovered by the stewards of school lunch programs, though it is not their fault. Government has just not evolved the power required to adequately address the problem. The purchasers of school lunch programs simply do not have access to local farmers and their produce. What "we" have to do is figure out how to connect local farmers to schools and improve the food distribution system. As one listens to Mr. Obama you would assume that he is President of the Sudan. One would never suspect, based on the President’s comments, that we are the most agriculturally proficient nation in the world.

The President cites Washington, DC as being particularly lacking in access to “good, fresh food.” Has the President, during the few years he has spent in Washington, ever taken a break from his campaigning career to look around the city? There are too numerous too count farmers markets in the DC area. Any failure of government bureaucrats to make fresh foods available to public school students, in DC or anywhere for that matter, is not due to lack of supply. If the President feels compelled to comment on deficiencies in DC schools, he might have tried something new, non-fiction. Under the watchful eye of city fathers, DC schools have garnered the title of most expensive and ineffective schools in the world. The Washington Post reported in 2008 that the cost per pupil in the DC system is an astounding $24,600. This compares to an average of $10,000 per pupil in DC private schools. One can only assume that after further discussion with Arne Duncan (Secretary of Education) and Bill Ayers that the President will be getting back to us with a plan for building on the staggering success only John Dewey could have envisioned after decades of expensive and destructive statist educational experimentation.

As regards Ma and Pa Obama, the citizens of DC do not require the first family to establish a White House Farmers Market. Further, if the President understood (or cared about) the free market and basic economics, he would appreciate that a White House Farmers Market would attract legions of Obama fawners (that would be the majority of District and Northern Virginia residents) who would no longer support pre-existing markets. On the other hand, if the President took a real interest in operating such a market, it would offer him business and supervisory skills which we all might benefit from.

Mr. Obama’s comments on the need for a White House Farmers Market offer irresistible analogies to his views on medical care. Many Americans cannot feed their own children and a village is required to fulfill this obligation to our youngest citizens. The government has been charged with this task for years but has performed poorly. Despite substituting cheaper, less effective services, the needs of our children are not being met. They are being offered substandard food. An expansion of government authority is required here to achieve the necessary goal. If we are truly to make certain that children in our schools have universal access to proper food, government must not only control distribution, which it has managed poorly, it must control production. Similarly, the President sees only benefit to government assuming control of the production, pricing and distribution of healthcare services. It is as intuitive to the President that government should exert its beneficent hand in food markets as it is that government would assume control of auto makers, insurers and the home finance industry.

Dissent is patriotic in this nation well, for, liberals. The unfortunate problem for hardcore liberals is that their core convictions are built on a foundation of antipathy to the United States envisioned by the Founders. The intent of leftists and Alinskyites is to destroy the historical and traditional systems of order and governing established in Western democracies and this nation over hundreds of years. It is near impossible to find any comments by the President that suggest the American governmental experiment is exceptional, that the dream of millions worldwide is to come here, even under risk of death, or that in our short history that we have uniquely offered heroic service and sacrifice on an unprecedented scale to the larger world community. No, for our President any American achievements are always suffused in a melange of moral equivalence.

It may be that the President has never seen “It’s a Wonderful Life”. I suggest that Gordon Brown might send it to him next Christmas…or holiday season. Imagine the world over the last century without the United States. Any reasonably honest analysis of such a proposition should leave champions of individual liberty, responsibility, freedom, and free markets with an overwhelming sense of nausea.

It would seem that the Bill Ayers, Saul Alinsky, Jeremiah Wright, Louis Farrakhan, Eric Holder, Rahm and Zeke Emmanuel, Arne Duncan, Michelle Obama and Barack Obamas of the world have spent decades committed to the obliteration of American tradition without taking any time to consider how they would govern, if they ever got the opportunity. Driven by an instinctual urge for power, they have always presumed, against overwhelming historical evidence, that absolute government control was the way to utopia. Despite proclaiming concern for the common man as their battle cry, the agents of hope and change have always presumed that it was they that possessed the wisdom to determine how utopia would be defined. It would be a core group of imperious government elitists who would determine what would best serve the citizenry and more importantly, how the citizenry would best serve.

The President creates an interesting metaphor…President Obama as the Farmer in Chief. Consider the power exercised by the farmer as he oversees his land with the express intent of generating the most bountiful harvest. Individual plants are of little interest to the industrious farmer. There is no individualism recognized by the farmer raising his crops. Fertilizer and water are distributed equally to all. Diseased plants are sacrificed for the greater good. Weeds considered a threat to the well being of the larger crop are destroyed. Hardier genetically engineered crops may take precedence over natural growth. The farmer takes all steps to protect the greatest percentage of his crop, the crop which he and the market judge as valuable.

Based on the principles of the President’s plans for healthcare “reform”, his commitment to redistribute wealth, and his demonstrated and espoused willingness to pursue control of key industry sectors, can there be any doubt that the President sees himself as the Farmer in Chief. As master of the American estate he believes his responsibilities include proper watering, feeding, fertilizing and culling of the harvest. The farmer is an American hero. He supports what most of us consider to be an exceptional and unique creation. Mankind. The Farmer in Chief is surrounded by gentrified political utilitarians who not only deny American exceptionalism, but who advocate political philosophies which will ultimately require questioning the exceptionalism of mankind.

Quite simply it is anathema to the President that anything other than government should control the healthcare, finance and energy industries. So when you are that committed and catechized to the most radical liberal progressivism, why wouldn’t the White House assume responsibility for disbursement of one more critical resource?

American Gothic, meet the Obamas. This is contemporary horror, of the non-fiction variety, that even Stephen King could not imagine. Welcome to the Green House.

Quaere Verum