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L. Neil Smith's
Number 505, February 8, 2009

"I am not kidding."

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The Age of Obama
by Sean Gangol
RGangol -+at+-

Special to The Libertarian Enterprise

Not too long ago, President-elect, Barack Obama was inaugurated into the White House. For a long time change has been promised, so people now expect Obama to be America's saver. There are others, who are just happy to have a black president, which they believe is a sign of progress. Unfortunately, I am not one of those people. I don't believe that Obama is the messiah given to us by God. I will not take his promises at face value. I could care less if our president is black or white. What I take issue with is the so-called change that he plans to bring about.

I will admit that Obama's success is unique considering that his campaign didn't seem all that original. Change is what every two bit politician promises. I suppose if you say it enough people will believe it. I was amazed at how people just bought into the rhetoric. Many of these people are so enamored with Obama that they can't comprehend how anybody could oppose him. I remember seeing a picture in The Chronicle of Higher Education that showed two female college students holding hands and crying tears of joy after hearing about Obama's election. After seeing this picture you would have thought that God had walked on earth and promised us a thousand years of peace.

Then there is the media. We have all seen different forms of media bias in the past. In the case of Obama this went way beyond media bias. During the inauguration the press ranted and raved about Obama dancing with his wife. I didn't think he did anything different from any other president. On ABC George Stephanopoulos compared Obama's inauguration with Lincoln's. He then proceeded to go on and on about how Obama is going to bring about change like Lincoln did with the Emancipation Proclamation. It was Ann Coulter who said that it was if the media wanted to have sex with Obama. As much as I dislike Coulter, I would have to agree. It also seemed like they wanted to spoon with him afterwards.

Then there are those who are just too thrilled to have a black president to worry about the real issues. There are people who actually believe that we need a black president so that we can end racism and bring more opportunities to minorities. First of all, racism should already be a dead issue by now. Unfortunately, we have people who are so obsessed with the idea of having a black president that it is obvious that race is still an issue in this country. There is also no guarantee that a black president will create opportunities for anybody. I think presidents are actually better at eliminating opportunities then creating them. People shouldn't feel obligated to vote for a minority who may not be qualified for the job.

Now it's time to take a look at the real issues. One of them is the economy. Obama's plan for fixing the economy has been compared to FDR's New Deal. The media, not surprisingly, has already praised his new plans even though they have yet to be implemented. The media also reinforces the myth that Roosevelt's New Deal was actually a good thing for the economy. The myth has endured for many generations, despite the fact that many historians and economists point out that Roosevelt's interference with the economy actually prolonged the depression. That was why the Roosevelt administration was so determine to get the United States involved in the Second World War. There are those who are in denial and believe that Roosevelt's policies saved us from the depression. I wouldn't be surprised if the same thing happened during Obama's administration. His policies may worsen America's financial crisis to the point where he needs another large scale war to distract the public. I also wouldn't be surprised if the history books still venerate him as America's savior.

Obama has also promised to reduce government spending and give us a balanced budget. It is doubtful that he will ever live up to any of these promises. He has tried to show the American people that he is serious by freezing the salaries of all the White House staff. Our president assumes that no one will notice the 150 million dollars that was spent for his inauguration or the 100 thousand dollars used for remodeling parts of the White House just to make his family comfortable. Let us not forgot about his so-called Stimulus Plan, which basically requires the spending of billions of tax dollars. Somehow I doubt Obama is going to be the champion of thriftiness.

Aside from the fact that Obama probably won't live up to the hype, I think the biggest issue that we need to be concerned with is the Second Amendment. Thanks to the incompetent neoconservatives that ran our country for eight years, the Democrats have also taken back the House and Senate. Considering that our new president has yet to see an anti-gun bill that he didn't like, anti-gun zealots will have plenty of opportunities to erode our right to keep and bear arms even further.

As pessimistic as this article may seem, there is some good news. One them is the closing Guantanamo Bay. I have never felt comfortable with the idea of the government detaining people without trial and keeping them in Monte Cristo style prisons. So far this is the one good change that the current administration has made. Let us hope that they don't eventually replace it with something else.

There is also hope that people will tire of Obama after he fails to live up to the hype and we will have to only endure him for four years. At the very least the Republicans could take back congress like they did during the Clinton administration, which would benefit our Second Amendment rights. Unfortunately, we would have to deal with the neocons and their empty promises, once again. That is always the downside of having to choose the lesser of two evils.


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