It’s all in the interpretation

We often pick on authoritarians for being hypocrites and liars, which of course they are, that is, in the big picture or from the standpoint of principles. We must be careful though in interpreting their words. When Obama said this a while back, he was being perfectly honest and consistent;

“The biggest problems we’re facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch and not go through Congress at all. And that’s what I intend to reverse when I am president of the United States of America.” — Senator Barak Obama, March 31, 2008

I say he was laying his intentions right out in the open, for all to see. T-ball. George Bush was trying to bring more and more power into the executive, and Obama intended to reverse that by instead doing it himself.

You just have to understand it from their perspective as competing, or fellow, authoritarians. One professional boxer may very well intend to beat the snot out of another professional boxer, but that does NOT mean he’s opposed to boxing. Look at it this from the perspective of rival gangs;

“The biggest problems we’re facing right now have to do with The Eastside Gang trying to exercise more and more power in this town, and that’s what I intend to reverse when I become Leader of the West Side Gang.”

It’s not that the prospective leader of The Westside Gang is saying he’s anti-gang, is it? But the inattentive, or the wishful thinker, may see it that way if he chooses. Our prospective gang leader’s fellow gangsters on both sides of town know exactly what he’s saying, though the words are chosen to appeal to a broader audience consisting of largely distracted and de-moralized victims of gang intimidation.

Likewise, in W.W. II in Europe there were three competing gangs: Italian Fascists, German National Socialists and Russian communists. Then, American Democratic Socialist (or progressive communist, i.e. Progressive) FDR got the U.S. into the fray. It was not at all a war of opposing ideologies, but one of competing authoritarian systems and separate gang interests competing for turf. Same goes for Democrats and Republicans, on a “good” day. On a bad day (which is more common now) they all work together against their common enemies, which are reason, human dignity, independence, justice and liberty.

Understand all of that and the whole world makes a lot more sense, and you’ll rarely if ever be left wondering what the hell just happened.

Hat tip; Tam

2 thoughts on “It’s all in the interpretation

  1. Lyle, a question: what does the phrase “…more power into the executive branch…” mean you you?

    I’m not saying POTUS — the current one or most of his predecessors — is anything but a multifaceted liar, but the way your trying to spin his words doesn’t quite square up — and your reformulation shows that.

    “The biggest problems we’re facing right now have to do with The Eastside Gang trying to exercise more and more power in this town, and that’s what I intend to reverse when I become Leader of the West Side Gang.”
    Omits or blurs a couple of points in,
    “The biggest problems we’re facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch and not go through Congress at all. And that’s what I intend to reverse when I am president of the United States of America.”

    “Town” is not an analog of “executive branch” and “Congress” has vanished altogether. In Obama’s quote, “exectuve branch” and Congress are (correctly, for once) identified as competing centers of power. No, if you want an analog, try this:
    “The biggest problems we’re facing right now have to do with The Eastside Gang trying to exercise more and more power in this town without going through the neighborhood council, and that’s what I intend to reverse when I become Leader of the West Side Gang.”

    A cynic might well read that as an offer to *collude* with the “neighborhood council,” but even as an outright lie, it does at least nod to the Constitutional balance between the President and Congress.

    It is interesting that most Presidential *candidates* are all about the separation of powers…but most *Presidents* become fond of executive orders. (Washington had some interesting comments on the subject.)

    Mr. Obama’s administration is deeply flawed. There’s no need to strain the language to show them.

    • You are entirely correct, insofar as the English language is concerned. The left however speaks a different language.

      The proper emphasis in Obama’s quote is George Bush.

      ““The problems we’re facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch…”

      There’s no reason to name names if you think the executive has been getting too uppity over the years, which of course it has, starting with Teddy Roosevelt, or Lincoln, or George Washington and continuing inexorably ever since. Note that he did NOT say; “The problems we’re facing right now have to do with more and more power [being vested] into the executive branch…”

      The focus is on Bush, and so once Obama got into office the process was thereby “reversed”. No more George Bush doing it, which is unacceptable. Now it’s “our guy” doing it, which is totally cool and more and more power to him. His Progressive audience knew exactly what he was saying, even if the wishful thinking among us were oblivious.

      Now imagine him saying that the federal government, or if you like, the executive specifically, had, for the last 100+ years been aquuiring far too much power, that the time had come to divest federal powers back to the states, and to the People. Totally different statement, and at that point, if they thought he meant it, the left would go ballistic and set out to destroy him, ’cause that’s tea-bagger talk.

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