Friday, July 26, 2013

 “With an endless parade of distractions, political posturing and phony scandals, Washington has taken its eye off the ball.” — President Obama, Wednesday

Question: How many Americans have to be murdered in an al-Qaeda attack on a U.S. consulate before it stops being a “phony” scandal?

Answer: If Barack Obama is president, more than four.

Writers across the spectrum — from the liberal New York Times to the conservative Wall Street Journal — have beaten up on President Obama’s latest “dreadful, cliche-ridden” (James Taranto, speech on economic policy, the second-longest speech of his presidency.

How can a man talk for more than an hour on a single topic, as Obama did on Wednesday, and say absolutely nothing new? As columnist Charles Krauthammer of the Washington Post explained, “It’s because the president has nothing to say about the economy.”

Liberals complain that all conservatives ever say is “Cut taxes and cut spending!” Perhaps they’re right, but that’s two more ideas than Barack Obama has offered during his entire presidency.

Which is why the only line from this Teleprompter novella that’s gotten any traction is his “phony scandals” feint.

“Phony”? What’s phony about the fact that the IRS targeted citizens based on their ideology? That the discussion of this targeting went all the way up to the president’s hand-picked IRS chief counsel William Wilkins? That Wilkins met with Obama in April 2012 just two days before “new guidance” on how to handle Tea Party applications was sent from Washington to IRS operatives?

Imagine cub reporter Barack “WoodStein” Obama being told by his Washington Post editors in 1972 that the Nixon administration using the IRS to target its enemies was a “phony scandal.” Would he have agreed?

“Phony”? What’s phony about the family members of a Fox News reporter being spied on by the Department of Justice? About Attorney General Eric Holder lying about his knowledge of “potential prosecution” of the media by his department?

And then there’s Ben-ghazi. Almost a year later, we still don’t know where the president was when the terrorist attack started, whether the military was ordered to leave Glen Doherty to die, or why the White House continued to push the phony story of a video weeks after it knew it was a terror attack and not a movie protest.

Four dead Americans at a consulate the Obama administration knew was being targeted but left unprotected. On 9/11. With an ambassador in it. If that’s a “phony scandal,” how many dead Americans does it take to make a real one?

On the other hand, Obama has a point. All the talk about Benghazi and the IRS has taken attention away from another scandal — his horrible handling of the economy.

We’re in year four of the worst “recovery” since World War II. How awful is it?

It’s so awful that we still have a lower percentage of able-bodied adults in the workforce today than we did when Obama took office.

So awful that median household incomes today are 5 percent lower than June 2009, the official start of the “recovery.”

So awful that it would take three months of Obama’s best “job creation” month (300,000) to equal one month of Reagan’s (1 million).

So awful that the lowest annual deficit under President Obama ($642 billion) is almost $200 billion worse than the highest deficit under George W. Bush ($459 billion).

This is the economic scandal of the Obama presidency. Or maybe he thinks his economic record is “phony,” too.

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