Friday, 23 September 2011

Give Obama Four Pinocchios

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Chip WoodLiberals are doing such a good job of bashing Barack Obama, we conservatives can just stand aside and watch. And isn’t it fun?

The most dramatic rejection of Obama’s policies occurred in New York’s 9th congressional district last week. Republican businessman Bob Turner defeated his Democratic opponent, State Assemblyman David Weprin, by a margin of 54 percent to 46 percent. This was a special election to fill the seat vacated by Anthony Weiner, who resigned in disgrace over a sexting scandal.

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz tried to put an optimistic spin on the outcome by saying, “It’s a very difficult district for Democrats.” Come on, Debbie, try another one. Democrats outnumber Republicans in the district by a margin of three to one. The seat had been in Democratic hands since 1923.

Turner very wisely made the election a mandate on Obama’s failed policies. When he did, a majority of voters gave the President a decisive thumbs-down. One of Turner’s most prominent supporters was former New York City Mayor Ed Koch, who urged “the voters of this district, the largest Jewish district in the country, to register a protest against the positions of President Obama and the Republican leadership on a number of key issues,” including “President Obama’s open hostility to the State of Israel.”

Democratic pollster and Fox News commentator Doug Schoen said the Republican win in such an overwhelmingly Democratic district is a “stunning rebuke” for the President and his policies. Longtime Democratic campaign strategist James Carville was even more blunt, saying it is time for the President to “panic.” An unnamed Democratic strategist told The Hill: “I’m warning my clients — ‘Don’t run in 2012.’ I don’t want to see good candidates lose by 12 to 15 points because of the president.”

Meanwhile, Republicans also won a second special election for Congress in Nevada, where former State Senator Mark Amodei crushed Kate Marshall, who was in her second term as Nevada’s State Treasurer. Despite the unions pouring in tons of money and “volunteers” to help Marshall, Amodei won by a margin of 58 percent to 36 percent. In other words, it wasn’t even close.

But it isn’t just voters who are becoming vocal in their opposition to Barack Obama’s policies and promises. So are many of Obama’s former comrades on the left. I have a folder full of articles and quotes I could share with you from politicians, social activists, liberal lobbyists, and a bunch of others. Even some community organizers are mad at him! A bunch of his former supporters are treating the guy like a piñata these days, banging on him as hard as they can.

It’s fun to see such dissension in the ranks. But none gave me as much pleasure as one from the Washington Post. It seems Washington’s most powerful newspaper has assigned a columnist the job of confirming the veracity, or lack thereof, of various political statements. After doing his research, Glenn Kessler then gives them the “Pinocchio” test.

One Pinocchio means there has been “some shading of the facts” and “selective telling of the truth.” There may be “some omissions and exaggerations, but not outright falsehoods.”

Two Pinocchios means Kessler found “significant omissions and/or exaggerations” or a deliberate effort to create “a false, misleading impression by playing with words and using legalistic language that means little to ordinary people.” (Bill Clinton was a master of this one.)

Three Pinocchios means Kessler found “significant factual error and/or obvious contradictions.”

What garners Four Pinocchios? Kessler sums it up in one word: “whoppers.”

According to Kessler, the President, in his Labor Day speech in Detroit, told a real whopper. The columnist began with this quote by Obama: “We said working folks deserved a break, so within one month of me taking office, we signed into law the biggest middle-class tax cut in history, putting more money into your pockets.”

Did he really? I guess it depends on what the word “biggest” means to you. (Sort of like Bill Clinton’s argument over what the meaning of the word “is” is.) For most of us, “biggest” in this context would mean “the most money,” wouldn’t you say? By that standard, the Obama tax cuts in his Making Work Pay package was nowhere near the biggest in history. Heck, the Bush tax cuts — the ones Obama has ranted about so often — were more than twice as large.

And we could argue all day over what comprises the middle-class in America. Whenever Barack Obama uses the phrase, he typically includes members of the working poor and excludes anyone earning $200,000 or more. As it was for the Queen in Alice in Wonderland, apparently words can mean whatever he wants them to mean.

When questioned, the White House explained that “biggest” to them referred to the number of people who received a tax cut. According to the spinmeisters there, every working family in America (except those making more than $190,000 a year) received something in the Obama tax cuts. That makes it “the biggest” of all time.

Kessler wrote: “Obama’s claim of having passed the ‘biggest middle-class tax cut in history’ is ridiculous.” He then added that the staff at the Post argued about whether it was a three- or four-Pinocchio violation. They finally concluded that Obama himself knew he was telling a whopper, so they made it a maximum nose-grower.

By the way, Kessler likes to point out exaggerations all across the political spectrum. In fact, folks on the right garner many more Pinocchios than those on the left. Check out his website to see how many Rick Perry, John Boehner, Michele Bachmann, and Sarah Palin have received.

Of course, the fact that Barack Obama can stretch the truth beyond all recognition will come as no surprise to regular readers of this column. We’ve come to expect nothing less from our Obfuscator in Chief.

But the distortions, exaggerations, and outright falsehoods of the past three years are nothing compared to what we’re going to see between now and next November. I can confidently predict that there is almost no limit to the lies Obama will tell about us — or the amount of your tax dollars that he will promise to give others — if only they will grant him four more years in the White House.

So guard your wallets, folks. And get ready to see Barack Obama’s nose grow a lot longer.

Until next time, keep some powder dry.

Chip Wood was the first news editor of The Review of the News and also wrote for American Opinion, our two predecessor publications. He is now the geopolitical editor of Personal Liberty Digest, where his Straight Talk column appears weekly. This article first appeared in and has been reprinted with permission.

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