In an interview with Katie Couric, President Obama defended his hopey-changey message. "Democrats wrote to me," Katie began with an apologetic smile, "saying you campaigned on a slogan of change you can believe in, but their lives and the ways of Washington, they wrote, haven't changed at all."
President Obama then launches into a denial-filled explaination of how transparent his administration is. He mentions the fact that his visitor logs for the White House are available to the public - something unheard of with other administrations (and you know who he means!). Of course he neglects to mention that those same logs were kept locked up (even after two federal rulings that the informtion was public), until November of '09 and even then, the list wasn't quite complete, it just went back to Sept. '09. The new era of transparency leaves much to be desired, in my opinion.
But it gets better. "We are eliminating lobbyists from boards and commissions," Obama insists. And what is happening to those lobbyists who are suddenly jobless in DC? Why, they miraculously get waivers to work in the White House
He finishes up with "There's more transparency on something like the Recovery Act and how taxpayer dollars are being spent than there/s ever been on a project of this size and scale." (has there ever been a project of this size and scale?) Sure, as long as you don't mind phantom zip codes and congressional districts that don't exist. And why, exactly, does the website say that about 650,000 jobs have been 'saved or created', but the administration keeps citing 1.5 - 2.4 million? Easy - they have now changed the rules so that if a company receives stimulus funds, any job within that company now counts as 'saved or created'. Quite a racket, no?
Obama, Pelosi et al have a little problem. They truly believe perception is reality, and that if they simply say something often enough, with enough conviction, it will be so. For the rest of us living in the real world (which luckily has internet access and youtube - something the administration, as tech-savvy has it has been touted as being, seems to have forgotten about), we can hear the spin and find out what's really going on. Apparently, for about 60% of Americans, their BS detectors are set to ultra sensitive, and claptrap like he was peddling to Couric just doesn't sell anymore.
Now Obama is calling for a health care summit, this time including Republicans and C-SPAN cameras. I guess bipartisanship and transparency are only necessary if you can't manage to pass it strictly on party lines and behind closed doors. Can you say 'political act of desperation'? I know that he is 'pivoting' to jobs, but why can't he just drop the whole health care thing completely for a while? Get the economy running again and then take up health care over the summer or fall (or, more realistically, next year). Unfortunately, the administration has managed to sell to their progressive base that economic recovery just won't happen until the health care system has been reformed.
One thing this administration has gotten really, really good at is painting themselves into corners.
What really strikes me, though, is the petulant tone of the democrats - particularly Obama. Well, except for Pelosi, who apparently has decided that tone-deaf defiance is the way to go. Hey Queen Nan - when you said you would "Go through the gate. If the gate's closed, we'll go over the fence. If the fence is too high, we'll pole vault in. If that doesn't work we'll parachute in but we're going to get health care reform passed for the American people", who do you think is making all of those obstructions? That would be the American people, Nan. You know, your bosses?
The woman is the poster child for power drunk career political hacks.
She is the snarling, snapping, rabid pitbull to Obama's shivering chihuahua, barking furiously to cover his uncertainty and incompetence as he hides behind her. If the republicans can manage to take back the House, she will be neutralized, and that is more than half the battle. The spin for this administration has become so lame and transparently, patently false that it is hard to believe anyone is falling for it anymore. Well, except for their hard-core base, which only comprises about 20% of the voting pool, thankfully. The rest of us respond to the desperate spin with a hearty chuckle these days, as we mark off one more day on the calendar.
The administration will be learning a hard lesson that perception is not reality, come November. Until then, let them spin away.