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Paul Jenkins: Obamacare just another disaster from president

Paul Jenkins

For a guy who fancies himself a hipster with all the answers, Barack Obama certainly is a dummy when it comes to knowing what his administration is up to. He is either a liar of epic proportions or an insulated, hapless passenger on a rudderless ship of state.

If we are to believe the meme, our fearless leader knows nothing of the long list of messes his administration has made. They just happened.

He knew nothing of the National Security Agency's eavesdropping in Europe, undermining relations with our staunchest allies. He had no clue the Benghazi attack in 2012 that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and others was an al-Qaeda assault -- and tried to blame it on a video. He did not know about the "Fast and Furious" federal gun-running sting that sent weapons to Mexican drug cartels and got people killed, including U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry.

He knew nothing of the IRS targeting conservative groups, or federal wiretapping of the Associated Press or investigations of reporters, or releasing illegal aliens with criminal records or national intelligence leaks.

Nobody tells him anything. Now we are asked to believe he did not know ahead of time the zillion-dollar Obamacare website was a humiliating bust. The administration rolled it out and Obama rode it like Slim Pickens astride the bomb. Did anybody bother to check it?

How could the disaster have been a surprise after Obama and his minions paid so much attention to Obamacare -- burned so much political capital -- at the expense of Syria, Israel, the war in Afghanistan, violent slippage in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and the American economy?

It is as if none of that mattered. Obamacare has been the payoff, the raison d'être. The legacy. The website a first, vital step. Because of that preoccupation, Dick Cheney rightly observes, "Our friends no longer count on us, no longer trust us and our adversaries don't fear us." None of this stirs confidence that this administration can protect America from foreign threats, or lead or even begin to manage health care. After all, a website is simply a website -- it gets tougher later.

A reasonable person might ask: Does Obama know anything about anything? Even his pals, apologists like Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen or the Miami Herald's Leonard Pitts, are grumbling. "Compared with Obama lately, the 1962 Mets look good," a recent headline over a Cohen piece said. "Forget sex appeal; what we need now is competence," a Pitts column headline said. Those on the Left are aghast that one of their own seems such a boob. Even they cannot buy the story.

How can anybody, you have to ask, know as little as Obama and still be in charge? If he, indeed, truly believes "there is no excuse," why has nobody been fired? How is it that he is blind-sided week after week and does not send heads rolling? It is beginning look as if "Obama" in Kenyan means "Huh?"

Nobody with even a shoe-size IQ believes Obama is, or was, out of the loop in these scandals or believes the NSA, for instance, was listening to the cell phone conversations of our allies' top leaders -- or the pope, for heaven's sake -- even as part of routine surveillance and failed to mention it to the boss. You know, to avoid possible embarrassment.

It is more likely true that the Obama administration, despite promises of transparency and open government, is as slimy as they come, that it discovered lying is easier than the truth, secrecy less messy than candor. After all, who really wants to tell Americans that Obamacare is simply the first step toward single-payer health care, something Obama does know about and fully supports. That, too, should be no surprise.

There is a hilarious parody on YouTube, one of a series that knowyourmeme.com says is based on " 'Der Untergang' (2004), a German WWII drama revisiting the last ten days of Adolf Hitler's life. ..." It has spawned a string of subtitled parodies of Hitler going bonkers over topical events. They have hit everything from Sarah Palin to "Hitler learns Chuck Norris is coming."

A recent effort titled, "Hitler finds out about Obamacare Exchange Problems" concludes with the distraught Hitler character saying, "Let's find a way to blame Bush."

That, in the end, may be Obama's best and only hope. It is a lie he seems more than comfortable with.

Paul Jenkins is editor of the AnchorageDailyPlanet.com.


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