Altruism vs. Reality

Monday, April 27, 2009

As E.J. Dionne points out, the "first 100 of the 1,461 days" of the Obama term are over, meaning that if it were two weeks long, we're just about through its first Monday. So how are all his magical-thinking supporters doing? Not so hot, if this article is any indication:

[A]s Obama nears the 100-day milestone of his presidency, [Greenwood City Councilwoman Edith] Childs suffers from constant exhaustion. In a conservative Southern state that bolstered Obama's candidacy by supporting him early in the Democratic primaries, she awakens at 2:30 a.m. with stress headaches and remains awake mulling all that's befallen Greenwood since Obama's swearing-in.

On Day 4 of his presidency, the Solutia textile plant laid off 101 workers. On Day 23, the food bank set a record for meals served. On Day 50, the hospital fired 200 employees and warned of further job cuts. On Day 71, the school superintendent called a staff meeting and told his principals: "We're losing 10 percent of our budget. That means some of us won't have jobs next year, and the rest should expect job changes and pay cuts." On Day 78, the town's newly elected Democratic mayor, whose campaign was inspired partly by his admiration for Obama, summarized Greenwood's accelerating fragility. "This is crippling us, and there's no sign of it turning around," Welborn Adams said.

On Day 88, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that South Carolina had set a record for its highest unemployment rate in state history, at 11.4 percent. Greenwood's unemployment is 13 percent -- more than twice what it was when Childs first started chanting.

"We have a lot of people who live in cold houses, with no jobs and no food," Childs says.
Over the weekend, I said half-jokingly that Obama had to somehow, "make sure his constituency keeps believing [he can create an Office of Fabulous Salaries] while also not noticing that he hasn't yet gotten around to magically making all of us fabulously wealthy."

This article shows that he needn't even do this much. Childs, who pays constituents' bills with her city council checks -- Is this even legal? -- is feeling overwhelmed and exhausted, but is nowhere near withdrawing her mistaken support of Barack Obama or questioning the creed of self-sacrifice that is causing her to wallow in the problems of so many other people. On happening by a Tea Party protest, her reaction was dismissive: "Let them have their tea party. They're just looking for somebody to blame. My ears are full."

It is, of course, a waste of time for opponents of Barack Obama to attempt to address those who, like Childs, will steadfastly refuse to hear us. But it is worth remembering that if we are to defeat Obama and his fellow statists any time soon, it will take our sustained effort versus the widespread ignorance and entrenched mental indolence of a significant portion of the populace.

No matter how arbitrary the edicts of King Barack the Mild, or how obviously detrimental they are to the hard-working and the self-reliant, do not think that the suffering they will cause will carry the day. We can reach many of the merely ignorant through rational persuasion, but the committed altruists will not stop working against us, and the saturation of the culture with their morality will offset their flagging enthusiasm, even if it can't get whipped up long enough for another election.

-- CAV

4 comments:

Jaz said...

Gus,
The reporter/journalist of the Washington Post article would make a great naturalistic writer! The portrait that has been painted in this story is fantanstic except for the utter dreariness and hopelessness of the characters!

And since I can't stomach a lot of that type of journalism...now I am looking for a portrait sketched by a journalist who would make a great romantic writer!
Jasmine

Gus Van Horn said...

Agreed. The story does make you want to read in spite of yourself!

You may have to wait awhile for that. I don't think a major news outlet would hire such a writer.

jay said...

Is monday considered the first day of the week? No big, I just thought it was sunday.

Gus Van Horn said...

You're right, although I can't resist pointing out that the names of week days are usually capitalized!

I must've been thinking of a tough work week...