Wednesday, February 20, 2008


"America is not deceived by an eloquent -- but empty -- call for change." (John McCain, Tuesday night in Columbus, Ohio)

Pennsylvania's (and America's) Obama Problem is that the candidate -- and his wife -- don't think very highly of America. Apparently, Obama believes the country is seriously deficient and must undergo radical change to become acceptable to the types -- people who despise their own country -- who back him.

What does his wife, Michelle Obama, think about her country? She recently said, "[F]or the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country. And not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change. I have been desperate to see our country moving in that direction."

That from a Black woman who received her undergraduate education at Princeton -- and then got a law degree from Harvard University. Many years ago a conservative writer produced a book entitled Why Harvard Hates America. He didn't use Michelle and Barack Obama as examples of the university's distaste for the U.S., but he could have.

It's improbable that the country is ready for a "First Lady" who doesn't like America very much -- except when her husband happens to be a serious candidate for President. This isn't Mrs. Obama's first gaffe -- nor will it be her last. Every once in awhile, she will tell us what she really thinks, and those will not be pleasant experiences for her fellow citizens, most of whom didn't get basically "free rides" through Princeton and Harvard.

In my case, I went to the University of Rochester in my home town. I lived at home to save money. I worked during the day and attended the University's night school, because it was cheaper to do so. Finally, I ended up with a Ph.d. and a good-sized obligation in the form of student loans.

Yet I don't believe there has been a day -- or an hour -- when I didn't love my country. Everything that is good in my life derives mainly from my being an American citizen infused with this nation's values and opportunities. To me, America means "not less than everything." I'm very uncomfortable with Americans who don't feel that way.

Obama has based much of his campaign on his belief that the U.S. erred by invading Iraq and overthrowing the genocidal Saddam Hussein. However, lest we think Obama is a pacifist, he has said that we should invade Pakistan (of all places!) without that country's permission, a bizarre and even childish statement.

In the second Democratic debate, Obam said, in essence, that if terrorists hit two American cities, his response would be to have a commission determine why the intelligence system failed. In other words, he'd go looking for scapegoats, rather than respond decisively to the attack. He and his fellow Democrats, who have worked so hard to hamstring our intelligence effort, would accept no responsibility for the CIA's and FBI's limitations. His view of "change" when it comes to the intelligence community is to weaken it -- and then blame it for failings whenever that's politically expedient.

John McCain said last night, "America will not be deceived by eloquent but empty calls for change." I hope he's right. Obama will continue blowing smoke and some people will inhale it as if it's nectar from the gods.In his rhetoric -- his words -- Obama often echoes his wife's comments about not liking much about the U.S.

However, there's no evidence that a country run by an Obama-type would in any substantive way be superior to one where people basically run their own lives. He's asking us to change a free society into one dominated by cynics like Barack and Michelle Obama.

John and Cindy McCain understand what's really at stake in this election. Unfortunately, Barack (and Michelle) Obama don't.

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