By the time you read this, President Obama will be taking a well-deserved break from the 54th hole of today’s scheduled golf game and the grueling responsibility of picking out his Final Four priority high-speed-rail projects on ESPN by relaxing on a beach in . . . Libya? Japan? No, Brazil. Oh, here he is now:
“Tall and tan and young and lovely
The boy from Spendaholica goes walking
And when he passes
Each one he passes
Goes ‘Aiiieeeeee . . .’”
Hey, it worked in 2008, and who’s to say the same old song won’t exercise its seductive charm all over again in 2012? That’s the way the president’s betting. As he told a gathering of high-rolling Democratic donors in Washington last week: “As time passes, you start taking it for granted that a guy named Barack Hussein Obama is president of the United States. But we should never take it for granted. I hope that all of you still feel that sense of excitement and that sense of possibility.”
Well, no, I couldn’t honestly say that I do. I mean, I always like the bit in the movie where 007 says, “The name’s Bond. James Bond,” but generally he follows it by rappelling into a hollowed-out volcano and taking out the evil mastermind while disabling the nuclear-launch codes with three seconds to spare. I’m not sure I get quite the same “sense of excitement” from the Obama version:
“The name’s Bond. James Hussein Bond.”
“I’m afraid you’re growing rather tedious, Mr. Bond.”
Speaking of names, the new stimulus-funded Amtrak station in Wilmington, Del., is to be named after Vice President Biden. Say what you like about Obama, but he made the naming of train stations run on time. We should never take it for granted that a guy named Joseph Robinette Biden is a railroad halt in the northeast corridor. I hope that all of you still feel that sense of excitement and that sense of possibility. I couldn’t be more excited if Robinette Hussein Robinette were president.
In 2008, Obama offered Hope and Change. This time round he’s offering the Hope of No Change. Life goes on. When your president’s middle name is Hussein, trust me, that’s all the change you guys need. Harry Reid says he doesn’t even want to talk about the possibility of opening discussions to consider raising the possibility of contemplating the thought of the merest smidgeonette of changes to Social Security for another 20 years. Senator Reid, 71, told MSNBC this week, “Two decades from now, I’m willing to take a look at it.” Big of you. No-Change You Can Believe In! The Audacity of Torpor.
There may be more takers for this than my friends on the right would wish. On Libya, the Audacity of Golf seems to have done the trick: Nobody’s in the mood for a no-fly zone in another thankless distant hellhole just as Iraq and Hoogivsastan have dropped off the news. And yeah, gas seems to be going up, and, when 40 percent of Americans work in minimal-skill service jobs, it makes a difference to the economic viability of those jobs whether you’re driving there at a dollar-eighty per gallon or four bucks. “We have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe,” said Steven Chu, now Obama’s energy secretary, in 2008. We’re getting there. It’s just shy of ten bucks per in Britain, but there’s no reason a fuel policy for small, densely populated nations can’t work for Wyoming, because we’re investing in all those high-speed rail links. So you’ll be able to commute from your home in Rattlesnake, Nevada to your job in North Rattlesnake, Nevada via the Joseph Robinette Biden Delaware, Lackawanna, Atchison, Topeka, Sante Fe & Canadian Pacific High-Speed Interchange Facility & Federal Stimulus Mausoleum in Wilmington.