Barack Obama recently addressed the Congressional Black Caucus and warned them, “Remember, the other side has a plan too. It’s a plan to turn back the clock on every bit of progress we’ve made.” The scare speech was a veiled attack on the Republican Party in terms of civil rights and racial progress — couched in equating Obama’s own record since 2009 as the antidote to reactionary forces that would turn back the clock. Obama once again trashed John Boehner as an architect of this nefarious effort.
Something is wrong with all this. Under President Obama, the poverty rate has hit an historic high, as banks and employers sit on trillions in cash, either scared of Obama’s redistributive rhetoric, or his policies enacted so far, or both. In response, he seeks to demonize a congressman as somehow an avatar of illiberal privilege, although Boenher, one of 12 children, grew up far poorer than the prep-school and Ivy League educated Obama. And in his call for “doing the right thing,” Obama, who promised a new ethical Washington, said nothing of the Charles Rangel tax scandal, the Maxine Waters banking scandal, or the Eddie Bernice Johnson scholarship scandal. Presumably all were in the audience as Obama appealed in moral terms to save his administration’s agenda.