Obama swings and misses

Obama reenters the limelight



So, having left the world stage a while back, Barack Obama, looking on the ragged side, ageing faster than anyone would like, has re-emerged, delivering a series of wild swinging punches at Donald Trump, on behalf, we presume, of Joe Biden who was probably having a nap after his afternoon cocoa. 

All right, so ignore the fact that Biden is very much in danger of taking his daily nap tally into double figures, and let’s concentrate on the reappearance of the ghost of a friend.

Obama is the man best remembered for embodying the concept of “all mouth and no trousers”. When he was at the helm not a lot seemed to happen, did it? OK, an army of people will now start to shout that it wasn’t his fault, due to the stalemate which developed between the two chambers of the US political system.

But, in all seriousness, this can’t really be considered to count. If someone is elected to the highest office in the land, and further, elected, as the head of the USA, arguably, the most powerful position in the world, then it’s unacceptable to say: “Well, I was stymied.”

Not acceptable as an excuse. No excuse would be acceptable. You managed to secure yourself a majority, you get yourself elected to the most powerful desk to be found anywhere on the globe, and then you find yourself snookered and…give up?

No, this is when, as we all know, the horse trading starts. Or should start. You negotiate, you trade, you compromise. Because if you don’t then you end up with a legacy similar to Obama’s…he will remain as “the man who wasn’t there”. Not a legend, is it?

Anyway, enough of Obama’s similarity to a phantom. Back to him fighting the fight against “hair-don’t” Trump. Old Papa Joe’s still snoozing, so let’s have a look at what the ghost of Christmas way past had to say.

“I get that this president wants full credit for the economy that he inherited, and zero blame for the pandemic that he ignored,” said Mr Obama.

Swipe. He swings, he misses. Trump is taking credit for the economy that Obama created? Well, the economy prevails, doesn’t it? At least it’s meant to. The economy is full of devices which are designed to work in the short-term, or in the longer-term, or in the long-term. Finance ministers are expected to plan ahead, aren’t they? Now, we all know that in Hungary there was a time at the start of the 90s when it appeared that the economy was being planned at about a week’s distance from where we were at any given time, but that approach has been remedied, and nowadays, like every nation that’s got its head screwed on the right way, we plan further ahead.

So, Obama, the man who didn’t make a mark, the man mostly remembered for his amusing speech delivered when stepping down, claims that Trump is riding on his coat-tails.

Well, we don’t exist in a vacuum, do we? No, so this is a daft accusation. The same can be said of Obama, the same can be said of every president. You enter office, you automatically inherit what your predecessor left you. Surely you can’t be blamed for inheriting what you inherited, can you? There’s no other option available. What? Pull on the handbrake at a pre-determined time before an election? Just stop the economy so that the incumbent government and the public can be reassured that they’re being required to start with a blank canvas? No riding on coat-tails, to be sure. But a stupid idea, from the viewpoint of the economy.

Presumably, “the man who wasn’t there” wouldn’t, in all seriousness, suggest that razing the economy to the ground, employing a scorched earth policy a year or so prior to an election would be a sensible or even popular idea. It certainly seems like a harsh way to ensure that your legacy remains yours and yours alone. On the selfish side, at the very least.

So, sorry Obama, but that opening salvo counts for shit. Scratch the surface of what you’ve said, and what lies beneath would be recognised by a drunken, lobotomised lemur as a pile of crap.

OK, what else was there?

“…and zero blame for the pandemic that he ignored,”

Well, this is a bit below the belt, too, don’t you think? Trump stands accused of not dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, that the president has ignored the pandemic and that’s the reason for the depressing statistics we can see coming from the US. Well, maybe, obviously. But, surely it’s a bit early in the game to get away with a claim like that, isn’t it? I mean, there are shades of a “low blow” here, aren’t there? Far be it from me to speak of manners, but this is a bit off…trying to score points on the death toll? As we can see as we cast our eyes over the world, there doesn’t appear to be a policy regarding the corona virus which has gained universal acceptance. Different countries are following different policies. Some policies coincide, others don’t. Some governments agree on which path to follow, others don’t. It’s not 100%, so, although everyone has the prerogative to criticise, “the man who wasn’t there” is attempting to beat Trump over the head with a stick made of consensus which, in reality, doesn’t exist.

Each country is different. Each nation is different. Every nation has, potentially, a different genetic base. We don’t know what it is that makes some people more or less likely to succumb to the coronavirus. In the USA, we know, in addition, that there isn’t a social safety net which could be compared to the welfare state in Europe. That might well be a complicating factor.  European countries tend to have a welfare state which involves hospitals…there for the use of all citizens, based on money that we pay in taxes. The Americans aren’t like us in that respect. They hate taxes with a vengeance. I’ve been there, and the hatred, the loathing, the abhorrence that the citizens of the USA have for taxes is really quite something. It took me completely by surprise. In conversation, when you ask if they wouldn’t like to pay a contributory tax to enable a system of health care that exists, on demand, as it were, then you’re told, in very clear terms, that that is not something we should ever expect to develop.

Of course, had Obamacare got off the ground, then things might have played out in a different manner, but…come on. In all seriousness, we can’t claim that a newly inaugurated national health care system would be able to handle, after just a few years of operation, a pandemic, straight off the bat, can we?

Again, this is an ill-mannered and misleading accusation from Obama. There is no consensus by which we could judge others. And it’s distasteful to use the dead to score political points. If Obamacare had got off the ground, then presumably at this juncture, “the man who wasn’t there” would be claiming that Trump was, once again, riding on his coat-tails. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

OK, so, onwards and…well, upwards? On we trudge…what else did the man say?

Well, as anyone could have predicted, he attacked Trump’s use of Twitter. Once again, we’ve come to expect this to such an extent that we no longer notice it. The sun rises, the sun sets, and a load of people continue to bang on about Trump tweeting. It’s as natural as breathing. Now, once again, this criticism falls into the category of “unevenly spread”. The extent to which Trump gets a kicking for using Twitter does appear to suggest that he’s practically the only Twitter user to be found worldwide, but that’s not the case, is it? Seems to reek of double-standards, that one. No matter, let’s move on.

What else was there? Well, “the man that wasn’t there” revived the idea that Trump is a congenital idiot. But, that’s got to be considered par for the course, surely? Obama no doubt had the faithful rolling in the aisles with his gag that even though he’d left the White House a book detailing how one should deal with a pandemic, Trump was, no doubt, using the same to stabilise a table with wobbly legs. Personally, I laughed so hard I unshipped 3 ribs. Yes, yes, we get it: you think Trump is a moron. But, aren’t you ploughing the same furrow…over and over again? This is getting old. Really old, really quickly. Tell me, Obi Wan bama, did you, during your tenure in the White House, regularly perform DIY jobs about the place? Did you change lightbulbs and the like? Did you adjust the length of the new curtains and mow the lawn? No? No. Let’s face it, the chances of that sort of thing happening are slimmer than a starving rodent, aren’t they? Yes, so it’s just a cheap shot. A cheap laugh. And, with a lot of cheap shots, it reflects badly on the person who delivered it. Claim your right to the moral high ground, but still enjoy taking cheap potshots? Sorry, you can’t have both. Cheap shots are always going to be cheap shots.

All right, one last thing, and then I’ll let you get on with your lives. Cub’s honour.

The economic damage he inflicted by botching the pandemic response means he will be the first president since Herbert Hoover to actually lose jobs.

What? Again? We’re revisiting old ground here, aren’t we? Well, this is mind-blowing. What are the chances? So, Obama is claiming, presumably in all seriousness, that not since the days of the Great Depression has an US president overseen a period of time in which jobs were lost? Shit, that’s impressive…no jobs lost since what? The 1930s? Blimey, Mabel, that pisses on all statistics we’ve seen to date. Only, obviously, painfully obviously, it’s not true. Stevie Wonder could see that it’s not true, and he’s blind. Ray Charles could see that it’s not true, and not only was he blind, but he’s now also dead! 

So, “the man who wasn’t there” is being funny, once again. But, it’s not worthy of a school debating society, much less the global stage. Try and raise the standard, eh? Making them wet their pants with laughter is one thing, but these comments can’t cut the mustard.

The rest of the speech was pretty much more of the same, and I could refute those arguments, or points raised in turn, but that would merely involve me repeating ad infinitum, which is what Obi did. Not worth 

The one thing that did touch a nerve, was the repetition of the idea that “Snoozin’ Joe” kicked off the other week…the old chestnut of democracy, lumping us and the Poles in with all the foul dictatorships of the world, deftly side-stepping that rather awkward fact that as far as we and the Poles are concerned, our governments were democratically elected. Which rather pulls the rug from under “Snoozy’s” argument, leaving him flat on his arse, looking a tad sheepish.


But, never one to let facts get in the way of a good line, Obi suggested that the election of “Sleepy Joe”* would automatically result in the increase of the USA’s reputation in the world. Well, perhaps, but given that the world seems to be split 50–50 on the question of who’s better between Trump and Biden, surely this means that it would be a simultaneous increase and decrease, no? But, let’s not forget the false base that Obi, and others of his “liberal” ilk, always like to use as a foundation stone…

“A nation that stands with democracy not dictators”.

Oh, God. Either get your facts right, or leave this topic well alone. Think about it…how many dictators, and by dictators, I don’t mean the ones you claim to be dictators because they don’t roll over and present their bellies for a good rub whenever you want them to. Forget the democratically elected ones, just concentrate on the real ones, the ones who seized power, in several instances, let’s not forget, with the enthusiastic assistance of the USA. OK, now…how many are there? A bag full, obviously. But…what have you done about them? Nothing? Yes, that’s right…and so, what’s that evaporating there, like the steam off my coffee…yes, that’s right, it’s your claim to credibility.

Done. Listen to what you said, Obi, examine it. Doesn’t it sound over-familiar? Yes, that’s right…it’s surely time to change the record. Please. Pretty please? Oh, OK, have it your own way, I, for one am not going to hold my breath. 

*My words, not Obi’s…I don’t think Obi refers to Joe in these terms. Well, not in public, anyway.