The ongoing debt ceiling debate reminds me of a Spanish television novela, a mini-soap opera replete with characters fresh from the William Shatner School of Overacting. President Obama goes on 60 Minutes and won’t rule out the possibility that senior citizens may not receive Social Security checks. Last week his Minister of Truth, Jay Carney, said the President has not made any spending priority decisions, leaving open the possibility that servicemembers and veterans may not receive paychecks and disability compensation.
Such pronouncements (or lack of reassurances) not only demonstrate cowardice and an absence of leadership, they may suggest to a potential enemy that we are not going to fund a strong military, a situation fraught with dangerous potential. The mere fact that Obama failed to assure the military that it would get paid is a despicable action by a Commander-in-Chief, one that has already fostered low morale among the troops. This damage cannot be undone, and no matter what happens with paychecks, the fact that Obama did not prioritize troop pay will not be forgotten.
Once again, I’m reminded why a man with zero credentials should never have become President. I can help our Non-Decider-in-Chief make some spending priority decisions, and I won’t threaten seniors, servicemembers, and vets along the way. Before there’s any talk about gutting these vital programs, there are plenty of other things taxpayers are gouged to fund that should be considered for cuts. Here’s a partial list of my most un-favorite things that need to be defunded:
- Planned Parenthood
- National Endowment for the Arts
- National Public Radio
- The U.S. Postal Service (can’t FedEx or UPS do it better, cheaper?)
- Department of Education (a money-laundering operation at best)
- Department of Energy (it was created to break our dependence on foreign oil…how’s that working for you?)
The President missed (or did he exploit?) an opportunity to lead by not addressing spending cuts to these and hundreds of other programs and agencies. He chose instead to threaten grandparents, our brave men and women in uniform, and our veterans.
A coward exploits opportunities to lead by engaging in demagoguery designed to frighten people into supporting him. A coward lies to the American people by saying that 80% of citizens support his desire to raise taxes as a solution to the debt crisis. This sort of Jedi mind control trick may work with a few die-hard sycophants, but not with the majority of Americans who have seen through the shallow veneer of Barack Obama. “These are the tax hikes you’ve been looking for,” just won’t make most Americans rush to his side.
Real leaders rise above petty party politics and reassure the American people that their lives will not be disrupted as the machine of government grinds its gears and debates heavy issues like the debt ceiling. Real leaders take care of seniors, soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and veterans. Real leaders signal to our adversaries that no matter what political issues simmer on the domestic front, that we are a United States of America and we will always have a military force with high morale and esprit de corps ready and capable of destroying any threat we face. If only we had a real leader in the Oval Office…
Mike Angley is an award-winning thriller author. He is a retired USAF Colonel and 25-year career Special Agent with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI). Follow him on Twitter: @MikeAngley, FaceBook: http://www.facebook.com/mike.angley, and visit his website: www.mikeangley.com.