Bottom line: He didn't do his job
By Frank Salvato
As the self-proclaimed political strategists pontificate the minutia of the many issues to be debated in this General Election cycle, it isn't hard to understand that there are so many issues to be debated; so many scandals, instances of inaction and examples of ideologically-based activism disguised as government, that we could very well run out of time debating them before any definitive case was presented to the American people about whether the current President's Administration has been a success or failure. This is an old strategy of the political Left, run out the clock. And, as the race heats up, you will see myriad examples of Progressive and Democrat operatives moving from the many topics of debate to by-product issues and arguments based on semantics.
But as the twenty- and thirty-something, green-behind-the-ears Conservative "strategists" respond to the well choreographed tactics of diversion executed at the hands of David Axelrod, David Plouffe, Valerie Jarrett and the "smirk crew," with what they believe are witty and potent retorts, I put it to you that the case for this administration's dismissal is easy to make if one adheres to the K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid) strategy for political gamesmanship.
The question to be focused on is not whether Mr. Obama kept any campaign promises or not. That question is easily answered by conferring with his base supporter special interest groups. Ask the Latino voters if he fulfilled his promise to establish comprehensive immigration reform. Ask the members of the anti-war movement if Mr. Obama has increased or decreased the number of theaters of engagement during his tenure. And ask all the peoples of the nation if Mr. Obama has united or divided us, given that he promised to be "a uniter" and "a post-racial president." No, it is easy to see that Mr. Obama didn't keep many – or any – of his campaign promises. In fact, given that Progressives Chicago politicians will say and do anything to attain power, I'd say there is a pretty good chance he never really meant to keep those promises anyway.
No, the question that must be asked or, rather, the evaluation that must be conducted, is more like the evaluations that each of us must undergo by our supervisors and employers once a year. It is based on job performance.
The Executive Branch of the US Government, by mandate of the US Constitution – for you Progressives, that's akin to an iPad's user manual, it explains how things are done, what can be done, what can't be done and what you must do to make it operate properly – is charged with the administration of government.
Article II of the United States Constitution is fairly straight forward where the duties of the president are concerned, and, quite frankly, there is very little, if any, that has to do with anything but administering the federal government and executing the laws passed by Congress and signed into law:
So, as you can see (and perhaps to your surprise), the Framers didn't empower the President of the United States with unbridled and expandable power. His role was clear and defined, and chief among his duties was the mandate that he "shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed." This is the provision on which Mr. Obama's "evaluation" should be centered.
That understood, Mr. Obama is responsible and answerable for the performance of every agency, board, commission and department – and every employee and appointee to those entities – established under the Executive Branch. And just like we are held accountable by our employers and supervisors for our decisions, actions and inactions, so, too, should the American people hold Mr. Obama accountable and responsible for his decisions, appointments, actions and inactions, and those of his underlings.
Almost out of the box, Mr. Obama's nominee to the post of Attorney General, Eric Holder, began to further politicize a Department of Justice that was politically tainted by career mid-level appointments under the Clinton Administration. Many of the same players – players who could not be terminated with the end of the Clinton presidency because of absurd Civil Service restrictions – were elevated to positions where their political and ideological allegiances would be detrimental to the faithful execution of justice for all, regardless of race, religion or sex.
Career Justice Department employees executed the will of ideologically Progressive appointees in refusing to pursue the appropriate punishment of New Black Panther operatives who were caught on videotape blatantly intimidating voters at a Philadelphia polling place during the 2008 General Election. In the aftermath of this, DoJ whistleblower J. Christian Adams provided evidence that the policy under the Holder regime would not see the prosecution of Black perpetrators of racial discrimination.
On the topic of the New Black Panthers and the Holder Justice Department, no action – none – was taken against the New Black Panther operatives who openly declared a $10,000 bounty, with a "dead or alive" precursor, for the half-Latino suspect in the Trayvon Martin shooting, George Zimmerman. The DoJ did, however, send "Peacemakers" to help quell the murderous cries of a racially enflamed mob of racist vigilantes. They helped to "defuse" the situation by assisting the "civil rights" leaders in better organizing the crowds, even arranging for a police escort for their march to demand "justice," even as Mr. Zimmerman remained in custody.
Again, addressing the performance of the Holder Justice Department, we find unsatisfactory results and some dead US federal agents in the Fast & Furious scandal, including the purposeful withholding of information and evidence by not only underlings but the Attorney General himself, from the authority of a Congressional subpoena.
And, yet again, Holder and the DoJ abuse their charge to affect equal justice under the law (for you Progressives out there that means the Constitution, as well as enacted legislation found to be actually constitutional) in their aggressive pursuit of judicial action against several States for their audacity to want to secure their citizens from cross-border violence at the hands of illegal aliens and their sassiness in wanting to secure the vote for citizens by expunging the influence of foreign usurpers.
Then we have the financially gluttonous acts of the Government Services Administration, the entity charged with making sure that taxpayer dollars are actually used wisely in the day-to-day- execution of federal government for the people. In evaluating this charge of Mr. Obama's, we find literally no "parental supervision" whatsoever. In item after item presented to the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee and the House Transportation Subcommittee, accounts of lavish conferences and non-governmental employee travel and procurement stunned even the most seasoned inside the beltway operatives. In a rare moment of congressional comity, both Democrats and Republicans were outraged. To paraphrase an old Jimmy Buffett song, GSA Administrator Jeffrey Neely was not only acting like a "gypsy in the palace," he was acting as King of the Gypsies. And I apologize to all the Gypsies for the comparison...that was offensive.
The US Labor Department, under union operative Hilda Solis, has done less in the way of creating a fertile ground for businesses and entrepreneurship to thrive in the United States than it has for securing the talons of organized labor to the throat of the American business. All one has to do is to gaze upon the posters that Ms. Solis wanted to hang all over the halls of the Labor Department building to see that her alliances lay with organized labor and union members – only – completely ignoring any purpose her office may hold to act on behalf of all Americans in a labor force that today has almost 2 million less jobs than when Mr. Obama took office.
Then we have the Department of Energy and Energy Secretary Steven Chu, who once opined during congressional testimony that the Obama Administration's main energy goal was not to create an atmosphere conducive to low energy prices but to forcibly transform the energy habits of Americans to embrace fledgling (and still inefficient) green energy methods. Mr. Chu and his "green berets" (my apologies to the real and honorable Green Berets of the US military) were squarely at the helm for the Solyndra debacle as well as several other green energy failures subsidized by the Obama Administration via our tax dollars (now that's what I call energy speculation!).
I could go on and on:
The actions, non-actions and declarations; every enacted policy and every regulatory execution of each of these agencies, boards, commissions and departments, are the exclusive responsibility of the President of the United States, the leader of the Executive Branch, by mandate of Article II of the US Constitution.
Given that Mr. Obama has failed to fulfill an overwhelming majority of his campaign promises – including the shuttering of Gitmo, and seeing as he has presided over one of the most ineffective, scandal-ridden and failure-prone Administrations in the history of the country, we should all be asking ourselves at least three questions: 1) How effective was Mr. Obama at community organizing, since that's all he has on his resume; 2) How completely out of touch with reality are those who still believe Mr. Obama is "doing a great job"; and 3) Given his performance how could anyone consider believing his campaign rhetoric a second time.
I don't know about you, but given the fact that Mr. Obama doesn't keep his campaign promises, and since he has proven himself to be a dismal administrator, I would be inclined to give him not only an unsatisfactory evaluation, but I would be hard pressed to find any reason to keep him in my employ.
Of course, it would be entertaining to hear his excuses for the mess he's presided over...he is good – very good – at providing excuses.
Frank Salvato is the Executive Director for BasicsProject.org a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and education initiative focusing on Constitutional Literacy and the threats of Islamic jihadism and Progressive neo-Marxism. His writing has been recognized by the US House International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention. His organization, BasicsProject.org, partnered in producing the original national symposium series addressing the root causes of radical Islamist terrorism. He is a member of the International Analyst Network and has been a featured guest on al Jazeera's Listening Post and on Russia Today. He also serves as the managing editor for The New Media Journal. Mr. Salvato has appeared on The O'Reilly Factor on FOX News Channel, and was featured in the documentary, "Ezekiel and the MidEast 'Piece' Process: Israel's Neighbor States." He is the author of the series Understanding the Threat of Radical Islam, an educational pamphlet series. Mr. Salvato is a regular guest on talk radio including on The Captain's America Radio Show, nationally syndicated by the Phoenix Broadcasting and ABC Satellite Networks, catering to the US Armed Forces around the world. and is heard weekly on The Roth Show with Dr. Laurie Roth syndicated nationally on the IRN-USA Radio Network. Mr. Salvato has been interviewed on Radio Belgrade One. His opinion-editorials have been published by The American Enterprise Institute, The Washington Times, Accuracy in Media, Human Events, and are syndicated nationally. He is a featured political writer for EducationNews.org, BigGovernment.com and Examiner.com and is occasionally quoted in The Federalist. Mr. Salvato is available for public speaking engagements. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.