By Dr. Robert Owens
Extortion, intimidation, and scams: these are the tactics of thugs. On the streets of Chicago there are neighborhoods where the police won't enter after dark. Gangs of thugs rule the night protecting the neighborhood or engaging in what the police in other places quaintly call extortion, intimidation and other activities common to organized crime.
The difference between the clique that has captured power in the United States and an organized crime family lies more in the magnitude of their scams and the legalized cover which gives them impunity than any other standard. The generational theft and constitutional subversion that the Obama administration and Congress commit on a daily basis is no more morally defensible than the shakedowns and extortions of a local street gang or other community organizers on the Southside of Chicago.
Thugs use intimidation. A liberal application of "Do this or I'll do that," as a means of forcing innocent people, seen merely as sheep to be fleeced, into doing what they want. The examples of the Obama Administration's thuggishness abound and are as close as the headlines.
The legal limit of liability for oil spills had been set at $75 million unless gross negligence has been proven. So far nothing has been proven, yet using his tried and true tactic of a bashing with the club of a compliant media and a short meeting behind closed doors President Obama was able to shakedown BP for 20 Billion. Of course, where the 20 billion is and who gets it are items to be filled in later.
The list of beat downs goes on: GM and Chrysler bond holders were pushed into accepting a surrender of their first position so that the companies could be given to the unions and the government. Solvent banks were forced to take TARP money so that consumers would not be able to identify the insolvent banks. After passing a law which mandates who they must insure and for what they must insure them, insurance companies are being pressured not to raise rates to cover their rising expenses and liabilities by the personal intervention of the president. After the BP spill the Obama administration took the opportunity to shut down all American drilling in the Gulf while they lend money and seek to give tax breaks to foreigners to do the same thing. When a federal judge declared the Obama ban on drilling in the Gulf is unconstitutional the Secretary of the Interior announces he's going to reissue the ban any way abrogating the rule of law.
This highlights the style and tone of our current leadership crew but what's the goal? Is it personal aggrandizement? Is it systemic change? President Obama has stated that his administration would fundamentally transform America. He has said that he sees himself as a transformative president.
Joining the New Deal, the Great Society, and the Reagan Revolution as a game-changer in American history, the Obama administration's Progressive transformation of America has passed more major legislation in less than two years than many administrations do in two terms. Building upon TARP, the parting present from the Progressive Bush, President Obama lost no time beginning a spending binge that soon added as much to the deficit as every president from Washington to Ragan.
Within months of assuming power the stimulus bill, the largest spending bill in American History was rammed through a compliant Congress. Its ostensible purpose was to end the recession but which was also meant to take over such diverse things as educational lending and medical records. In the meantime, as the Recession rolls on, the non-stimulating stimulus bill now acts as an election aid for Democrats.
The next shakedown came in the form of an overhaul of the health care industry. This was promoted as the only way to stabilize premiums and insure the mysterious millions the Progressive media tells us are uninsured. Of course now premiums are going through the roof because of the government take-over and according to the Congressional Budget Office the uninsured still will not be insured.
Then came the takeover of the financial industry as a way to save the financial industry. With Senator Dodd adding his, "No one will know until this is actually in place how it works" to Pelosi's infamous "We Need to Pass Health Care Bill to Find Out What's In It." The arrogance of the thugs adds insult to the injuries caused.
Before the electorate have a chance to "throw the bums out" and show them the door in December look for the Cap-N-Tax scam, the card-check unionization bill, net neutrality, open Internet or whatever they want to call a government speed limit on the information super highway, and import-a-voter immigration reform. If these can't be done legislatively in a lame-duck session before the one-party rubber-stamp leaves town look for a New Year's present in the form of executive orders or bureaucratic regulation as the vehicle for the change no one hopes for anymore.
These major Progressive goals, both achieved and potential, move the United States from a society based upon free enterprise and personal liberty solidly into the world of the socialist cradle-to-grave welfare state. The only question remaining is will our leaders move from political readjustment to social realignment as America staggers like a battered spouse looking for a shelter in the thugocracy of Chicago's 51st Ward.
Dr. Robert Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College and History for the American Public University System. © 2010 Robert R. Owens email@example.com