Memorial Day has become a time not of remembrance, as its name connotes, but just another three-day weekend, with its own plethora of sales and other examples of crass commercialism. The holiday was perhaps closer to its original meaning back when it was called Decoration Day — a name that harked back to the practice, begun in the Civil War, of decorating the graves of fallen heroes.
On this Memorial Day, it would do the nation well to rise above partisan rancor, to dispense with the petty bickering and name-calling exemplified this past week by one politician, who accused the president of acting in a manner that is nakedly political and makes voters “cynical” and “angry.”
The pol went on to observe:
We’ve got a commander-in-chief right now that has been captured by ideologues … whose principal focus at any given point in the day is trying to figure out how can he make people sufficiently cynical, sufficiently angry, sufficiently suspicious that his party can win the next election.
I hate to be blunt about it, but that’s the play. And, by the way, when I say the president has been captured, it’s because I actually want an effective, serious, patriotic, capable, sober-minded leader. And we’ve had that in the past.
So what misguided pol made these incendiary charges? None other than Barack Obama. Minor emendations were made to his petulant screed, delivered at D.C. fundraiser for congressional Democrats, the original text of which follows (courtesy of Keith Koffler of White House Dossier):
We’ve got one party in Congress right now that has been captured by ideologues whose core premise is “no” — who fundamentally believe that the problem is government; who don’t believe that we as a community, as a country have any serious role to play in giving people a hand up; whose budget reflects an interest in cutting back commitments to the most vulnerable and freeing the most powerful from any constraints; and whose principal focus at any given point in the day is trying to figure out how can they make people sufficiently cynical, sufficiently angry, sufficiently suspicious that they can win the next election.
I hate to be blunt about it, but that’s the play. And, by the way, when I say a party has been captured, it’s because I actually want an effective, serious, patriotic, capable, sober-minded Republican Party. And we’ve had that in the past.
It’s slightly laughable that Obama would have the audacity to bristle at the notion that “the problem is government” at a time when trust in government is at a 55-year low, according to a Pew poll that predates the rollout of Obamacare and the more recent and devastating Veterans Administration scandal.
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