President Hosni Mubarack Obama (D-Chi) has decided to preempt the so-called Congressional Debt Supercommittee by announcing whatever they decide, their deficit reduction plan had better include $1.5 trillion dollars in new taxes. While declaring that his proposal “is not class warfare,” Obama also noted that “Middle-class families shouldn’t pay higher taxes than millionaires and billionaires.”
Since the President knows middle class families don’t pay higher taxes than millionaires and billionaires, the only possible reason for doing this is tactical, a ploy to put Republicans on the defensive, allowing the erstwhile Annointed One to jump start his moribund reelection campaign, enabling him to travel around the country to key battleground states, and districts too close to call, trumpeting himself as the defender of the little people against the depredations of the evil rich and their Republican henchmen.
Whether, at this critical junction in our nation’s history, when our ability to continue to function as the world’s preeminent economic power is open to question, it is wise to force fiscal responsibility to take a back seat to class warfare and what we might as well call tribal politics, it is in keeping President’s heritage.
If we take a look at the post-colonial history of Kenya, which represents the half of his heritage which Obama chooses to recognize, (except, of course, for rare references to his mother, and then only to tell lies about her death bed experiences with insurance companies), we can see similarities between Obama’s campaign tactics and those of former Kenyan President Daniel arap Moi.
Moi presided over what had long been regarded as one of Africa’s most stable and economically advanced nations. For most of his reign he managed to avoid the sort of tribal warfare which had hindered so many of his neighboring countries’ attempts to negotiate the treacherous waters of independence. However, as time passed, the people grew restive under his steadily more repressive regime, until calls for free elections became more pronounced. Faced with the potential of a popular uprising, Moi had no choice but to submit to the people’s demands.
However, he did not go quietly. He fomented tribal tensions, and fanned black African resentment against white settlers who had remained in the country following independence. As tribal and racial violence increased, Kenya’s once strong economy began to falter. By the time he was forced to leave office, following elections in 2002, Kenya was in shambles. Gray Phombeah, in a BBC report, wrote, “Mr Moi leaves his country burdened with economic mismanagement, corruption, political repression and continuing ethnic tensions. “
Robert Shaw, a Nairobi economist and journalist, wrote, “”In the last 15 years, Kenyans have become poorer and poorer. From the 1990s, economic growth and the standard of living have declined or stagnated. Moi’s government promised many things but did very little – especially in the department of good governance.”
And so the circle is closed. Another President with Kenyan roots, faced with mounting opposition to his disappointing reign, seeks to drive a wedge between his nation’s population, in a bid to retain power. What a pity that, among the many dreams from his father he could have embraced, Obama had to choose the one most likely to destroy the remaining shreds of a civil society, and to tear his country apart.