A British politician once noted, “A lie can be halfway round the world before the truth has got its boots on.” He could have been talking about President Obama’s latest whopper.
Unlike so many others, this presidential prevarication isn’t limited to a single anecdote or speech. This one runs to more than 2,000 pages and weighs a reported 10 pounds.
It’s Obama’s $3.8 trillion budget and it is to truth what night is to day. To call it a “campaign document,” as Republicans have, doesn’t do it justice. Ditto for calling it a “wish list,” as reporters have.
It is a fraud, a scam, a wooden nickel, pure and unadulterated flimflam.
As such, it neatly captures the moral bankruptcy of Obama’s presidency. Trapped by the failure of his policies and the laws of economics and politics, he inadvertently reveals that he is serious about nothing except re-election.
Acting like a candidate running in a party primary instead of a president with a duty to govern, he glues reams of fictional numbers to the fantasies of a community organizer. Presto — he’s a man with a vision of utopia he can read from a TelePrompter.
To judge by his claims, he has adopted the credo that the end — four more years — justifies the means. Those means include a willingness to say anything that serves him. Freed from duty and facts, he submits his concoction to Congress as an official document under presidential seal.
The outrage is . . . where? In the fourth year of this national error, deviancy has been defined down so far that a monstrous dereliction of the basic duty to make a budget is met with a shrug of the shoulders. Apparently, we no longer expect any better from him.
This plan will get the same number of votes Obama’s last budget got in the Senate. That one was defeated 97-0. So the stalemate will continue and he will compound the lie by pretending it’s not his fault.
It has now been more than 1,000 days since Democrats, who hold a Senate majority, which is all they need for budget measures, adopted one. And Majority Leader Harry Reid, perhaps to spare the president from another embarrassment, refuses the simple formality of a vote this time.
“We do not need to bring a budget to the floor this year,” he said, declining to offer even backhanded praise for Obama’s presentation. Reid knows he couldn’t muster more than a handful of votes for this hoax.
Conscience won’t allow most Dems to decimate the military, as Obama proposes. Nor will they follow him in refusing to recognize the debt and deficit as mortal threats to the nation.
Even party dead-enders aren’t in the mood to raise taxes on virtually every worker for yet another round of “stimulus.” They know rancid pork when they smell it and most aren’t interested in risking their careers to endorse it. With Athens burning, few want to follow the Greek model of economics.
It is tempting, then, to see a silver lining, to believe that Obama has had his turn and that his vision for America is now so exposed as a delusion that it and he will be swept aside.
But to judge from the polls, that is far too optimistic. Facts don’t always prevail and truth is often slow to get its boots on.
Besides, America is scared, and for all the country’s cynicism about Washington, lies from the Oval Office still can fool nearly half the people. Sometimes, the bigger they are, the harder they are to recognize.
Michael Goodwin is a Fox News contributor and New York Post columnist.