In our Liberty Update commentary last week, we noted the many failures of Barack Obama as president…
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Stat of the Day: Terrible Deterioration of Race Relations Under Obama

In our Liberty Update commentary last week, we noted the many failures of Barack Obama as president over the past eight years.  Today, as the nation celebrates Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a Washington Post-ABC News survey shows just how disastrously race relations have declined under his watch:

In a recent Washington Post-ABC News poll, 63 percent of Americans think race relations are 'generally bad.' Shortly after Obama took office, that number was 22 percent. In the same time period, those who think race relations are 'generally good' plummeted from 66 percent to 32 percent." Of his failures and disastrous legacy, this may be the most depressing.…[more]

January 16, 2017 • 02:13 pm

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MLK, Obama, Biden and the Miniaturization of Language Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, August 29 2013
Today, however, we face a crisis of leadership.

“WE hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness…” 

-The Declaration of Independence, 1776 

“I still have a dream…  It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream…  I have a dream that one day, this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed:  ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’” 

-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 1963 

Fifty years ago this week, Dr. King gave one of human history’s most spellbinding and immortal orations from the Lincoln Memorial. 

One hundred years earlier, President Abraham Lincoln delivered a similarly timeless speech, the Gettysburg Address. 

The profundity of both speeches derives primarily from the nature of their appeal.  They did not announce novel or controversial concepts, but instead called upon the basic, founding principle of the United States of America itself.  Like King in 1963, Lincoln in 1863 explicitly and purposefully cited the Declaration of Independence in his opening sentence:  “Four score and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” 

The power of their words, the potency of their ideas, owed to the enduring American principles from which they derived.  After all, Lincoln or King could have just as easily chosen to trumpet more novel or controversial principles, or other political orders such as those embodied in the French Revolution or the Russian Revolution.  Many alternatives to our own founding principles exist.  But only ours have resulted in this most prosperous, most powerful, most enduring political system on Earth. 

Today, however, we face a crisis of leadership.  That crisis stems in large part from the fact that our current President and Vice President embrace revolutionary principles rather than America’s foundational principles, and degrade the meaning of words on a constant basis. 

For his part, Barack Obama telegraphed his avant-garde predisposition in 2001 when he lamented the Constitution’s framework and sought, in his words, “redistributive change”: 

“The Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth and sort of more basic issues of political and economic justice in this society.  And to that extent, as radical as I think people tried to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical.  It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it’s been interpreted, and the Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally, the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties.  It says what the states can’t do to you, says what the federal government can’t do to you, but it doesn’t say what the federal government or the state government must do on your behalf.  And that hasn’t shifted one of the, I think, tragedies of the Civil Rights movement was, umm, because the Civil Rights movement became so court-focused I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalition of powers through which you bring about redistributive change.” 

Whereas King and Lincoln sought fidelity to America’s founding principles, Obama considered them tragic. 

Since that time, we have witnessed innumerable instances in which Obama and Vice President Joe Biden discarded solemn pronouncements like refuse.  Obama assured us that he would cut our deficit in half by the end of his first term.  He proceeded to triple it.  He promised to close Guantanamo Bay by January 2010.  It remains open (and rightfully so). 

As a candidate in 2007, Obama unequivocally stated that a President must consult Congress before initiating military action:  “The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.” 

Then-Senator Biden, not to be outdone, said the same year that, “The President has no authority to unilaterally attack Iran, and if he does, as Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, I will move to impeach.”  Never mind that the House, not the Senate, would be the body to impeach. 

Today, Obama and Biden signaled intent to attack Syria in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation. 

The irony is that Obama’s rhetorical manner vaulted him into the national limelight.  Unfortunately, today it largely explains his alarmingly declining stature, and America’s. 

Question of the Week   
Since 1950, which one of the following U.S. Presidents has appointed the greatest number of Justices to the U.S. Supreme Court?
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Quote of the Day   
 
"The Clinton Foundation has confirmed that it always was what we and many others said it was.Its latest tax filing declared that the Clinton Global Initiative is closing its offices and sacking 22 staff. This comes amid reports that donations dried up after Hillary Clinton lost the election November 8. It was always obvious that the Clinton Foundation was not simply a charity. As Hillary's opponents…[more]
 
 
—The Editors, Washington Examiner
— The Editors, Washington Examiner
 
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Has President-elect Trump sufficiently distanced himself from his numerous international business holdings to eliminate reasonable conflict-of-interest concerns?