Although most sensible folks know that football is vastly superior to watching public service announcements, particularly in my circles, tonight found us taking a break and watching President Obama on 60 Minutes.
I had an absolute epiphany when a friend of mine remarked that Obama always comes off like a calm, rational, centrist kind of guy as he watched the program. Now I've given a few interviews in my day and I forget that most normal Americans fall for the deceptive practice of TV "interviews" as they are presented to us. This is how it really works.
The President is given a list of questions well in advance of the taping of the show, perhaps weeks or months. The President has something short of an eternity to review the questions, reject some, accept some, run them by advisers, spouses, or his crazy aunt and formulate an intelligent response.
In what amounts to "rehearsed testimony" the interviewer then asks those agreed upon questions. The President then pretends to ponder a moment, reflects with eyes slightly askew, and then utters his response as though he has no idea what question might come next. This then gets edited and formatted into a TV program. It ain't reality TV, trust me.
That bullshit then gets presented to us.
And knowing all of that, I watched the 60 Minutes interview anyway. It makes for good comedy. Obama just doesn't get it. Even after all of that rehearsal time, he just doesn't get it. He is either dense or he has some undisclosed agenda. In a nutshell...
The American people were taken to the cleaners. They watched as their home values got chopped in half, their 401ks turned into 101ks, and their children came home to live. They lost their jobs. Their health care costs went parabolic. We got a ridiculous health care bill that nobody in Congress bothered reading (and who could, all 2500 pages) and that most importantly- the consumers, the people using and paying for the system were left completely in the dark. Abandoned. Not important enough to participate in the process but expected to pay for it.
There has been no social justice. Not one fraudulent banker charged. The American people know we have a structural problem Mr. Obama. You can't pay down 15 trillion in debt when your government has allowed millions of jobs to flow overseas. When government allows GE to pay 5 billion in taxes on 637 billion on revenue, why are you squeezing us for chump change? Private companies earning money off shore and keeping it there- nearly a trillion- because to bring it stateside means they can't dodge US taxes.
The structural problems we face are dire. Those issues are going to take HARDCORE ACTION to resolve. Tremendous courage. Real hope and change, tangible efforts. The problem, President Obama, is that quite simply you are a hollow suit. A talker, a teacher. You are not misunderstood. We understand completely. You have no personal courage and no plan. And the middle class is tired of hearing you talk. They are the ones feeling the pain. This is not partisan politics. This effects ALL of us.
Lead, follow, or get the hell out of the way. We have heard enough rhetoric. You don't build a skyscraper by talking and discussing about how to build a skyscraper. Words are cheap. Shut up and go to work.
I'd love to do a real TV interview, not one of those scripted town hall meetings or rehearsed public service announcements by CBS. Next time, I think I'll just watch the football highlights.