No, Really. Obama, Worst President Ever.
It’s all over the hate radio and Fox-TV circuit. Obama is the worst President ever.
Talk-show hosts promote it. Hate radio announces it. Cheney emerged from an undisclosed location to proclaim it.
Cheney must have forgotten the crimes and misdemeanors of his own Administration. Not just the war-making kind, but also the moral kind and especially the economic kind, where a handful of Cheney-Bush cohorts made mincemeat out of our economy, and rotten hamburger of the global one.
Obama, worst President ever.
Why has the far right gone after Obama with such intensity? It could be, in part, the deep threads of racism that are stitched into the souls of ultra-conservative America.
Or, it could be because it works.
The Big Lie has for many years floated around the right-wing firmament, with examples that have won elections and caused cataclysmic political reversals, such as weapons of mass destruction that didn't exist.
Recent examples include character assassination, as in the Swift Boating of John Kerry; Obama’s religion, heritage and citizenship; and Hilary Clinton’s Rosewater law-firm scandal.
All of them were proven lies that were effective for a while but that exacted a terrible toll on Republican credibility and the body politic.
Gay marriage was never a Democratic issue before the Republicans made it up during the Kerry-Bush campaign.
Until then, not a single bill to legalize gay marriage was ever introduced in Congress, nor could I find a single bill or initiative in any state legislature to legalize it. In the years leading up to the Republican attack, even Paul Wellstone opposed it.
Gay marriage was a campaign issue utterly manufactured by Rove and the Bush White House. It was contrived to frighten voters, then spoon-fed to Republican governors, who began mouthing the talking points to their electorates.
Several hundred thousand fence-sitting, ticket-splitting Ohioans voted against their own economic best interests to defeat Kerry in Ohio and with it, a Democratic Presidency.
But politics is a great equalizer.
While the Republicans were celebrating, alarmed and outraged pro-equality groups around the United States coalesced.
What happened in the years since has been nothing short of breathtaking.
While state houses were hastily ramming through state constitutional amendments to preserve traditional marriage, a counter flow began rushing in another direction.
Rove and Company were too clever by half. Their perverse strategy holds that the path to winning is to identify opponents' greatest strengths and then, through money and manipulation, gradually erode them with innuendo and outright lies to produce a false impression. Thus, Kerry was a coward— not a hero — in Vietnam.
Character assassination might work in the short term, but the public isn’t stupid. Eventually people figure out what is going on and respond by punishing the perpetrators.
Since the Right drew a frame around love and matrimony and painted the canvas with only one man and one woman, nearly 40 states have legalized marriage equality, all since Rove and company awakened a sleeping giant with a lie.
And that's why Obama, the worst President ever, has a chance to vindicate himself as the most impactful President since Reagan; and as one of the greatest producers of lasting public policy, despite the straight-faced lies of his greatest detractors.