Obama selling stimulus, forgets war on terror

While President Obama is on a nationwide tour trying to sell his massive spending/entitlement program to the American people, some are now pointing out the fact that in the past 3 weeks he has done much in the way of weakening our nation’s footing with regard to the war on terror.

Point and case from the Washington Examiner:

In his uninspiring inauguration speech, President Obama told the world we would not waver in defense of our way of life, and he told the evil doers that “our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.”

That wasn’t even three weeks ago, but it seems like a different time. Since uttering that strong rhetoric, President Obama has backed away from the war on terror as fast as he can.

It started two days after Obama became the president. Obama directed the closing of the terrorist detention center in Guantanamo Bay, even though he has no clue what to do with the terrorists detained at Guantanamo.

At the two-week mark of the Obama presidency, the president was asked in a television interview why he didn’t use the phrase “war on terror.” Obama’s Carter-like naive response was to say he believes the U.S. can win over moderate Muslims if he chooses his words carefully:

“Words matter in this situation because one of the ways we’re going to win this struggle is through the battle of hearts and minds,” Obama said in an interview with CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360.”

[. . .]

“I think it is very important for us to recognize that we have a battle or a war against some terrorist organizations,” Obama said Tuesday. “But that those organizations aren’t representative of a broader Arab community, Muslim community.”

He added that he believes the U.S. can convince Muslims “that we should be working together to make sure that everybody has got a better life.”

Obama’s “choice of words” response brings to mind the just words speech Obama stole from Massachusetts Democrat Deval Patrick. I agree that words matter, but when one’s actions speak so loudly the words can’t be heard, the words matter only to mock the speaker.

Obama continues to walk away from the war on terror at a quickening pace. Two days after Obama talked to Anderson Cooper about his choice of words, Obama ordered charges dropped against the terrorist mastermind of the bombing of the USS Cole.

In meeting with families of September 11 terrorist attacks and the 17 sailors killed in the terrorist bombing of the USS Cole, Obama made it clear that he was more concerned about the prosecution of terrorists than prosecution of the war on terror:

“The previous administration was very focused on the prosecution of the war on terror and keeping America safe from future attacks. The current administration is very focused on the prosecution of the detainees of the war on terror. The important thing for America is to find the right balance of both those approaches.”

Then, even though Obama said he will send more troops to Afghanistan as he withdraws combat soldiers from the war in Iraq, today we learn Obama has put the brakes on more troops for Afghanistan. This step back comes even as military commanders continue to plead for more troops.

Instead of fully prosecuting the war on terror, President Obama has succeeded in halting the trials of terrorist detainees and is currently ramming nearly a trillion dollars in spending down the American taxpayer’s throats.

Even the left-leaning Washington Post is now admitting that at the pace Obama wants to spend the money, much will be wasted:

The Obama administration’s economic stimulus plan could end up wasting billions of dollars by attempting to spend money faster than an overburdened government acquisition system can manage and oversee it, according to documents and interviews with contracting specialists.

The $827 billion stimulus legislation under debate in Congress includes provisions aimed at ensuring oversight of the massive infusion of contracts, state grants and other measures. At the urging of the administration, those provisions call for transparency, bid competition, and new auditing resources and oversight boards.

But under the terms of the stimulus proposals, a depleted contracting workforce would be asked to spend more money more rapidly than ever before, while also improving competition and oversight. Auditors would be asked to track surges in spending on projects ranging from bridge construction and schools to research of “green” energy and the development of electronic health records — a challenge made more difficult because many contracts would be awarded by state agencies.

The stimulus plan presents a stark choice: The government can spend unprecedented amounts of money quickly in an effort to jump-start the economy or it can move more deliberately to thwart the cost overruns common to federal contracts in recent years.
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“You can’t have both,” said Eileen Norcross, a senior research fellow at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center who studied crisis spending in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. “There is no way to get around having to make a choice.”

Sounds like President Obama is having a bang up first few weeks.

Exit question: Has Obama lost credibility with regard to reckless spending since this “stimulus” bill or is he the same as Bush in this respect?

Update thoughts:

If Obama truly wanted to demonstrate leadership he would kill the pork-laden bill, chastise congress, and work with both sides for a bipartisan solution. Instead he’s giving a town hall meeting explaining why the bill must pass. Leadership is escaping Washington to go campaign for yourself more? It is like a traveling circus.

Otherwise for Obama to sit back while congress recklessly wastes taxpayer money is the same Bush and the Republicans spending us into oblivion.