Turning Off The Charm: Obama Holds Another Town Hall

President Obama held a town hall meeting in DC today. Despite sitting in front of a friendly crowd of hand-picked DC area liberals, he endured some tough, critical questioning. This woman has been all over the 'net:
“I’m one of your middle-class Americans, and quite frankly I’m exhausted. I’m exhausted of defending you, defending your administration, defending the mantle of change that I voted for, and deeply disappointed with where we are right now. I had been told that I voted for a man who said he was going to change things in a meaningful way for the middle class. I’m one of those people and I’m waiting, sir. I’m waiting. I don’t feel it yet, and I thought that — while it wouldn’t be in great measure — I would feel it in some small measure.”
That's one good reason to be a conservative, rather than an idealistic "movement" liberal, you don't sit around being disappointed by leftist politicians promising heaven on earth in exchange for your vote (it seems so easy!). Obama's response was essentially, hey, we've set up some programs that are helping you! (check it out if you don't believe me). Uh, I think she was just saying she doesn't feel like there's any help for her.

Obama's interlocutor also mentions that she has two kids in private school. So, you think, if you're struggling maybe you should take those kids out of private school and send them to the public school down the road. Ah, but she lives in DC, where the schools are a disaster, and the reform-minded mayor was just voted out of office in favor of a guy who explicitly promised to end the reforms. The teachers union, you see, was upset that teachers were losing their jobs and being held accountable. So, even though there are public schools available, they are not the sort of places that a respectable woman would willingly send her kids. And all the good liberals in DC (who knows, maybe even this woman) voted in favor of the union and against the kids. Again, if you are a conservative, you don't have to confront these sorts of internal contradictions, at least not on this level.

At another point in the town hall, the moderator asked Obama about "extending the Bush tax cuts." (actually what we are really talking about is maintaining the same tax rate after Jan. 1, when the tax rate is scheduled to rise). Obama was having none of that. You could hear the exasperation in his voice as he denounced the GOP "plan" (which has been gaining Democrat support) to "cut taxes" (maintain them at the same rate) to benefit "millionaires and billionaires" (an income of $250,000 makes you a millionaire??) who "don't spend that extra money anyway" (at least not in Obama's presence). You see, the GOP is saying to those millionaires and billionaires "we'll cut you a check for $100,000" (the government does this???) rather than give it to those more deserving. Also, (blush) Obama is one of those millionaires who would benefit (please, no applause) but he would rather argue against his own economic interests (you're welcome).

As God is my witness, that is what he said. I don't know whether Obama is stupid or if he thinks his supporters are stupid and that is the only way to motivate them. Either way, the political discourse went down a notch.

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