Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What Happened . . . And What Does It Mean?

In the Blog of November 4th, below, I wrote that "Soon, I will explore two related questions: (1) what made possible this insane choice of Barack Obama to be President of the United States, and (2) what the implications are of what made his election possible.

The answer to question (1) is by now obvious. Indeed, by now almost every electronic, print and broadcast pundit has weighed in with opinion, fact and analysis identifying why Obama won and McCain lost.

The pundits have written about Bush-fatigue, Iraq-weariness, economic meltdown, disaffected conservatives, Sarah Palin--all of which, and much more, contributed to the Democrat winning and the Republican losing.

But for the moment, I want to focus on what I call the "Four-Ms" of Obama's victory: Money, Media, Message, Magnetism.

Obama had much more money than McCain, which allowed the President-elect to hire an Internet-savvy, creative-thinking, hard-working organization and to purchase an enormous amount of exposure on television and elsewhere.

Obama had the Old Media in his pocket, which provided him with considerably more, and far more favorable, press than that afforded McCain.

Obama had a message as neatly tailored as a Saville Row suit--sometimes carefully specific, othertimes deliberately opaque. McCain's was usually muddled, often contradictory, soaked in bromides, and never wholly conservative.

Obama had a primary and general election campaign whose magnetism more resembled a Grateful Dead rock tour than a presidential contest, while McCain's effort reprised typical Republican rallys.

These four "Ms," more than anything else, are what elected essentially a nobody to the presidency of the United States.

But the more important, indeed the more fundamental, question is what are the four Ms' implications.

What does it imply that Obama had so much more money than McCain, that Obama had the Old Media in his pocket, that Obama successfully manipulated his message, that Obama was able to conduct a rock band tour posing as a presidential election?

The answer to these questions tells us a lot about where America is headed, certainly for the next four or eight years and perhaps far beyond that.

Money. Given how much money Obama was raising, it should have been clear that he would repudiate his promise to McCain and accept only public funding for his campaign. And repudiate it he did.

The implications of how Obama raised hundreds of millions of dollars are of great concern to those of us who believe in a two-party political system.

Here's why.

According to CBS News, Obama now has an e-mail database of more than 10 million supporters, at least 3.1 million of whom contributed money to his campaign. "Millions more made up the volunteer corps that organized his enormous rallies, registered millions of voters and held countless gatherings to plug the senator to friends and neighbors. On election day, they served as the backbone of Obama's get-out-the-vote operation . . . ."

But that's history.

What's not is that Obama is now in a position to use that database as a means of communicating with voters directly, thus avoiding the media entirely. The millions of names could be used not only for four more years of "Reelect Obama" fundraising, but also to communcate with Obama's legion of supporters and enlist them in a multitude of activities--from leaning on Congressmen opposing a favored bill, to taking to the streets in protest against the President's enemies, to inundating a newspaper with op-ed articles and letters-to-the-editor.

Media. That the Old Media was on board the Obama express is not news. The question is why, and what are the implications.

The why is no secret: Virtually all the white collar members of the media are liberals, many of them products of the Sixties and many of them aching to prove they weren't racists.

If--perhaps a more apt word is when--the Democrat President and Democrat Congress resurrect the "Fairness Doctrine," what will be left is the Internet (which could be heavily regulated by "user fees") and the Old Media. For the same reasons they so openly and shamelessly promoted Obama's candidacy, and because they'll never admit they were wrong (see the Dan Rather/George Bush scandal), the Old Media will continue to swoon over his programs and cover up his mistakes and wrongdoing.

Message. No one should have to be reminded about the substance of the part of Obama's message he deigned to reveal. Then, of course, there was what he did not reveal.

The implications of why Obama kept much of his program obscure are frightening. Two examples will suffice.

Barack Obama is at the least a socialist, at worst a Marxist, as his background, associates, writing and speeches leave no doubt. His unscripted, spontaneous "spread the wealth around" comment to Joe-the-Plumber was merely a brief glimpse into Obama's utterly collectivist-statist mindset. Behind that comment lies years of Obama's indoctrination into, and practice of, Socialist/Marxist principles, conduct as dangerous to American democracy as was the incipient National Socialism of Germany in the 1920s.

Now that Obama is free of the campaign's restraints, the implications of his real message will be translated into federal legislation and judicial appointments. Once that happens, while post-Obama in 2013 or 2017 some of the legislation could, in theory at least, be unwound, the federal judges he and the Democrat Senate will appoint during the intervening years have their jobs for life. (Pray for Justice Anthony Kennedy, of all people, to live at least another four years!).

Magnetism. Even Obama's most critical opponents recognize that he was perceived by tens of millions of voters, including virtually every Negro in the United States, as the Farrakhan-anointed political Messiah.

Apparently being comfortable with that status, Obama himself and his campaign played it for all it was worth: his acceptance speech in a sports stadium-as-Greek-temple, his phony seal of the President-of-the-United-States-to-be, his standing alone before an uncountably large audience for his victory speech. It is understatement to say that Barack Obama has successfully manufactured a cult of personality which reminds one of the early years of men who later became some of the worst tyrants in history: Hitler, Mussolini, Castro, Mao, Pol Pot.

Let's be clear about what I'm saying. It's not that Obama is like those despots. Nor is it that Obama will become like them.

I am saying that a cult of personality, at any level of political power, is a dangerous thing and that some of the worst cults of personality in history have resulted in the death of literally countless millions of innocent human beings.

If Obama persists in fostering and growing his Massiah-like persona, he will become more and more immune to reason and accountability.

President Obama's ability to raise perhaps $1 billion for his 20012 election, his power to reach electronically into every nook and cranny of the United States, his adulation by the Old Media and neutering of the New Media, his devious and oft-shrouded programs, and his Messiah-like personification among millions and millions of adoring acolytes are legitimate and undeniable implications from who he seems to be and what he has already done.

They do not portend well for our Republic--or its volk.

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