Friday, November 21, 2014

The REAL Reasons For The President's Actions

Let's talk about what's really behind the sweeping, unilateral immigration-related actions that President Obama took last night:

1) Attention: You must understand that this is a man who cannot stand not being the center of attention. The November 4 election rebuke hit him hard. Very hard. The thought that he might be irrelevant drives him crazy. He simply has to be (as Oprah Winfrey dubbed him) The One. He must be in the spotlight, center-stage, all the time. So, the announcement comes now because he desperately needs to be The Star right now. He can't stand all the attention that the congressional GOP leaders (and all those GOP Governors) have been getting of late.

2) Distraction. Obama knows he needs to change the subject. He needs to distract America (and, to whatever extent he can - The Congress) away from other issues (such as Obamacare and the keystone Pipeline) and define his own issues going forward. He wants the conversation to be about what he wants it to be about and he wants to define the debate. He can't have it any other way.

3) Division. By making this move, Obama is out to rattle the GOP. He wants to unsettle them at their moment of triumph and prevent them from setting the agenda going forward. In the process, he hopes to divide them. He wants them to begin arguing about what they must do in reaction to his moves. He's following Alinsky's Rules: Deceive, distract, divide.

4) The Endless Campaign. President Obama doesn't want to govern. He hates it. He doesn't want to have to interact with others at or near his own level, or negotiate with them, or find middle ground or do the hard, tough, day-to-day work of governing. He wants to campaign. At heart, he's nothing more than a propagandist. He wants to stir people up. He knows he desperately needs to re-energize what's left of his base -- if he can. Campaigning keeps him out of Washington (a place he hates), prevents him from having to interact with other public officials (most of who he detests) and puts him in front of carefully-chosen, demographically-correct, attentive, agreeable audiences. That's what he wants and needs in order to survive in a world of his own creation.

5) Chaos. For Obama and his minions crisis and chaos are the route to control. In fact, it's impossible to make the sort of sweeping, revolutionary changes that Obama wants to make unless the nation is in a state of chaos and/or crisis. This, too is Alinskyesque. So, if it's chaos that Obama needs to survive, then it's chaos he will create.

What should the Republicans do in the face of all this?
Well, first of all they should not be rattled. They should not be goaded. After all, they have nothing to prove. They've already proved their point. They've shown the Emperor is wearing no clothes. They've given him a good thumping. And now, the crown adorns a hollow shell of a leader.
Yes, it's fine to launch constitutional challenges to these actions. And strategic budgetary actions or other creative approaches may be in order.
But following the road of impeachment or attempting other such drastic measures (like shutting down the government) would turn the president into a martyr and he'd like nothing more than that. In fact, he'd welcome that as the final chapter of his reign.
The GOP leadership should be calm, firm and knowingly in command. And they need to stand united as well. When the nation's leader is acting like a petulant child it falls upon the adults in the room to quietly and firmly act in unison, charting their course and assuming the upper hand.
What Americans want and needs now is reasoned, responsible leadership. That's what the GOP should deliver.

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