Is it Stupidity, Greed or Malice? Does it matter? (updated)

Given the current state of affairs in America, the following would have been a credible exchange between Ed and Johnny during Carson’s opening monologue on the “Tonight Show”:

“Well, Johnny, just how bad is it?”

“It’s soooo bad, Ed, that they’re giving 50% discounts at Salvation Army Thrift Stores.”

However, this is not a joke, but an instance of life imitating art. The Salvation Army must also be feeling the need to bolster the Social Security system by offering discounts to those over sixty. But such is not the worst of what we face as a nation.

Yesterday, I had dinner with an independent business owner who happens to also be a former Airborne Ranger with combat experience. During the course of our conversation he expressed a sentiment very similar to one that has been growing within me when he said, “All my life I felt that America was an exceptional country. I don’t feel that way anymore.” And thus was confirmed my gnawing fear that, this time, “declinism” wasn’t just a recurring theme in America’s ongoing and ever boisterous political debate. Americans are losing faith in the country while having already lost faith in most of our leaders and many of our institutions.

The following, while cute and entertaining, is only one of the many pokes-in-the-eye of Obama that daily wash-in over my internet transom (with apologies to the Man in Black):

Yes, that will certainly get the President to change his ways and corral those liberal fools jooz who are running the country.

Time to get serious, Folks. Obama’s a symptom, not the cause, of our travails. And, protestations of Islamists to the contrary notwithstanding, Jews are the very least of our problems.

Most Americans, and I’m no exception, need a long, hard look in the mirror. We’ve lost our once-distinctive character that included honesty, civility and self-reliance. Getting it back won’t be easy. Though I’m not sure we’re up to the task. There are just too many pleasurable distractions pulling at us.

Twitter, anyone?

Update: From CBS News a couple of days ago. . .

Rick Perry enters presidential race with Obama broadside

CHARLESTON, S.C. and AMES, Iowa — Texas Governor Rick Perry announced his bid for the 2012 Republican nomination in South Carolina on Saturday with a speech grounded in attacks on President Obama for “downgrading” America.

“It’s time to get America working again,” Perry told 700 conservative activists packed into at Charleston hotel ballroom. “Page one of any economic plan to get American working is to give a pink slip to the current residents in the White House.”

In South Carolina, host to the nation’s third presidential primary, Perry vowed to apply what has worked in Texas during his ten years as governor to Washington – balancing the budget and cutting government spending.

“America is not broken, Washington, D.C., is broken,” Perry said.

I’m now feeling much reassured. Are you?


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