- The Washington Times - Monday, October 18, 2010

When I was in the Air Force, we routinely had to practice damage control after some misguided journalist published erroneous information about our weapons-systems programs. It was embarrassing for the Air Force and created an atmosphere of distrust with the media. Politicians also have to engage in damage control on a regular basis when their constituents make inappropriate comments in public or make openly incorrect statements about their party, administration policies or their political candidates.

The Obama administration has taken the approach of using misleading proclamations regarding how to “fix” the damage created by the previous administration in order to promote their latest spending initiative, only to put the country in a precarious position, where we now have a nearly $1.3 trillion deficit and are more than $13 trillion in debt that will require a monumental damage-control effort. There is no quick solution, and it will take years or possibly decades to recover,but the first step is to do no further harm, to paraphrase the Hippocratic Oath.

I suspect the Obama administration has little or no intent to live up to this advice, as evidenced by its ongoing efforts to spend even more of our tax dollars to continue the “fix.” There is talk of yet another stimulus bill, and cap-and-trade and other spending initiatives are waiting in the wings at the White House.

It is up to the citizenry of the country to take action to control the damage by voting out the rascals who have created this mess. In two weeks, we can start this process and begin to correct fundamentally the errors of the past two years. I hope we Americans don’t squander the opportunity, only to ask ourselves two years down the road why we didn’t do something proactive to turn back the misguided tide of President Obama’s “fundamental change” tsunami. The time for real change that employs comprehensive damage control of the current “fixes” begins in earnest at the polls next month.

LT. COL. ROB WEINHOLD

U.S. Air Force, retired

Dale City, Va.