It has taken three decades, but Americans are finally living through Jimmy Carter's second term.
Now we've got Jimmy Jr. barking at us from the White House about eating our peas and ripping off our Band-Aid. He might not even let us have our Social Security checks.
These are just the latest in a long line of nagging lectures. Already, we have been taught how we should sneeze into the crook of our arm. We need to drive less. And we need to caulk up those drafty houses of ours.
What ever happened to the soaring rhetoric and big bold ideas President Obama promised us in that historic election of his?
Is this what he meant by a new kind of politics? If so, no thanks. Oh, and it is not new. Jimmy already dragged us through all this once and we just barely survived it.
One of the most unpleasant things about Mr. Carter was the condescending disdain he could barely disguise for struggling Americans and their irritating malaise.
Increasingly, Jimmy Jr. is having difficulty concealing that very same disdain for us as the political winds around him turn hostile and all of his bright ideas lie fallow as nothing more than socialist hocus-pocus.
But even Mr. Carter never laid bare so baldly and plainly as Mr. Obama did earlier this week his deep-seated contempt for this whole annoying process we call "democracy."
The problem with reaching a deal to raise the debt ceiling, he explained in a long sermon, is that there is this huge wave of Republicans who won control of the House in the last election by promising not to raise any more taxes and to cut the absurd overspending that has driven this town for decades.
He bemoaned — in public — that these Republicans are more concerned about the "next election" rather than doing "what's right for the country." In other words, he is saying the honorable thing would be for these Republicans to ignore the expressed wishes of voters, break their campaign promises and raise taxes. Wow.
As if the whole problem of Washington spending us into oblivion is the fault of stingy taxpayers and stupid voters. And what we really need is Jimmy Jr., who knows what is best for us despite what we may think.
Continuing his lecture, Mr. Obama then complained about America's "political process, where folks are rewarded for saying irresponsible things to win elections."
How did this man get past sixth-grade social studies, much less Iowa?
When Mr. Obama finished his sermon about the contemptible Republicans keeping faith with their voters like a bunch of chumps, he then turned to his own intentions — and revealed even more of his contempt for us.
All this talk about "raising revenue" — the deceitful line he uses to describe raising taxes — has been most unhelpful, he said. "I want to be crystal clear," he said. "Nobody has talked about increasing taxes now. Nobody has talked about increasing taxes next year."
So when would these tax hikes that he is demanding take effect?
In 2013, well after Mr. Obama must face voters for re-election.
Lucky for us, it appears more and more unlikely every day that we will have to suffer through a third term of Jimmy Carter's.
• Charles Hurt's column appears Wednesdays. He can be reached at email@example.com.