- - Tuesday, May 27, 2014

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

According to my copy of “The Audacity of Hope,” Barack Obama is deeply disturbed by “income inequality,” access to health care for poor people and having U.S. troops on aimless missions abroad.

If only he could be in charge, he would fix these things.


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Oh, and he also really doesn’t like all the nasty partisan squabbling among politicians in Washington. That needs to be fixed, too.

“The distribution of wealth is even more skewed, and levels of inequality are now higher than at any time since the Gilded Age,” then-Sen. Obama lamented in his 2006 book.

He flayed former President Ronald Reagan, whose “domestic policies tilted heavily toward economic elites, with corporate raiders making tidy profits throughout the eighties while unions were busted and the income for the average working stiff flatlined.”


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If only HE could become president.

Today, these problems are even worse.

The median pay package for an American CEO, the Associated Press reported this week, rose above $10 million per year for the first time ever.

Last year saw a fourth straight year of CEO pay raises, while average workers’ salaries remained largely stagnant. CEO pay has jumped a staggering 50 percent since 2008.

“A chief executive now makes about 257 times the average worker’s salary, up sharply from 181 times in 2009,” according to the AP.

If only Barack Obama were president.

And as if that were not bad enough, now hospitals are turning the poor away and cutting charity for indigent patients because of a draconian new law by the federal government.

“Driving the new policies is the cost of charity care, which is partly covered by government but remains a burden for many hospitals,” explains the New York Times.

“The new law also reduces federal aid to hospitals that treat large numbers of poor and uninsured people, creating an additional pressure on some to restrict charity care.”

If only Barack Obama were president.

In addition to making him president, we should also give his Democrats control of both chambers of Congress for at least two years of his administration so that he can fix all these grave problems he has identified in his book.

Now, we have a president who has decided to bring a “responsible end” to the war in Afghanistan by keeping 9,800 U.S. troops there.

The soft-headed absurdity was not lost on even the president himself. “It’s harder to end wars than to begin them,” he explained limply.

That is president-speak for, “You started it first.” It is a sly way of blaming his predecessor.

If the price of greatness is responsibility, as Winston Churchill said, then we have neither today. But at least things aren’t as partisanly toxic around here any more.

If only Barack Obama were president.

Charles Hurt can be reached at charleshurt@live.com and on Twitter @charleshurt.