As John shows below, President Obama’s press conference tonight was characterized by the glib dishonesty that is coming to define his presidency. The biggest howller, as John notes, was Obama’s claim that Republicans want to do nothing to stimulate the economy.
Perhaps Obama was thinking of the claim that doing nothing would be better for the economy than adopting the stimulus program he is pushing. But (1) this was the finding of the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, not congressional Republicans and (2) the fact that the Democratic proposal might well be worse than doing nothing does not mean that we should do nothing; it just means we should reject what the Dems have served up.
Obama was also terrible on Iran. It wasn’t just his comment about the “mistrust” that has developed between the two nations over the years, which betrays Obama’s view (so characteristic of the Democrats) that the U.S. is partly to blame for the state of our relations with the mullahcracy. Even more troublesome was Obama’s take on why a nuclear Iran would be probematic.
[I]t’s important that, even as we engage in this direct diplomacy [with Iran], we are very clear about certain deep concerns that we have as a country, that Iran understands that we find the funding of terrorist organizations unacceptable, that we’re clear about the fact that a nuclear Iran could set off a nuclear arms race in the region that would be profoundly destabilizing. (emphasis added)
But the fundamental problem with Iran developing nuclear weapons is not that it would produce an arms race (that would be the problem with, say, Saudi Arabia developing nukes). The problem with Iran developing nuclear weapons is that Iran, our arch-enemy and the arch-enemy of our main ally in the region, would then have nuclear weapons.
Obama’s failure to understand this almost certainly means that he is not very serious about preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons. On the other hand, even if Obama understood the real problem with Iran having nukes, it is highly doubtful that he would be all that serious about preventing Iran from obtaining them.
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