Saturday, October 20, 2012

President Obama's "not optimal" statement in context

To excuse President Obama's dispassionate and dismissive characterization of the murder of four Americans by terrorists as "not optimal," some point out that his interviewer, Jon Stewart, used the the word "optimal" first.  In context, however, Obama's statement is even worseFrom The Atlantic Wire, here is the transcript, :
Stewart: "Is part of the investigation helping the communication between these divisions? Not just what happened in Benghazi, but what happened within. Because I would say, even you would admit, it was not the optimal response, at least to the American people, as far as all of us being on the same page."

Obama: "Here's what I'll say. If four Americans get killed, it’s not optimal. We're going to fix it. All of it. And what happens, during the course of a presidency, is that the government is a big operation and any given time something screws up. And you make sure that you find out what's broken and you fix it. Whatever else I have done throughout the course of my presidency the one thing that I've been absolutely clear about is that America’s security comes, and the American people need to know exactly how I make decisions when it comes to war, peace, security, and protecting Americans. And they will continue to get that over the next four years of my presidency." [Emph. added]
Although the question appeared to be a "puffball" about the "not optimal response" to the murders, Obama answered by calling the murders themselves, not the response, "not optimal."

This is reminiscent of Gov. Dukakis' uncaring response to a question in a 1988 presidential debate about the (hypothetical) rape and murder of his wife.  In Obama's case, his answer appears equally telling about his lack of empathy.  Obama's views, ranging "you didn't build that" to his desire for electricity prices to "skyrocket," all betray an extraordinary disregard for the lives of Americans.

Also, note Obama's admission that "the government is a big operation and any given time something screws up."  It would have been nice if he had considered the full implications of that before forcing Obamacare upon us.

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