John Stewart did what the Democrats couldn’t, the media couldn’t and the veterans couldn’t. He prodded Obama to address the veteran’s health care scandal by making fun of his “anger.”
Stewart said that when VA chief Eric Shinseki went in front of the Senate hearing and proclaimed he was ‘mad as hell’ about the scandal, he delivered it with all the passion he’d use to say we’re running out of orange juice.
Obama grudgingly went to the press room podium – 23 days after he was first asked about this – to express his anger. He came out of a meeting with “Rick” as he continually referred to the general (a slick slight against the military?) to deliver a similarly outraged statement. Only this time Obama said it with all the passion of someone declaring we’re out of strawberry jam.
Obama and the Democrats are in a jam, though, even though he tried to cover it over with this presser. As it went along (about 10 minutes max) he didn’t display much outrage at all. But then again he didn’t over the health care website debacle, Fort Hood massacres, assassination of our ambassador to Libya or the use of chemical warfare in Syria. What makes anyone think this one would stir him up? Honestly, has he checked for low T lately?
Obama said “When I hear of any misconduct (in the VA offices), I will not stand for it.” Wow, that was forceful. President George H.W. Bush displayed more emotion when he spoke about broccoli.
“I won’t tolerate it,” Obama said. He paused and continued, “Period.” Only he has been tolerating it for the past 5-6 years. And he’s used that “period” technique before and that turned out to be a lie.
After he gave us the platitudes about his role as Commander-in-Chief, blah, blah, blah, he started throwing out more whoppers. He said, for instance, that going to Walter Reed and Bagram hospitals have been “the most searing moments of my presidency.” Really? Maybe not seared, but topically sunburned? I’ve heard that “seared” comment before with John Kerry. Honestly, where do the Democrats get their vocabulary? From a big book of platitudes?
“Taking care of our veterans and their families has been one of the causes of my presidency,” Obama concluded. Funny, no one has noticed. That was a fib right up there with his biggest ones. Right next to “if you like your health insurance, you can keep it.”
Of course, we had the obligatory “not my fault” ploy. This is not a recent issue, Obama said. Read: Bush did it. “It’s a problem I worked with while running for the Senate.” In the Senate, his work on the Veterans Affairs Committee provided “one of my proudest pieces of business I did in the legislature.”
Note how “I” has reemerged.
Oh, but not when it comes to fixing the problem.
Getting rid of the problems, Obama said, means “WE have to redouble our efforts as a nation.” Rs and Ds must work together Obama said even though he’s been the most partisan president, stirring up division every chance he gets.
In this press conference Obama succeeded in displaying the anger Jon Stewart spoke of. But this should not be surprising coming from the candidate who, when approached with a question in a diner, responded “Can’t I just eat my waffle?”
He can eat his waffle, but the veterans will find something much less tasty on their plate.