The White House today released a copy of the original Hawaiian “long form” birth certificate of President Barack Obama (born in Honolulu on August 4, 1961) in an effort to get past the frivolousness of various challenges by Republicans such as Sarah Palin and Donald Trump.
The idiocy of challenging Obama’s legitimacy as an American is only surpassed now by Palin’s and Trump’s back-pedaling in a wash of media by stating that they were influential in forcing Obama’s hand.
The GOP is faltering. Because of its Tea Party pandering, no Republican centrist (is there such a thing? oh, for the days of Barry Goldwater!) can be nominated. Republican “hopefuls” daily drop out of contention. (Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour is the latest to get wise, saying he lacks sufficient fire in the belly. What he lacks is the ability to be elected, especially given his former career as a lobbyist and his racially insensitive remarks in the past.)
Both Palin and Trump are media people. Trump is known for firing potential apprentices. Palin is noted for firing at wild animals. Both should have avoided the insanity that is birtherism. Instead, they swallowed it. The White House must be delighted at ripping the rug from under their feet.
But don’t forget, people who buy birtherism will fawn over the next claim. And there will be one. Because the Tea Party is not about truth. It’s not about making sure wise heads govern. It’s about making sure a man whose father was black never gets re-elected.
(That Tea Partiers fail to focus on Obama’s white mother and the white grandparents who raised him is evidence that his skin color is their real issue.)
There’s much to criticize about Obama’s approach to the Presidency. Many of us wish he had been more Rooseveltian (either Teddy or Franklin, take your pick) with regard to healthcare. The US still does not have a healthcare system, it has an expensive healthcare market. We pay more and get less than any other Western nation (see, for example, this article on the maternal mortality dangers of a still-rising American trend toward C-sections). Healthcare is not a subject for collaboration and conciliation. It’s a red-alarm situation that requires strength – in archetypal terms, “the good king”.
So, GOP, criticize Obama’s substance. But stop focusing on non-issues. It makes you look like idiots. And idiots don’t get elected in Western nations. Except for Italy.