Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Punting To Putin

I understand that Barack Obama is not much of a football player. Rumor has it that he can't even throw a spiral pass. But from casual observation, I can firmly state that he is a great punter. As a matter of fact, he has been punting frequently since his election to the Presidency.

Most lately, our President has punted world leadership to Vladimir Putin. Not that Mr. Putin is the person that most of the world wants in a position of leadership. Politics, like nature, abhors a vacuum. Give up the power that your countrymen have bled for and your citizens have paid for, and the biggest baddest alpha dog will snarl and the rest will go belly up. They may growl a little but, ultimately they will expose their soft undersides in obeisance. 

How could this happen, you ask? I ask, how could it not happen? Putin and Obama are both educated men. While Obama was at Harvard getting an education in liberalism and law while strolling with the Choom Gang, Putin was at St. Petersburg State University getting a degree in jurisprudence. Rumor has it that his education at St. Petersburg State was actually basic training for the KGB. We can all see how ones world view would differ with those experiences. So while Obama was organizing minorities in Chicago, Putin was organizing spies to steal western technology.

No one could deny that both men are major narcissists. While Obama likes to see himself in front of adoring audiences with his nose held high or playing at basketball, Putin likes to see himself doing manly things, like hunting and SCUBA diving. Putin has himself photographed sans shirt in personal moments. Obama prefers his collar unbuttoned.

Both are patient men. Faced with the need to make a decision, President Obama will study and restudy. He will get opinion papers and convene study groups. He will discuss ad infinitum. President Putin will spot an opportunity put pieces into place and wait for his opportunity. Then his people rush in, grab the target, and he goes back to the middle of his web to wait for the next opportunity.

Putin is a hard man and a thug. I do not believe he has a moral center. He dreams of the glory days of the USSR. His goal is to return Russia that glory. He sees himself holding all the trump cards today. He sees a weakened opposition that is in turmoil. He took South Ostia from Georgia during the Bush administration and is presently taking the Crimea away from the Ukraine. Whether there will be further incursions in the immediate future is anyone's guess. I hope not but we can be relatively sure the Crimea is gone.

Since the days of Ronald Reagan, the world has become less safe. Now it seems to be getting less safe at an increasing rate. China, Korea, Iran, and Russia are all rattling their sabers. Meanwhile we cut back on our military. We really need to stop wasting money on "pie-in-the-sky" projects and get back on a firm strong foundation. There may be some that are content to see America sink into oblivion. Do not count me as one of them.

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