Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN


October 21, 2013

Stumptalk: What a revoltin' development this is

CROSSVILLE — In the 1940’s and ‘50’s when situation comedy reigned on radio and then TV, William Bendix played Chester Riley, a father and husband who frequently created situations that turned out humorously badly for him, and his famous line was “What a revoltin’ development THIS is.”

That line occurs to me frequently when I witness the awful outcomes of the political dark comedy in Washington. As I write this, we have a President who thinks he does not have to negotiate with Congress on significant budgetary matters; who has politicized the IRS to target and silence groups that he doesn’t like; a President who will not acknowledge the awful failure of the Obamacare startup; who approves special treatment of corporate and union friends, giving them a special one-year waiver for purchasing the Obamacare insurance, giving Congress permanent Obamacare waivers; and the selective pain meted out by his administration to make the non-politicians (i.e. us) regret the government slowdown… read, “make them (i.e. us) regret opposing Obama.” A disgusted park ranger reported that they have received orders to “make life as difficult for people as we can.”

Then there are other insults, such as “Fast and Furious” (the politicization of the Department of Justice), the Benghazi betrayal (the politicization of the State Department) … the list goes on. Some events that bring this administration’s disdain for citizen honor into focus are smaller, and more easily comprehended.

Perhaps the most disgusting example is the refusal of the Obama Defense Department to honor our fallen heroes and their families by refusing to pay for the trip to Dover Airbase to receive the bodies and pay the death benefits to the families. Obama doesn’t care. Obama was quick enough to the White House newsroom television cameras to lecture us about Trayvon Martin, but had to be dragged to pay attention to this insult to our hero fathers. That highlights his community organizer values, I guess. He is silent about locking out vets from the WWII monument, but opened the mall to a demonstration by illegal aliens. Obama is revealing himself to be a petty politician, certainly not a statesman. It is interesting to see how far he has fallen. One news columnist in England refers to him as “President Pantywaist.”

After the shootings in Arizona last year, the president and Democrats flooded the airways to demand “civility” in political discourse. They played the guilt card to the hilt, until it suited them to forget it. Democrats retreat to ugly discourse when they have no intellectually honest argument to present. Thus, for Democrats, Republicans become “terrorists” and “con-men” and “arsonists” and “anarchists,” and “domestic abusers.” The President seriously failed his statesman test by reducing himself to calling Republicans who dare defy him “extortionists.” What happened to his egotistical promise to “bring us together”?

He refers to the “government shutdown” whereas 83 percent of the government is still up and running. Obama attempts to govern by crisis, thus a “government slowdown” is not sufficiently hyperbolic to make us think there is a crisis, it must be a shutdown. Oh, no, will we ever recover?

Obama has not offered any solutions to the “crisis.” He simply has threatened to hold his breath until he turns blue. “I won’t negotiate. You can’t make me.” He is astonishingly petty. One would hope that this nation has learned the danger of putting the power of the presidency into the hands of an inexperienced, narcissistic, petty Chicago “pol,” but that is expecting a bit much, I suppose.

Remember the ecstatic reception Obama received during his European victory tour? Germany, Cairo and all of that? The embarrassing and silly Nobel Prize? He should go back and try the tour again. I’d love to see that. His last speech in Germany had to be given from behind a bullet proof glass wall.

What a revoltin’ development THIS is.

• • •

Stumptalk is published weekly in the Crossville Chronicle. The opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of the Chronicle publisher, editor or staff. To contact Stumptalk, email coordinator Jim Sykes at


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