Friday, June 20, 2014


Because of my rheumatoid arthritis, I have been seeing a certain doctor for several years. Even with ObamaCare, I can continue seeing him. What has changed is the nature of the paperwork involved. Today’s visit, which would normally entail a 10-minute discussion with Dr. Ratiner, followed by a 5-minute drawing of blood, took me over an hour. That was due to all the additional forms the government is now insisting be filled out.

It’s my guess that even though Obama’s policies have crippled just about every other area of the economy, the paper industry must be blowing him kisses. I say that because in the past I used a credit card to pay for the office visit, and received the yellow copy as a receipt, whereas today they had to run off an entire page for me. And when the receptionist gave me my notice for the next visit, instead of the usual little piece of cardboard with the time and date scrawled on it, they wasted a second sheet of computer paper to let me know I was expected back on 07/31/14 at 11:30.

You would think that California’s millionaires -- a group of busybodies who are so devoted to the environment that, like some weird sort of Corsican brother, they feel every discomfort and indignity experienced by birds, fish and bugs -- would be up in arms over this unnecessary assault on the timberlands.

That reminds me how much juggling Barack Obama has to do in order to keep both the environmentalists and the unions safely in his pocket. He’s like some poor sap trying to keep both a wife and a mistress, without having one find out about the other, lest he wind up being used for target practice.

The clearest example of his problem is the Keystone pipeline. Groups such as the Sierra Club oppose its construction, not so much because they actually believe it would impair the environment, but as a symbol of their political clout. The unions, on the other hand, not only want to see it built because of all the jobs that would be involved, but want to see the EPA reined in because every time the agency enforces a new set of regulations, they kill off another few thousand jobs.

In fact, when I heard the statistic that people are far likelier to be hit by lightning than to be shot on school grounds, the first thought that occurred to me was that the EPA was now going to get to work outlawing lightning.

Although I would like to see the VA defunded and veterans’ health care put on the voucher system, a reader, Bob Gutsche, reminded me that the first administrator of the department, General Omar Bradley, once said, “We are dealing with veterans, not procedures; with their problems, not ours.” Unfortunately, the later administrators reversed those thoughts, ensuring that today’s bureaucratic scandal would be an inevitable consequence.

With November elections just around the corner, I would suggest that they be handled by Price-Waterhouse, the accounting firm that oversees voting for the Academy Awards. They manage to run things every year without anything being leaked prematurely and without any of the distraught losers having the slightest justification to cry “Foul!”

Another suggestion has to do with the teaching of math in our public schools. By any measure, we are falling behind all the other industrial nations when it comes to this all-important subject. Unless things have changed drastically since I was studying arithmetic, the problems always involved either trains traveling in opposite directions or farm production. Is it any wonder that even some of my brighter friends would have their eyeballs roll up into their head when having to deal with pecks of potatoes or trains headed from Chicago to Denver?

Even then, I wondered why they didn’t tailor the subject to the interests of boys. Every sport, and baseball in particular, is filled with statistics. By the time I was 10 years old, I was able to figure out batting averages, ERA and winning percentages, on my own. The secret was that they actually interested me.

Finally, Susan Rice, Jay Carney and other unsavory mouthpieces for this administration, all praised Bowe Bergdahl for having served honorably, if not heroically, for simply donning the uniform of his nation.

Then, to cover up the fact that Bergdahl was a deserter, and very possibly a traitor, they put a gag order on Bergdahl’s former platoon members, just as they did with the survivors of the Benghazi massacre. For an administration that sold itself as the most transparent in history, the only thing transparent about this gang of scoundrels happens to be their self-serving motives.

Then, when the truth about Bergdahl’s service record began to ooze out, Obama’s thugs accused the soldiers who had actually served honorably of trying to swiftboat their former comrade in arms. The term “swiftboating” was meant to impugn their testimony. But the fact is the term came into existence during the 2004 election when it was those who had served on the same boat in Vietnam with John Kerry, and knew the lying goldbrick for what he was, who, fortunately for America, cost him the election.

As for those who insist on Bergdahl’s behalf that the mere wearing of the uniform is reason enough to proclaim him a patriot, they would do well to recall that Benedict Arnold did as much, and not even Barack Obama has seen fit to praise his military service.

Not yet at any rate.

©2014 Burt Prelutsky. Comments?