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Into his 2nd year, how is Obama seen now: Messiah or merely a Prince?

“Men have imagined republics and principalities that never really existed at all. Yet the way men live is so far removed from the way they ought to live that anyone who abandons what is for what should be pursues his downfall rather than his preservation; for a man who strives after goodness in all his acts is sure to come to ruin, since there are so many men who are not good.”— Machiavelli, “The Prince”

Candidate Obama sailed to victory in 2008 in part by appealing to the public’s desire for change. Exhausted by eight years of media harangue, partisan politics, war fatigue, and the relentless barrage of personal attacks on the Bush administration, the electorate was anxious to turn the page, hit the reset button, and try something new. Almost anything, almost anyone, as long as his name had a “D” after it, was seen as a plausible relief from the dispiriting tedium of politics as usual.

With craftiness and cunning, Barack Obama’s campaign tapped into this national yearning with all the zeal of an evangelist. Fortified with visionary self-assurance, they seized the moment by shepherding the candidate as he morphed into a type of Christ, a savior in fact, the One we all had been waiting for.

In short, as the Messiah of Biblical history was anticipated by the Jews to be the one who would emancipate His oppressed people from the pagan Roman imperialists, Barack Obama would become the messiah who would free the little people from the inherently unfair ravages of capitalism and malfeasance of conservatives.

By simply appealing to our better angels, he would quickly cleanse the system of all injustices, establish a new sense of brotherhood between the country’s warring political parties, and purge the temples of our nation’s capital by removing the parasitic money changers, lobbyists, and an assorted list of greedy persons whose special interests corrupted the government and prevented it from acting in the best interest of all the people.

Once this was accomplished, he would then “spread the wealth around” so that all might partake of the comforts that were for far too long enjoyed only by the privileged few.

But, his beneficence would not stop at our borders. No, there was much more to be done to reverse the nation’s long history of self-enrichment at the expense of neighbors, both local and of those far from our shores.

Henceforth, America would project a new ethos, one more accommodating to the inexorable march toward world unity. A doctrine of equality among nations would replace the discredited notion of American exceptionalism that had been used to exploit our less powerful neighbors for the past 200 years.

With arms extended in love and friendship, candidate Obama, once he became President Obama, would redeem the nation in the eyes of our foreign friends and too, where possible, those of our enemies.

Having then vanquished all iniquity, caused the offenders to repent of their evil ways, secured the blessings of social justice, and ushered in a new earth, a new world order, messiah would be at liberty to rule his Eden by the simple wave of his beneficent hand.

Such were the promises made by candidate Obama as he moved with aplomb through the rigors of the campaign, winning the election, and ascending from his humble beginnings as a community organizer to the highest and most powerful position in the world — President of the United States of America.

Not since Christ walked on this earth offering mankind a radical alternative to mindless paganism have promises of such cosmic proportion been presented to a waiting world.

But, now that we are 18 months into the reign of messiah, what can we say about this purveyor of hope and change? Did our nation elect a nearly divine reformer, one who has made men marvel at a long list of promises achieved, or has he turned out to be a false prophet; is he a man who is merely a man after all?

It is clear that since placing his mighty hands on the helm of the ship of state, Obama the messiah is now seen for what he really was all along: Obama the prince of power. The campaign camouflage is now removed and we find a power-hungry crusader instead of what many had hoped for — the humble prince of peace.

Like the prince in Machiavelli’s treatise on the acquisition, perpetuation, and use of political power, Barack Obama rules by the dictum that the ends justify the means.

It is now clear that his entire campaign was crafted to give the illusion that a man of great courage, wisdom, and compassion had at last come forth to lead the American people to the Promised Land.

Positioned as a man blessed with uncanny leadership abilities, those very skills needed to sweep away the many cancers that were sapping the life from our nation, we now find Barack Obama to be more adept at using the power of his office to bludgeon his opponents and force radical changes on the nation which the vast majority of its citizens oppose.

Instead of healing the nation, his administration has deepened divisions among its people, rendering the hope of civic unity a virtual impossibility.

Nearly 500 years ago, Niccolo Machiavelli described in detail how a prince would have to rule if he was to maintain power over his realm and the vassals who would do his bidding. The end game for any prince must be of necessity to remain in power; he could not rule if her were no longer the ruler. His moral imperative, therefore, was to use any means available, imposed by any means necessary, to accomplish that end.

It is to our nation’s disgrace that 55 million voters were completely unaware of the lessons taught by The Prince, and thus allowed themselves to be blinded by seductive imagery and rhetorical deceptions that presented Barack Obama as a messiah who would save them all from the evils of America.

What they elected instead turned out to be only a prince; and now all of us must live with the consequences of their folly.

Randy Hough

Peachtree City, Ga.

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