Business Insider summarizes a remarkable series of comments from journalistic icon Bob Woodward about Barack Obama’ approach to sequestration:
The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward ripped into President Barack Obama on “Morning Joe” today, saying he’s exhibiting a “kind of madness I haven’t seen in a long time” for a decision not to deploy an aircraft carrier to the Persian Gulf because of budget concerns.
“Can you imagine Ronald Reagan sitting there and saying, ‘Oh, by the way, I can’t do this because of some budget document?'” Woodward said.
“Or George W. Bush saying, ‘You know, I’m not going to invade Iraq because I can’t get the aircraft carriers I need?'”
“Or even Bill Clinton saying, ‘You know, I’m not going to attack Saddam Hussein’s intelligence headquarters,’ … because of some budget document?”
The Defense Department said in early February that it would not deploy the U.S.S. Harry Truman to the Persian Gulf, citing budget concerns relating to the looming cuts known as the sequester.
“Under the Constitution, the President is commander-in-chief and employs the force. And so we now have the President going out because of this piece of paper and this agreement. ‘I can???t do what I need to do to protect the country,'” Woodward said.
“That???s a kind of madness that I haven’t seen in a long time,” he said.
I’ve noticed some needling from liberals about the Strange New Respect conservatives are showing Bob Woodward, now that he’s strongly criticizing President Obama. But Woodward is still generally quite liberal. I don’t see why his comments should not be taken on their own merits, and embraced or dissected, without tossing him a jersey from Team Conservative and expecting him to slip it on.
And it’s hard to argue with him about this. Granted that he might be a little testy at the blowback he’s been getting from Obama supporters and operatives for reminding everyone how the sequester got started, but I don’t think you’d see Reagan, Bush, or Clinton unleashing a flood of criminals on the American public, or deliberately slow-walking national defense, as part of a political game. Obama’s behavior is extraordinary, offensive, and dangerous.
I’ve occasionally reported sightings of “Barack the Mad” before. I don’t mean this as clinical insanity, and neither does Woodward. When I see Barack the Mad take the stage, I see a deliberate attempt to make statements at variance with reality, with the expectation that reality will bend to the President’s will. It’s a strategy, not uncontrolled dementia. This time, he may have gravely miscalculated.