All politicians over promise. Many come into office saying that they will clean up graft, cut down on government waste, lower taxes, balance the budget, bring peace, or do all manner of things which are beyond their ability to deliver.
But most at least make an honest attempt. They come into office with good intentions, but run into an obstructionist legislatures and other obstacles. Entrenched interests are had to root out. Graft is an inescapable part of any big government. And peace is cannot be accomplished unilaterally.
Barack Obama has been different. I honestly cannot recall another recent American politician who has made all sorts of promises, all the while intending to do the exact opposite.
During his 2008 campaign Obama said that there would be no earmarks, no more "business as usual" in his administration. The first bill he pushed was the stimulus bill, which was almost entirely a grab bag of goodies and earmarks for Democrats.
Obama said in 2008 that he would be the first post-partisan President. But when the Democrats in the House excluded Republicans from the drafting of the stimulus bill, and the House Republicans complained to Obama, he shrugged and told them, "I won."
At the start of his original campaign for President, Obama said that he would accept public funding, and criticized private funding as a corruption of the electoral process. As soon as it became apparent that he could raise more money than his opponents, he opted for private funding.
In 2008 Obama famously declared that there wasn't a white America, or a black America, but a United States of America. He campaigned as the first post-racial President. As soon as he was elected, he appointed Eric Holder, the most racially biased Attorney General in recent memory. When Holder took office, the Department of Justice was prosecuting the New Black Panthers for having intimidated voters at a Pennsylvania voting place, an event caught on videotape. Holder instructed his minions to drop that case, and numerous other cases involving malfeasance by blacks. As 2012 approaches, Holder has declared that asking for a photo ID at a voting place constitutes racism and voter intimidation. Obama has uttered not a word against his AG, nor has he reined him in.
Obama himself instinctively -- and publicly -- sided with Harvard Professor Henry Gates when Gates had that confrontation with the Cambridge police. Obama sneeringly announced a ten percent tax on tanning salons (which are frequently exclusively by whites). When the Trayvon Martin case broke, Obama announced that if he had had a son, he would have looked like Trayvon.
When a vacancy came up on the Supreme Court, Obama declared that he would appoint a "strict Constitutionalist who would not legislate from the bench." He then appointed Sonia Sotomayor.
During his campaign Obama promised not to hire any lobbyists. As soon as he was elected, he proceeded to hire lobbyists.
A year ago Obama sent 100 Special Forces troops to Uganda to aid in the fight against Joseph Kony, saying that this was in the best interests of the US. (How?)
When the Reverend Wright's sermons were made public in the summer of 2008, Obama declared that "this is not the Reverend Wright that I have known." But in fact Wright has been extremely consistent in his black liberation theology, and those widely heard quotes from his sermons reflect exactly the Wright that Obama knew.
In 2008 Obama said that he would have the most open and transparent administration in history. His signal achievement, ObamaCare, barely passed after a long series of back room deals and buyoffs which the Obama administration tried to keep secret. The Louisiana Purchase and Cornhusker Kickback were merely the tip of that iceberg.
While pushing for ObamaCare, he said that the individual mandate did not constitute a new tax on the American people. When its constitutionality was challenged in the courts, his administration immediately began arguing that it is legal precisely because it is a tax.
Recently Obama has recently tried to paint himself as the candidate of fiscal probity, and said that it is the Republicans who want to bust the budget. The truth, of course, is the opposite.
I can't even begin to list all of his lies; every time Barack Obama opens his mouth he is at least obfuscatory, if not outright dishonest.
But, as he told Medvedev recently, he'll have more flexibility after the election. Perhaps, once he's no longer running for reelection, he can also stop living in Opposite Land.