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March 19, 2009

When Will Obamas Stop Lying to Military Families?

We all know that the sacred trust does not end when the uniform comes off. That’s why it’s time to build a 21st-century VA. No more red tape. It’s time to give every service member electronic copies of their medical records and service records upon discharge so that they can immediately get the services that they’ve earned. No more shortfalls. We’ll fully fund VA health care. No more delays. We’ll pass on-time budgets. No more means testing. It’s time to allow every veteran into the VA system.

- Barack Obama

You know, I'm becoming extremely tired of Barack and Michelle Obama lying to the American public and military families:

It's been at least 8 years since America has had such a self-absorbed and selfish First Lady. In a recent interview the Far Left wife of the antiwar president was just too impressed with herself for noticing that the military families actually sacrifice for their country here in America.

This is something Michelle Obama picked up on last year during the campaign-- seven years into the War on Terror.

Team Obama even went as far as to suggest that military families "had probably have never been invited to the White House."

The Obamas' stunning arrogance and insularity is nowhere more evident than in statements like this:

...it was just a little disconcerting ...to hear the First Lady explain how she came to this issue during last year's campaign. "I think I was like most Americans," she told ABC News. "Pretty oblivious to the life of military families. Sort of taking it for granted."

During last year's campaign??? By the time the Obamas finally woke up and realized we could be useful to them we exist, military families had been at war for five years. What took our monumentally clueless First Lady and her husband so long to wake up and smell the coffee?

... the reporting seems to reflect an assumption that if the Obamas haven't done something, nobody else has, either. Certainly the Washington Post did not challenge the First Lady's social secretary when she said, "one idea Michelle had was to have an event for military families -- here they are sacrificing so much for the country and many of them probably have never been invited to the White House."

This uncritical reportage does Laura Bush an injustice. In hundreds of ways -- picnics on the South Lawn, fund-raising for scholarships for the children of sailors on the USS Texas, unheralded visits with the wounded and families of the fallen, the work she did for military kids under her Helping America's Youth initiative -- Mrs. Bush showed our troops and their loved ones how close they were to her heart.

And what kind of nerve does it take, having openly admitted you forgot to pay your attention bill for FIVE YEARS, to turn around and slam those who did remember to acknowledge the contributions of military families while you were at the Mall? Lying to distract the public from your own failures is hardly the kind of leadership this country needs.

As a Marine wife of 28 years, I can testify firsthand that military families were frequent recipients of Presidental visits and attention during the Bush years. We were often invited to the White House and, while there, treated graciously and with warmth and decency.

During the year my husband was in Iraq I met the President many times. I was invited to the White House on no less than three occasions. I was invited to take place in conference calls on military issues, as were many other military spouses and military bloggers. I am no one important, influential, or special. All I needed to be what the wife of a United States Marine serving his country during wartime - that was enough. The Bush White House actively reached out to military families over and over again, and it's about time for the military community to begin setting the record straight.

I don't need Michelle Obama to keep me from "feeling alone". Not once during the administration of George Bush did I doubt the President was intimately aware of the concerns of military families. I knew he had our backs. He was there for us when it counted. He fought for us when Harry Reid and Congress tried to block desperately needed funding for soldiers and Marines in harm's way:

war supplemental.jpg

And I was there, along with over one thousand military spouses, when the President of the United States thanked us for the sacrifices we make in support of the military's ongoing operations.

Twice, actually. Because George and Laura Bush never for a moment forgot military families, I have both photos and some wonderful memories I'll one day be able to share with my little grandson. I've seen the leader of the free world get down on his knees to talk to the children of active duty service members. How many ordinary citizens can say they met the President of the United States not once, but several times? I can, and I'm hardly alone among military family members.

military spouse appreciation1.jpg

military spouse appreciation2.JPG

The Obamas don't know military families. They don't understand our culture or our concerns. But some within the military community have proven extremely useful to the Obamas, who have actively promoted a whiny culture of entitlement which undermines everything that makes the United States military one of the most respected American institutions:

Michelle Obama doesn't help military wives already dealing with admittedly difficult situations to cope:
To a woman, their struggles focused on housing, healthcare and basic child care -- all topped off with a big dollop of deployment. "I don't think that many Americans that are not in the military understand just what you've laid out," Obama tells the women. "And that's one of the reasons we're doing this. I don't think people understand all that goes into serving the country, and going to war."

"What you're asking for, it isn't extra; it's the basics that you need to survive. And we should be at the point where you're not just talking about survival, you're talking about thriving. We need families that thrive."

That is utter nonsense. Every military family has the basics they need to survive. There isn't one of those examples which cited a "basic need" or "survival". They all involved people making voluntary choices or people facing the same circumstances or challenges faced by civilians. Some are exacerbated by war, but then again (as I'm about to illustrate) in many cases their lives are no more difficult than those of many of their civilian counterparts and in many cases due to the excellent support systems provided by DoD, they are far, far easier.

I grew up in a career Navy family. My mother coped with long deployments and a war in Vietnam. My husband comes from a career Navy family. Like my Dad, my husband's father served in Vietnam - twice, in fact. And unlike John Kerry (who bailed out 1/3 of the way into a twelve month assignment) my father in law completed both tours. Consequently, he wasn't home when several of his children were born. Yet my mother in law - a life-long Democrat - would never have countenanced the selfishness and shameless opportunism being cultivated by Michelle and Barack Obama.

My mother and mother in law, like so many other military wives, always understood the sacrifices of America's armed forces necessarily entail sacrifices by their families, and they were proud to step up to the plate. They realized our shared tradition of service and sacrifice is not something that needs to be "fixed" by the federal government, but a proud and voluntary example others might do well to emulate instead of exploiting in this time of national crisis.

The Obamas need to stop lying about matters easily rebutted by even a cursory examination of the public record. Their dishonest and self-serving portrayal of the Bush record with regard to military families may provide them with political cover while they renege on long-standing promises made to military veterans. But do these people honestly think we're stupid enough to be deceived by blatantly dishonest lip service as our hard-won benefits are gutted to fund a wholesale war on the very way of life our loved ones fight and die to protect?

If so, they've got another thing coming. America's military families deserve better than a President and First Lady who practice deception under the guise of supporting our armed services.

Update: more photographic evidence via the Armorer (thanks - I was thinking of this photo but didn't have time to find it)


And Blackfive nails it:

The victimization of our military has got to stop. The support, real support, of the military has got to start. Deeds, not words, Mr. President.

Posted by Cassandra at March 19, 2009 08:58 AM

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I would like to thank you for saying this and for doing so as well as you have. I would just like to add a peave I've just been struck with. This President is about to go on national television this evening with Jay Leno - without a tie. Does he really believe we are so naive that as the leader of the free world we can also view him as just some ordinary Joe? He is the President of The United States of America..he needs not only to begin acting like it but dressing it as well. Have some class for goodness sake.

Posted by: Normajean Amblo at March 19, 2009 12:36 PM

I will be rereading this regularly to remind myself that I am not alone and lower the blood pressure as needed.

The Jay Leno thing is awesome. For the first time ever. Historic. Because being behind the desk isn't historic enough. We need late night schmoozing and reassuring and puke in my mouth

Posted by: wifeunit at March 19, 2009 12:45 PM

Thank you, thank you! Daughter of a career Marine, proud step mom of a Marine and a soldier. Would it be okay with you if I copied this entry and emailed it to a number of people? Thank you.

Posted by: Merry at March 19, 2009 12:49 PM

Yes, he does. That's his schtick. Comic-in-Chief. He won, he can do what he wants, reality is as he says it is. This is the role that in history was played by the Jester ... I'm going to stop now, before I start talking about invisible clothing.

Thank you, Cassandra, for posting this.

(Off to play Jimmy Buffett's Gypsies in the Palace; where's my harmonica?)

Posted by: htom at March 19, 2009 12:56 PM

Oh, please do!

In case it wasn't obvious, I'm just furious about this. I try not to openly slam Obama and confine my criticism to his policies. But this dishonesty is just shameful, especially after the Bushes worked so hard to ensure a smooth transition and the former President has declined to criticize Mr. Obama.

What a shame his gracious professionalism isn't returned by the current occupant of the Oval Office.

Posted by: Cassandra at March 19, 2009 12:58 PM

"But do these people honestly think we're stupid enough to be deceived by blatantly dishonest lip service....America's military families deserve better than a President and First Lady who practice deception..."

You appear to be laboring under a false presumption that these people were/are/will be honest people in the first place. This, I believe, is where your dogged belief in the inherent good of people gets in the way. Because once you understand that these people are not *practicing deceit*, that, instead, deceit is at the very core of their basic nature, it opens a whole different window on their intentions.

Posted by: DL Sly at March 19, 2009 01:12 PM

The Obamas need to stop lying about matters easily rebutted by even a cursory examination of the public record.

But they won't until someone calls them on it.

Nice call.

Posted by: Diogenes of Sinope at March 19, 2009 01:12 PM

Don't look at the cover of Vogue magazine, then.
It has a red-draped Michelle with her toned and buff arms curled up and leaning forward, provocatively in the manner of a throbbing sex kitten with the absolutley vomit-making side caption of...

(wait for it)

"Michelle Obama; At last, a First Lady that the world has been waiting for."

Posted by: Cricket at March 19, 2009 01:13 PM

cass this was so amazing. thanks so much for saying it and backing it up with your own family's contributions. the administration's lies and dishonesty about our military is just too much.

Posted by: kate at March 19, 2009 01:40 PM

You bet.

Posted by: The World at March 19, 2009 01:40 PM

Thank you for this, Cass. I've been wondering where M'Chelle has found those cheering crowds at Ft. Bragg.

It appears to me that if something has not happened personally to M'Chelle and/or O'Bambi, it has not happened, like, ever, to anyone.

Posted by: MathMom at March 19, 2009 01:53 PM

It's going to be a long four years.

Posted by: Carrie at March 19, 2009 02:01 PM

What else can I add but a hearty HOOAH! (hey- I'm going to be an Army wife) and a DAMN STRAIGHT.

Posted by: AFSister at March 19, 2009 02:02 PM

The Obamas need to stop lying about matters easily rebutted by even a cursory examination of the public record.

But they'll keep on so long as the media don't even bother making a cursory examination of the public record.

I wouldn't hold your breath.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at March 19, 2009 02:13 PM

Oh, thank you Cass. You said it EXACTLY.

I'm bookmarking this. I NEED to re-read it many times.

Sometimes I feel like I'm alone in how I feel about the new president, the old president, and what is going on. I know I'm not alone, but it sure does feel that way sometimes. It's good to read that I'm not.

Posted by: airforcewife at March 19, 2009 02:23 PM


Posted by: David M at March 19, 2009 02:29 PM

Why are the comments on these mil blogs always such a circle jerk?

Posted by: Robbie at March 19, 2009 02:51 PM

I don't know. Why do trolls mistake childish insults for intelligent commentary?

Posted by: Cassandra at March 19, 2009 02:53 PM

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