Cowboy Wisdom for the Week, January 26, 2013

Friday, January 25, 2013
by Patrick Dorinson

On Monday January 21st Barack Obama was sworn in for a second term as president.

Congratulations Mr. President.

Even if I may disagree with just about every one of your policies and proposals, you won the election fair and square.

His inauguration was full of symbolism. It was held on Martin Luther King Day and Obama used Dr. King’s bible to take the oath of office.

At his first swearing-in he chose to use the bible that Abraham Lincoln used while he was president.

President Obama’s many admirers in the mainstream media often compare him to Lincoln.

And in fact Obama himself thinks he has much in common with our 16th President.

In 2007 he announced his candidacy in Springfield, Illinois where Lincoln had a law office and served in the state legislature.

But other than both having lived in Illinois and served in the state legislature, the comparison begins and ends there.

In his second Inaugural address, Lincoln reached out to his brethren in the soon to be defeated South in an effort to begin the healing process from a civil war that had torn the nation apart for four bloody years with brother fighting brother.

Unfortunately Lincoln did not live to see the eventual reconciliation between North and South and it could be argued that had he lived it might have been less contentious.

The Radical Republicans in the Congress in 1865 were determined to extract their pound of flesh from the defeated Confederacy and without Lincoln to act as a check on their vengeance; the reunified nation remained just as divided as it had been before and during the Civil War

In his second inaugural, President Obama did not reach out to his defeated opposition even though almost half of the nation voted against him.

Instead he went out of his way to let the Republicans know that he won the election and would go around them, over them and through them to transform America into some Euro-style country with cradle to grave social programs as well as a redistribution of the nation’s wealth.

Perhaps President Obama should have read Lincoln’s speech before he wrote his own.

And he should remember that as Churchill said, “The problems of victory are more agreeable than those of defeat, but they are no less difficult.”

Sometime in the next four years he will need the support of all Americans-Democrats, Republicans and Independents-to address the nation’s problems.

By humiliating the opposition party and by extension those who voted against him in front of the whole country and rubbing their noses in their defeat, he has made that task all the more difficult.

So here is your Cowboy Wisdom for the Week.

And it comes from Obama’s hero Abraham Lincoln.

“A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

In 2004 at the Democratic convention in Boston, Obama said, “We are not red states or blue states but the United States.”

Over the years he has repeated a variation of that line.

But now that he has been re-elected with a campaign that sought to divide America along racial, economic and class lines he no longer has to pay lip service to those words.

It makes you wonder whether he really ever believed those words or were they just a cynical political ploy to get elected and re-elected.

Will the “house divided” that Lincoln spoke of still be standing in 4 years?

Let’s hope so. Only time will tell.

And that’s your Cowboy Wisdom for the Week