President Obama is once again complaining about the media for making people frightened about the state of the world right now. At a Friday fundraiser in Purchase, New York, Obama said,“If you watch the nightly news, it feels like the world is falling apart.” He also blamed social media for spreading anxiety.
But he said today is much easier than the Cold War years, because we have a fantastic military:
Second reason people are feeling anxious is that if you watch the nightly news, it feels like the world is falling apart. (Laughter.) Now, let me say this: We are living through some extraordinarily challenging times. A lot of it has to do with changes that are taking place in the Middle East in which an old order that had been in place for 50 years, 60 years, 100 years was unsustainable, and was going to break up at some point. And now, what we are seeing is the old order not working, but the new order not being born yet -- and it is a rocky road through that process, and a dangerous time through that process...
But -- and here’s the main message I have for you -- the truth of the matter is, is that American military superiority has never been greater compared to other countries. Our men and women in uniform are more effective, better trained, better equipped than they have ever been. We have, since 9/11, built up the capacity to defend ourselves from terrorist attacks. It doesn’t mean the threat isn’t there and we can’t be -- we don’t have to be vigilant, but it means that we are much less vulnerable than we were 10 or 12 or 15 years ago.
The headline on this could be “Obama Credits Bush for Post-9/11 Military Buildup.” Don’t count on that. Or for them to notice that having a great military and no strategy isn't scary. It continued:
And the truth of the matter is, is that the world has always been messy. In part, we’re just noticing now because of social media and our capacity to see in intimate detail the hardships that people are going through. The good news is that American leadership has never been more necessary, and there’s really no competition out there for the ideas and the values that can create the sort of order that we need in this world.
I hear people sometimes saying, well, I don’t know, China is advancing. But I tell you what, if you look at our cards and you look at China’s cards, I promise you you’d rather have ours. (Applause.) People say that, I don’t know, Russia looks pretty aggressive right now -- but Russia’s economy is going nowhere. Here’s a quick test for you: Are there long lines of people trying to emigrate into Russia? (Laughter.) I don’t think so.
Yes, the Middle East is challenging, but the truth is it’s been challenging for quite a while. And our values, our leadership, our military power but also our diplomatic power, the power of our culture is one that means we will get through these challenging times just like we have in the past. And I promise you things are much less dangerous now than they were 20 years ago, 25 years ago or 30 years ago.
This is not something that is comparable to the challenges we faced during the Cold War. This is not comparable to the challenges that we faced when we had an entire block of Communist countries that were trying to do us in. This is something we can handle, because we are Americans and that’s what we do. And around the world, when you travel to Asia, or you travel to Europe, or you travel to Latin America, or you travel to Africa, what you find is, among ordinary people, they are still looking to America as a beacon of hope and opportunity. And we should not forget that. (Applause.)
Again, this is not the Obama that ran in 2007 and 2008 clamoring that the world decided to loath us during the Bush years, and we can’t expect the media to show that the world doesn’t love Barack Obama at this point. We can't expect journalists to say "even Obama says Reagan faced a tougher hand."
Then he naturally turned on the do-nothing, “ideologically rigid” and yet cynical Republicans:
Which brings me to the last reason that people are anxious, and that is that Washington doesn’t work. It’s hard to describe how unproductive this Congress is. Harry Truman campaigned against what was known -- what he called the “do-nothing Congress.” But compared to this Congress, that was a do-a-whole-lot Congress. (Laughter.)
And I have to tell you that, you know what, Democrats aren’t perfect. We’ve got our own foibles. Democratic politicians, like all politicians, they’re concerned about getting reelected. But the truth of the matter is, there’s one reason why Congress is as broken as it is, and that is that the other party has become captive to the most ideologically rigid, most unproductive, most cynical group that I have ever seen.
They don’t seem to be interested in getting things done. They seem constantly interested in the next election as opposed to the next generation. And that’s not inherent in the Republican Party. I come from Illinois. My favorite President was the first Republican President, a guy named Abraham Lincoln. But that is what is happening now.