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Barack Obama’s Childish Solyndra Game

Barack Obama is at it again.

The man who proudly and publicly touted his support of Solyndra is now trying to inartfully distance himself from it. Solyndra was once the poster child for the stimulus package; now we’re told to understand “this was not our program per se.” Oh yes it was, Mr. President. Oh yes it was.

The RNC has a short, devastating ad here.

Perhaps this can be a “teachable moment” (to use a favorite Obama phrase) for the president, a chance to instruct Malia and Sasha on what it means to be a responsible adult. The lesson might go something like this: to be responsible means to be answerable, to be accountable, to accept the consequences of one’s actions rather than blame others (see Chapter 3 of The Book of Virtues for more).

The British philosopher Mary Midgley wrote that “the really excellent and central point of Existentialism [is] the acceptance of responsibility for being as we have made ourselves, the refusal to make bogus excuses.”

Barack Obama has shown the habit of making bogus excuses during his presidency. He blames everyone and everything — from his predecessor to tsunamis and earthquakes to the Arab Spring to Fox News to ATMs to the Chamber of Commerce to the founding fathers to the Tea Party to so much more — for his failures.

It is a tiresome game, and childish, too. It might be useful for Mr. Obama to consider these words from the inaugural address of America’s 44th president. “In the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things.”

Amen to that.