While the United States writhes in the agony of seeking a way out of the current financial mess, President Obama, his wife, and a cast of 500 aides and hangers-on took the show on the road, crisscrossing the old world well-equipped with a supply of the trusty teleprompters needed to render him eloquent.
Accompanied by a horde of worshipful media, ever-present to record his every spiel, Obama the ringmaster wowed the rubes at every stop -- from the British Isles, where he gave the queen an iPod modestly featuring some of his own spellbinding (and ghost-written) speeches; to La Belle France where Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, the president's glamorous wife (who has shamelessly recorded every detail of her multiple romantic liaisons), managed to avoid being so much as kissed by her guest; to Germany and Turkey where he let it be known that the Unites States isn't really all that it's cracked up to be.
All along the way, the locals were entranced, showing up in large numbers to see the traveling circus and get a glimpse of the fabled American president, and shiver in delight in hearing him praise their great wisdom while denouncing his own nation and blaming all our ills on his predecessor.
It was like a sideshow featuring never-before-seen characters that the rubes couldn't wait to observe -- as they might flock to see the bearded lady. The Obamas took all this attention as an indication that what was really curiosity was, in fact, adoration.
The show got rave reviews from the media, which in the midst of experiencing Chris Matthews-like tingles up their thighs, managed to avoid noticing that all of the ringmaster's groveling before the Europeans failed to produce anything really worthwhile for the United States, the war in Afghanistan, or our failing economy.
Practically on his knees, he begged for combat troops from the various NATO allies, and ended up instead with a mere corporal's guard all but forbidden to fire shots in anger at the Taliban, which is sworn to destroy them as well as the United States.
In Turkey, this alleged Christian who hasn't been in church since becoming president (they can't seem to find a suitable church -- or mosque -- in Washington) informed his hosts that the United States is not what our founders said it was -- a Christian nation. He put icing on the cake by subserviently bowing deeply before the king of Saudi Arabia, who happens to be a Muslim.
He capped it off with a stop in Iraq, now safe for a president to visit despite his years of opposing the very war that made it safe.
It was nothing less than a blame-America-uplift-our-enemies show, acting on the mistaken belief that he is making friends with people who look with scorn at the United States of America as their own nations go swirling down the drain.
Barack Obama has discovered the joy of jetting around in the comfort of Air Force One. It helps him avoid answering embarrassing questions or getting his hands dirty arranging to spend trillions upon trillions of non-existent dollars to restore the economy -- going deeper and deeper into debt to supposedly overcome a disaster caused by mountains of private and government debt.
He is presiding over the biggest left turn this nation has ever taken, and he has discovered that getting out of town as much as possible helps distract the public from realizing that everything he's done only promises to make matters worse.
The Romans called what he's doing a policy of "bread and circuses."
Nobody bothers noticing that we are the ones paying for both.
Mike Reagan is heard on radio stations nationally as part of American Family Radio (www.afr.net). E-mail comments to Reagan@caglecartoons.com.