Wednesday, May 9, 2012

“Julia’s World”

Sydney M. Williams

Thought of the Day
“Julia’s World”
May 9, 2012

Andrew Wyeth’s famous painting “Christina’s World” depicts a young woman with her back to the viewer, half lying on the grass. She appears plaintive and the landscape is barren. The painting evokes great sadness, and reflects the emotions Mr. Wyeth still felt three years after the death of his father, the illustrator N.C. Wyeth.

Viewing the dozen slides that comprise “The Life of Julia”, I was reminded of Christina. Both women are dependent: Christina because in real life she was a polio victim, so unable to walk; Julia because she has given up all personal responsibility to rely on the beneficence of the state.

Every American – man and woman, old and young, of whatever race or creed – who relishes their independence, should view these slides, available at www.barackobama.com/life-of-julia. The slides present an Orwellian world in which the state is involved in every major decision of Julia’s life: from her enrollment in a Head Start program at age 3; to becoming a web designer at 23, thanks to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act; to having a child (no mention of a husband or boyfriend is made) at age 31, with free maternity benefits thanks to Obama’s healthcare reform; to retiring at 67 with monthly payments from Social Security that allow her to live “comfortably” with time to work in a community garden. Julia, an educated middle class woman, is seen as totally dependent on government. It sends shivers up one’s spine.

Each slide is accompanied by a written description of what Julia would be provided under a second Obama administration, and how she would descend into untold horrors should Governor Romney become President. The implicit message is that government is integral to her life. It is chilling in its impersonality.

Julia is pre-packaged, described by Mark Steyn as “composite” woman, and by Leftists as “everywoman.” She is emotion-less. She is a product of the state. Her parents only warrant one slide – she is able to stay on their insurance plan after college. They serve no other role. She is simply there at the age of 3, alone except for Big Brother. From the slides we learn of no neighbors or friends. There are no relationships or support groups. Other than a child she had, perhaps divinely, as there is no mention of a father, there is no mention of a husband, or even a boyfriend. She has no social life, nor any religion. She is a product of the state, born into it, lives according to its dictates and presumably dies friendless, with only the state to mourn (or celebrate) her passing.

Of course she is not “everywoman.” At the age of 31, she has a father-less child. The typical first time American mother, as Ross Douthat noted in Sunday’s New York Times, is married and has her first child in her mid twenties. And the typical woman is not a “web designer.” While Mr. Obama is portrayed as the “Great White Father”, Mr. Romney and Representative Paul Ryan are seen as the wicked uncles, intent on spoiling the “good life.” It is a caricature that is sobering and ultimately very sad.

The United States is a country founded on such principles as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, and on the concept that power resides in the people, not in government. “…Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…” Julia represents a sharp break from our historical past. The only conclusion that one can draw is that Julia represents Mr. Obama’s vision of America, one toward which he wants to lead the country in a second term. It is why every American should watch this Orwellian slide show. George Orwell wrote 1984 in 1944, at a time when democracies were engaged in a mortal combat against totalitarianism. The people in Orwell’s fictional world gradually descend into a world that constantly monitors their whereabouts and controls what they do. As long as everyone is obeisant and obedient – that they never question authority or deviate from the script – they are fine. There is no room for individualism, which means that in such a world there will be no art, no music, no great teachers, no dissenting philosophies. Inquisitiveness would be repressed. A world of sameness does not enjoy the benefits of diversity.

No one wants to see the poor go hungry, the sick without care, or the aged left alone, and Barack Obama and paternalism, no matter their claims, do not have a monopoly on looking after the unfortunate in our society. The slides make no mention of the costs of Mr. Obama’s Orwellian world. Benefits are simply there. There is no recognition that every time we allow government to intrude further in our lives, we give up some measure of independence. We are a fortunate people who have been free of tyranny for so long that it is often immigrants alone who are able to explain what it is like to live without freedom. Julia is a character that would be unrecognizable not only to our founding fathers, but to our own parents and grandparents. She is frightening in her unquestioning acquiescence of an all-powerful government, accepting what they give with no thought of the monetary cost, or of the freedom lost.

“The Life of Julia” is a depiction of a socialist-tyrannical state; thus is the best depiction between what Mr. Obama wants for this nation and what, I believe, the vast majority of the people desire. For that reason alone everyone should see it. It is a sterile, impersonal and unfeeling world that Mr. Obama envisions, a world unlike anything America has known. Watch it and be afraid.

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