The U.S. moving in the right direction? Well, sure, from Obama’s point of view.

Imagine a chess player, moving his rook into danger for no apparent reason, except for the real possibility of advantage seven moves down the line that only he can see.

Or a general, calling a retreat from a long-defended and beloved city. Neither the troops, nor the people, nor the general’s bosses will be happy, until the withdrawal proves strategically decisive later on.

Or a football coach, calling three straight running plays that go nowhere at the beginning of a game, despite his Pro-Bowl quarterback. A wasted possession, unless he learned something about the defense that will come in handy later on.

Now read this:

President Barack Obama said Tuesday that he has “never been more confident that our nation is headed in the right direction.”

“We are doing what is needed to move forward, and we’re doing what’s necessary not just to rebuild the economy for the short term, we want to rebuild it for the long term,” the president said at a Seattle fundraiser for Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash).

Over at Weasel Zippers, they asked:

See what happens when you don’t take your Thorazine?…

But hang on. What if your goal is to keep the economy down (or make it worse), thereby increasing public demand for government services, thereby increasing the size, scope, and power of government?

We may well be headed in the right direction for that.

What if your goal is to increase voter dissatisfaction with your own party, thereby increasing the chances of a GOP takeover of Congress, thereby creating a political enemy you can fight? Which, let’s all remember, can only help Obama’s re-election campaign in 2012.

We may well be headed in the right direction for that.

Or: what if your goal is simply to secure your own financial, influential, historical future? Which, by becoming the “first black president,” Obama has already done?

Given any or all of the above possibilities, from Obama’s perspective, we may well be heading in the “right” direction.

Now the question becomes: is Obama (or, possibly, Obama’s behind-the-scenes handlers) that smart? Is he that prescient? Does he have that ability to look into the future, and to realize that today’s setbacks might be necessary for tomorrow’s victories?

I don’t believe he is. You don’t, either, probably, even if you’re an Obamaniac yourself.

Even so: if we let ourselves be satisfied with today’s polls, and today’s public opinion, and today’s Democrat embarrassments, and even with November’s (we hope) Republican tsunami, it’ll prove exactly one thing. We don’t have that foresight, either.

In other words: don’t get cocky.

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