Consider: He chose Timothy Geithner to be his lead negotiator. Geithner has repeatedly shown he is not serious about entitlement reform. He and the president have failed even to put a proposal on the table. Also, they've proposed no real short-term spending cuts, twice the level of tax increases Obama campaigned on, more stimulus spending, an intransigent demand for an economy-smothering tax rate increase on the "wealthy" as opposed to decreases in deductions, and the topper: a demand that Congress surrender to this reckless spender of a president its constitutional prerogative over spending limits.
The upshot is that Obama is demanding Republicans agree to policies that will further damage the economy and ensure the nation's financial demise even sooner than is now inevitable. Adding insult to injury, Geithner is arrogantly boasting that Republicans will cave.
Republicans are agreeing to let Obama increase taxes (by reducing deductions for upper income earners) even with the anemic economy, but are demanding from him, on behalf of the nation, serious discretionary spending cuts and major structural entitlement reform. If Republicans cave in exchange for Obama's vague, illusory, insincere promises to cut spending and reform entitlement down the road, they will be complicit in accelerating the nation's fiscal destruction.
Some painfully superficial analysts argue that Obama is right to offer an extreme position as his first volley, because that's the way negotiations work. But Obama's hardball offer is not merely a different approach to the shared goal of restoring the nation's fiscal health. It unequivocally guarantees national bankruptcy while the Republicans' proposal is designed to avert that disaster.
Obama is playing chicken, all right, but he's not driving his own car; he's driving the United States of America. People can quibble endlessly over whether he is intentionally trying to harm America. The better way to frame it is that Obama is, by his own admission, trying to fundamentally transform America.
His transforming vision means continuing to expand the welfare state, major tax hikes, increased spending and obstructing reform of our already insolvent entitlement programs, the major debt drivers that are leading us toward the real "fiscal cliff."
Obama's policies in furtherance of his vision -- as clearly laid out during the campaign and even more so during these "fiscal cliff" negotiations -- left unchecked will complete the fiscal destruction of the nation.
So if you insist, don't call it intentional destruction. Call it, euphemistically, "the intentional fundamental transformation of America that will necessarily destroy her."