Last week's news from the political arena reminded us of the old Seinfeld episode, "Bizarro Jerry," where a group of new friends looked like, but were actually the exact opposite of the normal cast of characters in the show.

Suddenly, the mirror of the bold, obnoxious character was polite; the nervous neurotic was peaceful and content, etc.

So why do we see President Obama, the 2008 poster boy for the Populist movement and opponent of the wealthy class, once again rubbing elbows with Hollywood's rich and famous? The latest was a $40,000 a plate fundraiser for the president hosted by Sarah Jessica Parker in New York City.

And on Sunday morning, it was time for another round of golf for Democrat Number One his 100th visit to the links since becoming president. While many Obama defenders claim this is a badly needed outlet and time of relaxation for the overly-stressed commander-in-chief, others feel it sends the wrong message to the multitudes struggling in a depressed economy under his watch.

In fact, President George W. Bush gave up golfing in 2003, stating that it sent the wrong message to our troops.

"I don't want some mom whose son may have recently died to see the commander in chief playing golf," Bush said. "I feel I owe it to the families to be in solidarity as best as I can with them. And I think playing golf during a war just sends the wrong signal."

The leader of "the party of the people" should take note. There are still many U.S. soldiers serving in hostile environments and of course, we see the economic hardship all around us.

Although Democrats are trying to attach "the elite" tag to Mitt Romney, that label really wouldn't stick last weekend. While Bizarro Obama was sinning against his Populist theology, Romney was on his "Every Town Counts Bus Tour," which brought him to off-the-beaten-path places like Carbon County.

The strategy of Team Romney was to reach out to voters hopefully many undecideds in smaller cities and towns through the crucial battleground states like Pennsylvania and Ohio. The tour gave Romney a chance to hammer Obama where he is most vulnerable on the economy.

During his stop at Weatherly Casting and Machine Company, he mentioned a segment of the economy which affects the lives of many Pennsylvanians the coal industry.

"I believe in what's above the ground and what's below the ground," Romney told the crowd in zinging Obama's green energy-only strategy while ignoring coal and natural gas. "I want to use our oil, our natural gas, coal as well as our renewable resources as well."

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tom Smith, who is challenging Sen. Bob Casey, also said in a news conference last week that Obama and Casey's support for more federal regulations are job-killers. He called on Casey to support a Senate bill that would repeal certain EPA regulations which Republicans, like U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey feel are too restrictive.

Washington County Commissioner and Pennsylvania Treasurer Candidate Diana Irey Vaughan joined Smith, calling the coal industry a "long-time cornerstone" of the state's economy. She stated that Obama's energy strategy will cost the nation 50,000 direct jobs and 250,000 indirect jobs, with southwestern Pennsylvania bearing a great deal of the impact.

As President Reagan reminded us nearly three decades ago, government is not the solution government is the problem.

By Jim Zbick

jzbick@tnonline.com