In 2004 Obama said “I am a believer in knowing what you’re doing when you apply for a job” and ruled out running for President in 2008, saying “if I were to seriously consider running on a national ticket I would essentially have to start now.”
Then he added:
“Now there’s some people who might be comfortable doing that, but I’m not one of those people.”
And yet he did just that.
Senators do not often become Presidents. Senators are coddled. They get to strut and primp but really aren’t responsible for much. Governors and Presidents are executives and have to make decisions and have to be responsible for them.
Obama has had no executive experience. He has never been responsible for much of anything during his entire life. Now Barack Obama is way over his head. And it’s getting noticed:
Presidents are hostage to events, goes the old political axiom. But that’s a half-truth. Presidencies rise and fall far more by their response to great events than to the event itself.
And by a lack of response.
This issue comes down to presidential leadership. The British Petroleum crisis clearly placed Obama’s presidency in crisis a couple weeks back. Yet the status quo endured. The media pile on ensued. Impressions solidified. This is what happens when the president does not meet the moment.
History tells us how it happens. Perceptions contrast with promises. The measure of the president appears smaller than the problems before him. Presidencies, subtly and at similar junctures, turn south for a long winter.
“The good presidents are able to basically survive these kinds of events, rarely are they able control of them. They find strong political and strategic responses,” said Princeton political historian Julian Zelizer. “The bad presidents make the crisis seem greater than the presidency.”
This turning point is often gradual. Not made by one event. And like all crossroads, clearest in the rear view mirror. But when the perception goes from good to bad on great events, the entire presidency goes bad.
Obama is used to voting “present.” He is accustomed to waiting out events and seeking shelter in the popular outcome. People are mistaking Obama’s not giving a damn for being aloof, cool and detached.
The president’s emotive distance from the tragedy too great. The aloofness too constant. The expressions of anger and empathy too contrived. The crisis too far along.
FDR most famously took command of like times. His response to the crisis won the public — and historic gains in the midterm elections — despite the Great Depression languishing on. It was not the solution but the response. In Roosevelt, as Zelizer put it, “Americans saw someone from the White House doing as much as anyone could see possible. That’s in contrast to the current administration on the oil spill and, many would say, on jobs.”
Obama’s effort to highlight his command has only underlined his failures. This week he told NBC that he talks to his experts “so I know whose ass to kick.” It was like hearing Spock swear.
Obama “went street” to show his anger- and he had to be pushed into that by Spike Lee. The problem is, it’s not real. When you have to tell people how much you care or how angry you are, you don’t and you’re not.
His arrogance, his naivete, his Mea Culpa Americana has not served him well. George Bush had far better success at the UN than Obama.
“It is ironic that Bush had a far better record at the U.N. than Obama, as there was a unanimous UNSC vote under Bush, and Obama has lost it,” said Elliott Abrams, a deputy national security adviser under Bush. He said the reason is not that the Iranians’ behavior has improved, because “the clock keeps ticking, and Iran gets closer and closer to a bomb.” The reason, Abrams said, “is simply that American weakness has created a vacuum, and other states are trying to step into it.”
Bolton argues that the administration’s willingness to operate within the U.N. system left it at a negotiating disadvantage. “Everyone believes the Obama administration is joined at the hip to the council, which is a position of negotiating weakness,” he said. “Weakness produces today’s result.”
The Gulf tragedy has has really shined a light on the rookie. Obama knew how bad the oil spill was likely to be right from the beginning, yet he continued to fundraise and “party like it’s 1999.” Senators can do that- they have staffs to worry about details. Presidents have to show leadership. After 9-11, George Bush stood on the pile of debris and led the nation. After the Deepwater Horizon sank, Obama teed it up and said…….nothing.
Obama blasted Bush’s response to Katrina as “unconscionable incompetence.” Bush flew over the Gulf two days after Katrina and Obama hammered him for it. Obama took eight days to even say anything and 13 days before he made his first visit. Obama has unwittingly vindicated Bush.
He is indeed flailing- internationally, domestically and economically.
Being President isn’t just golf, Wagyu beef and Paul McCartney. Surprise.
Obama has had the skids greased for him his entire career. With each event it seems as though he’s waiting for the guy with grease gun to show up again.
Lefties love to make a big deal of how intelligent and cerebral Obama is. Perhaps. Perhaps all of these events are simply boring to Obama and interfere with his vision of “fundamentally transforming” America into a collectivist utopia.
But as William Buckely said:
I’d rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University.
DrJohn has been a health care professional for more than 30 years. In addition to clinical practice he has done extensive research and has published widely with over 70 original articles and abstracts in the peer-reviewed literature. DrJohn is well known in his field and has lectured on every continent except for Antarctica. He has been married to the same wonderful lady for over 30 years and has three kids- two sons, both of whom are attorneys and one daughter on her way into the field of education.
DrJohn was brought up with the concept that one can do well if one is prepared to work hard but nothing in life is guaranteed.
Except for liberals being foolish.