In many instances, didn’t Obama set the expectations he is failing to meet?

I really don’t want to be unsympathetic to Barack Obama, or any president, yes, including his predecessor, for having a strong ego and lots of self-confidence.  Deciding to run for a major party’s nomination, securing it and then running for election against the nominee of the opposing party are not for the short-winded, weak-willed or those racked with self-doubt.  In fact, I don’t want a president who lacks self-confidence.  But some explanation of things done or left undone at odds with campaign commitments, whether they be apologies for personal failings in key areas or simply thoughtful expositions of why one has chosen a path other than that proposed  need not undermine a healthy ego or a self-confident character.

A cynic might think Obama would rather run in 2012 against the background of a Republican Congress than with a Democratic one that had failed to meet public expectations and thus isn’t going to do more than the minimum to rally Democratic voters in a year when he is not on the ballot.  But that’s like deliberately choosing to enter the second half of the game behind rather than ahead of the other team.  It may be the modern political calculus but it takes some getting used to to accept that being in the lead the whole game isn’t better.

Glenn Greenwald (I know, him again) makes a list of items in which Obama has not only failed to live up fully to his campaign pledges but has either failed completely or has adopted the very policies he criticized when practiced by his predecessor.  Sometimes he’s gone farther than Bush did to make these latter policies unacceptable.

One thought on “In many instances, didn’t Obama set the expectations he is failing to meet?

  1. I don’t disagree with the criticism in this case and I, like many libruls, am disappointed in several of Obama’s decisions and lack of leadership skills. But, not to simplify, I always ask myself, how would it have been had McCain and that know-nothing twit been elected. As weak as the health care and banking reform bills may be, we wouldn’t even have any under a McCain administration. Even more simplistically, when was the last time anyone agreed with everything a president said or did?

    I think a lot of people have long and short term memory loss or lack understanding of the political process which always involves compromise: When Social Security was first introduced, it was nothing like it is today; it has taken years with lots of changes and amendments to make it a viable government program, socialistic as it may be. The Civil Rights Act wasn’t passed without compromise. The president doesn’t write the bills, Congress does (but I do wish Obama were a stronger negotiator – he’s no arm-twisting LBJ). In the history of this country, I don’t think another president has been faced with such a well-orchestrated concrete wall of obstructionism. Not one Republican has had the backbone to go up against McConnell and the Orange Man, probably because they’ve been threatened with having their campaign funds cut off. If that weren’t bad enough, yellow dog Democrats, mostly from the Land of Enlightenment, don’t support him. Over 20 of them are against ending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy! And I won’t even get into Reid.

    As a liberal daughter of the South, a rare disease, I’m all too familiar with the code words that add up to racism. In Obama’s case, it has gone beyond “code” to outright.

    I don’t know whether it has been due to naivete, youth or lack of experience, but Obama should have seen very early on that the GOP is in no way interested in bi-partisanship or frankly, the welfare of the country or even their own constituents. Their whole goal is to obstruct while ensuring their pockets are lined with silver. There used to be some astute, honorable and intelligent Republicans. Where are they now that the country needs them?

    I also think that for the first time in our history we’ve never had an extremist group get such extreme amounts of money from a large group of corporate moguls such as the Koch Brothers, the Coors family and Armey. The money behind the John Birch Society was small potatoes compared to financing and corrupting the minds of these extremists – paying for signs, buses, hotel rooms and meals is only a tiny aspect of it. If Fox News (and their $1.5M donation to the Republicans), Murdoch and the WSJ don’t scare the pants off of you, they should. They are far more frightening than Big Government.

    Obama is no dummy, so hopefully he’s doing his homework and will come out even smarter and stronger over the next two years. At any rate, because of the above and because of Tea Party stupidity in this video, I will not have to hold my nose when I vote for him in 2012.

    This is a video of interviews with attendees at Glenn Beck’s revival.

    But as ludicrous as all this is, nothing can top the report I read that Palin “might” appear on Dancing with the Stars. Is this bimbo all that the GOP can find for a presidential contender.


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