Thursday, March 05, 2009

Too Many Rookie Mistakes

It hasn't even been 2 months yet, and let's look at the how the President's doing:

1. After complaining about deficits in the Bush years, he signs one bill that makes President Bush look like a deficit hawk.

2. He's rude to the British Prime Minister, and he gets smacked down as an amateur by Putin/Medvedev. How's that so-called smart diplomacy going?

3. He picks a fight with--an entertainer? Dan Quayle tried that, and it didn't turn out so well for him.

Imagine, for a moment, if George Bush and his chief of staff had made coordinated and concerted attacks on Michael Moore, and suggested that the colorful left-wing fulminator — not Nancy Pelosi or Harry Reid — was the "true intellectual force" behind the Democratic party. Imagine the howls of protest. And, undoubtedly, the media would have focused on the propriety of a commander-in-chief and his advisers wasting time and political breath on an entertainer. And yet we have President Obama and his hammer, Rahm Emanuel, doing just that in a time of war and economic crisis, and the story is about... Republicans!
4. His political appointments are an embarrassment. Perhaps President Bush nominated a bunch of people who didn't pay taxes, but I don't remember that being the case.

Bottom line is, the man looks good. He speaks well. He's got cute kids. But he's not ready to be president.


Neko said...

1) All I can say is that I think that we are over due for another Tea Party.

2) But Darren, we were told that once Obama was elected the Europeans would welcome us with open arms...

3) As you brought up in a previous post, Bush didn't bad mouth his political enemies. He had more class than that. I don't know how he did it, but he took the abuse without striking back.

4) After he nominated the first tax fraud, shouldn't he have learned to double check the tax issues of any further nominees? It's now beyond a joke. The family dog has gotten more vetting than any of his nominees.

mazenko said...

Yet, he is. And will be for four, if not eight, more years. Thus, I hope he, like all great men, rises to the challenge. At this point, I don't see the criticisms as major points of concern.

The deficit has economic justification, even if it has ideological opposition. The GOP simply can't rationally comment on the deficit, when there is no significant argument for the increased spending being any more problematic than it has in the past.

You might consider Pearlstein's very astute analysis in the Post yesterday at:

As far as the Rush significance - at this point, it seems like a shrewd political move. Barack Obama is "no Dan Quayle."

Steve USMA '85 said...

One thing about the President being rude to the British PM, why is the only article about it the one you linked? I searched to see what other Brit media said about this and found absolutely nothing except links to the same article. If this was such a big deal, why haven't all the other British media sources picked up on it? Is this a case in which only one reporter had a problem?

I wonder simply because then a third of your argument's support crumbles.

PeggyU said...

Darren, I really think he's worse than incompetent. He does want the economy to fail, so he gave it a big shove in that direction. There is no other reason he would so glibly hand off the creation of the "stimulus" package to Pelosi and Reid, et al. He knows that they are like undisciplined children on a sugar binge, and he was counting on exactly the porker package he got. He wants us to be demoralized and dependent.

Steve USMA '85 said...

And to follow up, I found this later in the day:

It is an article that goes into detail about the thoughtful gifts the Brown gave to Obama and his family and the 'choice' gifts given in return.

Donalbain said...

He wasnt rude, he just didnt fawn over GB the way that GW fawned over Blair. Frankly, the British attitude to America has been embarrasing for quite some time. We simply don't figure as highly in US foreign policy as some of our politicians wish. At best we act as a convienient fig leaf. The sooner UK politicians realise that, the better.

rightwingprof said...

No, he isn't. Quayle is a great deal more intelligent and savvy than Obama -- and unlike Obama, Quayle has a moral compass.

Ellen K said...

This is a great example of communism in social behavior. They simply do not have a clue how to graciously receive a head of state. The UK blogs and news sites are seething. Why would Team Obama go out to offend one of our closest allies? As for the gathering storm, you may want to take a gander at my blog for an amusing/sad little list of the Taxes We All Pay. With falling property values and the taxes based on those amounts, we are only going to pay more. And by the way, just how long can Team Obama keep claiming this is a Bush legacy? Especially when Obama's every utterance drives the market to new lows? As for me, I am investing in teabags, pitchforks and lighter fluid.

Ellen K said...

Steve, you may want to check yesterday's links to RealClearPolitics-there were several stories.

allen (in Michigan) said...

I think you're getting a trifle ahead of yourself Mike with the use of the word "great" in reference to Obama.

Of course the left throws that term around pretty casually so I guess you can be excused but so far there's been nothing about Obama to suggest greatness and more then a little to suggest quite the opposite.

In fact, if I were to characterize my observations about both the man and the country's response to him I'd say that the tsunami of hysteria over his election subsided with gratifying swiftness, a good part of the country seemingly able to become indifferent to the color of the man's skin rather more quickly then either his ardent supporters or Obama himself were quite ready for.

As far as the immense deficit, and addition to the national debt that are in the offing, don't be a sap. There's no economic justification for these huge expenditures other then that the political power lies in the hands of those with no sense of responsibility to the public but ample facility when it comes to gassy rationalizations. Well, we voted for 'em and now we get to enjoy the fruit of our choice. May God have mercy on us all because we won't get any from our elected representatives.

We do have one point of agreement though. Targeting Rush Limbaugh was a shrewd political move. The diminishment of the presidency by the implied elevation of Rush Limbaugh to the status of official enemy is something that the nation will survive. It'll help Obama deflect some criticism from himself by giving the true believers, "moderates" such as yourself, a target for your disapproval and by sheer weight of numbers you'll convince some real moderates that New Deal Part Deux isn't quite the disaster it's shaping up to be.

mazenko said...


I'm not at all calling Obama great - I am hoping that he becomes great, as I think the US really needs that. I don't think it's impossible that he will be, though my point was that great men rise to the occasion. Whether he does so will be decided about four years from now and judged for decades after.

I also wouldn't align myself with "the left" that casually throws that word around, any more than I would the right that does the same. Remember the serious discussion of Reagan being added to Mt. Rushmore. Both the pragmatic conservative and the social moderate in me admire much about Ronald Reagan, but he is certainly not Rushmore- material.

Did you read Pearlstein's argument before calling me a "sap"? I'd being more inclined to graciously accept the insult if you could break down his numbers with a logical counter-argument.

I know you are opposed to practically any taxation or government spending, but arguing that the stimulus is purely driven by a lust for power is a bit too much conspiracy for me. My position is based on simple economics. Do you remember the hysteria about the economy crashing when the debt went over $1 trillion? I do. I also remember the ranting from Gingrich, Graham, and Limbaugh that the Clinton tax hikes were going to bring about a recession for the ages. That was right before our most massive economic expansion.

Thus, I tend to look a little more comprehensively at all the data, from both ideological positions, before drawing a conclusion.

Donalbain said...

Brown is not head of state.

Anonymous said...

"Brown is not head of state."

Yes. Queenie is head of state and Gordon Brown is head of the government.

Brown is, for all practical purposes, Obama's counterpart in the U.K. though.

For purposes of this thread/post, do we really care about "head of state" vs. "head of government" in a parliamentary system?

-Mark Roulo

allen (in Michigan) said...

Yeah well you're whistling past the graveyard Mike because as far as I can determine there's not a damned thing in Obama's past to indicate that he's anything other then a talented political hack. His primary skill to date seems to be to manipulate people who can do him some good and then dump them without a backward glance when they become a liability. Those don't strike me as talents consistent with greatness or even decency.

Maybe there's some greatness in the man but on the basis of his history I'd be happy if he turned out not to be more of a shortsighted, race- and class-panderer then he's already revealed himself to be.

Your example of even-handedness is nothing short of ludicrous. What's the point of bringing up some unnamed party's desire to memorialize Reagan by putting his face on Mount Rushmore? Whether you admired the man or detested him I can tell you with assurance that he'd have lined up unhesitatingly with the opposition to the plan.

As to whether Reagan was worthy of that sort of monumental memorialization, it's a silly question asked by people with little understanding of Reagan. That he was an important figure on par with some of the most important presidents is beyond question seeing as he managed the destruction of international communism with his encompassing of the destruction of the Soviet Union.

You are partially right in your characterization of my antipathy to most government expenditures but that's because I don't have as easy a time as you rationalizing the seizure of private property to satisfy my conceits.

You're not generous when you get upset that the welfare state has been partly disassembled. You're not compassionate when you advocate for socialized medicine. You're not courageous when you get terribly upset that there are still people who harbor racist feelings and you're not being magnanimous when you want to reach out the hand of friendship to those who have no interest in peace. Those are conceits and there's not much in them to engender respect even if they are popular conceits among otherwise rationale adults. Since satisfying those conceits is the force driving the left I find little to value on the left.

There are expenditures of which I wholeheartedly approve defense of the nation leading the list. Much beyond that and I think you're on shaky ground. I know that puts me at odds with the bulk of the nation but on the basis of the results of many, perhaps all, of those expenditures I'd say it's the bulk of the nation that has something to answer for, not me.

Darren said...

Just stumbled upon this article in the Telegraph. I wonder why Obama returned a bust of Winston Churchill? No reason was given in this piece.

rightwingprof said...

Because he'd much rather have a bust of Chamberlain, and it would be far more appropriate for Obama anyway.

Donalbain said...

The comparison to Michael Moore would be relevant if at least two major Democrats had felt the need to grovel to him for DARING to suggest he might be wrong. Sadly for the Republican Party, they are allowing a shock jock to set their agenda.