Try to imagine a member of the Bush administration firing a lower level employee because they had learned of an impending embarrassing media story. It would never happen. As much as I disagreed with nearly every policy promoted by the previous administration, I have to admit that no matter how idiotic and counterproductive the policy, they could carry a message, stick to a script and get their programs enacted-- we have 40,000 needlessly maimed and killed soldiers as evidence, but that's another topic.
Where is the revolution I voted for in 2008? Not only are many of Obama's policies Bush-light, but he has been only able to pass lukewarm health care reform, wimpy financial regulation and anemic economic stimulus, and even in the every day management of personnel, Obama's administration has faltered. Who fires someone without all the facts? If his cabinet members wet their pants over a potential Glenn Beck story, then it's no wonder they couldn't champion a public option in health care, and what chance is there that Afghanistan won't become another Vietnam?
Let's roll some Olbermann, who is growing weary of the Obama diplomacy to the dingbats:
Tom Vilsack didn't first look at the whole videotape, didn't first ask if the event took place when Ms. Sherrod worked for USDA, and not 24 years ago."We could have waited all day, we could have had a media circus," said the Deputy Chief of Staff at the White House. "But we took decisive action and it's a good example of how to respond in this atmosphere."......"Can you give us some, specifically, some things that he said that would help us?," Mr. Gibbs was asked at this afternoon's press briefing. "Well again," Mr. Gibbs replied, "I think he, he talked about the fact that, that, that a disservice had been done here and an injustice had happened."......He was quoting you Mr. President. Fired up!? "A disservice has been done." Fired up!? "An injustice had happened." Mr. President, it is beyond admirable that in your position, and at this time of fearful division in this country, that you view yourself as President of everyone, not —as your predecessor did — only as President just of those who voted for you....But you must, at long last, Sir, come to terms with the fact that while you have spent these first 18 months and one day of your presidency bending over backwards for those others, they have spent this time insisting you are not actually president, or you are a communist, or you are bent on destroying whatever is starring this week in the paranoid fantasies churned out by Fox News and the farcical Breitbart.......As you stay silent and neutral and everybody's President, they are gradually convincing racists that they are civil rights leaders and you are Police Chief Bull Connor. And then some idiot at Fox news barks, and your people throw an honorable public servant under the nearest bus, just for the sake of 'decisive action' and the correct way to respond in this atmosphere.......Mr. President, please stop trying to act, every minute, like some noble, neutral figure, chairing a government of equal and dispassionate minds, and contemplative scholars. It is a freaking war out here, and the imagined consensus you seek is years in the future, if ever it is to be re-discovered.......Sir, get a copy of the Michael Douglas movie "The American President." When you get to the line where he says "I was so busy keeping my job, I forgot to do my job" — hit the rewind button. Twenty times. "Fired up?" "FIRED up?" Anybody? Anybody?
Exactly. Falling for a Breitbart scam can be conveniently pinned on Vilsack, but the otherwise miquetoast response is vintage Obama and is symptomatic of a sick presidency. As with every opposing camp, the right wing nutjobs who cautioned that Obama may be too naive to be President spoke some truth. The paradox is that we all want someone untainted by Washington, but then require him to operate within the crucible. The last President had the benefit of a sociopathic Vice-President who was cut from the coarsest fabric of DC, having served in some of most corrupt Administration's in history, and could inoculate the Administration from attack. Mr. Cheney had experience and mentored George in the ways of deceit and disinterest. Mr. Obama's team has not been as effective.
Let's face it, Obama won largely because a
senile increasingly senescent sailor who serves in the Senate from a landlocked state picked a beauty queen as his running mate. Sure, many of us romanticized that Obama could change the paradigm, but the hard fact is that Palin lost that election as much as Obama won it. So let's disabuse ourselves of the fact that the paradigm has shifted in any substantive way, as we send more billions down the rat hole of Asian wars and see more people lose their jobs and health care while Wall Street shovels dollars into their coffers, and now concentrate on the work-a-day business of navigating the nation out of the most treacherous waters in recent history.
President Obama would do well to tune out the cacophony from the Breitbarts and the Becks, and assume, as many of us have for years, that they are full of shit; nothing they say has merit and most likely their "facts" are outright lies. The operating thesis is that President Obama is a one termer, so he should attempt to do as much as he can now, and don't plan on cleaning up the loose ends after the 2012 election. If you do get re-elected, great, but until then, live in the now.