Free Markets, Free People

More Dissension

It can’t be hate or racism because both of these guys are huge Obama supporters:

Sooner or later it is going to occur to Barack Obama that he is the president of the United States. As of yet, though, he does not act that way, appearing promiscuously on television and granting interviews like the presidential candidate he no longer is. The election has been held, but the campaign goes on and on. The candidate has yet to become commander in chief.

Those are pretty strong words, again alluding – no not alluding – flat out stating that there has been a whole lot of rah, rah going on and no leadership exhibited. And it is WaPo’s Richard Cohen uttering them. He goes on to describe the incident at the G20 meeting which he calls one that had “a faux Cuban missile crisis quality to it”. Lots of drama and stern visages, but not much substance as the leaders revealed something their countries had known about for years and only did so because Iran had made it known the previous week.

Cohen then advises:

For a crisis such as this, the immense prestige of the American presidency ought to be held in reserve. Let the secretary of state issue grave warnings. When Obama said in Pittsburgh that Iran is “going to have to come clean and they are going to have to make a choice,” it had the sound of an ultimatum. But what if the Iranians don’t? What then? A president has to be careful with such language. He better mean what he says.

Indeed. And as we all know, the Secretary of State has been missing in action. If there is TV face time to be had, this president is going to elbow his way to the front. And that’s something else Cohen is tired of – seeing him on the tube. He says we should see much less of him. Frankly I agree, but am hoping he ignores the advice and continues to over-expose himself.

Cohen has also caught on to the “tell ’em what they want to hear at the time and then change your mind later” rhetoric that is common with Obama:

The trouble with Obama is that he gets into the moment and means what he says for that moment only. He meant what he said when he called Afghanistan a “war of necessity” — and now is not necessarily so sure. He meant what he said about the public option in his health-care plan — and then again maybe not. He would not prosecute CIA agents for getting rough with detainees — and then again maybe he would.

What Cohen is dancing around actually saying is something which was said of Bill Clinton, “he’s a particularly good liar”.

Cohen ends his lament with this:

Most tellingly, he gave Congress an August deadline for passage of health-care legislation — “Now, if there are no deadlines, nothing gets done in this town . . . ” — and then let it pass. It seemed not to occur to Obama that a deadline comes with a consequence — meet it or else.

Obama lost credibility with his deadline-that-never-was, and now he threatens to lose some more with his posturing toward Iran. He has gotten into a demeaning dialogue with Ahmadinejad, an accomplished liar. (The next day, the Iranian used a news conference to counter Obama and, days later, Iran tested some intermediate-range missiles.) Obama is our version of a Supreme Leader, not given to making idle threats, setting idle deadlines, reversing course on momentous issues, creating a TV crisis where none existed or, unbelievably, pitching Chicago for the 2016 Olympics. Obama’s the president. Time he understood that.

But he doesn’t. He doesn’t at all. He has no reason to understand that because he has no experience in the type job he now holds. He’s a firm believer in his ability to persuade in a job that, like it or not, requires leadership and the use of power, intimidation and action.

And that brings me to the second of the dissillusioned – Marty Peretz at The New Republic’s “The Spine”:

The secretary of defense, Robert Gates, revealed two hush-hush secrets on television this morning.

1. that Iran intended to develop nuclear weapons. No sh*t!

2. that the matter of closing Guantanamo was “more complicated than we thought.” Surprise, surprise.

The first of these revelations is especially significant. What does it say about the president’s adventures in sympatico diplomacy? This is hard to say: but I believe it’s an utter failure.

And why is that? Because international politics is a form of anarchy, and that sort of an approach is seen as a sign of weakness to be exploited. So Iran, as it usually does, will make all the right noises at the appropriate time to try to lessen sanctions, but whether successful or not, it will continue to pursue its nuclear goals. As for Gitmo – has Obama learned that posturing is much easier than governing yet? The answer is no. In his UN speech he lauded himself for “ordering Guantanomo closed” on his first day and then a few days later it is announced that it won’t close on his extended deadline.

That is a perfect example of what Richard Cohen sees as problematic with this presidency. Obama considers the fact that he  “ordered” something done to be an accomplishment. The rest of the world won’t consider it one until Gitmo is closed. He doesn’t seem to understand that difference.

See health care reform.  Heck, see just about anything.



20 Responses to More Dissension

  • Erb has decreed Obama as a great leader; therefore it is so. Only those with ODS can deny it.

  • McQObama considers the fact that “ordered” something done to be an accomplishment. The rest of the world won’t consider it one until Gitmo is closed. He doesn’t seem to understand that difference.

    I suggest that he DOES see the difference. TAO believes (not without reason) that the American people are a pack of gullible fools who will believe anything he tells us. And why not? He’s been getting away with that since he started his campaign.

    The problem is that people like Ahmadinnahjacket, Hugo, Kim Jong-Poofy Hair, and even allies like Brown, das Merkel, and Sarkozy don’t get their news from the NYT, the LAT, CNN, MSNBC, or HuffPo: they KNOW that TAO is a serial liar. They KNOW that his “promises” come with an expiration date. They KNOW that he’s in over his head, rudderless, feckless, and enthralled by the sound of his own voice as it mouths the empty platitudes he reads off his teleprompter. They KNOW that his speeches are intended solely for political purposes, that they are intended sole for the American voter. They KNOW they can roll him like a whore can roll a drunk.

  • “They KNOW they can roll him like a whore can roll a drunk.”

    Now the big question becomes which whore is gonna roll the drunk? (Under the bus?)

  • The engineering that brought Obama into the presidency never equipped him for the actual job of President. That’s the good news.

    The bad news is that now a Washington Post liberal like Cohen wants him give it a try.

    I don’t think that’s going to be good for the United States.

    Obama should defer to McChrystal and Petraeus on Afghanistan.

    Support the Israelis and let them deal with the Iranian nuclear facilities.

    Let the Europeans argue with Putin.

    And then stay go on vacation as often as the urge strikes him.

    Other moves that would be encouraging:

    Get that malignant rot known as Rahm Emanuel out of the White House.

    Tell the Republicans to put their free market reforms of the medical industry all on the table at once, take all the boondoggles out of the health care bill, dress it up with a little free stuff for the hapless among the uninsured, and sign it.

    Walk away from Waxman-Markey.

    Stop the class/race warfare talk.

    Which all adds up to essentially becoming someone else. Not a bad idea.

  • But Erb said Obama was doing fantastic on the international scene!!

  • I’m still trying to figure out exactly where has “America’s image” improved (and do they matter) ?

    Obama has the British, the French, the Poles, the Czechs and a few more I can’t remember throughly angry with him. Nicolas Sarkozy has called him an “empty suit”. It’s some feat for a left leaning President to lose the French. (Hiliary must be wondering when she can bail without looking like she is bailing)

    Seems that Sarkozy (and Brown) wanted to bring up the Iranian nuclear factory at the UN on Thursday, last week, but Obama wanted “to play” nuclear disarmer for a day in his chance to chair the UN Security Council. On Friday in Pittsburgh, Obama really still didn’t want to spoil the day with those nasty Iranian matters, but the Iranians had the gall to inform the IAEA of the new nuclear plant two weeks ago and it leaked out, so it had to be dealt with, much to Obama’s dislike. The French now see him as so naive and full of himself that he doesn’t realize just how naive he is. The result is that the man is dangerous.

    Europe is now seeing first hand what it is like when America fails to lead and they don’t like it one bit.

    • By the way, let me be the first to predict that Rio will get the 2016 Olympic Games.

      Obama has now made a personal effort to bring the games to Chicago. Based on the European view of Obama, they will do their best to give it to Rio. Saying “No” to a US President will give them a special pleasure, especially seeing that this would be personal with no strategic importance.

      Revenge is a dish best served cold.

      • The IOC members probably still remember getting duped about the weather in Atlanta, so maybe they’ll actually do some research this time. But less than 10% of the IOC lost their voting rights after the Salt Lake scandal, a few after London got awarded their games and both cities kept the Olympics.

        No matter how weak Obama is at actually leading, he still has connections to the dirtiest political machine in the free world. Nobody knows how to rig an election like Chicago. Granted, they can’t sneak a dead voter into the IOC; but with secret ballots, you’ll never know who broke ranks for profit.

  • I had some fun and went and scanned some kos komment threads after the public option was voted down anymore. What astounded me was how *many* still believe that Obama will do something to include the “public option” in a final bill and get it passed. Now, maybe they know something I don’t, I can’t completely discount that possibility. But there is a lot of anger and frustration beginning to boil around the edges, and for whatever reason this frustration, on both left and right, has seized upon this health bill as it’s manifestation.

    If Obama can’t get the public option through, the left is going to *explode* in anger – they’re on the edge of that today. This will be the tipping point; as Jim DeMint said, this will be Obama’s Waterloo.

    And once support on the left collapses, the absolute failure of his ability to lead will be evident on *every* other issue, especially on international affairs.

    It’s almost as though we are approaching a singularity – events are beginning to happen faster and faster and consequences grow larger every day. What happens on the day we breach the event horizon? Where do we go as a nation then?

    • Michael Moore threaten to work against Democrats who don’t do .. whatever.

      But really, where do the KosKids have to go if they lose faith in Obama ?

      Obama is about as good as their are going to get for the next decade or two.

      • Where do the KosKids go if they lose faith in Obama? It is not where they will go, it is where they won’t go: To the voting booths.

        As has been documented to some extent by esr on his blog (including in the comments on his recent ACORN post), current Democratic electoral dominance is a lot more fragile than it looks, or even than they realize. The demographics are not swinging their way. People are currently talking about how the Republicans might pick up the House again, but I personally think it will be a bloodbath because so far the Democrats have shown no awareness of what the problem is and have no ability to fix it.

        Unfortunately, getting the Republicans in will at best only delay the Tea-Party-type anger unless they really figure out what those things mean, which they are also ignorant of. I wouldn’t be surprised that that is the point where a real third party emerges, when both the Democrats and the Republicans both prove they are clueless in back-to-back elections.

        • Jeremy BowersUnfortunately, getting the Republicans in will at best only delay the Tea-Party-type anger unless they really figure out what those things mean, which they are also ignorant of.

          Exactly right.

          It seems to me that the health care takeover debate has really highlighted the disconnect between the DC / NYC elites and the rest of us.

          Who do members of Congress and MiniTru talk and hobnob with? Where do they get their information?

          FROM EACH OTHER.

          It’s a very incestuous and increasingly isolated little world they’ve got up there, made up of aging politicos and “journalists” (hah!) who’ve lived and worked in the same place and with the same people for decades. They don’t even share the same general reality as the rest of us.

          — Only in DC is a lie passed off as mere “spin”.

          — Only in DC is a reduction in the rate of increase called “a cut”.

          — Only in DC is it possible to merely rename a bill or program and pretend that it’s really something new.

          — Only in DC is it possible to vote one way and later claim the opposite and be believed.

          — Only in DC is it acceptable to use public money as a personal slush fund (earmarks).

          — Only in DC is it possible to lie about one’s work and be REWARDED for it.

          — Only in DC is it acceptable to never give a straight answer to a straight question.

          — Only in DC can you pretend to tell the truth and everybody else will pretend to believe you.

          These people live in a fantasy world.

          So, I agree: the GOP hasn’t figured it out, either. They never will.

    • Where do we go as a nation then?

      Gore Vidal says that the US will descend into a military dictatorship (but when was the last time he was right about anything political ?).

      • I have to say, Gore Vidal has some batshit crazy ideas, but he was actually pretty accurate when he attacked Obama. It sort of makes you do a double take, when you read one sentence and think “that’s right”, and when you read the next you think “that’s insane”.


  • The World likes an ineffectual America – they can then do whatever they want. This is what escapes the Libs.

    • That’s what happened in the era after Vietnam and before Reagan.

      The Soviets rose up off of their bed at history’s hospice and had a late rally.

      Enter Reagan, who slammed the door on them.

  • I’m told that Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and chief economic adviser Lawrence Summers have both complained to senior Wall Street execs that they have almost no say in major policy decisions. Obama economic counselor Paul Volcker, the former Fed chairman, is barely consulted at all on just about anything — not even issues involving the banking system, of which he is among the world’s leading authorities.

    At most, the economic people and their staffs get asked to do cost analyses of Obama’s initiatives for the White House political people — who then ignore their advice.

    Wow. Worse than I thought.

  • Not even a “stern” letter …

    The UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), has thanked Iran for providing the agency with information about the construction of its new pilot enrichment plant.