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Author: Subject: NY Times- Frank Rich - Does Obama Suffer From Stockholm Syndrome?

Zen Peach





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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 06:26 PM
" The cliché criticisms of Obama are (from the left) that he is a naïve centrist, not the audacious liberal that Democrats thought they were getting, and (from the right) that he is a socialist out to impose government on every corner of American life. But the real problem is that he’s so indistinct no one across the entire political spectrum knows who he is."

quote:
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/05/opinion/05rich.html?_r=2

December 4, 2010

All the President’s Captors

By FRANK RICH

THOSE desperate to decipher the baffling Obama presidency could do worse than consult an article titled “Understanding Stockholm Syndrome” in the online archive of The F.B.I. Law Enforcement Bulletin. It explains that hostage takers are most successful at winning a victim’s loyalty if they temper their brutality with a bogus show of kindness. Soon enough, the hostage will start concentrating on his captors’ “good side” and develop psychological characteristics to please them — “dependency; lack of initiative; and an inability to act, decide or think.”

This dynamic was acted out — yet again — in President Obama’s latest and perhaps most humiliating attempt to placate his Republican captors in Washington. No sooner did he invite the G.O.P.’s Congressional leaders to a post-election White House summit meeting than they countered his hospitality with a slap — postponing the date for two weeks because of “scheduling conflicts.” But they were kind enough to reschedule, and that was enough to get Obama to concentrate once more on his captors’ “good side.”

And so, as the big bipartisan event finally arrived last week, he handed them an unexpected gift, a freeze on federal salaries. Then he made a hostage video hailing the White House meeting as “a sincere effort on the part of everybody involved to actually commit to work together.” Hardly had this staged effusion of happy talk been disseminated than we learned of Mitch McConnell’s letter vowing to hold not just the president but the entire government hostage by blocking all legislation until the Bush-era tax cuts were extended for the top 2 percent of American households.

The captors will win this battle, if they haven’t already by the time you read this, because Obama has seemingly surrendered his once-considerable abilities to act, decide or think. That pay freeze made as little sense intellectually as it did politically. It will save the government a scant $5 billion over two years and will actually cost the recovery at least as much, since much of that $5 billion would have been spent on goods and services by federal workers with an average yearly income of $75,000. By contrast, the extension of the Bush tax cuts to the $250,000-plus income bracket will add $80 billion to the deficit in two years, much of which will just be banked by the wealthier beneficiaries.

Obama didn’t even point out this discrepancy — as he might have, had he chosen to make a stirring call for shared sacrifice rather than just hand the Republicans a fiscal olive branch that they could then use as a stick to beat him. He was too busy tending to his other announcement of the week: dispatching Timothy Geithner to lead “negotiations” with the Republicans on the tax cuts. This presidency has been one long blur of such “negotiations” — starting with the not-on-C-Span horse-trading that allowed corporate players to blunt health care and financial regulatory reform. Next up is a “negotiation” with the United States Chamber of Commerce, which has spent well over $100 million trying to shoot down Obama’s policies over the last two years. It’s enough to arouse nostalgia for the “beer summit” with Henry Louis Gates Jr. and the Cambridge cop, which at least was transparent and did no damage to the public interest.

The cliché criticisms of Obama are (from the left) that he is a naïve centrist, not the audacious liberal that Democrats thought they were getting, and (from the right) that he is a socialist out to impose government on every corner of American life. But the real problem is that he’s so indistinct no one across the entire political spectrum knows who he is. A chief executive who repeatedly presents himself as a conciliator, forever searching for the “good side” of all adversaries and convening summits, in the end comes across as weightless, if not AWOL. A Rorschach test may make for a fine presidential candidate — when everyone projects their hopes on the guy. But it doesn’t work in the Oval Office: These days everyone is projecting their fears on Obama instead.

I don’t agree with almost anything Chris Christie, the new Republican governor of New Jersey, has to say. But the popularity of his leadership right now is instructive. New Jersey has voted Democratic in every presidential election since 1992, with Obama carrying the state by a landslide margin of almost 15 percentage points. Yet Christie now has a higher approval number (51 percent) in the latest Quinnipiac state poll than either Obama or New Jersey’s two senators, both Democrats.

Christie’s popularity among national right-wing activists and bloggers has been stoked by a viral YouTube video where he dresses down a constituent in a manner that recalls Ralph Kramden sending Alice “to the moon.” But the core of Christie’s appeal at home is that he explains passionately held views in concrete, plain-spoken detail. Voters know what he stands for and sometimes respect him for his forthrightness even when they reject the stands themselves. This extends to his signature issue — his fiscal and rhetorical blows against public education. He’s New Jersey’s most popular statewide politician despite the fact that a 59 percent majority in the state thinks public schools deserve more taxpayer money, not less.

G.O.P. propagandists notwithstanding, Christie’s appeal does not prove that New Jersey (and therefore the country) has “turned to the right.” It does prove that people want a leader with a strong voice, even if only to argue with it.

No one expects Obama to imitate Christie’s in-your-face, bull-in-the-china-shop shtick. But they have waited in vain for him to stand firm on what matters to him and to the country rather than forever attempting to turn non-argumentative reasonableness into its own virtuous reward. It’s clear now the shellacking was not the hoped-for wake-up call. For starters, Obama might have robustly challenged the election story line pushed by the G.O.P. both before and after Nov. 2 — that deficit eradication and tax cuts for all are voters’ No. 1 priority. Repeating it constantly — as McConnell and John Boehner do, brilliantly — does not make it true. But the myth becomes reality if there’s no leader to trumpet the counternarrative.

In the summer before the election, the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll (of June 21) found that only 15 percent of respondents thought the deficit should be the government’s top priority (behind jobs and economic growth, at 33 percent); the Washington Post/ABC News survey just a week before Election Day found that only 7 percent chose the deficit as the most important issue influencing their vote (again well behind the economy, at 37 percent). After constant G.O.P. fear-mongering about the budget — some of it echoed, rather than countered, by Obama — deficit reduction did jump to first place in Nov. 2 exit polls as voters’ highest priority for the next Congress. The disciplined Republican message had turned the deficit into a catchall synonym for America’s entire economic health. But at 40 percent, deficit reduction still was neck and neck with “spending to create jobs” (37 percent). Cutting taxes was chosen by only 18 percent.

We’re now at the brink of a new economic disaster that will eventually yank a chicken out of every pot. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities calculates that the extended Bush-era tax cuts will contribute by far the largest share to the next decade’s deficits — ahead of the recession’s drain on tax revenues, Iraq and Afghanistan war spending, TARP and Obama’s stimulus. The new Congress’s plan to block any governmental intervention on behalf of 15 million-plus jobless Americans guarantees that the unemployment rate, back up to 9.8 percent as of Friday, will remain intractable too.

Obama should have pounded home the case against profligate tax cuts for the wealthiest before the Democrats lost the Senate. Even now Warren Buffett — not a socialist, by the way — is making the case with a Christie-esque directness that usually eludes the president. “The rich are always going to say that, you know, just give us more money and we’ll all go out and spend more, and then it will trickle down to the rest of you,” he told Christiane Amanpour on “This Week” last Sunday. “But that has not worked the last 10 years, and I hope the American public is catching on.”

Everyone will have caught on by 2012, but that will be too late for many jobless Americans, let alone for Obama. As the economics commentator Jeff Madrick wrote in The Huffington Post, the unemployment rate has been above 7 percent only four times in a presidential election year since World War II — and in three of the four the incumbent lost (Ford, Carter, the first Bush). Reagan did win in 1984 with an unemployment rate of 7.2 percent, but the rate was falling rapidly (from a high of 10.8 two years earlier), and Reagan was as clear-cut in his leadership as Christie (only nicer).

But as Madrick adds, there has never been a sitting president over that period who has had to run with an unemployment rate as high as 8 percent — which is precisely where the Fed’s most recent forecasts predict the rate could be mired when Obama faces the voters again in 2012. You’d think he’d be one Stockholm Syndrome victim with every incentive to break out.




 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 06:29 PM
quote:
http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,2035270,00.html

One Nation
What Obama Needs to Come Back: Luck

By Mark Halperin

Monday, Dec. 06, 2010

The coalition that got Barack Obama elected President just two years ago has been shattered. Gaming out the trajectory of the next two years can be done any number of ways, but Obama's efforts to rebuild a politically robust alliance will be the most telling. It may be the biggest challenge of his career — and he will need happenstance along with skill if he is going to get it done.

A survey of the political landscape shows that many groups who were part of the 2008-09 Obama coalition have turned on him. Liberals believe he is an overcompromising wimp. (See blistering recent columns by progressive icons Paul Krugman and Frank Rich of the New York Times for a taste of what the left thinks of "their" President now.) The business community considers Obama ignorant about markets at best, a socialist at worst (O.K., some business people entertain an even harsher assessment). The media, after aiding and abetting his ride to the White House, now see the President as incompetent and overwhelmed. The independents and Republicans who backed him for office currently feel he is too liberal and too weak to do the job. These trends are all worse in Washington and among opinion leaders than they are in the country at large, but the views of elites are clearly shaping how the President is perceived by the nation in general.

With unemployment high and promising to stay there, it is nearly impossible in the short term for Obama to shift opinion and be seen as a successful President. But he can't achieve anything in 2011 and 2012, or get re-elected, unless he can win back support from some of his core groups.

The already tiresome debate about what Obama should do to launch a comeback tells only part of the story. Yes, he needs to show people what he stands for, fight for what he believes, compromise with Republicans when it's sensible, reshape his circle of advisers and focus on job growth and deficit reduction. But those are all tall orders, and they run counter to Obama's instincts, the political realities of American politics for the last generation, or both.

Even if the President somehow sloughs off that Spock-like laconic demeanor and dispatches his fired-up-and-ready-to-go persona, he isn't going to be able to change many of the dynamics that have weakened him. Republicans are emboldened by the results of the midterm elections and by their continued discipline and verve in driving the same message since Election Day (and likely well into 2011). They believe they can beat Obama for re-election and will stay on their winning path as long as it is working. Liberals, frustrated and rattled, are poised to cry betrayal whenever the President cooperates with the GOP. And the rancid freak show of the politico-media industrial complex is as toxic as ever.

Should Obama effectively confront these dynamics, he will still need some luck. Busy as he's been, he has not yet experienced a single major moment that has benefited him politically. The most dramatic events of his term — the BP oil spill, the passage of the health-care law, the arms-control agreement with Russia — have had either no impact or a negative influence on Obama's standing.

No one wants the country to suffer another catastrophe. But when a struggling Bill Clinton was faced with the Oklahoma City bombing and a floundering George W. Bush was confronted by 9/11, they found their voices and a route to political revival. Perhaps Obama's crucible can be positive — the capture of Osama bin Laden, the fall of the Iranian regime, a dramatic technological innovation that revitalizes American manufacturing — something to reintroduce him to the American people and show the strengths he demonstrated as a presidential candidate.

While he negotiates his way through the lame-duck session of Congress, prepares for his State of the Union address and budget, and braces for the new normals of 2011, the President had better figure out how to react when the moment comes. Without that moment — whatever it is — and strong leadership in its wake, Obama may find his luck has run out.








 

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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 07:09 PM
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.
 

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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 09:27 PM
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.


And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...

 

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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 10:54 PM
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.


And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...


You know that and I know that but I don't think "everybody" "knows" that as you will soon find out I suspect.

 

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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 11:03 PM
I think he's handled himself well considering what was handed to him. tell me who would have done better?.

 

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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 11:31 PM
quote:
I think he's handled himself well considering what was handed to him. tell me who would have done better?.


That seems to be the mantra now. Kinda like saying "Well, at least it's only herpes instead of gonnoreah." And how has he "handled himself well" by the way? And to your question as to who would have done better?

As it turns out, just about anyone...

 

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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 11:32 PM
quote:
quote:
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.


And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...


You think that and I that but I don't think "everybody" "thinks" that as you will soon find out I suspect.


Edited for better accuracy.


No I prefer it the way I had it. Hope that helps.

 

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  posted on 12/6/2010 at 11:33 PM
quote:
quote:
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.


And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...


You think that and I that but I don't think "everybody" "thinks" that as you will soon find out I suspect.


Edited for better accuracy.


Congratulations Otie my boy, you've just been promoted to "Captain Obvious"

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 12:38 AM
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.
And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...
While I'm certainly no Obama fan, I wonder how much of this dissatisfaction comes from unrealistic expectations of the power of the Presidency - and govt in general.

The saddest thing I noted about the last Presidential election was watching our fellow citizens - and large parts of the media - fall head-first into a swoon over a guy with no record of achievement and a nebulous feel-good message of "hope". The fact that so many fell for the belief that a President, or the Federal govt, could somehow mend lives and offer new opportunities shows something far more troubling: a serious loss of understanding the structure of American success and freedom.

Our success did not come about because of the deep thinking, great planning, and micro-management by elected leaders in Washington. It is precisely the opposite. It came from people freed from the burden of capricious rulers or a meddling, overbearing govt. It is no coincidence that as the enumerated limits our Founders put in place to protect us from govt have become ignored, trampled, or forgotten by too many, our success has dimmed and our struggles have increased. Only by reversing that direction will we begin to climb from the mess we have created.

As long as a large percentage of our fellow citizens continue to reinforce the failed belief that govt will save them by voting for politicians offering those false hopes, we will continue to have these cycles of hope and despair with our leadership. Its ironic that the very people who help catapult our current President to such lofty, unrealistic heights are now the first to help undercut him. I expect more of the same from guys like Mr. Rich.




[Edited on 12/7/2010 by Fujirich]

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 12:51 AM
quote:
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.
And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...
While I'm certainly no Obama fan, I wonder how much of this dissatisfaction comes from unrealistic expectations of the power of the Presidency - and govt in general.

The saddest thing I noted about the last Presidential election was watching our fellow citizens - and large parts of the media - fall head-first into a swoon over a guy with no record of achievement and a nebulous feel-good message of "hope". The fact that so many fell for the belief that a President, or the Federal govt, could somehow mend lives and offer new opportunities shows something far more troubling: a serious loss of understanding the structure of American success and freedom.

Our success did not come about because of the deep thinking, great planning, and micro-management by elected leaders in Washington. It is precisely the opposite. It came from people freed from the burden of capricious rulers or a meddling, overbearing govt. It is no coincidence that as the enumerated limits our Founders put in place to protect us from govt have become ignored, trampled, or forgotten by too many, our success has dimmed and our struggles have increased. Only by reversing that direction will we begin to climb from the mess we have created.

As long as a large percentage of our fellow citizens continue to reinforce the failed belief that govt will save them by voting for politicians offering those false hopes, we will continue to have these cycles of hope and despair with our leadership. Its ironic that the very people who help catapult our current President to such lofty, unrealistic heights are now the first to help undercut him. I expect more of the same from guys like Mr. Rich.




[Edited on 12/7/2010 by Fujirich]



I fell for it. But I won't get fooled again....until the next time.

What a sucker I am.

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 12:57 AM
I don't think I had unrealistic expectations of Obama. I did expect him to do the things he campaigned on, or at least try. Close Guantanamo, for a start.

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 01:40 AM
quote:
I don't think I had unrealistic expectations of Obama. I did expect him to do the things he campaigned on, or at least try. Close Guantanamo, for a start.
From what I can tell, you have a whole life built around self-reliance SCB - something to be proud of. Its not surprising that your expectations would be more reasonable. I'm not sure that can be said for many at the core of Obama's constituency.

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 09:15 AM
quote:
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.
And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...
While I'm certainly no Obama fan, I wonder how much of this dissatisfaction comes from unrealistic expectations of the power of the Presidency - and govt in general.

The saddest thing I noted about the last Presidential election was watching our fellow citizens - and large parts of the media - fall head-first into a swoon over a guy with no record of achievement and a nebulous feel-good message of "hope". The fact that so many fell for the belief that a President, or the Federal govt, could somehow mend lives and offer new opportunities shows something far more troubling: a serious loss of understanding the structure of American success and freedom.

Our success did not come about because of the deep thinking, great planning, and micro-management by elected leaders in Washington. It is precisely the opposite. It came from people freed from the burden of capricious rulers or a meddling, overbearing govt. It is no coincidence that as the enumerated limits our Founders put in place to protect us from govt have become ignored, trampled, or forgotten by too many, our success has dimmed and our struggles have increased. Only by reversing that direction will we begin to climb from the mess we have created.

As long as a large percentage of our fellow citizens continue to reinforce the failed belief that govt will save them by voting for politicians offering those false hopes, we will continue to have these cycles of hope and despair with our leadership. Its ironic that the very people who help catapult our current President to such lofty, unrealistic heights are now the first to help undercut him. I expect more of the same from guys like Mr. Rich.




[Edited on 12/7/2010 by Fujirich]


Great post. Fortunately the American electorate seems to resist continually electing a European stile social democratic government. The experts can't understand why. Hence books like "What's the Matter With Kansas?" They assume the people are being fooled into voting on stupid issues because they can't get past the marxian way of thinking that the world is a struggle between economic classes.

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 09:22 AM
quote:
Do you have a comment or is this another "wait until someone posts and jump all over them" bits? Anyone can read these things, we don't need you to post them.

Hope this helps.


Man is this a pot calling the kettle black post or what? I have seen so many senseless posts slung towards Derek and now you post another one about him making a wasted post LMAO

I for one enjoy these articles no matter who posts them I can not nor do I have the time to find them all.. so let it rest a bit of all the wasted bandwidth posts in the whipping post this one is hardly worthless and I am not jumping all over anything..

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 09:51 AM
quote:
The saddest thing I noted about the last Presidential election was watching our fellow citizens - and large parts of the media - fall head-first into a swoon over a guy with no record of achievement and a nebulous feel-good message of "hope". The fact that so many fell for the belief that a President, or the Federal govt, could somehow mend lives and offer new opportunities shows something far more troubling: a serious loss of understanding the structure of American success and freedom.


Getting rid of the f*****g idiot that held the office before Obama created a lot of excitement all on its own.

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 09:52 AM
quote:
The experts can't understand why. Hence books like "What's the Matter With Kansas?"


I can tell you a lot that's wrong with Kansas.

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 09:53 AM
I remember before Obama was nominated I expressed some reservation about him (I did end up voting for him since my choice was not perfect opponent but McCain/Palin) someone (can't remember who?) said "who is going to save the country?" I responded that I don't want someone to "save" the country. I want someone to "govern" the country.

 

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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 09:58 AM
quote:
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.
And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...
While I'm certainly no Obama fan, I wonder how much of this dissatisfaction comes from unrealistic expectations of the power of the Presidency - and govt in general.

The saddest thing I noted about the last Presidential election was watching our fellow citizens - and large parts of the media - fall head-first into a swoon over a guy with no record of achievement and a nebulous feel-good message of "hope". The fact that so many fell for the belief that a President, or the Federal govt, could somehow mend lives and offer new opportunities shows something far more troubling: a serious loss of understanding the structure of American success and freedom.

Our success did not come about because of the deep thinking, great planning, and micro-management by elected leaders in Washington. It is precisely the opposite. It came from people freed from the burden of capricious rulers or a meddling, overbearing govt. It is no coincidence that as the enumerated limits our Founders put in place to protect us from govt have become ignored, trampled, or forgotten by too many, our success has dimmed and our struggles have increased. Only by reversing that direction will we begin to climb from the mess we have created.

As long as a large percentage of our fellow citizens continue to reinforce the failed belief that govt will save them by voting for politicians offering those false hopes, we will continue to have these cycles of hope and despair with our leadership. Its ironic that the very people who help catapult our current President to such lofty, unrealistic heights are now the first to help undercut him. I expect more of the same from guys like Mr. Rich.




[Edited on 12/7/2010 by Fujirich]


Well said, Fuij....And I agree. But again, when comparing Obama to his opponent, he was the hand's down choice for me. McCain, in many ways, would have been another George Bush. And as Bhawk pointed out, many of us wanted no part of that. And I certainly was not an Obama supporter who wanted saving, just a president who had a some ideas on how to turn the country around, get us the hell out of Iraq, and maybe turn back some of the insanity of the Bush years.

[Edited on 12/7/2010 by Chain]

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 10:01 AM
quote:
I remember before Obama was nominated I expressed some reservation about him (I did end up voting for him since my choice was not perfect opponent but McCain/Palin) someone (can't remember who?) said "who is going to save the country?" I responded that I don't want someone to "save" the country. I want someone to "govern" the country.


It's pretty obvious that "governance" now applies to those that agree with you on a basic level. Those who choose not to be governed by someone they diametrically oppose choose to not be governed.

Say Obama ends up being a one-term President. Does anyone think that the next Republican up to bat will be in any way interested in "governing" those who disagree with him/her? The polarization is set. This is the new normal.

 

____________________
"Live every week like it's Shark Week." - Tracy Jordan

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 10:17 AM
quote:
The polarization is set. This is the new normal.


I don't think we've seen anything yet, just ripples. This is nothing.

 

____________________

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 10:19 AM
quote:
quote:
The polarization is set. This is the new normal.


I don't think we've seen anything yet, just ripples. This is nothing.


For once, we agree.

 

____________________
"Live every week like it's Shark Week." - Tracy Jordan

 

Zen Peach



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Posts: 15832
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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 10:52 AM
quote:
quote:
quote:
Do you have a comment or is this another "wait until someone posts and jump all over them" bits? Anyone can read these things, we don't need you to post them.

Hope this helps.


Man is this a pot calling the kettle black post or what? I have seen so many senseless posts slung towards Derek and now you post another one about him making a wasted post LMAO

I for one enjoy these articles no matter who posts them I can not nor do I have the time to find them all.. so let it rest a bit of all the wasted bandwidth posts in the whipping post this one is hardly worthless and I am not jumping all over anything..



Pot/kettle? When do I post opinion pieces without comment? I'll help you out. Never. LMAO.


I do it all the time, as do others. I post stuff because I think it is interesting, and the comments often help me form my own opinions. You're being an ass, Otie. Is there a rule you have to provide a comment when you post an article. Who made that rule? Sheriff Otie? Does the rule only apply to Fletch?

 

____________________


 

Zen Peach



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Posts: 15832
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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 10:57 AM
quote:
quote:
quote:
The polarization is set. This is the new normal.


I don't think we've seen anything yet, just ripples. This is nothing.


For once, we agree.


Yep, that die is already cast. If a Republican wins in 2012, the Democrats will start digging his grave on day one. The only way we'll ever see the wealthy ruling elite come together on anything is if their livelihoods and fortunes are in peril. Then they will come together to keep the poor people from getting their hands on any of it.

 

____________________


 

Maximum Peach



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Posts: 8384
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Registered: 3/22/2006
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  posted on 12/7/2010 at 11:01 AM
quote:
quote:
quote:
quote:
Sad thing about Obama, is that if the Democrats hadn't rushed him into becoming President, that with a "little political seasoning" (i.e about two terms as a Senator) he might have become the President that many were expecting. Obama is certainly a case of being placed into a job that he ill-prepared to do.
And we're just finding out about this now? We know more about Sarah Palin's KIDS than we do about Obama's, well, pretty much everything. (And I'm no fan of Sarah Palin, believe me). He is the poster boy for a manufactured candidate. I too had high hopes, thought by electing him we would prove once and for all that we had "grown up" as a nation. I was willing to overlook the associations with Wright and Ayers, the murky past spent overseas, the name changes, the sealed academic records, all that stuff.

Now we all know, he's a poser and an empty suit. He makes a pretty picture, but he's the presidential version of a movie lot. Nice facades on all the buildings, but nothing behind them...
While I'm certainly no Obama fan, I wonder how much of this dissatisfaction comes from unrealistic expectations of the power of the Presidency - and govt in general.

The saddest thing I noted about the last Presidential election was watching our fellow citizens - and large parts of the media - fall head-first into a swoon over a guy with no record of achievement and a nebulous feel-good message of "hope". The fact that so many fell for the belief that a President, or the Federal govt, could somehow mend lives and offer new opportunities shows something far more troubling: a serious loss of understanding the structure of American success and freedom.

Our success did not come about because of the deep thinking, great planning, and micro-management by elected leaders in Washington. It is precisely the opposite. It came from people freed from the burden of capricious rulers or a meddling, overbearing govt. It is no coincidence that as the enumerated limits our Founders put in place to protect us from govt have become ignored, trampled, or forgotten by too many, our success has dimmed and our struggles have increased. Only by reversing that direction will we begin to climb from the mess we have created.

As long as a large percentage of our fellow citizens continue to reinforce the failed belief that govt will save them by voting for politicians offering those false hopes, we will continue to have these cycles of hope and despair with our leadership. Its ironic that the very people who help catapult our current President to such lofty, unrealistic heights are now the first to help undercut him. I expect more of the same from guys like Mr. Rich.
Well said, Fuij....And I agree. But again, when comparing Obama to his opponent, he was the hand's down choice for me. McCain, in many ways, would have been another George Bush. And as Bhawk pointed out, many of us wanted no part of that. And I certainly was not an Obama supporter who wanted saving, just a president who had a some ideas on how to turn the country around, get us the hell out of Iraq, and maybe turn back some of the insanity of the Bush years.
Exactly right Chain; there was no contest during the last Presidential election. The ultimate Washington insider; McCain, trying to freshen up his tired act was no real option at any time. I think the R's made a serious mistake in not picking Romney, who at least would have made a competitive show of it.

 
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