“Listen, I just want to say one thing. Having been in the South in the ’60s and Los Angeles, in Watts and northern urban areas, when we were evolving as a country, I’m thinking of all the bigots and rednecks and people I met along the way. I’m saying to them, ‘Take this.’ You know?”
— Tom Brokaw on Barack Obama
Yes, the dream of journalist hacks everywhere has been realized. Barack Obama is now the president of the United States. Last Tuesday’s messianic inauguration purportedly captured the eyes of the entire nation. Personally, I can affirm that this was true of the folks I know. Most of them spent the day with pupils lovingly affixed to boob tubes in facilities where entertainment devices are not usually found.
As Obama blundered through his coronation, he was met with considerable cheering. Praise resounded and that’s no surprise. In Barack Obama, the public has all the welfare bread and sound bite circuses it could ever wish for. Always a student of human nature, I asked several associates why they felt that studying the inauguration — a fabricated, glossy, overpriced affair — was so essential. I was told with near uniformity that it was “a major historic event.”
So it was. Just as were the inaugurations of all our presidents, yet I recall no vocational disruptions transpiring during the other ones I lived through. Therefore, I must once again pose the question, what is so special about this guy? The answer disappoints. There is no substantive reason why his qualities make him anything more than a snappier version of Jimmy Carter or a Bill Clinton deveined of unsavory tastes and habits.
We are told repeatedly by the media that Obama’s presidency will be transformative, but the only prospect for transformation I foresee is the abandonment of the free market and America quickly descending into socialism. Yes, yes we can become East Germany! And Obama may well alchemize us into a not-so-novel GDR in the very near future.
To further bolster my claim, Obama decorated his newly constituted cabinet with refitted and re-outfitted hulks of smoldering iron — male and female contraptions last seen in 2000 when they were left abandoned on the political battlefield by the aforementioned Mr. Clinton. Yet now, all that is old embodies change and hope.
Just as with every other man, Obama has strengths and weaknesses. Undoubtedly, his political instincts are acute and he knows far better than other Democratic leaders what the citizens want to hear. He also presents in rehearsed speeches as being polished and thoughtful.
However, one of his foremost weaknesses concerns leadership capacity. The main problem is that he does not appear to be well-endowed in this area. In the old days, a guy who voted “present” on 130 bills (or 129 depending on the source) while a member of his state senate was rightly viewed as pusillanimous.
In 2009, thanks to cultural implosion and media bias, his primary deficiency has been reclassified into a transcendent trait. Nowadays indecisive fellows like Obama — should they be Democrats — qualify as symbols of astuteness. After all, anyone can have strong beliefs, but only a New Age hero has the wattage to be uncertain about so many things. It’s nuance! No doubt that the clowns on MSLSD will soon refer to him as the realization of Plato’s concept of the philosopher king.