As the country goes careening forward toward a credit abyss President Obama continues to remain strangely inert and passive.
He said a few impromptu comments this morning to reporters without taking questions. They are filled with cliches, but the most striking thing is how thoroughly disengaged he appears. Excerpts:
“The time for putting party first is over. The time for compromise on behalf of the American people is now,” Mr. Obama said. “And I’m confident that we can solve this problem.”
“My door is open,” Mr. Reid said as the Senate convened. “I will listen to any idea to get this done in a way that prevents a default and a dangerous downgrade to America’s credit rating. Time is short, and too much is at stake, to waste even one more minute.
“The last train is leaving the station,” he said. “This is our last chance to avert default.”
Then he asked the American people to tweet their elected representatives.
In the middle of a crisis you ask people to Tweet?
This reminds me of “Daily Show’s” Jon Stewart’ remarks the other day after the President’s address to the nation in which he appealed to citizens to call Congress.
“Did the president just quit?” he said of the idea. “Seriously, you’re the president. You’re asking us to call Congress?”
At this moment of crisis this is one detached and aloof President.
Even as he expressed optimism, however, Mr. Obama delivered a stern warning to Congress: “For all the intrigue and all the drama that’s taking place on Capitol Hill right now, I’m confident that — but as I said earlier, we are now running out of time. It’s time for everybody to step up and show the leadership the American people expect.”