Tuesday, January 20, 2009
looking forward with "hope"...
anybody who's ever even casually glanced at this blog knows that the "o" was not my first choice to be the new elected leader of the free world...in fact in my view he ranks near, if not at, the very bottom of the very long list of erstwhile candidates.
that being said, he is indeed the new elected leader of the free world, meaning he is my president too. and once i am able to stifle the autoresponse of regurgitation that is the normal reaction to being forcefed something extremely unpalatable, i'm going to do my best to support him and his policies as they relate to our relationship with the rest of the world...because we are all Americans, and united we stand.
but i do fervently hope, and even somewhat believe, that the realities of the office and the world will bring a necessary and cautious deliberation to the euphoric mantra and mission of "change" that was the centerpiece of his campaign. indeed, that has already begun, as witnessed by the recent disclaimers as to the difficult road ahead and the need for patience and controlled "expectations" as we move forward into the new reality, here in the brave new world.
congratulations, Mr. President, may God bless you, your administration, and most especially, the United States of America.
Posted by the pawnbroker at Tuesday, January 20, 2009
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Thank you for alerting me to your blog post. I apologize that I was under the assumption that you were yet just another pissed off 'Pub with a chip on his shoulder. Obviously, you're standing by our man, so to speak, and I appreciate that immensely. All too often I am hearing negativity, close-mindedness and outright bigotry when it comes to our President, and I guess I am tetchy about the whole subject. Because I do dare to hope and dream and because I have been an Obama supporter since the early days of the campaign, I find myself frustrated and sad by what I read over and over every day. I honestly just want people to take notice. We all are in this together. You've quite aptly noted that in your blog as well. Thank you for supporting OUR President. He may not have been your choice, but I am hoping that he will make positive changes that will affect everyone.
How do you feel about what he's accomplished already in his first two days?
ask me again in two years...
Dunno, man. I didn't vote for the guy, either, but for the first time in most of my political memory, there's actually an atmosphere of HOPE among the people... except among the people who want nothing more than to snipe constantly at the Opposition. But if they want to be miserable instead of stepping up and trying to HELP, that's their choice, right?
i guess that means you are too young to remember the election of 1980..."morning in America".
and so it was...rr engineered the reconstruction of the notion that our country is great and strong, and he ushered in a twenty-five year run of unprecedented prosperity...how i miss him; and how the world needs him again right now.
unfortunately our ship of state is now helmed by someone who has never done anything but talk, never run anything but his mouth. but you are right that perception has a broad influence on what is, or what can become, reality.
so i, along with every other right-thinking American, wish and hope for the very best for the President and for our county.
No, I remember Reagan's election all too clearly, not to mention Carter's and the ascension of Ford. Reagan's "bright message" was seen as such primarily by Republican steadfasts; the rest of the country looked askance upon things such as the aptly-named voodoo economics ("trickle-down" economics applying its magic to big business and the socioeconomic upper class, with the claimed sympathetic magic of the trickledown allegedly helping everyone else).
Be that as it may, Reagan remembered one thing, a lesson learned the hard way by Carter: an American president can't DO the job of the president any longer. It's just too big. Reagan knew that he wasn't big enough to take on the whole job, so he took on the essential job that he DID know he could do: be the public face of the US. For the rest, he assembled competent staff (crooked in a number of cases, but they were definitely damn good at what they did). And although I'm certain that this comparison will make some diehards twitch, Obama has the same charisma that turned Reagan into the PR success that he became (the more widespread hope to which you're referring regarding Reagan came WELL after his election). If Obama's as smart as I think he is, he'll follow the other good part of the Reagan example by putting together the best overall staff he can assemble... and letting them work. Simply put, all the accomplishments in the world don't mean dick when you get "POTUS" applied to you - you've stopped being any kind of politician who can DIRECTLY get things done, and all you can do is play the freakin' role for the world. Reagan did precisely what you said: he USHERED in an era of prosperity. He didn't create it. No president is even remotely capable of creating it. If you absolutely must attribute credit, you have to keep in mind that the economy is such a monstrously huge process that it takes a MINIMUM of 4+ years for ANY influence to take any visible effect. By that measure, assigning "credit" for that period of prosperity would necessarily go to Carter, Ford or Nixon... and they didn't do it. Short of creating cosmic-level changes in American business, which doesn't even begin to describe ANY of the Band-Aid acts espoused by ANY president, they'll never do it. It's easier to mess an economy up, but even that can't be the work of one president unless he declares martial law and then appoints himself generalissimo-for-life. Bush, for all his bullheadedness, isn't to blame for our economy. Our business world's leaders ARE.
Anyway, I cringe every time I remember the last time a president allowed himself to try to DO the job of the president (Carter, and it was so painful to watch a good, brilliant man screw up SO badly by trying to DO THE JOB), and I hope Obama has learned that lesson. With his charisma, he'll be hell on wheels as a Reaganesque "poster boy for the US"... if he doesn't give into the temptation to try to do more.
i agree with most of what you say...and the lapse between policy and effect is the reason that clinton is given the credit by libs for the prosperity that serendipitously coincided with his administration.
as for obama's charismatic attraction, that too cannot be denied...it is the one and only reason for his meteoric rise. unlike rr, however, his belief that gov is the be-all and end-all solution for the domestic plague and a naive belief that evil others in the world have a sense of honor and fair play that will guide their dealings with us if they will only listen to his fine speeches, is a recipe for disaster and a terrorism cabal gone wild. as you say, time will tell...God help us.
btw, i was a carter supporter and defender until the bitter end...a better-hearted, good-intentioned and more intelligent man has never held the office; yet his presidency was an unmitigated disaster. and i hated rr for most of his first term, until i saw that his simple, powerful convictions were exactly what we...and the world...needed.
let us hope that obama is a student of both men and their attributes, methods, and shortcomings. there is no better proof that fine oratory and dazzling intelligence is no substitute for conviction, experience, and fortitude.
Nobody has a real answer to terrorism, and any politico who believes otherwise is too much into his own power or glamor. The Republican approach (bomb 'em back into the Stone Age) is about as good for the U.S. as a high colonic for the sake of amusement, while the usual Democratic stand (validate them emotionally until they "inevitably" come around to the roses-and-rainbows Everybody's Happy view) is a waste of political space.
As for government being an "answer"... both sides are right AND both sides are wrong. For this country to function effectively and ensure the quality of life of its citizens, there's a certain level of governmental control that MUST be applied (the cult of the free market having been shown to be a horrifying disaster in so many ways); there's no such thing in a nation this size as true freedom. On the other hand, a government that is so bloated as to stick its nose completely into every aspect of our lives is a huge drain on our collective and individual resources. The sooner both major parties realize this and come to the middle, the sooner we can move forward as a nation towards REAL progress.
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