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Obama’s 365 Days of Spectacular FAIL (Or, How Not to Vote for President Ever Again)

Posted on January 21 2010 9:52 am
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Mort Zuckerman is angry.  Very, very angry.

The Daily Beast columnist has taken stock of Obama’s first year and found him sorely lacking, as in a, “Dear God, what have we done? This man is an magnificent mistake,” degree of lack.  In fact, until the end, I was certain I was reading a conservative columnist.  No, Zuckerman supported Obama and he’s got a sour taste in his mouth he wants to tell you about.

In, “He’s Done Everything Wrong,” Zuckerman rushes out of the gate swinging:

Obama punted on the economy and reversed the fortunes of the Democrats in 365 days.

He’s misjudged the character of the country in his whole approach. There’s the saying, “It’s the economy, stupid.” He didn’t get it. He was determined somehow or other to adopt a whole new agenda. He didn’t address the main issue.

During the campaign, in typical form, the country swung left after the precipitous economic downturn.  For reasons insane, people harbor deep affection for one of our most Socialist presidents to date, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Obama reaped the harvest of said affection (perhaps it was his constant referencing and modeling after FDR, take your pick).  The people wanted the government to fix it. McCain, in painfully wooden form, offered more of the same and refused to enumerate reasons why Republicans prefer free-market solutions rather than government intervention (hint: because he doesn’t believe it).  This was a tacit admission of Republican blame for the crisis (a.k.a. Democrat talking points) not lost on anyone, and for a population convinced that Government “saves,” there was no alternative to Obama.  No one told them otherwise.

Zuckerman’s disillusionment touches on the botched Health Care legislation, government corruption, foreign policy concerns, international opinion and domestic approval.  Yet, he circuitously returns to the economic crisis:

I hope there are changes. I think he’s already laid in huge problems for the country. The fiscal program was a disaster. You have to get the money as quickly as possible into the economy. They didn’t do that. By end of the first year, only one-third of the money was spent. Why is that?

He should have jammed a stimulus plan into Congress and said, “This is it. No changes. Don’t give me that bullshit. We have a national emergency.” Instead they turned it over to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi who can run circles around him.  (Emphasis mine.)

Herein lies the problem. While buyer’s remorse is delicious, if not grounded in truth, it fails to satisfy.  Zuckerman appears to think that if Obama had only been more insistent, his policies would have been implemented “better,” “faster,” and we all would have magically been rescued.  To Zuckerman, the issue isn’t the policy, it’s methodology.  This is a profound mistake and someone needs to tell him why ideas make the man (thus the policies), not the glitter, cotton candy and fluffy kittens pouring forth from his hallowed mouth.

I’m concerned that the majority of people weeping and gnashing their teeth over Obama’s first year still maintain a faulty understanding of American government (i.e. separation of powers, checks and balances).  Why, it’s almost as if they believe if Obama says it, “it” should materialize.  I spent the duration of the campaign appalled by the willingness to hand over our proverbial national keys to a novice, a virtual cypher, an…actor merely reading his lines well.  He had no record to speak of.  He had no expertise, no longstanding service to our country.  There was nothing to recommend him save a navel-gazing tome written to an Oprahfied nation ripe for a new cult to join.  Someone please keep these soggy, impressionable minds away from the movie theater lest the immersive experience convince them that The Rock really is a flying tooth fairy, or something.

Given the downward trajectory Obama seems loath to correct, we should anticipate more voter lament.  While we can savor the short-term sweetness in knowing we were, in fact, right all along (nana nana boo boo, etc.) we need to get down to the long-term business of educating a population.  Let’s give them an actual choice this time.

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