Thursday, November 05, 2009
"Yes we can" has turned into "why we can't."
A year ago, American voters made history, electing the first African American President. The charismatic campaign of President Obama had the majority of Americans in a frenzy. The Obama campaign's mantra of "yes we can" became a touchstone of high hopes for so many Americans, both right and left.
A year later, "yes we can" has turned into "why we can't." Historically it is normal for a man elected President of the United States to face the stark realities of the office and be more humble in his approach as President than as a candidate for President. But, perhaps no time in American history has a candidate stirred such hope and delivered so little in office.
The Obama Administration seems to have a laundry list of people to blame for "why they can't." On universal health care, they quietly blame Republicans and "blue dog" Democrats in Congress. On the economy, they trot out tired old arguments against former President Bush. On Afghanistan, they blame Bush and the Afghanistan government for why Obama can not decide on what to do next.
The stark truth is that the President seems to vacillate on the larger issues. The Obama Administration has wasted time in not realizing the campaign is over and the governing has begun. The President filled his administration with far left activists who would rather fight than work out a deal.
The press makes much ado about how people on the right are angry, with reporting about "tea parties" and such. But, there is an anger on the left in America that is perhaps stronger. People on the left voted for Obama believing the clouds would part, the sun would shine, and life would be utopia. It has not happened. Where is the Barack Obama who promised moderate and right leaning voters he would win the war in Afghanistan? Where is the Barack Obama who promised left leaning voters a public health care option that would let those who could not get insurance opt into Medicare? Remember how candidate Obama criticized Hillary Clinton in Orangeburg, SC for proposing to make people buy health insurance or be fined? Now President Obama seems okay with that.
Indeed, the Obama campaign consisted of a likable candidate with a great family who could give a good speech filled with rhetoric that really said nothing. Thus, people projected their own political views upon the guy they liked personally.
President Obama is so different than candidate Obama. When the lack of leadership, the continued political campaigning, and the downright issue flip flops are considered, there is little wonder at how the "why we can't" Presidency of Barack Obama is slipping so in the approval numbers.