Add this Page to Facebook!   Submit to Twitter   Submit to Reddit   Submit to Stumble Upon   Pin It!   Fark It!   Tell A Friend  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite Save As Favorite View Article Stats
4 comments

Exclusive to OpEdNews:
OpEdNews Op Eds

The New Man in the White House

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 1   Interesting 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

Headlined to H2 2/10/10

opednews.com


The Barack Obama who traded barbs with Republicans in retreat recently, and who "respectfully" admonished the Supreme Court to its face for ignoring "a century of law," was a welcome addition to the many personae who have appeared in his name since his inauguration, and certainly progressives hope that the newcomer will now assume center stage. The most recent Obama demonstrates an ability to think on his feet, to recognize and respect the opinions of those who disagree with him, and to argue, with civility and even gentle humor, that when hypocrisy or ignorance are the controlling motifs of opposing opinions, they must be dismissed with prejudice.

Many of the concerns of progressives have been put to rest by this new iteration of the President. He is not an "empty suit," a glib rhetorician of shallow intellect. Alone in the lion's den, and even given the Neanderthal quality of Republican intellect, he was clearly the smartest man in the room. But he is still a problem for progressives whose disagreements with him are neither hypocritical nor ignorant. To wit: if the essential object of health care reform is, as he has repeatedly said, to increase coverage, control costs, and inhibit abuses of the insurance industry, and if, as he reiterated more than once this week, he is "game" to consider alternate proposals to achieve those objectives, why has expansion of Medicare, an existing institution that exactly exemplifies the goals he wishes to achieve, never been so much as considered by the administration? And, for another example, if the "fat cats" of Wall Street are literally stealing from Main Street, and are unrepentant to boot, where is the outrage and action plan to take them to task?

Obama is perhaps the most capable chief executive in generations with the ability to cut through the miasma of political rhetoric and explain with reason and clarity the true nature of American societal concerns and the risks and rewards of dealing with them. It is frustrating to speculate why the new populist spokesman arrives now, and not six months ago, which would likely have dramatically changed the present political scene, including Democratic occupancy of the Senate seat held so long by the late Senator Kennedy.

The answer, I fear, is as obvious as it is pedestrian. Our American democracy has evolved into a system in which incumbency is the product of a schizoid process: our leaders are hired by voters and work for corporations. Getting hired is a consequence of campaigning for voter endorsement, and governing is a consequence of executing corporate directives. Obama's huge problem is that he, more than most, articulated the problem but is failing to resolve it.

 

I am a retired boatbuilder with a fascination for political thought. Most of my life I cheerfully described myself as an "eastern establishment, knee jerk, liberal Democrat."
Add this Page to Facebook!   Submit to Twitter   Submit to Reddit   Submit to Stumble Upon   Pin It!   Fark It!   Tell A Friend
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Capitalism and Health Care

Corporate America's Secret Weapon: Socialism

The Occupation is the Message

Follow the Money

A Case Study: Dawn E. Johnsen

The Face of a Corporate Citizen

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
4 people are discussing this page, with 4 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)
Team Obama is on a pernicious path of political d... by Larry Tierney on Wednesday, Feb 10, 2010 at 4:31:03 PM
'He is not an "empty suit," a glib rhetorician of... by John S. Hatch on Wednesday, Feb 10, 2010 at 4:49:11 PM
He's great at giving speeches and saying the right... by Michael Shaw on Thursday, Feb 11, 2010 at 1:55:23 PM
Obama was elected on stump speeches that nailed do... by Steve Hanken on Thursday, Feb 11, 2010 at 5:50:13 PM