Liberal WashPo Calls Obama an Absentee President

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It’s getting ugly for the Fraud.
His former friends and acolytes are turning against him.
Spike Lee was upset with Obama’s slow and affectless response to last year’s BP Gulf oil crisis. Barbra Streisand, Hugh Hefner, “Glee” lesbian actress Jane Lynch, and the latest, Matt Damon, are all unhappy that their former messiah is not “aggressive” enough on the Left’s pet issues of DADT, gay “rights”, Gitmo, Afghan war, etc. (See Matt Damon joines the growing list of celebrities unhappy with President Obama“) Yup, Obama’s isn’t left enough for Rabid Hollywood. Scary!
 Now, the liberal Washington Post finally notices what we conservatives have been saying for some time: “Where’s Waldo?”

Obama’s ‘Where’s Waldo?’ presidency
By Ruth Marcus – WashPo – March 2, 2011 

For a man who won office talking about change we can believe in, Barack Obama can be a strangely passive president. There are a startling number of occasions in which the president has been missing in action – unwilling, reluctant or late to weigh in on the issue of the moment. He is, too often, more reactive than inspirational, more cautious than forceful.

Each of these instances can be explained on its own terms, as matters of legislative strategy, geopolitical calculation or political prudence.
He didn’t want to get mired in legislative details during the health-care debate for fear of repeating the Clinton administration’s prescriptive, take-ours-or-leave-it approach. He doesn’t want to go first on proposing entitlement reform because history teaches that this is not the best route to a deal. He didn’t want to say anything too tough about Libya for fear of endangering Americans trapped there. He didn’t want to weigh in on the labor battle in Wisconsin because, well, it’s a swing state.
Yet the dots connect to form an unsettling portrait of a “Where’s Waldo?” presidency: You frequently have to squint to find the White House amid the larger landscape.
This tough assessment from someone who generally shares the president’s ideological perspective may be hard to square with the conservative portrait of Obama as the rapacious perpetrator of a big-government agenda. If the president is being simultaneously accused of overreaching ambition and gutless fight-ducking, maybe he’s doing something right.
Maybe, or else Obama has at times managed to do both simultaneously. On health care, for instance, he took on a big fight without being able to articulate a clear message or being willing to set out any but the broadest policy prescriptions. Lawmakers, not to mention the public, were left guessing about what, exactly, the administration wanted to see in the measure and where it would draw red lines.
That was not an isolated case. Where, for example, is the president on the verge of a potential government shutdown – if not this week, then a few weeks from now?
Aside from a short statement from the Office of Management and Budget threatening a presidential veto of the House version of the funding measure, the White House – much to the frustration of some congressional Democrats – has been unclear in public and private about what cuts would and would not be acceptable.
By contrast, a few weeks before the shutdown in 1995, Clinton administration aides had dispatched Cabinet members and other high-ranking officials to spread the message that cuts in education, health care and housing would harm families and children. Obama seems more the passive bystander to negotiations between the House and Senate than the chief executive leading his party.
He performs best on a stage that permits the grandest sweep. He rises to the big occasion, from his inspiring introduction to the public in his 2004 Democratic convention speech to his healing words in the aftermath of the Tucson shootings.
The president has faltered, though, when called on to translate that rhetoric to more granular levels of specificity: What change, exactly, does he want people to believe in? How, even more exactly, does he propose to get there? “Winning the future” doesn’t quite do it.
My biggest beef is with the president’s slipperiness on fiscal matters. Obama has said he agrees with some of his fiscal commission’s recommendations and disagrees with others. Which ones does he disagree with? I asked this question the other day of Austan Goolsbee, the chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.
Here’s what I got: “The view espoused by some of the . . . commission that we ought to do Social Security 100 percent off of benefit cuts for sure he doesn’t agree with.” But of course, the plan that 11 of the commission members endorsed did nothing of the sort.
I was unfair to Goolsbee because I asked him a question he didn’t have the leeway to answer. You can’t blame the aide for ducking when the boss fudges.
Where’s Obama? No matter how hard you look, sometimes he’s impossible to find.
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0 responses to “Liberal WashPo Calls Obama an Absentee President

  1. Candance Moore

    Dear Ruth,
    I don’t want to hear any whining from you now. Conservatives told you plenty of times before the election that Obama was the “voted present” Senator who would spend most of his presidency phoning it in. We told you he was an amateur, an empty suit, who would disappear when we needed actual leadership.
    And how did you react? You called us racist. You said they were partisan talking points. You admitted in the Washington Post that you voted for Obama.
    So shut up and spend the next two years enjoying your president.

    • Brilliant, Candance!
      I took the liberty of posting your love letter to Dear Ruth as a comment on the WashPo site. LOL
      Here’s a scary comment by a diehard Obamabot who calls himself MLFrank1, 3/3/2011 7:12:15 PM:

      Dear Ms. Marcus, I disagree with your analysis. I find it narrow minded and you do not look at the big picture. The Presindet has been walking through a mine field since the beginning. For most of this time, he has tried to stay focused on the issue. Everything has been thrown at him, including the kitchen sink. I see someone who cares deeply about our country and our people. he is a thinker and I have learned not to lose faith in him because he is not behaving like I want to. I respect his skills especially his patience. He is a skilled tactician and a fine poker player. I am always reminded of the scene from Brave Heart when William Wallace tells his troops, wait, wait, wait, now… For the most part the President has delivered considering the many challenges he has faced. Yes, he has made mistakes, but overall, I would vote for him again.

  2. Matt Damon!! (inspired by Team America).

    • But, seriously, what’s the current admin waiting for on Libya? It’s Khadafi– sponsorer of terrorism, invader of neighboring countries and sayer of crazy stuff longer than Charlie Sheen has– for cyrin’ out loud!


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