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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

But He Tells Such Inspirational Lies!

Tonight's SOTU - I listened to it on the radio while neurotically scrubbing things down with bleach - struck me as tragic.

It was a great speech, backed by little cohesive policy, imbued with lofty ideals and high hopes, sounding genuinely inspirational notes. It was a tragic speech, because if Obama had ever bothered to sit down and engage with reality during his presidency, he could have been a truly great president.

It was a very American speech. I think we elected Obama because we were not yet prepared to deal with reality, and we wanted him to reinforce our delusions. This man has truly impressive political skills and no idea whatsoever as to what to do to make things better. None of his proposals ever add up, and now he has really almost stopped making them.

I suspect that the American public, which generally is wading hip deep in smelly reality, is in the mood to move on from our delusions, provided that the adjustment to reality isn't too painful. The strong response to Ron Paul's candidacy among the young implies that something has changed.

Mitch Daniels is someone who would tell the truth in a campaign. It would have been interesting to test the contrast between the two and see whether the American public is prepared to deal with it.

Added reactions:
1) DU, top thread when I went to the General Discussion forum:
Is Obama not the best looking President We've Had In Decades?

2) Ann Althouse noticed the weird pronounciations also. Reggalations? I don't know what Obama was trying to do with that.

3) Robert Samuelson in an earlier article on the Keystone decision summed up the laundry list in tonight's speech:
It isn’t often that a president makes a decision that has no redeeming virtues and — beyond the symbolism — won’t even advance the goals of the groups that demanded it. All it tells us is that Obama is so obsessed with his reelection that, through some sort of political calculus, he believes that placating his environmental supporters will improve his chances.
I was playing the constituency game with this one.

4) If Obama really wants to fix the "reggalations" problem, he might want to change a few things at EPA. His line about opening up public lands was pure BS - you can't get a permit to do anything. You can get a lease, but you won't get permission to use it. As Carl carefully explained in a prior post, all that "clean fuel" stuff is getting weirder and weirder day by day.

5) One of my brothers claims that we are doomed to growing acrimony between the parties not because of political spin but because we've pushed things to the point at which there can be no middle ground on many issues.

6) The Anchoress, writing on a very different topic:
You want the truth? You think you deserve it? The press can’t handle the truth; they can’t bring it to you. The New York Times just ignores inconvenient truth, entirely.
Obama's very much a creature of his times. But so are we, and that's why he's in the White House! Mitch Daniels just appealed to a nation of adults. Are we that nation?


The boyfriend and his son are both disillusioned Obama supporters. Boyfriend can't understand the opposition to Keystone and is fed up with environmental regulations.

I disagree that Obama is anything approaching a good politician. Clinton was a master and never would have pissed off his base the way Obama has.
Depends on what he thinks his base is.

President Obama is betting his reelection on racial minorities, upper-class twits, government-employee unions, and the cemetery vote.

It's possible that's enough to do the job.
Two more cycles until the earliest we can have adult supervision in DC, MOM. Hope we can hang on that long.
Teri - I think you are confusing political skills with policy skills.

He has no policy skills. None. He is very good at sensing what an audience wants to hear.

The combination of really good political skills and total zero policy skills has led to a presidency devoted to developing a list of talking points for political campaigns.

Neil - government unions and upper-class twits he's going to get. There is a strong overlap between these two groups. He had a pretty broad coalition in the last election and won't this time.

I guess it depends on how bad the GOP candidate winds up being, but the basic point here is that this election may not wind up getting us closer to a consensus on tackling the living room elephants, which puts us in deep jeopardy.
WSJ - Sadly, we do not have that time. Our time is running out. It isn't that we have to do it all in the next couple of years, but we have to begin.
>>I think we elected Obama because we were not yet prepared to deal with reality, and we wanted him to reinforce our delusions.<<

He is the tool of bankstas who keep us in debt serfdom, just like the current crop of conmen politicians. You are correct the bankstas wanted to reinforce our delusions because the pillaging is not complete.

President Obama is betting his reelection on racial minorities, upper-class twits, government-employee unions, and the cemetery vote.

It's possible that's enough to do the job.

Naah, he's betting his reelection on the likelihood that the GOP will once again back a candidate who will keep the fence-sitters at home.

Romney? Gingrich? Santorum? Please. Independents hate those three with extreme passion, much like McCain. Daniels or Paul would kick Obama's ass. Daniels doesn't want the job (smart man) and the GOP wants the status quo which Paul won't provide.
The man does love to talk.

There is a certain similarity with Woodrow Wilson. I read an interesting book by Sigmund Freud and William Bullitt (who knew Wilson well) which contains the following description:

Sigmund Freud and William Bullitt (who worked closely with Woodrow WIlson at the Versailles conference) wrote a book titled Woodrow Wilson: A Psychological Study. Excerpt:

"Throughout his life he took intense interest only in subjects which could somehow be connected with speech...He took no interest in mathematics, science, art or music--except in singing himself, a form of speaking. His method of thinking about a subject seems to have been to imagine himself making a speech about it...He seems to have thought about political or economic problems only when he was preparing to make a speech about them either on paper or from the rostrum. His memory was undoubtedly of the vaso-motor type. The use of his vocal chords was to him inseparable from thinking."
Actually I consider political skills to be people skills. Think of that kissing babies stereotype. A good politician will make you feel like you are respected and acknowledged. I have never seen Obama do that. He continually disrespects the public. How many politicians would have let that "bitter clingers" statement slip? Obama despises people and he lets it show.
Where is Jon Corzine when you need him?
Crying laughing re Corzine.

Ah, yes. Such is the life of an elf. Isn't Corzine being hauled up before Congress?
David - re Wilson. Until I read more about him, I did not realize what a narrow mind he had in many ways.

As an example, when he took over in DC he pushed to segregate the government employees.
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