Obama pays price for thinking Bush was a dunce

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Mercor, Jun 3, 2010.

  1. (AP)
    President Obama went from the triumph of passing his national health plan to the tragedy of the BP oil spill in just two months.

    It was only March 28 when Obama pronounced that getting Congress to pass a bill strenuously disliked by the American people was proof that government could "still do big things." By May 28, Americans were watching oil belch up from the briny deep and wondering whether government could do anything at all.

    Blame over what Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano might call a "man-caused disaster" in the Gulf of Mexico will be traded until long after the last pelican has been wiped down and the final check has been cut to an out-of-work shrimper.

    BP will get most of the blame, and there's reason to wonder whether a company that saw its stock described as having "the smell of death" will survive billions of dollars in fines, lawsuits and cleanup fees.

    But Obama will be endlessly second-guessed for allowing more offshore drilling before he made sure that his regulators were up to the task and then taking so long to jump in after it was clear they weren't.

    Some of the blame will be unfair, and some will be well placed. But a good bit from both categories will adhere to the president, who once was seen as spotless.

    But Obama needn't wonder why the wreck of the Deepwater Horizon will have done so much damage to his political fortunes.

    By raising expectations for what government can do and for campaigning irresponsibly against the failures of his predecessor, Obama made his own eventual fall all the more precipitous.

    When Obama was running for president in 2008 he was still bashing George W. Bush for his handling of Hurricane Katrina, scoffing at Bush's promise to "do whatever it takes" to help New Orleans residents rebuild.

    "Those words have been caught in a tangle of half-measures, half-hearted leadership and red tape," Obama said on a campaign swing through New Orleans.

    Obama can hardly be surprised to now hear Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal giving him a taste of his own medicine for the administration's slow response to local requests for permission to act against the disaster when the feds weren't offering better ideas of their own.

    Obama knew perfectly well that there were problems in New Orleans that predated Katrina that could never be fixed by the federal government, no matter how long the Bush administration carpet-bombed the city with free money. But he was not going to give up any of his rhetorical flourishes because of a fear that he might raise expectations too high in NOLA.

    Obama believed his own hype and figured that he could succeed where Bush failed.

    Now, two more years down the road, Obama has been unable to solve the problems that he accused Bush of leaving behind through "half-hearted leadership." And now the city faces another disaster, in part because Obama's administration was so bad at regulating the oil industry.

    Obama, who railed against the oil industry and wrapped himself in the suffering of the poor people of New Orleans, surely was attuned to the risks at play in deepwater offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.

    But even he could not fly in like Superman and save the day.

    Of all the fictions that Democrats embraced during the Bush presidency, perhaps the most dangerous was that Bush was an idiot.

    John Kerry's bitter joke to a college class about poor students getting "stuck in Iraq" and Obama's famous line about being opposed to "dumb wars" reveal the view among liberal intellectuals that the country's problems arose because Bush was a dunce.

    It played well to the liberal base that sees Bush as Will Ferrell's impersonation of him: a dope who was led around by Dick Cheney and a cabal of war-mongering oil barons. And as the Iraq war bogged down, New Orleans moldered under floodwaters and the Panic of 2008 wiped out retirement accounts, the idea that it could all be blamed on Bush's incompetence was appealing.

    It was certainly more appealing than a more "nuanced" (as Kerry would say) view that America, in the third decade of its third century, faced some nearly impossible challenges.

    Agree with him or not, George W. Bush was no dummy. But assuming that he was one allowed Obama to believe the job of being president was easier than it is.

    Obama's misapprehension will pay bitter dividends for his presidency for years to come.

  2. 377OHMS


    Most of the time Dubya was pretty awful in debates but there was one debate with John Kerry where he actually seemed sharp and answered some semi-technical questions fairly quickly and accurately to many peoples astonishment.

    I have a very bright friend who insists, to this day, that George Bush had a transceiver on him and earbuds in his ears and was having answers relayed to him. He swears that he saw a rectangular lump in the upper back area of the President's suitcoat.

    These people are married to the idea that Bush was dumb and they do not seem subject to facts, logic or reason.
  3. Before Obama addressed the spill his approval ratings were 45-46 %

    After addressing the issue his approval ratings has been 48-50 %

    LOL !!!

    Only dumbass Republicans can think this is Obamas fault.Maybe if Obama had advance notice like Bush did with Katrina and 9-11 :confused:
  4. No name journalist defends the idiot aka Generalissimo Bush. Without a doubt, El Presidente was the dumbest of all the others who occupied the White House.


    So when does Bobo the Stinky Chimp launch his 2012 campaign?
  5. GWB was pretty clearly an idiot... the way he talked, the things he said, and the seemingly endless stream of self-inflicted disasters that occurred during his presidency.

    That's not even counting the financial crisis, I don't hold him especially responsible for that.
  6. There's no doubt that Bush was an idiot. Not too many will argue against that.

    But Obama, for all his supposed intelligence and savvy, isn't doing so hot either.

    You can either blame Bush for Katrina and Obama for the oil spill, or blame neither of them for either incident. But you can't pick and choose.
  7. There's no doubt that Bush was an idiot...which would make the ET klannish Bush supporters during his term idiots, which would make many of their comments about Obama idiotic...

  8. fhl


    Would that mean that Obama supporters are like Obama?

  9. Sure.

    However, the Bush supporters were supporting an idiot for nearly 8 years...so their thinking is beyond stupid...

    Their thinking simply cannot be trusted to produce anything intelligent...which puts into doubt their ability to see anything in a reasonable light.

    Their support of Bush has put them in the mentally incompetent class...so why they are not given any credibility in their often ridiculous attacks on Obama is mysterious.

    Look, it's like a guy who was wrong on his stocks picks for nearly 8 years...and now you are going to trust his ability to pick stocks?

  10. Sure you can. Weren't there federal budget cuts that specifically affected the proper construction and ongoing maintenance of the levees before Katrina hit? Budget cuts to pay for the tax cuts for the rich? Did the Obama administration proactively take measures that gave rise to the BP spill? To be sure, the government oversight agency has some serious explaining to do, but you and I both know that the incident did not occur to the extent that it did because Obama had taken specific measures to make it possible. Apples and oranges. Specifically blame Bush for the extent of the damage done by Katrina, but don't specifically blame Obama for BP.
    #10     Jun 4, 2010