Comments on: Why has The One fallen short? http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/ History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present Mon, 22 Sep 2014 10:08:09 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 By: Opeach Obama http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675888 Thu, 29 Jul 2010 06:44:59 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675888 the strange strange 21st Century Nobel Peace Prize of 2009 ????????

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By: Trudy http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675622 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 18:16:47 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675622 I do think you have a point about experience, generally speaking. A lot of effectiveness in any given job comes from having experience and taken advantage of lessons learned. I also have to agree with Emma. What she wrote reflects the sense I get that he is not in for any fundamental change, he really likes the system. I don’t think he ever was anything but clear about this; that the system “works” (it worked for him, didn’t it?) and all that needs to be done is sort of act the shepherd and make sure the sheep don’t go way off into the cliff. He did advocate the bailout, he did state clearly he believed in US military intervention in Afghanistan … he has done nothing much to help with unemployment or the immigrants’ plight, because that might affect his “bipartisan” stance, which he was clear about from the beginning: bipartisanship was crucial to his vision, and that means a great deal of appeasement under the guise of “compromise”. I always thought too many Liberals were pinning way too much hope on the man. Is he better for the country than McCain would have been? Probably. But, sadly, given the state of our country nowadays, that isn’t saying much.

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By: Indyanna http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675561 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 16:51:59 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675561 Us hippies are (still) just taking a little rest. Who says there are no great second scenes in the first acts of American lives? Actually, us hippies–along with the former Soviet Union–are still taking the hammer from the Reagan defense spending run-ups of the first half of the 1980s. The old “spend your enemies into submission while backing smaller government” strategy, one that Bush II learned not half badly on the tax cut side. Brilliant.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675545 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 15:51:21 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675545 Yes–perhaps the Roberts court will be his longest-lived legacy. Awesome!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go stick my head in a gas oven.

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By: Tony Grafton http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675527 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 15:36:34 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675527 Let’s not forget that Bush put the final touches on the Roberts court.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675508 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 14:28:25 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675508 Bush was not a success in my view–he’s the Worst President Ever, bumping John Adams out of last place. But, he was *highly effective* in pushing through his agenda, and for that he’ll probably get higher marks from many historians. He got more done with 50 senators plus Dick Cheney than Obama has with 59 or 60 senators. For example: today I see that the Senate has given up on its climate change bill, because they couldn’t make cloture with “only” 57 votes.

Pathetic!!! And the House Dems who took the hard votes are hopping mad. One thing’s for sure: Bush didn’t let much legislation come up for votes if he and Bill Frist didn’t have the votes. Any competent Department chair knows you don’t call for a vote on an issue on something consequential unless you’re pretty sure how it’s going to turn out.

As Eduardo said above: The Dems plan is to say “it could be worse,” and “Big ol’ Republican meanies won’t let us do anything!!!” And this messaging is going to work?

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By: Emma http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675507 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 14:23:57 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675507 Bush was successful in getting his agenda passed. The Republicans were massively effective in getting what they wanted, including two wars and huge tax cuts for the wealthy.

The one notable policy failure they had was privatizing social security. No worries, though, Obama is going to do it for them.

Now, whether this all was good for the country is another matter. But they certainly did what they wanted to do.

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By: LadyProf http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675375 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 05:35:08 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675375 Part of the problem is that it’s rare for a candidate to seem plausible as a presidential nominee without having served as a governor, senator, or vice president. The latter two categories are vulnerable to “He never ran anything and now he wants to be the leader of the free world!”

But the former category, which you praise, Historiann, has its own vulnerability, about foreign policy. No coincidence that Reagan and Bush were both governors of very large states that have nation-like views of themselves and, in effect, foreign policies of their own.

I’m not sure I understand in which ways G.W. Bush was a success. Certainly he threw his weight around well, leveraging the terrorist attack he should have prevented into first a war that he wanted to wage as part of his private agenda, and then to getting himself reelected. But his domestic legislative accomplishments are pretty negligible (delaying stem cell research? faith-based initiatives? No Child Left Behind?), and he presided over a national economy as it fell apart.

Some foreign policy in his past might have been helpful, I think. Former governors have been CEOs, but maybe that experience blinds them to their limitations. Someone who had served on the Senate foreign relations committee or even been briefed on a national security matter probably would have considered the idea of an Iraq war more soberly.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675314 Wed, 28 Jul 2010 03:01:03 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675314 Heh. Eduardo, who knew that we’d ever agree on something politically? I think you’re correct. Obama is the dog that caught the car, and he doesn’t quite know what to do with it now.

But note: I only restricted my comments on executive experience to the modern presidency (which I would define as pretty much anything 1900 or 1920 on). Lincoln was utterly bereft of executive experience–but then, the presidency was a totally different office then (although Lincoln gave it a good shove towards the Imperial Presidency, what with the suspension of habeus corpus and massive government buildup/spending.) But you know much more about that than I do, I am sure.

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By: Eduardo http://www.historiann.com/2010/07/27/why-has-the-one-fallen-short/comment-page-1/#comment-675224 Tue, 27 Jul 2010 22:38:19 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=11921#comment-675224 Of course, Lincoln didn’t have executive experience either, except running a law office. But on the whole, I think you’re correct, exec experience usually helps more than hurts.

But so many other factors are involved too — judgment of one’s personnel, micro versus macro managing, effectiveness at governing linked with effectiveness at politics (pretty damn necessary in a democracy, whine as many people do about it), etc. Carter was a micro manager, disaster. Reagan was a macro manager, good deal more successful, masterful pol.

OB strikes me as smart man who took advantage of the moment, and found himself in a situation one and a half years into his presidency that he’s never faced before. He can’t charm or orate his way out. He’s never governed before, so it’s a mystery. He’s surrounded himself with people not unlike himself who have little answers. And his inclination and of those around him is to blame voters and opposing pols (Repub and Blue Dog) for not understanding “what it’s all about,” “what is good for them,” “or what we’re fighting for.”

Which won’t win you elections. When you’re midterm slogan is “elect us, it could be worse,” things are going very badly indeed.

E

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