America has had it share of presidents who, once elected, have failed to inspire and lead the nation through tough years. With the collapse of his popularity polls, his failure to make corrections to his operation, his lack of plans and policy and his aloof attitude toward the very people who elected him President Obama stands on the threshold of throwing away a presidency of promise and change.
I come from the old American view that everyone should want our president to succeed, no matter what political party he may subscribe to in getting elected. Long ago the political parties dominating the American landscape lost their control over their own candidates because once elected their candidates chose to serve the people, not their party platform.
In fact the whole concept of a political party with a rigid agenda that is good for all Americans has long been accepted as nonsense which is why more voters now see themselves as independents, not Democrats or Republicans. That is how it should be in a Republic such as ours. Once elected the president must accept responsibility for all Americans, not just those who voted for them.
When a president learns that lesson they start to become effective. John Kennedy became popular when he moved to the center and stop adhering to a social, spend free liberal platform advocated by his own party and he started doing what was best for all Americans.
Ronald Reagan overcame a disastrous economy and slammed through his Reaganomics agenda with tax cuts and reduced federal government interference his first term, then turned his attention to stopping the Cold War and foreign affairs his second term. His success swept him to a landside re-election.
Bill Clinton had to take a few defeats before he saw the light and moved to the center embracing the dreaded business community over the social activists. It seems he didn't realize it was Ross Perot and his independent movement who got him elected and not the Democratic platform. But once he made the change he was able to survive many personal difficulties and gain popularity.
Even George Bush was able to serve out two terms because his agenda was what the people wanted, even if he was not the most popular president. Like him or not the Bush administration fought and won battle after battle with the Congress, Democratically control for much of his tenure, by demonstrating that the will of the people was not represented in the will of Congress.
Obama tapped into the unrest of the people with government but lost his compass on the way to the Inaugural address when the union and social activists on the one hand and his silent and well concealed backers from Wall Street on the other took control of his agenda and set him on a path in direct opposition with the people who elected him.
It was not the unions, social activists or Wall Street executives who elected him, they have never elected anyone to the presidency. It was middle America with their distain for big government and independence from political parties and tactics who put him in office. Sadly, as he did offer hope to an electorate tired of business as usual, he settled into the role of business as usual.
A year into office he has accomplished nothing for the people although he did a number of things to reward the small group of Wall Street, union and social activists who felt they elected him. How he fell into the trap is what is makes his fall from grace so unusual. His problems are only compounded by his arrogant refusal to hear the people.
Obama seems to come from the laissez-faire approach to big business, (let them do whatever they want), his consensus building approach to policy, (don't be responsible for what happens), his seemingly professorial aloofness to communicating with the public, (if you only knew what I know you'd know I knew best), and his penchant for blaming everything wrong all the time on everyone else, (I didn't get us into this mess).
If you were a tenured professor from Harvard with a Nobel prize for excellence and accomplishment you might be able to get away with such an approach but even the Harvard professors would probably have a plan or policy to follow. Now Obama is a professor from Harvard but his Nobel prize was not for excellence or achievement but for empty promises. And he is not a professor at Harvard but the President of the United States.
We elect presidents to lead, not pontificate. We elect them to be responsible, not point fingers. We elect them to represent all the people, not just his campaign contributors. And we elect them to tell the truth, not proclaim transparency while making more secret deals with contributors than Huey Long in his prime in Louisiana where he was known for his flamboyant style and brazen deeds.
For some reason it seems that the only people concerned about controlling big deficit spending, bigger national debt, eliminating special interest influence and restoring honesty and integrity to government are the people, not the politicians and the special interests who own them who rape and pillage our national government in Washington.
Today, the first anniversary of the Obama stimulus, we should all ask if we are better off now than when he was elected? Did he shut down the bad guys on Wall Street? Did he throw out the lobbyists and special interests prowling our nation's capitol? Did he fix health care or is he trying to take over health care for the unions and special interests? Did he move us toward energy independence or did he just make a few liberals rich with cap and trade and alternative energy projects while the gas, oil and coal needed to be independent remain in the ground?
I could go on and on but you all know the truth. The question is how is our president reacting? Today he again blamed the Bush Administration for his failures and the Republicans for stopping his agenda. We have no idea what that agenda might be since he seems to have no long term policy or plan to fix our nation.
As for the Republicans, Obama has had total control of the House and Senate with enough votes to shove legislation down our throats with no Republican votes. If his agenda was good for the people don't you think he might have done it? But if his agenda is littered with special deals, secret payoffs and hidden agendas then he might want to stay out of it and let Congress look like the fools, because the ultra liberal hidden agenda will in time be exposed and fail.
His White House staff today is continuing to spin all the benefits from his first year in office, how the millions that became unemployed under Obama were not his fault either, and how the Republicans in Congress are to blame for no action by Congress. If the big government, big spending, big deficit and big national debt are all that was proposed by the Democrats in Congress and the mouthpiece for the Democrats in the White House then maybe we owe the do nothing Republicans a great deal for saving us from a socialist takeover and national bankruptcy.
Yet the defenders of our Democratically controlled Congress are also in the news today proclaiming all the good Congress has done this past year. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer says Congress had a great year and things would have been much worse without their leadership. What tea leaves is he reading? What in the world are the pharmaceutical companies protected by Congress putting into the water in Washington, Prozac?
If Obama and our Congressional leaders say things are well on the way to recovery then the best thing that can happen is for Congress to do nothing while the people systematically vote them out of office. We deserve better than that. Yes "We", those people our forefathers proclaimed as the heart and soul of our Republic. Maybe Congress should read again our Declaration of Independence and remember it is not our declaration of partisan or special interest dependence.
To quote just a little of our Declaration:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.