The Failed Obama Administration


Erik Kain

Erik writes about video games at Forbes and politics at Mother Jones. He's the contributor of The League though he hasn't written much here lately. He can be found occasionally composing 140 character cultural analysis on Twitter.

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8 Responses

  1. And every day the Obama administration becomes a supposedly failed administration, I immediately head over to gallup to check his daily tracker.

    Man, I didn’t know failed presidents could manage 65% approval day in and day out. Bush was in the thirties on a good day(failed president), Obama stays in the 60’s (failed president). What’s a successful president look like?Report

  2. Avatar Chris Dierkes says:

    I hear you both on Obama. But I think there is a danger for the Congressional Democrats, especially in the House. Never underestimate the stupidity of the American public and the dirty tricks wizardry of the Republicans. We’ll see it looks to me like 1993 all over again. Clinton in the end beat Gingrich but not after having lost The House.

    I think this is ultimately a ploy to either A)drive a wedge between Obama and the Democrats or B)Force Obama to abandon any attempts at bipartisanship and make him subservient to Pelosi and Reid. C)Untether Pelosi/Reid/Hoyer from Obama and they give up the play nice to the GOP that Obama has wanted.

    With the financial crisis forcing so much domestic focus, while I think it’s truly despicable, it could work.Report

  3. Avatar Roland Dodds says:

    “First, it’s really funny to me that the media is clinging to every one of these “failed” nominations as though they were major blows to the Obama Administration. Conservative commentators are already decrying Obama as a failure or an embarassment or worse and gleefully harp on his every hiccup.”

    Do you find any of this surprising? Better yet, did you find the constant celebration of Obama throughout the campaign equally disheartening? It seems to me that the folks in the punditry business need to fill 24 hours of programming non-stop, so they talk up every single scandal/adulation they can get their hands on. Quality programming it isn’t, but hardly surprising.

    And it’s easier to get enough talking heads to commensurate on this subject, then say, actually discussing the bailout as an initiative. That would require actually understanding economics.

    On the other hand, I do hope that all these figures removing themselves from Obama’s potential cabinet reaffirms that politics can not be changed by eloquence and optimism. Rational individuals already know this, but some need constant reminders.Report

  4. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    Hey, I’m all for accountability. It’s the loss of perspective (both in elevating Obama unrealistically before, and now in casting his administration in this ridiculous light of “failure”) that irks me about the media.

    In any case, you’re completely right, and no I’m not at all surprised…Report

  5. Avatar Bob says:

    Actually Obama has had a long media honeymoon. As I recall The Failed Clinton Presidency occurred about 5:15 pm on Inauguration day.Report

  6. Avatar Roque Nuevo says:

    The following is not really on the subject, but anyhow, I’d appreciate some response.

    I’m usually pretty isolated from the conventional wisdom and media hype in general since I don’t live in the States and I don’t watch TV. But the other day I watched Obama’s first press conference on the Internet. I didn’t catch the whole thing but what I saw freaked me out quite a bit. Obama just seemed in over his head. He looked like some overly-bright high school kid defending a master’s thesis–no real knowledge or wisdom, just a lot of rhetoric that never really made any points at all. Here are my notes from the other night. I tuned in when Obama was taking some questions about national security.

    Is it just me, or is he just incoherent?
    19:40 He seems like he’s just rambling all over the map.
    It’s making me nervous.
    19:41 Fallen heros?
    19:42 Afghanistan is a big problem!
    Progress in Iraq?
    19:44 Smart, effective, consistent
    Now I feel a lot safer!
    19:45 One of my bottom lines?
    How many bottom lines can you have before someone calls you a fairy?
    19:47 Do we have a 30% chance of going up shit creek?
    Something’s going wrong…
    19:48 There’s just a lot of stuff you have to work on at the same time to be president so ….
    19:49 Now let’s get depressed about steroids in baseball
    It’s all about the children
    It’s just a waste of time to watch this shit
    19:50 Obama is freaking me out
    Can this really be the president?
    19:52 Does he just look like he’s in over his head?
    19:53 Am I seeing this all wrong?
    19:54 He’s going to allow a witch hunt against Republicans
    19:55 If I was in a cave with bin Laden, I’d be feeling a sigh of relief.
    19:57 He just keeps giving campaign speeches
    19:59 I think he’s on drugs
    20:01 We’re ideologically blocked!

    I realize that some of the above is too extreme and I would modify it accordingly. But afterwards I looked at some blogs to see how they reacted and nobody reacted like I did. I saw stuff like, “Wow! No wonder he won the elections!” and so forth. Maybe it was just the constant “err, you know, err, you know…” followed by meaningless gobbledygook that freaked me out. But he just seemed like he was reciting a lesson, not answering questions or explaining the situation to the public. The “ideologically blocked” crack kind of pushed me over the line. Do people really take this seriously?

    It made me think of the “Officer Krupke” song from “West Side Story.” You know,

    Officer Krupke, you’re really a square;
    This boy don’t need a judge, he needs an analyst’s care!
    It’s just his neurosis that oughta be stopped.
    He’s ideological’ly blocked!
    He’s blocked!
    He’s blocked!
    He’s ideological’ly blocked!

    Did anyone else look at it this way at all?Report

  7. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    I think Obama has proved in many ways that he’s a savvy politician and smart enough to do the job, however he may differ ideologically from many on both the Left and Right. It’s simply too early to tell how well he’ll govern. And watching GW’s first press conference was much more painful. Obama may be in a bit over his head, true, but he’s a quick learner. So far, those who have underestimated him have been wrong…Report

  8. I’m posting this link for the record.

    When I find my misplaced motivation, I’ll likely write about it.Report