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Obama: Too Clever by Half

David Warren has a must read article that has Barack Obama and his voters pegged:

What the polls can't say directly, and thus perhaps the White House can't yet hear, is that the policies themselves are diminishing Mr. Obama's appeal. There are indications of this in the polls themselves, but they are subtle. On one issue after another, from bail-outs to the environment, Medicare, life issues, foreign policy, the polls now tend to confirm what this pundit and a few other incorrigible reactionaries knew from the outset: that a plurality of American voters had embraced Mr. Obama not because of, but despite the policies he was signalling. They most certainly liked the man and his "temperament," and they most certainly wanted the Republicans out. But it did not follow that they wanted their government to lurch to the left.

To my analytical mind, such as it is, they wanted Obama the man, but not Obama the agenda, except for the uplifting rhetorical bits about "hope," "change," and so forth. The idea that the man could not be separated from the agenda never fully fixed; John McCain and company actually avoided riding home on this point, once the media made clear it would be reported as "scare tactics."


He is a free soul, but he is also the product of environments in which even moderately conservative ideas are never considered; but where people on the further reaches of the left are automatically welcomed as "avant-garde." His whole idea of where the middle might be, is well to the left of where the average American might think it is. To a man like Obama, as he has let slip on too many occasions when away from his teleprompter, "Middle America" is not something to be compromised with, but rather, something that must be manipulated, because it is stupid. And the proof that it can be manipulated, is that he is the president today.

It is at this point that the phenomenon known as "too clever by half" sets in. Technically, it is indistinguishable from arrogance and hubris, but it is unnecessary to stress the point. Sixty days into his first term (and I begin to doubt there'll be a second), he would seem already to have dug a hole from which no rhetorical skill can lift him.


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Comments (18)

Perhaps a small ray of hope... (Below threshold)

Perhaps a small ray of hope

I'm getting this sneaky sus... (Below threshold)

I'm getting this sneaky suspicion that's he's way over is head.
Peter Principle at work here.

Who'd a thought it. Obama ... (Below threshold)

Who'd a thought it. Obama a product of his environment. A closet socialist. Nah! Couldn't be. Maybe he'll become more moderate, move to the center. WHY! Remember, "I won!"

"He is a free soul,...."<br... (Below threshold)

"He is a free soul,...."
Maybe he is, but he has one of the most rigid, uninventive intellects I think I have ever seen in a person who has been hyped so effusively as this man has. Difficult times can bring out the greatness in an individual, but I think Obama is just not capable. No matter how desperately he tries, his square peg of rigid socialist ideology simply does not fit into the round hole of the current economic situation.

I think every President has... (Below threshold)

I think every President has to come to terms with the job in his own way - figure out the way he's going to approach it, how he's going to handle the manifold crisies that are going to come up, how he's going to just plain treat his time in office.

Reagan and Bush looked upon the position as a great responsibility. Clinton looked on it as part responsibility, part annoyance - it got in the way of his partying. Bush II looked on it, I think, with respect because he recognized the great responsibility inherent in the office.

Obama... I don't think sees the position as being either terribly worthy of respect (certainly not worth enough effort to make sure a visiting dignitary actually had DVDs he could play) or as something where he bears a great deal of responsibility. (Yeah, he'll play lip-service to the idea, but it's not really something that he's concerned with.)

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe he's going to get his feet under him and start acting in a Presidential manner. I sure hope I'm wrong, and he's going to settle in and do a good job.

But so far, he's acting like a second-rate comic in a movie where he gets mistaken for the REAL President and bumbles along - with all the regular staff doing all they can to cover for his sudden brain farts. And because everything will come out right before the credits roll, we can laugh ourselves sick at how flaming stupid the comic is.

But that's fiction. That's comedic gold. That's something you laugh at knowing in the real world it just plain isn't going to happen.

Until - it does. You get a President that's never accomplished anything other than running a good campaign (or having it run for him) - who not only doesn't seem to have developed any leadership skills to speak of but thinks himself excellently equipped for the hardest job in the world. He's eloquent, when he's got a teleprompter. He's charismatic - as long as someone else is feeding him lines.

Well, we made it through Carter, and Warren G. Harding. We'll make it through Obama - though what shape the country will be in at the end is anyone's guess. We'll make it... because it's not really like we've got a choice, right? We can't walk out of this movie or fast-forward it - we've got to live it out in real time.

Good Post JL."We'... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Good Post JL.

"We'll make it... because it's not really like we've got a choice, right? We can't walk out of this movie or fast-forward it - we've got to live it out in real time."

THe thing is what Obama is doing is DANGEROUS. It encourages our enemies and people are going to die.

And the liberals will say "well Bush had 911" and it is true. But we didnt have squat after that. The terrorists hit the easier targets. Now WE ARE THE EASY TARGETS. We saw the beginning of what this type of diplomacy gets us under Clinton. Attacked again and again.

Under Obama thousands will die and then in another attack thousands more. Obama cant seem to get a message out without his teleprompter, what is going to do with thousands of Americans dead? Hope and change may work after one attack but more than that and people will start reaching for pitchforks and looking for tar and feathers.

This country gets attacked ... (Below threshold)

This country gets attacked again (after 8 years), Barry can kiss his sweet ass goodbye. He'll sit isolated in the White House as a pariah until the end of his term. The rest of the Democrats, led by Her Majesty Pelosi and Dumbshit Reid will be too busy covering their asses to worry about any more new legislation.

Well, if John McCain would ... (Below threshold)
Paul Hooson:

Well, if John McCain would have been elected and then took no action on the economy and other matters, and conditions only worsened, his popularity would plummet as well. Remember, Jimmy Carter? His economic advisor, Alfred Khan was afraid to take much of a hands on approach to the economy, so conditions only worsened. In fact Khan's greatest achieve as Carter's main economic figure was growing a mustache.

The real test with Obama is whether his policies work. You can't tell this from day to day now. It's way too soon. But in one year, there will be pretty good evidence whether these were the right solutions to the pressing problems or not. If Obama succeeds in loosening up credit,then he'll probably succeed because home, auto and retail sales need this credit to survive and flourish.

I hope the next four years ... (Below threshold)

I hope the next four years brings the country to ruin.

Then and only then will people realize that only Repulicans know how to govern.

I wouldn't use only the sin... (Below threshold)

I wouldn't use only the singular descriptive: too clever by half (though I've used it myself). Far too much is made of Obie's 'smarts'. When really, there isn't much there. He's a one trick political pony [yeah, it was quite a big trick (but he did have help)].

Experientially, he's as light as they come. His disconnect from the real world, near complete. All he can do in office, is continue to run for a/the job he already has. And speachify.

Four more years. Fook me.

This is a paraphrase from a... (Below threshold)

This is a paraphrase from an Obama quote from before the election, but I think it's an accurate window into how Obama sees the American public:

"Just tell me what you want to do. I'LL sell it to the American people..."

You have to remember what Obama has been doing for his entire professional life: nursing the petty resentments of the liberal left, and the left never runs out of things to resent.

He has spent NO time actually doing or managing anything constructive. He is a purely political animal, out to settle a score. He honestly believes he is a Great Man, and that kind of arrogance breeds national disaster.

We ain't seen nothing yet. It's gonna get worse.

"He has spent NO time ac... (Below threshold)

"He has spent NO time actually doing or managing anything constructive."

Got that right, Bobdog. He quit as a 'community organizer' because he wasn't getting anything accomplished. His 'management' of the Annenburg Challenge was pretty well useless - a couple of hundred million spent with no improvement in grades in the Chicago School System. The ONLY project on record for his time as a state senator is 'Grove Parc' - and that's a flamin' disaster area at this point.

He's spent his entire political life angling for the next higher office, with incredible success. But he's at the peak now - he's either got to perform or fail in an epic manner.

And he doesn't have the skills or talent to do that. Worse, he doesn't have the knowledge to pick out competent people to help him.

Sucks to be us for the next few years - but there ya go. Electing a talentless hack may be the pinnacle of Democratic acheivement - but it might be something that the DNC will never recover from.

No Paul. Obama cannot incre... (Below threshold)

No Paul. Obama cannot increase our debt by almost 2 trillion dollars and get a pass for a year. With that kind of money, results are expected immediately. You libbies crack me up. You wouldn't give GW a single day for anything and you have the audacity (or hope) that we won't demand action. Doesn't work that way. ww

Here is another Obamalala f... (Below threshold)

Here is another Obamalala first. The First, Quickest, Worst, Un-American President in recent history. Apologies to LBJ, Carter and Clinton.

Bobdog, you oughtta be on T... (Below threshold)

Bobdog, you oughtta be on TV. For some reason they are more worried about feelings in their legs and symbolic mumbo jumbo to call a waddling quacking bird just what it is.

We shouldn't have to wait f... (Below threshold)

We shouldn't have to wait four years to castrate this liberal agenda - the election in 2010 should do the job just fine.
We may have to wait another two to reverse some of the trends, but the forward movement will end when we get rid of the far left idiots who have so much power in the house now.

GraceThe thing is ... (Below threshold)
retired military:


The thing is you are going to have the following happen in the next 20 months.

a. Illegal immigrants will get the rights to vote.

b. ACORN and Obama will juryrig districts to help dems get reelected.

c. 2 more SCOTUS judges will be added to the court (Note I didnt say they would be replacing anyone - the number of judges will be 11).

d. The dems will use the NUKE option to get rid of the filibuster.

e. Spinless SPectre, Clueless Collins, and Stupid SNowe will contine to be traitros.

Meanwhile Nero is warming up the fiddle.

In a nutshell, capitalism a... (Below threshold)

In a nutshell, capitalism and communism don't mix. That's the problem with the markets today, but since the players behind the National Service Bill lean left, hard left, that's actually the old Soviet commissar system. A commissar was a Communist party official. And, guess what the Democrats have in store for America? Political officers: commissars. 

The title Commissar refers to either a People's Commissar (government), or a Political Commissar (military). In the USSR, the Institute of Political Commissars was established to control the military. The state security organizations, KGB, etc., and or the People's Commissars also controlled the Soviet Army, together with the entire Soviet State. Incidentally, Christianity and Marxism don't mix either. 

Compulsory Public Service is the future. Anti-Marxist sentiment will be smashed; all men shall be judged politically. But we first require a state organ, an apparatus with which to train the political functionaries who will hold coequal rank and authority. Welcome comrade to Hillary's National Public Service Academy. Goodbye Christianity. Forget capitalism. Oh, and bring your dungarees and a mop friend proletariat; Chairman Al says we must clean up the planet. Welcome to the commissar system; it's here: http://theseedsof9-11.com






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