Friday, April 08, 2011

What's President Obama Thinking

I'm not asking because I question his judgment on an issue - I'm asking because I literally have no idea what he's thinking. For somebody who can, at any time, capture any amount of national or international media attention he desires, it's amazing how silent he is on the issues of the day. It's not just that the silence leaves us in the dark about policy choices and priorities, it seems that the President is giving up a tremendous opportunity to educate the public about contentious issues and to help shape the public debate.

1 comment:

  1. I saw that as you projected, when Obama finally spoke on Libya it was when he could include the "We're handing over operations to our allies" line in his speech. If the latest ceasefire offer works Obama can reasonably give a lot of the naysayers an "I told you so".

    It seems like he's waiting to make statements about his actions such as the attack on Libya until a lot of the ambiguity is gone from the situation, and that he's waiting to make statements about his inaction until a deal has been cut and he can call whatever comes out of Congress a "victory", as with the budget deal.

    He's going to be criticized no matter what he does, often by the same people. Newt Gingrich personifies the Republican approach to his Presidency. "The President is being indecisive. He needs make a decision now and he needs to do X! The President made a decision? How atrocious that he didn't involve Congress and wait until they had spent a month or two debating the issue before acting - we had time to wait. And he is doing X? How incredibly irresponsible. He should have done the opposite!"

    He seems to have difficulty with criticism from the political right, but I hope it's not that difficulty that is keeping him from speaking out more vociferously on the issues. He can't win, so I say take a position, speak forcefully in support of your position and why it's right and go for it.


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