Saturday, March 14, 2009

President Obama: a "Leader" or a "Figurehead"?

It might be too early to say what kind of Leader Barack Obama will be, but if we were to judge by his performance thus far, I and many others would say it's lacking. Some people have maintained that Obama was never meant to be more than a figurehead for the Democrat Party; the Party Leadership, Pelosi, Reid, etc, will be doing the "Leading", while Obama holds press conferences and summits, and generally continues to do carefully planned campaign style appearances with his teleprompter. How much truth could there be to that? What kind of president have we elected? Michael J. Bernard asks these questions and more:

The Ploy of Inaction
Is President Obama Lazy or is Inaction a Calculated Political Move?
[...] Some observers, however, have begun to take notice of President Obama's lack of leadership in a lot of the moves being made by his Administration and party in congress. As Jennifer Rubin concludes, "Well, it's becoming obvious he's not really much of a manager, decider, legislation-craftsman, or supervisor. His vetting process is in shambles and key Treasury slots are still vacant. His Treasury Secretary is a classic under-performer and Obama encourages that tendency by talking about everything other than our immediate recovery needs. He lets Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid do the legislating — and they've come up with an embarrassing stimulus and an omnibus spending-bill even Democrats aren't swallowing. What does he like to do? Summits. These are in essence campaign events — faux town-halls where nary a discouraging word is heard and no real work is done. And he loves those campaign rallies around the country. So if the report is accurate that others are crafting his political strategy (just like the Pelosi-Reid machine is drafting his legislation), it should should come as no surprise. George W. Bush was lambasted for poor management skills and excessive delegation. But that was nothing — Obama has delegated the entire task of governing. He will keep the campaigning for himself."

Have we elected a figurehead President who is more enthralled with the idea of being President then actually doing the work of being President? That may suit America better given that the election cycle had all the substance of a high-school popularity contest.

While Obama has yet to spend a weekend in the White House, and jets all over America to do such menial tasks as signing legislation (at a clip of $67,000 an hour on the taxpayer's tab), some have been having time to further analyze his leadership style. [...]

The article is full of links to other articles to back up what is being said as it goes on further to examine Obama's exaggerated career accomplishments and resume distortions, and what some former co-workers have to say about him.

I can't say that I find any of it particularly surprising. My biggest concern is that Obama and the Democrat Party generally want to extend the current crisis, not fix it. They keep talking about the crisis as an "opportunity". I hear some Democrats who keep repeating the mantra, "the death of capitalism". Many Leftists in the Democrat party have for years been talking about making our current economic and political system "unworkable", so they can replace it with something else. Is that what we are seeing here? Deliberate sabotage?

The truth is, over the next four years, we are going to see what kind of leader our president is. For better or for worse.

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