Obama, then and now

President was hailed as America's savior. So what happened?

  • Follow Editorials

Barack Obama received what could legitimately be described as a messianic welcome to the presidency.

After a Greek-column backdrop of a candidacy, fainting audience members and a news media that got a thrill up its leg at his oratory, Mr. Obama spoke to adoring masses in Europe – and was handed a Nobel Peace Prize mere months into his presidency – not for achieving anything, but for talking like he might.

Today, his credibility at home and likely abroad is in a freefall after multiple scandals enveloped his administration. There’s even a petition to strip him of his Nobel Peace Prize, after his maintaining and even expanding drone strikes in the Mideast.

And if the Nobel committee thought he was going to help the world reduce its nuclear weapons, or even the interest in them, guess again: North Korea has become nuclear on his watch, and Iran is about to.

While his personal popularity remains fairly high, his presidency is stuck in cement and besieged by critics.

And did you ever think you’d live to see this day? A Gallup Poll shows the much-maligned President George W. Bush is now more popular than President Obama.

What in the world has happened?

A number of things, in our view.

Mr. Obama might be the first to tell you that being president is a lot harder than it looks. The federal government is a behemoth with a lot of moving parts. And for every action in public office, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

And let’s face it: Life has a way of sending us near-constant reminders that not even the most powerful man in the world is in complete control of things. Events take on a life of their own; human nature makes certain of it.

But Mr. Obama has brought on a lot of his problems himself.

His presidency has been hyperpartisan, perhaps the most partisan in history, yet his Democratic colleagues on Capitol Hill also complain of his complete lack of interest in a working relationship.

If the news and entertainment media had stratospherically unrealistic expectations of this man, he encouraged it with his soaring oratory and promises. One of his speeches suggested history might say his nomination “was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal …”

You have to wonder if he was qualified to begin with. Nothing in his work history suggested experience or ability in juggling a mammoth bureaucracy.

And despite the happy, hip persona he puts on in public, nothing in his limited engagement with lawmakers has demonstrated the people skills required of a president who needs to press an agenda through a recalcitrant Congress.

As scandal and difficulty erupt all around him, he falls back on fundraising and campaign-style appearances, though he is term limited.

The latter is a peephole into what may really be going wrong with his presidency.

In retrospect, most of this president’s priorities have revolved around solidifying a power base. It’s become clear that centralizing power in Washington, and more specifically in the executive branch, and creating a permanent Democrat Party ruling majority is Job 1 with this president. From health care to student loans to the auto industry and more, we haven’t seen this much of American life nationalized since FDR.

This sort of top-down, central-planning approach has never worked for long, and certainly is incompatible with the American system of self-governance – the foundation of which is individual liberty.

So, not only is he in troubled waters, but he’s swimming upstream.

If nothing else, future generations should recognize the folly of putting so much blind faith in one person, particularly one so utterly unproven and untested.

Comments (79) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Bizkit
30537
Points
Bizkit 06/23/13 - 01:12 pm
2
2
Bubba I'm sick of the blame

Bubba I'm sick of the blame game. Obama was elected for Hope and Change-not Nope and all your spare change. His lack of qualifications and experience and his ability to mislead people all spell disaster for US.

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 01:11 pm
1
2
mess........
Unpublished

so you say that W. Bush had to deal with the mess of budget surplusses when he came to office?..... yes he took care of that mess alright.......

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 01:12 pm
1
2
so bizkit.... another one-liner
Unpublished

don't cast aspersions on my asparagus !

Bizkit
30537
Points
Bizkit 06/23/13 - 01:14 pm
2
2
The Budget surplus is a

The Budget surplus is a ruse-Newt's achievement-and means nothing. We were still in a recession and the dominoes were already falling for the mortgage crisis long before Bush entered office.

LillyfromtheMills
12887
Points
LillyfromtheMills 06/23/13 - 01:15 pm
3
2
And Russia

Is really laughing at Obama. We are in deep poo!

Bizkit
30537
Points
Bizkit 06/23/13 - 01:15 pm
2
1
Bubba I am an equal aspersion

Bubba I am an equal aspersion provider. I hold both Bush and Obama in contempt. LOL.

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 01:19 pm
1
2
qualifications of W. Bush
Unpublished

Take a look at the posting Dahreese @11:10am
Do you defend that as qualifying for the office of president?
Both Clinton and Newt might take credit for the surplus as far as I am concerned. But... the dot com was no where near the damage of AIG, investment houses, banks being overleveredged and trading those funny financial instruments called derivatives, etc.
That was big !

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 01:21 pm
1
3
biz
Unpublished

"equal aspersion provider" I like that =^.^=

allhans
23517
Points
allhans 06/23/13 - 01:24 pm
3
2
Surely everybody knows by now

Surely everybody knows by now that in spite of talking points there was not a budget surplus when Clinton left office. The administration proposed a budget, (YES, he presented a budget, congress approved it...a BUDGET, got it)...they (meaning mostly Newt) made sure they stayed under the "projected" budget...this was on paper.
You can look this up..it is on the record.

allhans
23517
Points
allhans 06/23/13 - 01:26 pm
2
1
I project that I will spend a

I project that I will spend a million this year...Whoa...I will only have a few thousand to spend but at least I can say I stayed under budget.

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 06/23/13 - 01:29 pm
4
2
"are you claiming that W.
Unpublished

"are you claiming that W. Bush did NOT leave a mess when he left office?"
I am not a repub and not a big fan of Bush. He campaigned as a conservative but governed as a stinking liberal. A VERY LARGE PART of the mess Bush left was the collapse of the housing bubble WHICH WAS created by the democrats in congress.

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 01:32 pm
0
0
@ allhans.... really?
Unpublished

So what do you say to the information from this website?
Stop "misinforming" ! Shame on you !
http://www.factcheck.org/2008/02/the-budget-and-deficit-under-clinton/

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 06/23/13 - 01:34 pm
2
2
"Somehow, amazingly, your
Unpublished

"Somehow, amazingly, your 10:01 post managed to make Mike Ryan's editorial today look like a the work of a reasonable, fair-minded, objective commentator. It can't have been easy."
eel, actually it is, all you have to do is tell the truth.

J.C.King
89
Points
J.C.King 06/23/13 - 01:37 pm
3
0
this will show the truth....

here is the truth about deficits/surplusses by president since 1990
http://www.factcheck.org/2008/02/the-budget-and-deficit-under-clinton/

faithson
5130
Points
faithson 06/23/13 - 01:40 pm
3
1
yep

bush had a chance to bring the whole world together against terrorism, he decided to go it alone... biggest forgien policy blunder in american history, period. obama had the financial industries on their knees when he took office, he let them completely off the hook, one of the gravest mistakes he made was not reeling in the out of control banking system, the biggest financial blunder in our recent history. Now for those of us that are pacifists, obama has kicked us all in the teeth with his on-going wars and especially the drone warfare policy, a policy that will bite America in the arse when the rest of the world powers catch up with the technology. Hey, GW had his, Obama has his... Why anyone would think the MAN we elect is something other than a MAN is beyond me.

maryhamm
73
Points
maryhamm 06/23/13 - 01:43 pm
4
3
God Bless President Obama and the United States of America

I am so sick of the bickering and in-fighting by both sides. I repeat, God Bless President Obama and the United States of America. Having travelled abroad on many occasions, upon returning to the Great USA, I always felt like kissing the ground as soon as I de-planed in New York or Los Angeles. Turn off your computers, Fox News and CNN, venture outside, and see what you can do to improve the situation in your own backyard.

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 01:50 pm
1
2
so ACE ?
Unpublished

why are you flagging my posts?

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 01:56 pm
2
3
@faithson....
Unpublished

I agree 100% with this statement that you made:
"obama had the financial industries on their knees when he took office, he let them completely off the hook, one of the gravest mistakes he made was not reeling in the out of control banking system, the biggest financial blunder in our recent history."

Bizkit
30537
Points
Bizkit 06/23/13 - 02:30 pm
2
0
Faithson, I agree with your

Faithson, I agree with your 1:40 post too. All the "nation building" strategy was probably an idea that may have worked twenty years earlier when the dinosaurs who thought of this idea was working from those observations. But this time this action has been a dismal failure and likely plays a role in the Arab Spring. Afghanistan was doomed just from a historical perspective and we should have pursued another strategy.

Truth Matters
6565
Points
Truth Matters 06/23/13 - 02:29 pm
4
2
Obama.....again

@EEL --9:53 and b b b bubba:
Good job of keeping the conversation balanced and honest. Many days I look at the editorial and the posts, shake my head and keep moving. Someone said it is hard to fight against people who buy ink by the barrel. As sure as tomorrow is Monday, there will be another anti-Obama piece from ACES. And if last week is any indication, there will be one each of the six days following Monday. Hey, it is what it is.

Only a small fraction will stop to rebut the claims, but what is more important is that people who never post here still go out and vote. Thus, in 2012 I think the pro Romney supporters believed they were winning because their side was more vocal, or had more ink, if you will. And if I had made a judgement based on the pro Romney editorials and pro Romney posts made on this site, I would have concluded the same. So when Romney lost the election they couldn't and still can't understand why.

The take away is that no matter how steep the rhetoric and claims that Obama is a liar, scandalous Muslim, socialist Marxist; go and vote! That is the opinion that truly matters.

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 02:38 pm
1
2
@bizkit.... agreement
Unpublished

I agree with your posting about "nation building".
Enough is enough. USA should stop doing this !
The nation that we should focus on building is our own !

RMSHEFF
15651
Points
RMSHEFF 06/23/13 - 04:34 pm
3
3
Obama look like the job has

Obama look like the job has taken a toll on his health. I guess destroying America can be hard work.

carcraft
25149
Points
carcraft 06/23/13 - 04:50 pm
2
2
Bush went to Barney Frank and

Bush went to Barney Frank and ask him several times to slow down Fannie and Freddie. Barney refused! The wall street regulators who were supposed to be monitoring Wall Street investments like the the subprime market were watching porn instead! Ya, it was all Bush's fault!

carcraft
25149
Points
carcraft 06/23/13 - 04:58 pm
3
2
J.C. King So because Bush ran

J.C. King So because Bush ran up a deficit in 8 years it is OK for Obama to match it in 4 years? Obama even excoriated Bush's spending. Interesting that those jumping on Bush are giving Obama a pass!

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 05:20 pm
0
2
@ carcraft....
Unpublished

I believe JC was answering allhans claim that there was not a surplus when W. Bush began his presidency. It had nothing to do with comparing deficits of W.Bush with Obama.
But, at least Clinton left a good situation for W. Bush.....
Can you not admit that W. Bush left a bad situation for whoever came next as president???

Bizkit
30537
Points
Bizkit 06/23/13 - 06:40 pm
1
0
Whoever is Prez is

Whoever is Prez is responsible at that time for that mess. Fair is fair too that Bush did go to Congress warning them of an impending crisis. My beef with Bush is more in going to Iraq and the whole idea of "nation building". It doesn't have anything to do with WMDs or Bush being legally just to pursue regime change-I just hated his timing with 911. It is like they already had this plan and it was a go no matter what. I don't see any return from this in like oil rights or the region settling down. If it had worked-then great but it didn't. Just like Obamacare-if cost were even leveling or reducing then hey great it worked-but it seems impotent legislation.

b b b bubba
223
Points
b b b bubba 06/23/13 - 06:51 pm
0
2
biz and iraq
Unpublished

The end result of the Iraq debacle is this: China has workers there developing the oil fields and is now Iraq's number one customer for oil. Meanwhile, all the thousands the USA spent "rebuilding" Iraq and more importantly .... all the thousands of American lives ended or altered by injuries .....from this crap war ..... and what benefit did the USA get?

carcraft
25149
Points
carcraft 06/24/13 - 05:13 am
2
1
b b b bubba, some of us

b b b bubba, some of us actually have a life! Carter left a mess for Reagan. Reagan saw it as an opportunity not a reason for excuses! All of Obama's failures from job growth to economic growth arr blamed on Bush or the Republicans. Reagan had a Democratic House and Senate. Obama can't deal with only one chamber being in the hands of Republicans! Obama was so mean to McCain "I won, you lost ". So give the whinning a rest!

lovingthesouth72
1368
Points
lovingthesouth72 06/24/13 - 08:54 am
0
2
Wolf in sheep's clothing

Wolf in sheep's clothing is the best way to describe this man. He has fooled even his greatest supporters and stunned those who wanted to give him a chance. Now this great country pays the price for his ineptitude. Instead of actually governing this country he has been the bed fellow and puppet of Planned Parenthood and the socialist left, promoting an agenda that is completely contrary to the founding principals of this country. It's truly sickening.

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 06/24/13 - 09:14 am
0
2
' Instead of actually
Unpublished

' Instead of actually governing this country he has been the bed fellow and puppet of Planned Parenthood and the socialist left, promoting an agenda that is completely contrary to the founding principals of this country. It's truly sickening.'
well said

Back to Top

Search Augusta jobs