Towards A Good Samaritan World

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


Barak Obama, now Democratic candidate for president, has no executive experience and only two years of experience in national politics. George W. Bush would have benefited from having more experience before becoming president. He'd been governor of Texas for six years. And that was peacetime. But peacetime or wartime, Obama is just too inexperienced to belong in the White House.

But a bigger problem is that all Obama's utterances seem to be meaningless pabulum. For example:

“Our leaders in Washington seem incapable of working together in a practical, common-sense way,” Mr. Obama said, speaking in a video address sent to his supporters. “Politics has become so bitter and partisan, so gummed up by money and influence, that we can’t tackle the big problems that demand solutions.”

Blah blah blah. Give me substance. Bitter, partisan Democrats, gummed up by the money and influence of the AARP, blocked Bush's attempt to tackle a big problem, Social Security, that demands a solution. Is that what you're talking about, Obama?

Actually, Social Security aside, I'll be contrarian here and say that Obama is actually wrong. In the last few years, Congress has passed the No Child Left Behind Act, big tax cuts, and the Medicare prescription drug plan, while implementing regime change in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those are fair achievements.

But the real problem is that Obama's statements are designed to play well in the press, and to play well to different audiences. They're fortune-cookie statements, that make everyone's brain say "Yeah" because they sound good and are too vague to have any real meaning with which to provoke disagreement. It's a nifty trick, but voters would be very foolish to put a guy into the White House for it.

But wasn't Bill Clinton a smooth-talker too? Yes, but he was also a smooth operator, based on a lot of executive experience and a healthy dose of sleaze, that's what made him successful, and anyway, he was only successful in domestic policy; in foreign policy, the late 1990s were mostly a time of drift, and of course they led up to 9/11. Obama lacks the executive experience and (as far as I know) the sleaze; and this is not a time when we can afford to let foreign policy slide.

That said, I'll give my last dime to Obama's campaign if the Republicans nominate Tom Tancredo.


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