The truth is this country gambled on Obama. With no resume or experience to base our decision, we judged him by his ability to use a teleprompter, his talent at campaigning and the promise of a different direction than Bush. From his oratory, we ascribed Obama intelligence and leadership. Although a gleaming political resume is not a requirement for being a successful President (Think Lincoln, a two term congressman who never proposed a bill in his life), some people will simply never be able to fill the shoes. I pride myself on being a good observer and so I’ve listed a few things that I’ve been watching in Obama. Please note; these are purely conjectures, but all the same, something worth keeping your eye on.
Obama is possibly inadequate to fill all of the roles of the President. For those of you that don’t know what they are, they are commander in chief, Head of state, and executive in chief. We haven’t seen much from him on the commander and chief side, but then again, this may or may not be a strike against him.
• Head of state – Where is Obama on the national scene? Iran is getting closer to being a nuclear state (very public about it too), North Korea is rattling the saber, and China is practicing cold war tactics in international waters. Yet, Obama has no comment, no direction, nor policy. He’s left Clinton (no experience as an ambassador) to herself. It’s clear his administration wants to change our foreign policies. However, it’s naïve to believe that world leaders will open their doors because you speak well and are not Bush. We’ve heard a lot about how the world views Obama better, but that has not turned into any action of substance. We’ve extended a reset button to Russia in regards to our nation’s relations. They’ve rejected it. So far Obama has strained ties with NATO Eastern European Countries and Israel to reach out to Russia, Palestine, Syria, and Iran. All the while, he has done so publically, but silently. Each turn has been fruitless, except indignation from countries we’ve long been allies. Obama snubbed Britain when Brown was in Washington. Whether he was ignorant or deliberate, I do not know which is worse.
• Executive in chief – Geithner has been going down in flames. He has not appointed any staff to his department and has failed to give any details on his department’s actions. Obama is his boss and needs to rein him in. Coach him if needed, provided Obama understands what is going on, which I am doubtful. Obama is absent from foreign policy as noted above, leaving an inexperienced Clinton to sink or swim. What about his cabinet chief vetting process (I’m not saying anymore there).
Meanwhile, where is Obama while the economy is in crisis and the world is looking to the US for our new foreign policy? He’s campaigning for the stimulus he’s already signed. Now, I know a little about leadership. I have a long history in leadership. I have mentored others to become leaders and studied leadership academically. There are a few things that I know about the subject. For example, how do incapable leaders deal with their insecurities? One of the most used methods is to engage only in the tasks with which they are successful, even to the detriment of achieving one’s goals. For example, a successful accountant turned gas station manager. Perhaps, the gas station is suffering from lack of business and the accountant needs to get more clients. Instead, our incapable accountant leader will lock the office door and obsess about the books. He’ll focus on making sure the cash register is not short or over. He’ll focus in on the time you clock in. While facing something they’ve never done before, they will resort to whatever activities they feel most comfortable to relax their inadequacies.
Obama is out promoting his stimulus plan, but for what reason? Sure he’s come under fire and I can understand the desire to defend his actions, but he’s not up for election anytime soon. There is plenty of time for his plan to take effect and work or not work. Either way, his stimulus promotion now will be worthless by the time we the people determine the outcome. So why is he out campaigning? Most politicians campaign for their bills until they are passed and move on. Could it be that he feels inadequate and is using a new campaign to distract him from his insecurities? After all, campaigning is one of the few things he does well.
Now I understand and agree it’s too early to make a final judgment on Obama. He may be doing what Bush should have been doing with the Iraq war. Still, since we don’t know Obama, we can only be left with the idea that our President may be in over his head.