The Second Year of the Obama Administration: Facts, Opinions and Discussions

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Jedi Merkurian, Jan 20, 2010.

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  1. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    You make me laugh, 44. Truly and honestly.

    He'll take the oath of office again on January 20, 2013, and this time he and Roberts will get it right the first time.
  2. DeathStar1977 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 31, 2003
    star 4
    Mr44

    Seriously, considering your analysis of many issues are so strong, yet your analysis of Obama is so completely absurd, it is baffeling to me how you can ever accuse some of the people here of being blind Obama supporters.

    I saw parts of it, he was fine. Christine O?Donnell probably would not have done better considering based on her speech last night, I think she thinks she won.

    But by brutally honest, you mean completely agrees with you? I know you dislike Obama but it must be severe if you?re citing someone who wants to draft Howard Dean to run against him in 2012. He still has a decent approval rating all things considered, and it remains to be seen whether or not the GOP delivers now that they have to govern. As was cited earlier, there isn?t a lot of confidence in the GOP either according to polls. And just because someone has a twitter account doesn?t make them brutally honest nor do they represent a lot of Democrats.

    Yes, I?m sure he said that he sucks even though legislatively he?s accomplished quite a bit. The Democrats took a shallacking last night. But he won the Presidency with a greater margin than Bush ever did. The Democrats still control the Senate. For all of our talk, the main issue is still the economy, and all things will revolve around that.

    But it?s not suprising the left is angry at Obama. They were angry at LBJ, Carter and Clinton. There was talk that Jesse Jackson would run in 1996 in the Democratic primaries. IMO that is probably the only interesting aspect of the tea party, that the Republicans can no longer count the rank-and-file to just fall in line as they always have. It will be interesting to see how the primaries pan out for the GOP in 2012. In a party that usually has structure in terms of the nominating process, the now more vocal and media-oriented base will have more influence and may not fall in line as they have in the past. In other words, they could have the same problem the Democrats have had for the past several decades.
  3. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Well, at least you're finally lightning up and laughing. For far too long, you were just mean, mean, mean, and I honestly thought you would give yourself a stroke or aneurysm or something.

    I still like it better when we discuss things, but I suppose I'll accept a "you make me laugh statement" from you, even though that's pretty non-specific.
  4. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    I'm still mean, 44. Probably always will be. There are diplomatic liberals and I'm not one of them.
  5. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Eh, DS... I just think that Obama is turning out to be the exact type of politician that his Illinois history indicated he would be. 3 years ago I pointed out that he never had his "Kobayashi Maru" moment, and it shows. I just think that the idea of being a "good campaigner," where you get to call all the shots, doesn't translate into actually serving in the position you get elected to.

    The magazine hasn't been mentioned in the forum for a while, but the latest issue of The Economist has an article that highlights much the same ideas as that blogger did. The Economist's article starts off with the idea of "it's not all his fault, but Obama got elected on a platform of hope and change, and hasn't accomplished either." I'm summarizing of course, because the Economist freezes links to their stories, and the actual article is much longer, but the idea is there. I know KW has a subscription, so he can read the article as well.

    Interesting that you also mention Howard Dean. Joe Trippi, Howard Dean's former campaign manager, was a political analyst on election night. Trippi indicated that Obama's greatest fault was that he surrounded himself with too many "yes men" and circle insiders right away, and he insulated himself from his own policies. Also raised was an idea that I also mentioned before, in that no matter what the reasons are, you can't have a "legacy issue" if a plurality of the voting public is against that legacy. A large part of the election was supposed to be a shock to Obama. Now, there's probably a good deal of "anecdotal-ness" to such accounts, but Trippi is another respected source.

    I think a lot of people wouldn't mind a Dean comeback.... [face_mischief]

  6. Jedi_Keiran_Halcyon Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2000
    star 6
    What's most frustrating is how much time and opportunity Obama and the Dems wasted trying not to alienate people who were never going to support them anyway.
  7. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    The Economist always abandons presidents they previously endorsed. They haven't ever endorsed the same U.S. presidential candidate twice in a row.

    I haven't had a subscription since Obama's inauguration, which is about when my subscription ended.
  8. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    It's just a "man behind the man" type of publication. First they tell you why you should do something, and then after you do it, they tell you why you shouldn't have done what you just did.
  9. DeathStar1977 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 31, 2003
    star 4
    IIRC, recently The Economist issued a mea culpa regarding Obama and the auto bailout. As KW indicated, they seem to fluctuate.

    Also raised was an idea that I also mentioned before, in that no matter what the reasons are, you can't have a "legacy issue" if a plurality of the voting public is against that legacy.

    I think that?s one hundred percent wrong. Truman was strongly disliked in his day, and now he?s considered a top President. The first President Bush was chastised for his budget (tax increases and spending reductions) as was Clinton (same thing), but now are more highly regarded for making tough choices that cost both politically.

    Otherwise, agree to disagree regarding Obama?s political/campaigning skills. IMO most punditry is worthless, mainly because I?m jealous that those guys get paid a lot to spout nonsense, most of it obvious or completely made up when a simple explanation is most likely the accurate one. In this case, it?s the economy.
  10. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Well, would you also throw in Bush and the invasion of Iraq? I think that would be a fair progression of the examples you gave.

    And I certainly accept your point, I just think they might be different ideas. Truman, for example, was heavily criticized for "nationalizing" steel mills during the Korean War, but he explained the reason why, and sold the idea. Truman didn't just take over steel production and sit back and say "trust me" when citizens became angry. That's an example of making tough decisions and getting people on board despite the concerns, which is the opposite idea of what just happened.

    HWBush wasn't re-elected for a second term for precisely the reasons you mentioned, so I'm not sure what it illustrates.. It's not like HW Bush sat back and said "I'm going to make my non-pledge my defining issue."

  11. DeathStar1977 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 31, 2003
    star 4
    One can include anything that was or became unpopular provided it was given time to evaluate, and determined to have been a positive. Of course people's initial impressions and opinions certainly have merit, but for Trippi (or anyone) to make a blanket assertion not popular = not good is lame.

    HWBush wasn't re-elected for a second term for precisely the reasons you mentioned, so I'm not sure what it illustrates.. It's not like HW Bush sat back and said "I'm going to make my non-pledge my defining issue."

    It illustrates that a decision that may be unpopular at the time may in retrospect be a good idea in regards to how it plays out.

    Truman didn't just take over steel production and sit back and say "trust me" when citizens became angry. That's an example of making tough decisions and getting people on board despite the concerns, which is the opposite idea of what just happened.

    Truman did nationalize the steel industry in 1952, when his approval rating was in the mid to high 20s. The public was really on his side. ;)

    But yes, Obama just sat back and said ?trust me?. That?s exactly what happened. In Imaginationland. Where Joe The Plumber was going to have imaginary taxes raised on his imaginary business, and where Obama did or didn?t do or say a whole bunch of imaginary stuff.

    Of course, what really matters, barring repeal, is whether or not the bill is effective, which is yet to be determined.
  12. Kimball_Kinnison Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    Is that anything like your prediction for how the Democrats would lose no more than 29 seats in the House and maybe 4 seats in the Senate?

    If I were you, I'd be a bit less arrogant about making such broad predictions, especially so far in advance. It only makes you look like a Cubs fan saying "They'll win the World Series next year!"

    Kimball Kinnison
  13. Jedi Merkurian Episode VII Thread-Reaper and Rumor Naysayer

    Manager
    Member Since:
    May 25, 2000
    star 6
    Profanity warning: What the [censored] has Obama done so far? There?s a metric crap-ton of things that this Administration has done that Democrats shoulda/coulda/woulda ran on, if only they?d ?grown a pair? and/or learned how to speak in small words.

    A key strength of Republicans is their ability to take complex issues and put them into catchphrases. Now whether or not those words are also true... [face_whistling]
  14. kingthlayer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 7, 2003
    star 4
    I didn't fall into any racial traps, I pointed out that your analysis is absurd. Saying that Boxer, Bennett and Reid holding onto their seats shows a demographic shift in the Democratic party is nonsense. That is what you said.

    And yeah, I'd go as far to say that they are all pretty obscure races, even Reid's. We are political Senate nerds, so of course we would know who the SML is, but I bet you most Americans couldn't accurately name him. Maybe now a bunch could after all the hullaballoo over his election victory, but not on your average day. Speaker of the House, on the other hand, is a much more prominent position: people can tell you who O'Neill, Gingrich and Pelosi are. But not SML. Case in point, GOP attack ads used Nancy Pelosi in their attack ads all the time, but I never saw them use Harry Reid.

    Also, on the question of which politician a young female professional is going to look up to, well, that will firstly depend on her politics.
  15. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    No, clearly I was wrong about the House, and moderately wrong about the Senate. I freely concede that. However, I would note that my history of predictions is filled with many more hits (Obama's nomination, election, that Palin would do well for a few weeks and then fell apart, etc.) than misses. One bad call does not mean the rest of my correct predictions were also in error.

    Whoever the eventual Republican nominee is must declare their candidacy within the next couple months, with February being the latest they can do it.
  16. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    I know there are some great things in there for the most disadvantaged Americans. I think Obama will be remembered for health care reform over the long haul - a positive piece of legislation that will improve the lives of millions of Americans and will not be repealed, hopefully it's something to build on toward the long term goal of true universal health care.

    As important as it was, and will be, it came at the expense of more pressing and immediate priorities. Obama did not deal decisively enough with the recession early enough. The financial reform is tepid, those most responsible for the crisis are still running the financial sector and haven't been held accountable even in the most basic sense of losing their jobs and being kicked out of the industry.

    Had Obama forced a solution to the mortgage crisis on banks and underwater home owners instead of halfheartedly urging them to take action, the housing market might have been on the road to recovery even now. I would say there is still a glimmer of hope for Obama if he takes decisive action right now on the mortgage foreclosure crisis in a way that causes pain to bank shareholders and homeowners alike. The Republican path will be to simply give banks blanket immunity from liability for failure to produce legal documentation for their note and mortgage. That will lead to even more middle class anger that will of course be directed at the president.
  17. Jedi Merkurian Episode VII Thread-Reaper and Rumor Naysayer

    Manager
    Member Since:
    May 25, 2000
    star 6
    Let me illustrate the "communication deficit" I'm talking about:
    Republican response: "Death panels" "You lie" or any number of soundbytes.
  18. SithLordDarthRichie London CR

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Oct 3, 2003
    star 8
    According to news over here, Obama's Climate Change policy is considered dead in the water since the Republicans won't support it (it being a "myth" and all o_O ).

    They also want to rip apart the Healthcare Reform. I don't see how going back to the old system which people were complaining about will help anyone. Americans asked for change, they got it and they still complain.
    John Boehner apparently described the healthcare bill as a "monstrosity" and that it "will kill jobs, ruin the best healthcare system in the world and backrupt the country".
    He seems to have forgotten that there is already massive unemployment, the country is bankrupt, and that France is the nation with the best healthcare.

    Add to that the Republicans want to cut taxes for higher earners (just as our right-wing Tories love to do here, help the rich and punish the poor) and I begin to wonder exactly how this is supposed to help an ailing country when unity and agreement is what should be going on.
  19. New_York_Jedi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 16, 2002
    star 6
    Healthcare reform won't go away. Too many parts are too popular. They may nibble around the edges at smaller provisions, but they commit political suicide if they suggest insurance companies could go back to denying pre-existing conditions.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Anyone have any ideas on what congress may actually accomplish in the next two years? I'm suspecting some sort of tax breaks for small business, and there will certainly be some compromise about the Bush tax cuts. No one wants all of them to expire in a couple months. I believe there are some Free Trade Agreements still sort of languishing on the Hill...those could possibly get through as well.

    I hear Boehner is big into education stuff for poor kids; is that true (I don't know much about it)? If so, maybe something surprising could come out of that.
  20. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Obviously the most interesting time of year will be appropriations. What happens this time if no viable budget bill can be passed? There are some people already rubbing their hands together about a government shutdown showdown with Obama. Republicans have waited oh so very long to take revenge for the fiasco when Gingrich tried this with Clinton. This time it will be different of course. Boehner is no Gingrich. But there's also a democratic-controlled Senate this time.
  21. DorkmanScott Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    You mean after two years of calling Obama ineffective, a poor leader, and otherwise predicting doom based on a predetermined, purely ideological narrative, Mr.44 is now calling Obama ineffective, a poor leader, and otherwise predicting doom based on a predetermined, purely ideological narrative?

    You don't say.

    And as more of the provisions come into effect, people will start to take an even rosier view of them, and possibly a less favorable view of the Republicans who will have tried to repeal the bill before they came into effect -- although the electorate has the collective memory of a goldfish and will probably completely accept it when the Republicans claim to have fought hard to include those provisions in the bill and opposed attempts by that evil Muslofascist Obama to water down or kill the bill.

    Don't laugh. This last week Bush started pushing the narrative that he was one of the lone voices opposing the invasion of Iraq in 2003. They'll say whatever they have to in order to look like they've always been on the right side of history.

    Very little, while the Repubs are still pushing their anti-healthcare agenda. They'll append anti-healthcare provisions to every bill introduced in the House, effectively killing them right in the House; even if they pass into the Senate, that's still a majority Democrat body and wouldn't ratify it; and even if both houses went through with it, Obama would veto it and they don't have the votes to override it.

    Once healthcare really gets rolling and people start to like what they're seeing, the Republicans will eventually realize that it would be politically disastrous to try to repeal it and something might actually get done -- at least unless they can find some kind of indiscretion of Obama's that they can trump up into an attempted impeachment, like they did with Clinton. So he'd better keep his nose clean.
  22. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    You mean after two years of calling Obama ineffective, a poor leader, and otherwise predicting doom based on a predetermined, purely ideological narrative, Mr.44 is now calling Obama ineffective, a poor leader, and otherwise predicting doom based on a predetermined, purely ideological narrative?

    And so What? Are you claiming that he actually is a great communicator and an excellent leader? I think a great many people in the voting public would question that. Do you think that people shouldn't question things that they feel are wrong in general? In that sense, the strict ideological narrative has typically been made in response back to me. Ironically, I've had a good deal of responses which were just that-"Don't say that, 44. Obama is a great communicator, well, because he says so..."

    I've outlined a set of fairly constant examples of why he has turned about to be all of those things. Just in the past couple of days, I've supplied critical observations made on Huffington (who isn't right leaning by any stretch) The Economist (with an international focus), and Joe Trippi (who used to be Dean's campaign manager and is still solid democrat) in addition to my solid pattern of observations. Not once in all the time I've been critical of him have I ever simply put forth the debate equivalent of "Obama is bad because someone like Rush Limbaugh said so"

    My opinion has remained constant from the beginning. One of my very first analogies, which I made probably 3 years ago, was that Obama was like a runner who showed up at a track meet claiming to be a world class sprinter because he wants to bypass the qualifying rounds, but who always found a way not to get his actual running time recorded. At some point, the runner has to run, and it's too late to finally do so during the final race. (DS77 and I also had a pretty good debate which used football references and revolved around the difference between being the quarterback vs sitting on the bench.) I've seen very little that changes these impressions.

    He's a shrewd political opportunist who jumped into the Presidency too quickly because he manipulated a set of expectations. I've always said that he should have at least served out his initial Senate term, even if the possibility exists that his record would then become more transparent and less easily controlled by a campaign team. This doesn't automatically make him a horrible President- hubris is part of the job after all, but his "below the radar" political career pretty much sums up the disconnect that now exists between form and function.
  23. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Obama's legacy is going to be complicated. On the one hand, he brought the nation closer than ever before to the universal healthcare it so desperately needs for widely shared economic prosperity. On the other hand, he made the tactical political error of pushing healthcare reform at a time when all his focus should have been on job creation and regulatory reform of the financial sector.

    Healthcare reform will not be repealed. It will go down in history as a monumental legislative achievement in an extraordinarily challenging time. At the same time, Obama is the Herbert Hoover of our time, the man who caved in to political pressure from the right to do nothing significant to avert an employment crisis and deflationary spiral. Obama's biggest mistake as I wrote earlier is that he didn't lean harder to the left when he could have made a difference.
  24. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    What do you mean by letting the housing market recover? If you means houses rising to extraordinarily high value again, that would be a bad idea. The housing market should stay down and never get that high again, so people can buy a house and not worry about paying a mortgage for 30-40 years.

    Cap-and-trade has been dead since Summer 2009. They will now focus on what they should have always focused on: Energy Independence.

    As for Healthcare, even the Republicans admit there is good in it. They may have a symbolic vote in the House to repeal it, but it will never even come to a vote in the Senate. What is already implemented will be impossible to reverse, and more will be implemented as time goes on. There will be tweaking to the healthcare law, but nothing major. The only threat I see is the House choosing not to fund it, but I'm not sure how that would actually work.
  25. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    I mean returning to an orderly market where home prices have found a solid bottom, where almost all the underwater mortgages have been written down or the people who are in homes they can't afford are out of them, where the banks have gone through their huge backlog of unforeclosed delinquent mortgages, where the foreclosure scandal has been sorted out so that people who buy and sell homes can be sure of taking possession of legal title, where the multiple years of inventory in homes on the market have been sold off, where the majority of homes being sold are not distressed or short sales, where the residential construction industry can proceed at a sustainable pace and people who need to move can put a home on the market and expect to sell it within a reasonable time. Is that clear enough?

    The Obama administration could have imposed a permanent and rapid fire public-private solution on this vast mess, but didn't. This particular failure is unforgivable because it's the clearest area where the government could have stepped in and done something proactive that would have had a significant impact on the economy. This is the area where I'm most in agreement with Mr44 about Obama's failure of leadership. We needed a government imposed solution to the housing crisis that never came.
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