Observant readers will note that I haven’t been writing much of late. I’m sure I could come up with a whole bunch of excuses, but the bottom line is that I really haven’t been moved to write.
Fortunately, and to the great relief of many, Mr. Obama won the election. Since then there has been much fuss and made-up controversy over President-elect Obama’s staff and cabinet selections. I’m certainly not plugged in to the Washinton establishment to really work myself up about who he picks for what post, and why. There seems to be some consternation that the President-elect isn’t creating an ultraliberal cabinet, or even a liberal one.
To me, this feels like, somewhere along the line, people began to believe the propoganda that President-elect Obama is some ultra-liberal politician. I really am surprised that this is causing such a stir. He’s been center-left throughout his career, this profound centrism shouldn’t surprise anyone. Would I prefer he be more liberal? Absolutely. I said as much back in primary season (which feels o’ so long ago). But, he will be the President, and he’s vastly more liberal than the current occupant of that office. That needs to be enough.
Interestingly, while the ultra-liberal meme from the campaign is being disproven, so too is another bizarre assertion from the McCain campaign: that President-elect Obama was not ready to lead. The last few weeks have demonstrated exactly how groundless that assertion was. I obeserved during that campaign that Obama’s leadership was on display in the campaign itself. Now, while lame-duck President Bush and his administration does nothing to attempt to lead the economy out of the dumpster, and actively tries to lead us further in on other topics, President-elect Obama is doing everything he can to get us through the next couple months without allowing our economy to implode.
And what is “everything” he can? Talking, pointing, influencing, and leading. He has no official power to wield, and yet he’s supporting a crumbling economy through force of will, demonstrated in is selection of economic pragmatists as his advisors. When I try to imagine what a President-elect McCain would be doing right now, how he would be trying to fit the square peg of reality into the round hole of his (and his advisors’) ideology, I can only see him fumbling around in much the same way he did during the campaign. That’s not leadership at all.
And so, here we are. Just under 2 months left in the failed presidency of George W. Bush, and all I can do, as I read the news, and watch the fallout, is hope that President-elect Obama can hold things together from his powerless perch, since it’s painfully clear that President Bush couldn’t care less about what happens to this country.