Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Is The Honeymoon Over For Obama?

A set of polls by the Associated Press-GfK, ABC News and the Washington Post appear to show that a growing number of Americans are unsatisfied with the Presidency of Barack Obama.
His approval rating has fallen below 60% for the first time although his 55% approval rating is better than Bill Clinton and just below that of George W Bush six months into their presidencies.
An obvious reason would be the economy which is tanking and showing no signs of picking up.
What internal policies he has bought in i am not aware of enough to comment but the Universal Health System he is pushing seems to split opinion.
As for us over here, his pre-election stand on Israel was where people i know began to question him and his decision to escalate the Afghanistan War and take it to Pakistan was a horrific blunder that is in danger of exploding in his face.
The real problem for Obama was the hysterical over-reaction and hype his election victory bought. The expectations of not just Americans, but the whole World, after the disaster of George W Bush, was unsustainable and the bar was placed far too high.
We have the recent example of Tony Blair who came to the post with the highest approval rating ever after the 1997 election on the back of a widely loathed former Government. The fresh faced Blair promised much but delivered very little and was finally removed prematurely from the post with his approval rating bottoming out at 26%, making him the most unpopular Labour Prime Minister ever and the third lowest ever from any party since records began.
Six months is a desperately short time in which to assess anyone in power but at the moment Obama is on the same trajectory although it remains to be seen if he turns out to be the silver tongued incompetent that Tony Blair was exposed as or if he can turn things around.
I just hope that he doesn't follow the tried and trusted formula of many world leaders of provoking a war to boost his standing. Hopefully that painful lesson has been well and truly heeded.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

i still don't consider Bush any worse than clinton or obama. clinton and obama just describe things using words that so called "liberals" like, and of course they don't blunder every other word.

too me the most revealing part of the speech we got last night was when obama said "i don't have all the facts" but "i know the police acted stupidly". don't you need all the facts to know that?

Q

Lucy said...

Like with the leaders of everywhere else, we only get to hear about the big things and foreign policy. I couldn't really tell you what Bill or Bush did inside of their own borders for you guys so the views of anyone outside is based on a small percentage of their actions. If you say Bush was no worse than Bill or Obama then you are in a better position than me to know.

Anonymous said...

Lucy,

just a personal opinion. can't back it up. but to me the difference in behavior of them all is small and mostly symbolic. afterall, obama isn't going to dump iraq, he is escalating afganistan. i don't think bush (either of them) started the wars to get re-elected and i don't think obama will start a war to get re-elected. i do think he will use the military or start a war (pakistan) out of USA self-interest (economics, actual security, access to resources, for allies, etc.) just like fdr, truman, jfk/lbj, and bush did.

Q

Anonymous said...

lucy,

i occasionally reference "napolean's thirds" when explaining how to win people over. supposedly napolean thought (he probably learned it from the chinese who seem to be about 2000 years ahead of the rest of the world in human understanding) that 1/3 of people will follow anybody with an idea, 1/3 are against every idea, and 1/3 cannot make a decision. napolean allegedly said to focus on the undecided 1/3.

well, obama seemed to pursuade many of the undecided 1/3 with his convincing rhetoric during the campaign. it seems he is now losing their support, so in that sense the honeymoon is over. his words still sound inclusive and inviting but his actions reveal that he is really aligned with about 1/3 of the nation (left to far left) and most of the press.

he hurt himself further with the undecided 1/3 this week by saying "i don't have the facts, but i know that the cambridge police acted stupidly".

this was in response to a black harvard professor (dr. gates) screaming "racism" on the national press when a white cop from the cambridge police dept, responding to a reported burglarly, arrived at the scene and asked dr. gates for identification. dr. gates (the home owner) felt that the cop was harrasing him because of race and he responded angrily. the cop responded by arresting him (not a real smart move).

the reason it backfired on obama is because while this felt like racism to blacks, it didn't feel like racism to whites. the reason it didn't feel like racism to whites is that almost all white people know that if you give a cop a hard time, you are get gonna get a hard time in return. in other words - you don't yell at a cop or even aruge with them unless you want a free ride to the police station.

anyway, whites (including the undecided 1/3) saw obama playing the race card and that backfired on obama.

q

Lucy said...

I did hear snatches of the Dr Gates story, especially after your earlier comment which i had to Google.
He didn't cover himself with glory i admit.

Anonymous said...

none of them (gates, cop, obama) did...

in the end, just a minor gaff by all three, miniscule in respect to both time and space...

q