Monday, February 29, 2016

The Obama Era, Part 7 - Memories From The Worst Presidency Ever?

Late last year I thought it might be a good time to review everything that I remember about the Obama administration. He has been in office for seven years, seven long years that in my opinion have been horrific in so many ways. This was someone who entered office with approval ratings that were above 70% and who represented the so-called “hope and change” that many Americans were seeking.

This theme unexpectedly took four days to cover, that is how many failures, lies, threats, and narcissism examples we could list out from this President. The first post can be accessed at:

Seven years later, hope has become very scarce and change has almost always been for the worst. Now, before someone says that I am just a sour grapes Republican, conservative, or neo-con, understand that I have never voted for a Republican for President in my life (I started voting in the 1970s). Up until 2010, I had never voted for Republican for national office in my life. I fully support gay rights and respect a woman’s legal right to an abortion. Thus, none of what you are about to read over the next few days comes from a Republican sour grapes perspective.

But unless you have had completely had your head in the sand or elsewhere, this has been the worst Presidency that I have experienced in my lifetime. From horrid legislation (e.g. Obama Care) to a failed foreign policy (e.g. Syria) to daily lawlessness on the part of this administration (e.g. use of unsecured email accounts by high ranking administration members), the ineptness and ineffectiveness of this administration is mind boggling.

Today, we will discuss more things that I remember from this Presidency, including the latest Pew Research results, in addition to the horror stories and disasters we already talked about, starting with the link listed above:

- I will remember that the American public rate “gun policy” and “climate change” as the 16th and 17th (out of 18 issues) most important issues in their lives while this President seems to focus only on these two issues most of the time, a bad misalignment with what Americans want him to do.

- I will remember that this President worked hard on a trans pacific trade agreement even though Americans rated that the least important (18th) issue in their lives.

- I will remember that Americans rated the “economy” as the most important issue in their lives even though this Presidential administration has been doing a horrible job at developing and implementing effective economic policy, given that 45 million Americans still receiving monthly Federal food assistance, 14 million Americans who are still unemployed or underemployed, national annual economic growth has never come close to attaining the long term annual average, and household income and wages have been completely stagnant during the life of this Presidency.

- I will remember that dealing with immigration has steadily jumped up over time to become the 11th most important issue to Americans, indicating that they are not happy with Obama’s immigration performance.

- I will remember that as Obama has weakened our military and meddled in military decisions that only experienced military veterans should deal with, Americans desire to “strengthen our military” has grown 8%.

- I will remember how the number of Americans view “protecting the environment” as a top issue has dropped 5% during the Obama Presidency despite the President’s obsession with the potential myth of manmade climate change.

- I will remember how this President promised “hope and change” but 51% of Americans now think that his failures will now outweigh his accomplishments with only 39% thinking his accomplishments will outweigh his failures.

- I will remember how independent voters have a massive 16 point difference between those thinking that his failures will outweigh his accomplishments.

Thus, the Pew results show that America also has a lot of bad memories of this Presidency, that I am not an outlier in my memories of how bad the shortcomings have been of this Presidency.

P.S. One last set of memories, based on the fact that Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia recently passed away and the President of the United States did not attend the funeral. The funeral was held Washington DC, not an inconvenience for the President. It was held on a weekend, traditionally not a work day for anyone in Washington. Previous Presidents have attended funerals of Supreme Court justices so there is a precedent. It is not in the heat of an election season.

Thus, I will remember how this President refused to attend the funeral of a very important person in this country but did attend, and speak at, the funeral of others whose importance and contributions to the country was far less important:

  • Less than two months before the 2012 Presidential election, Obama took time out of his schedule to attend and speak at the the funeral service of Democratic Senator Daniel Inouye, which much like the Scalia funeral, is being held in D.C.
  • The President attended and spoke at the funeral of Democrat and former Ku Klux Klan member Senator Robert Byrd.
  • The President attended and spoke at the funeral of Reverend Clementa Pinckney who was one of the nine people killed in a mass shooting in South Carolina in 2015 even though he had never met the reverend.
  • Just six months after skipping the funeral of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and in doing so insulted our British allies, Obama attended and spoke at the funeral of former Democratic Speaker of the House Tom Foley. 
  • Obama traveled to New York for the memorial service of Walter Cronkite, where he spoke, although he had never met Cronkite. 
  • Obama traveled to South Africa to attend the funeral of non-American Nelson Mandela.
But this President cannot travel across town to the funeral of a Supreme Court justice. And this is so typical of what I will remember of this Presidency: if any event, including an important funeral of an important American, did not support an Obama political situation or feed his ego, he reverts back to being the community organizer that he has always been, whether in Chicago or in Washington.

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