“In a new Quinnipiac University Poll, 33% named Barack Obama the worst president since World War II. Only 8% named Obama as the best president.”
1. The conservative blogosphere, and I assume conservative radio and Fox News, are crowing about this. That’s revolting. No citizen or patriot should rejoice at a failed Presidency, which this one surely is.
2.The United States desperately needed–and needs—a uniting, skilled, strong and non-ideological leader with the ability to solve problems while maintaining a positive image of his (or her) iconic office and the United States itself. That a President who promised so much and created such hope has proven to be none of these is no less than a tragedy, and quite possibly a catastrophe.
3. Polls aren’t always meaningless. This one is important, I think, because it shows that the American people are paying attention, and that the incredible covering, bolstering, spinning and enabling efforts by the mainstream media to prop up President Obama and blame others for his inadequacies have failed. This is good news.
4. The bad news, in addition to what I already mentioned above is…
- The failure of the first black President to excel harms race relations, and badly. There is no way it could not. I have written about this before, in reference to past trailblazers, particularly Jackie Robinson. I know no one can will themselves to have skills they do not possess; I don’t doubt that President Obama is doing the best job he can, as depressing as that conclusion is. Nonetheless, a trailblazer has an extra duty to not only succeed, but excel. Believing one can meet this challenge and proving horribly mistaken is itself an ethical breach.
- Obama’s failure after creating so much hope and enthusiasm in his first campaign grievously magnifies the cynicism in our younger generations, and the public’s distrust in our institutions. Neither of these should be cheered. They are both dangerous developments.
- There is no indication that President Obama recognizes any failings or deficiencies at all. This, unfortunately, is the consequence of electing narcissists to high office. Obama really still believes that he shares no responsibility for his inability to work with Congress and jointly govern, a responsibility which is also called “being President.” He is only capable of governing, sort of, by executive fiat, which is the kind of government that the United States was created to end. To the extent that he has support for this, he is actively undermining support for democracy. Has any other President done this? I can’t think of one.
5. Any President’s failure is our failure. We elect Presidents. They are, like it or not, the personification of our principles, ideals, legitimacy, power and success. This hurts. Republicans and conservatives, like everyone else, had a hand in this mess.
6. It is fair to point out, I think, that the poll also shows that as far as the performance past Presidents are concerned, the public has limited knowledge, understanding or perspective. The poll found that the public thinks the best President in this period was JFK, who, like Obama, talked a good game, and also nearly blundered into World War III, set the stage for the Vietnam fiasco, and treated women like inflatable dolls.
7. The 8 per cent of the public who said that President Obama was the best U.S. President since World War II should be subjected to a separate study.
Source: Quinnipiac University