Thursday, February 05, 2009

Obama's narrow window of opportunity

Obama has a very narrow window of opportunity to succeed. Although presidential elections only occur every 4 years, congressional elections occur every 2 years, and he needs Congress to help him implement his agenda.

And on that timetable, he has even less than two years to succeed, for voter opinion will begin to gel well before election day.

Obama was only elected because a certain percentage of the electorate ignorantly blamed the Republicans for the economic downturn. If the Democrats were to lose control of one or both houses of Congress 2 years from now, Obama would be a lame duck president for the remainder of his term.

Now, he may get lucky. Life is unfair.

But there are many ways in which his tenure can go badly wrong. For example, if what is euphemistically called the “stimulus package,” which is doubletalk for massive pork barrel spending, fails to salvage the economy, that’s one thing that could sink his administration.

It may also be that Obama is setting some traps for himself. Not only has he vowed to close GITMO, but he’s offered a date certain (a year from now). That’s very foolhardy. It’s imprudent to set a date certain when, by your own admission, you don’t know where else to put the detainees.

Here’s a very plausible scenario: they are brought to the mainland to stand trial in Federal court. They will be acquitted on various technicalities since the gov’t can’t meet the usual burden of proof in a criminal trial.

For reasons of political correctness, they can’t be deported to their own countries for fear of being “tortured.”

Therefore, they will be released onto the streets of America.

Suppose one (or more) of them then commits a terrorist act on American soil, thanks to the bleeding-heart policies of the Obama administration. Imagine the coverage on talk radio, cable news, the blogosphere, &c.

Or suppose the mainland suffers another major terrorist attack. Obama has been very vocal about reversing the countermeasures introduced by the Bush administration. A certain percentage of the electorate would attribute the attack to his bleeding-heart policies.

He has also vowed to repeal “Don’t ask, don’t tell.” Now, that’s not the sort of thing which will single-handedly sink his administration. But he will blow political capital on an issue where he has little to gain and much to lose.

A politician can doom himself in two different ways: by one very long misstep or by a series of short missteps.


  1. My fear is that this recession will run its natural course in about 12 months time, as most recessions do, and PRESTO! we have Obama's stimulus package to thank for it - when all it will have actually done is sink us into greater debt as our economy follows its normal laws of self-correction and rebounds. Obama and the Democrats get all the credit, and they all sail into re-election.

  2. David's right. I see the Dems as thinking that way all along. They know the economy will run its course, so meanwhile they can do their socialist vandalism which will effect things to a slower degree towards economic hell and tyranny.

    I'm surprised he did the Bill Clinton mistake regarding gays in the military. I'd thought he'd at least avoid that mistake. It shows he and his team are not as sharp as they seemed during the campaign.

  3. Obama will never be called out by the Media. Oprah, and everyone else are mesmerized by his personality, and he can do no wrong.

    So come what may, Obama will be cheered on. It matters not. Amazing, but true.

    I saw Oberman last night and he was interviewing someone who said the larger the stimulus package the better for the nation. Amazing.

  4. Donsands, I'm sensing something a little different in the air. I sense the leftwing media in general (Olbermann is the white padded room media) has let up on the Obama worship once they got him in and made their big historical statement. Now they are thinking about their money just like everyone else. When you read headlines about bank failure that include Bank of America to any degree people start to get serious. Notice Pelosi and Reid are being criticized by the moderate left now. The hard left hates everybody who isn't Hugo Chavez level.

    Obama is in a difficult place. The markets speak objectively and the left media can't spin it away. Really, in America, these Alinsky types can only be parasites on a thriving economy. They can't run the show. Americans are always ready to kick some you know what at the polls.

  5. Michael Steele asked for the resignations of the entire Republican National Committee. I heard that. Hope it's true. Elections in much less than two years.

  6. "..has let up on the Obama worship once they got him in and made their big historical statement."

    I suppose you could be right.

    We need another Reagan. It's his B-day today. Not that he was perfect, but he at least had a backbone.

    I like Steele, I think. Politicians! Where are the statesman?

  7. Anyone listen to Obama's speech last night on the stimulus package? Any thoughts or analysis?

  8. I didn't hear it except for sound bites, but one commentator said something that sounded accurate: he said Obama sounded like he was still running for president rather than leading.