Mr. Incredulus: A Superhero That Is Only “Present”
A lot of Obama voters out there still believe he is some sort of superhero. The JibJab.com team cleverly compartmentalized this folklore with great artistic liberty. Obama does not fight off enemies, he delegates to others while standing in the center of conflict declaring “Present!”
As outlined in the Financial Times, Obama is letting the Congress draft and pass awful legislation that will upset voters and result in their expulsion in 2010. He will let them take the credit and the blame when it fails. At the same time, he is arguing on both sides of every issue. Obama calculates that when challenged, he can grab credit for whichever one of his opinions falls into the right side of history.
There is a big problem with this approach. First, his own highly-irritable supporters are going to cry like babies when their domestic agenda items are reduced to an afterthought. Evidence for this is already erupting from the gay community who think they are getting it in the rear. They are right, but not alone in that line of thinking. Second, by framing himself so highly in the minds of many he risks catastrophic failure. If a terrorist attack, increased war involvement or deepened financial woes occur his picture will be removed from many fireplace mantles around the country.
Third, even the press cannot hide tragedy behind sweet innuendos. The domestic or international failures of this President will be evident for all to see when they occur. When bad things happen there are many who stand to blame the only one standing there. You know, the only one who is “Present“.
The president has cast himself not as a leader of reform, but as a
cheerleader for “reform” – meaning anything, really, that can plausibly
be called reform, however flawed. He has defined success down so far
that many kinds of failure now qualify. Without hesitating, he has cast
aside principles he emphasised during the campaign. On healthcare, for
instance, he opposed an individual insurance mandate. On climate
change, he was firm on the need to auction all emissions permits.
Congress proposes to do the opposite in both cases and Mr Obama’s
instant response is: “That will do nicely.”