Third Party & Independents Archives

Obama Is More Than Tone Deaf

There are moments when the President of the United States cannot be too busy not to attend something like last Sunday’s march in Paris. It was more than the 50 world leaders - and that included both Palestine and of course Israel - who marched with linked arms down the winter boulevards of that great city. It was the millions of French citizens who have had enough of islamic terrorism and it’s latest deadly attempts to impose blasphemy laws in a Western, democratic society. President Hollande’s embrace of columnist Patrick Pelloux was visceral, moving and untheatrical. This was not something staged, even if it was planned. This was real down to the very marrow of all those who marched and all those who watched in silent support around the world. Where were America’s leaders? There may have been moments when France may have quietly asked the big bad old USA not to attend, as infuriating as that may have been. This was clearly not the case.

So where was Obama? Where was the First Lady? Where was the Vice President? Where was AG Eric Holden? Oh, that's right. He was in Paris. The worry is not necessarily that Obama somehow has a moderate position vis-à-vis the terrorists who committed the murders - these murderers are extremists within an already abhorrently extreme group. It is more a case of trying to puzzle out what kind of justification or worse still, lack of concern, motivated his absence? If Rudy Giuliani could walk the streets of Manhattan in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 and bring purpose to the chaos that surrounded him, surely Obama, or Michelle, or the Vice President could have walked the streets of Paris in repudiation of the same evil that struck New York. Basic leadership demands such a response. Who told Obama what kind of relativistic, petty drivel to convince him not to go? Or did he already have his wandering mind made up? Will we ever know? Smirking selfies at Nelson Mandela's funeral, missing in action on the golf course, watching the playoffs while the world marched in Paris. Obama is more than tone deaf. He lacks the authority of a leader, not because he is unable to exercise it. Rather because he is unwilling to exercise it at key moments. The Why may be morbidly interesting but it is not the key. The What - as in what he didn't do - is the thing that will go down in the history books.

Posted by AllardK at January 14, 2015 9:38 PM
Comment #387390

Sorry AK, but the President of the United States can’t be expected to travel the globe and mourn for victims of terrorism. It is not worthy of his time, or our money.

Posted by: kctim at January 15, 2015 2:55 PM
Comment #387399

kctim is partly correct. Obama probably didn’t even know what was going on in France. If Valerie Jarett did not inform Obama, then he certainly didn’t even know there were world leaders in France.

The mistake is made when we believe Obama actually knows what is going on in the world. He only knows what he is told. If he is told the American people love him and support every executive order that comes across his desk, then that is what he believes. As Clint Eastwood said, “He’s nothing more than an empty chair”.

Posted by: George at January 15, 2015 3:51 PM
Comment #387404

I am not surprised that obama did not send some high government official to Paris to join dozens of world leaders in a show of solidarity against terrorism.

He is not a leader of our nation as he does not lead to the benefit of all Americans in non-political areas. He is simply a party “boss” leading only on political issues of concern to his constituents.

Leaders inspire. Leaders take a stand on moral issues. Leaders sacrifice their political gains for the common good. Leaders are remembered.

Obama will soon be forgotten.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 15, 2015 4:43 PM
Comment #387406

“He’s nothing more than an empty chair”.

If the 2012 GOP convention teaches us nothing else, it is that an old man yelling at an empty chair is an effective tactic when it comes to Obama.

“Obama will soon be forgotten.”

Oh, come on. The Obama administration has created the best economy of the modern era, by virtually any statistic one cares to name: employment, stock market, interest rates, inflation, job creation, reducing deficits, causing oil prices to drop, encouraging alternate energies, encouraging the fight against Global Warming, and more. Legislative accomplishments include the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and the PPACA.

For foreign policy, every polled nation looks at us more favorably than they used to because of Obama. That includes the French. There are two exceptions: Israel (an international pariah) and Pakistan, which never got over Obama bagging Bin Laden on their turf.

A few months ago, the leaders of the EU met in London. The crowd was quiet and polite as each one entered the room. They broke into spontaneous applause for one, and only one, world leader: Obama.

Posted by: phx8 at January 15, 2015 5:04 PM
Comment #387408

More levity! Now your getting it, phx8! Good job!

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 15, 2015 5:15 PM
Comment #387412

It’s unfortunate that neither Biden nor Holder missed this particular photo opp. However, it is very fortunate that nobody in France seems to care.

Posted by: Warren Porter at January 15, 2015 5:32 PM
Comment #387413

I see you are not questioning any of the facts I present regarding employment, job creation, interest rates, the stock market, housing prices, inflation, reducing deficits, falling oil prices, or any others.

I see you are not questioning the improved view of America since Obama became president. By the way, I doubt that includes Russia. The Russians are terribly fond of Obama since his administration tanked their economy as punishment for violating international law. Hard to know with Syria, either, but at least Obama forced them to give up their chemical weapons arsenal without firing a shot.

And of course, we won’t be hearing any questions from Bin Laden or Khaddafi. They are dead.

By the way, one of the great foreign policy achievements of the Obama administration was bringing China to the table for commitments to international cooperation over Global Warming.

Posted by: phx8 at January 15, 2015 5:35 PM
Comment #387415

It’s unfortunate that neither Biden nor Holder missed this particular photo opp. However, it is very fortunate that nobody in France seems to care.

Posted by: Warren Porter at January 15, 2015 5:41 PM
Comment #387419

“Global instability is on the rise and faith in America’s stabilizing presence is on the decline, and all we have from Washington are empty, millennial-friendly buzz phrases. “Leading from behind” was how one, too-clever-by-half administration official termed Obama’s global strategy. Hitting “singles” and “doubles” is Obama’s own, jocular assessment of his foreign policy. And now, “Don’t do stupid s—-” is the mantra being repeated throughout the halls of the White House and State Department.

“Don’t do anything at all” seems more apt a description of this administration’s approach.”

BY James Kirchick
Sunday, June 29, 2014, 4:30 AM

Kirchick is a fellow with the Foreign Policy Initiative.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 15, 2015 6:46 PM
Comment #387420

There are some on the left foolish enough to believe that all good and all bad comes from the sitting president.

Republicans: All bad

Democrats: All good

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 15, 2015 6:50 PM
Comment #387423

Economy gets driven into the dirt.
Slides around in the dirt for years.
Growth occurs as a result of being alive and on the earth.
Economy finally reaches a point resembling before the drive in the dirt.
Obama claims credit and insists mediocrity is progress.

Gas was this price before Obama was president.
Russia convinced Syria to get rid of the chem weapons.
Obama didn’t punish Russia. He “punished” about 13 people in Russia.
I heard China got a free lunch at that table.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 15, 2015 7:51 PM
Comment #387443

So the economy “gets driven into the dirt” under Bush, and now that we’re above ground again, thanks to Obama, we are supposed to believe that Bush had nothing to do with the dive, and Obama had nothing to do with the recovery? Gas skyrocketed under Bush, and when it comes back down under Obama, the only conclusion is that “gas was this price before Obama was president”?

It must be strange to live in such a random world, one so utterly free of cause and effect.

“Russia convinced Syria to get rid of the chem weapons.”
Oh really? Because Russia has been a close ally of Syria for decades, and never ever pressured them to get rid of their chemical arsenal. Syria only did so when Obama told them to get rid of it or face bombing.

Is the economy ‘mediocre’? You call GDP growth of 5% ‘mediocre’? Zero inflation ‘mediocre’? Interest rates at all time lows and the stock market at all time highs ‘mediocre’? The monthly creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs ‘mediocre’?

Please tell us all what would constitute ‘great’.

Posted by: phx8 at January 16, 2015 12:29 PM
Comment #387447

You guys set the benchmark. GHWB had 5% growth and your guys beat him up for it. GWB had 5% growth and your guys beat him up for it.

Why the double standard, phx8. Partisan much?

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 16, 2015 1:46 PM
Comment #387452

Oh! Well, obviously the economy today is exactly the same as it under Bush #43. Not.

WW, do you know how to read a chart? If so, here are some useful ones for the Bush presidency:

As we are all aware, the Bush #43 presidency ended in economic disaster. What caused it? What factors led up to it? Are those still concerns today?

Posted by: phx8 at January 16, 2015 2:50 PM
Comment #387464

A Congress run by Democrats, PHX8, and Bush giving them everything they wanted.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 16, 2015 4:03 PM
Comment #387465

Can you name an example?

Posted by: phx8 at January 16, 2015 4:14 PM
Comment #387468

Fanny and Freddy for one. Who do you think ran the purse from 2006-2010, phx8. Or did you forget that in your hate of Bush.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 16, 2015 4:32 PM
Comment #387474

If President Obama Told The Truth About The Economy

A good factual read:

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 16, 2015 4:51 PM
Comment #387478

But see this article from the same publication. Note the updates at the end of the article.

Posted by: Rich at January 16, 2015 5:10 PM
Comment #387479

The author of the article makes a bad assumption, and the rest of the article fails because of it. Jeffrey Dorfman claims the Great Recession was not as bad as the recession in 1981. That is simply false. The Great Recession was caused by a financial meltdown that cratered the investment banking sector. During one two-week period in September 2008, 12/13 largest institutions were in danger of failing, according to the Chairman of the Federal Reserve. The situation with housing was actually worse than the Great Depression by some measures.

The Reagan recession was an intentional one, inflicted by Paul Volker at the Federal Reserve, who jacked up interest rates in order to wring out inflation. It was painful, but short-lived.

I really don’t know how guys like Jeffrey Dorfman keep their job. Must be tenured. He is certainly in no danger of being hired away.

Posted by: phx8 at January 16, 2015 5:12 PM
Comment #387481


How quickly we forget the dramatic collapse of the credit markets in 2008. An emergency Rose Garden address to the nation by President Bush in early evening. Secretary of Treasury, Paulson, literally on his knees pleading for of majority leader, Pelosi, for an urgent relief package for the banks (EMERGENCY ECONOMIC STABILIZATION ACT OF 2008 eventually more popularly referred to as TARP).

Posted by: Rich at January 16, 2015 5:48 PM
Comment #387483

The article is a real piece of work. The author claims that since the unemployment rate during the Reagan recession peaked at a higher number than under Obama, the 1981 recession was worse. That ignores the fact that the Reagan recession resulted in the loss of 2.9 million jobs, while the Great Recession resulted in the loss of 8.7 million jobs. Incredible. And that guy gets paid to write that stuff!

Posted by: phx8 at January 16, 2015 6:13 PM
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