This past weekend President Obama was interviewed by some friendly reporter or other. In that interview, Obama made some extraordinary statements of Presidential failure. They were ostensibly small things, but the admissions themselves were astonishing.
First Obama said that “perhaps it had been a mistake” to go golfing immediately after announcing the murder by beheading of journalist James Foley.
Then, Obama indicated that the circumstances or the politics of the moment were not favorable for him to act unilaterally regarding immigration — ie for him to make some vast, sweeping amnesty-type move for people in this country illegally.
First extraordinary thing: Regarding the Foley murder: Obama said that he was “supposed to pay attention to the optics,” and that “that’s his job.”
But, what are “the optics?” Well, simply, they’re the appearance of something. When Obama announced Foley’s murder, then went straight to the golf course, “the optics” suggested a President who didn’t really give a darn about what he had just said. Better “optics,” I guess, would have been to cancel the round of golf, go back to the Oval Office and start doing things that would pertain to addressing the murder.
But, here’s the rub. The “optics” frequently reflect reality. This is what Obama did not address. Obama went to the golf course because he really didn’t care all that much about “the optics.” He might have been upset about Foley’s murder, but realized that there was nothing in particular that he could do about it right then and there, so why not continue with the planned round of golf?
So, why might Obama not care about “the optics?” Simple: here’s a President who has received a pass from any critical media attention for the better part of six years! He’s never had to pay even the teentsiest tiniest whit of a jot of a hint of a whiff of attention to “the optics.”
Don’t forget, this is a President who paid close attention to George W. Bush’s Presidency. When Bush was criticized for playing golf during wartime, Bush stopped playing golf. Immediately. He said something to the effect of, “No mother who’s just lost her son in Afghanistan should see the Commander-in-Chief on the golf course.”
Obama was perfectly aware of that, and didn’t care. No Commander-in-Chief has golfed as much in wartime as Obama.
This “optics” admission says one thing: Obama has heard the message from someone that he won’t continue to get a free pass from the media. If the left-left-wing legacy media are abandoning Obama — these are, don’t forget, the staunchest of his allies — then they have heard a message that America just might be starting to pay closer attention; that Obama’s skin color doesn’t automatically get him a free ride anymore; that he might actually have to do something Presidential — and this nearly six years into his Presidency! Look for more fallout from this in upcoming days, as the media try to sew together the tatters of this long-failed Presidency.
Extraordinary thing two:
The admission that the circumstances are not right for Obama to act unilaterally on immigration. Just out of curiosity, what does one call a leader who does things unilaterally, without consulting representative bodies of the people? Easy: a king.
Someone has transmitted the message that the “imperial Presidency” that we so feared when Richard Nixon was the President, actually came into being under Obama. That makes for bad “optics” too.
Here is a President who has, astonishingly, written laws without the approval of Congress, and enforced laws selectively, according to how he feels about the laws in question. Talk about an “imperial President!” Both of these things are completely unconstitutional and represent a power grab unprecedented in American history since the days of FDR. Only, FDR failed in his plan to pack the Supreme Court with judges of his political persuasion.
Extraordinary thing three:
Obama admitted he had done something wrong. This is a guy who has never admitted ever to having done anything wrong. It’s all Bush’s fault. It’s the fault of Congressional Republicans. He’s blamed the people, the media, the weather (remember how the Japanese tsunami prevented something or other that he wanted to do?), other countries… He, Obama, however, according to him, has never done anything wrong.
Now, nearly six years into his Presidency, he admits that “perhaps” he might have slipped up — and even then on something so incredibly simple.
This all demands the obvious question: What else has he done wrong.
It bears repeating: if Obama — nearly six years into his Presidency is still so bad at the really easy stuff, what about the tough, complicated stuff?
If Obama mucked up something so simple as the announcement of the Foley murder, how can anyone possibly imagine that he got the really complicated things right? Like, for example, healthcare? Race relations? The economy? Unemployment? The national debt? How are they all doing?
Look, I’ve never been President, but if I were, and I had just announced the gruesome murder of an American in the Middle East, you can be sure that I would have called off the golf game. Why? It would have been the right thing to do. It would have been (not “seemed”) perfectly cold and callous of me just to go out golfing. I wouldn’t have had the stomach to go golfing after such an announcement.
I don’t need my President to be a tear-gushing, pantywaist feeling everyone’s pain, but for crying out loud! This was a gruesome atrocity, a crime against humanity that he had just announced. A crime that signaled that our adversaries aren’t like anything we’ve dealt with before. To say they’re rabid dogs is to be unfair to rabid dogs.
Without using exactly those words, that is the announcement that Obama made that day. Then he went out golfing. Optics schmoptics, Obama is a cold, heartless man. Or an ignorant fool. Don’t rule out the possibility that he’s both.
This is the golfingest President in the history of the country. Coincidentally, it’s also a Presidency during which nothing whatsoever has improved anywhere in the world, despite the simple fact that Obama is the most powerful man in the world… the most powerful man in history.
Obama golfs as the world bursts into flames around him — largely due to his own actions or inaction. A closer parallel to Nero would be difficult to find.