Speaking up for President Obama

He seems like a decent guy

Barack Obama’s book, Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters, is okay. The illustrations, by Loren Long, are very good. The words are nothing super, mostly conventional platitudes, too heavy on multiculturalism for my taste, but it’s okay. Platitudes become such because they are solid observations that bear repeating, and a father he should try to transmit his own convictions to his children. The book will do no harm, and some good.

I refuse to hate President Obama. Nursing a hatred for even four years can drive a man crazy, and examples of that abound. We would do better to leave irrational virulent spewing hate to the far left. Indeed, at this point they may be unable to do anything but hate the president – any president. The far left hates authority, the United States government, and the majority of the American people. Over the last ten years the most extreme have made themselves haters, and their redemption is beyond my ability.

The president is a liberal, and I’m a conservative, but he seems like a decent enough guy, and he is setting the good example – something our national leaders display less often than they should: he’s married to the mother of his children. He’s at least nominally a Christian. You’d think a couple of years in the Whitehouse would make a Christian out of any man, but that may not be the case. Plus, he lets his mother-in-law live with him in the Whitehouse.

By experience and apparently by temperament, he is unqualified for the presidency, but it’s possible he did not think to actually get elected. He found himself in a good position to run for the Democratic nomination, and thought maybe the speeches and exposure would advance his career. Maybe he hoped for a major cabinet post from Ms. Clinton, or to position himself for a run for governor of Illinois with maybe a serious shot at the presidency in eight years. Then he found himself the focus of peoples’ dreams and hopes, and events took on their own momentum. Maybe the adulation turned his head and he believed his own campaign’s rhetoric.

Having taken office, he quickly found the limits of his power, and just how few options the US has for dealing with terrorism, Afghanistan, the economy, and people’s fundamentally incompatible convictions about serious issues. So having had to continue many of George Bush’s policies that he had (somewhat self-righteously) condemned, and being unable to convince the voters about issues important to him, two years later he’s less popular than George Bush, and his own far-left supporters are turning on him. Well, that’s what you get for catering to the crazies to get elected. He and the far left have done some damage to the country, and would do more if they hadn’t lost so badly in the midterms. Still, I feel bad for him as an individual.

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