Don’t Blame Obama

When asked, President Bush wouldn’t admit to making any specific mistakes while in office, and this raised the media’s ire.  There are some things that I wish Bush would have done differently while he was in office although his inability to name something when put on the spot didn’t cause me to lose sleep.

On the flip side, President Obama continually refuses to take responsibility for any of the important issues facing him.  He generally utters something like:  “Bush and the Republicans did it, and I’ve got to clean it up.”  Certainly, you should never scrutinize anything he does, because that’s just wrong.  I like James Taranto’s take on the issue.  To wit:

This has been a recurring theme in President Obama’s rhetoric. As we noted last week, he frequently refers to the “mess” that he “inherited.” But the presidency is not an inheritance, it is a responsibility that Obama sought. To the extent that the country is a “mess,” it is not “somebody else’s mess”; it is all of our mess. If Obama’s policies make matters worse rather than better, it won’t be his mess either; all of us will have to live with the consequences.

It’s fine for an opposition candidate to decry the “mess” created by the party in power, as Obama did last year and Republicans are doing now. But this style of rhetoric is unpresidential. It’s reminiscent of the petulant teenager who tries to evade responsibility by asserting, “I didn’t ask to be born!”

Except that the teen’s statement is literally accurate. No one asks to be born. Barack Obama did ask to be president.

Obama’s logic (or lack thereof) is quite flawed.  When you campaign for president and win, you don’t just win the post.  You also receive the baggage that goes along with it.  After eight years, most Americans should have a decent grasp of what transpired during that period of time referred to as Bush’s term in office.  Blaming Bush is irresponsible, trite, and does nothing to improve the situation in question.  Obama campaigned on the notions of “hope and change.”  So far, we’ve only seen excuses and machine politics.

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4 Responses to “Don’t Blame Obama”

  1. While it’s true that Obama sought out the presidency, a lot of people are blaming him for the mess he inherited. So what else is he supposed to say?

    • Of course, partisan politicians of both sides are going to blame their counterparts for any and everything. That’s not really what I’m referring to. Obama’s team predicted that the so-called stimulus package would produce far beyond what it has done and likely ever will do. He and his team should be held to account for this and other predictions and promises they make. Moreover, as Taranto pointed out, Obama has made a habit of doing this. It’s not like the media he generally deals with blames him for anything at all. They’re still stomping Bush also.

      • No, he never “promised” any results from the stimulus. They made an estimate. And only 25% of the stimulus has been spent so far.

        You’ve been listening to right-wing pundits and repeating their mindless talking points.

      • Look, you’re just being ridiculous. I don’t mind disagreement at all, but to say that I’m repeating the “talking points” of “right-wing pundits” is condescending and untrue. A lot of what was done in the name of stabilizing the financial system can be judged better down the road when the picture becomes clearer. I don’t particularly like intrusive government involvement, but the banking system and the federal government are definitely linked. So, I understand and don’t disagree with drastic government action being taken to stabilize the banks and thus avoid runs and the like.

        What I’m definitely against is the expansion of government in the name of “stimulus.” Government has never been any good at efficiently administering programs. In my opinion, stimulus should be done quickly, so pointing to all the money that hasn’t been spent doesn’t strike me as a strong point. It was foolish to assert that the stimulus could keep unemployment below 8%. It would’ve been foolish for a conservative to float such an idea since unemployment is so hard to predict and, consequently, difficult to slow. I do remember the Obama team making such a statement, and they should explain that and why we should be heartened that the “stimulus” is only 25% accomplished.

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