A Report Card on Obama's First Year (Time Mag.)Breaking News
His approval ratings have fallen, and ideologically, liberals seem almost as unhappy with Barack Obama as do conservatives. Those on the right think Obama has revealed himself to be a flaming liberal (the word socialist has been tossed around), while those on the left have expressed disappointment with Administration decisions ranging from the troop surge in Afghanistan to the potential abandonment of a public insurance option for those without health care coverage. Rating Obama's first-year performance in terms of ideology, therefore, rests in a purely subjective realm.
Rating the President on competence, however, is another matter. Obama proved his executive proficiency by running a successful underdog campaign against the more experienced Hillary Clinton and John McCain. Having inherited from the previous Administration a battered economy, two wars and a range of other thorny problems, it is fair to say that what success Obama has achieved so far in his new job owes to a level of skill his 2008 rivals predicted he would lack (rather than blind luck).
But while the nation's 44th President has not been overmatched, he has not yet mastered the role either. Here, then, is a review of Obama's first year on the job.
comments powered by Disqus
Donald Wolberg - 12/31/2009
Mr. Obama is fortunate that grading policies allow failed students to move on. Thus, he will enter the second year of what has been perhaps the most miserable Presidency in modern times, perhaps exceeding the terrible years of Mr. carter's occupation of that office. There is not a sector that has not sufferred during the occupation of the White House by Mr. Obama and his "unusual" set of compatriots, from the absurdly silly Mr. Biden and "insecurity" cabinet members to staffer-Czars and what looks like a make work program for refugees from left of the 60's.
Failures in domestic and economic policy, cave-ins to unions and special interest groups, disliked health care policiy, failed military and anti-terrorism policies and the nonsense of a miserable environmental non-efforts, are the record of the first year of the Obama administration. There has not been an administration so out of step with America since Mr. Carter.
As a President, Mr. Obama seems untutored in most issues, superficial and grandiose in unlept promises, uncetain of technical matters and simply inexperienced and very limited intellectually. But he does seem to travel a lot, and as is the case with Mr. Gore, with a massive carbon footprint.
- Now it’s the University of Louisville’s turn to remove a Confederate statue
- A fortress built by Alexander the Great after he conquered Jerusalem has been discovered
- Yale students protest decision to keep Calhoun’s name
- Six maps that will make you rethink the world
- Middle Tenn. State President Wants to Strip Confederate General’s Name From Building
- The historian and cartographer Bill Rankin has developed a new way to visualize slavery
- Paula S. Fass says young Americans need required national service
- Historians are now trying to show that the gay revolution also took place in the midwest
- The Unconference Movement Grows – And Historians Are Taking the Lead
- New appeal to "Bring Back Military History"