This is Not the Barack Obama I Thought I Knew

I’ve always been a huge fan of Peggy Noonan. I know many said she couldn’t play in our reindeer games anymore because she had the audacity to be critical of Sarah Palin and a McCain campaign that gave us plenty to be critical aboot, but not me. I have this weird view of conservatism where hearing from Peggy Noonan was just as valuable as hearing from Michelle Malkin. Divergent views make us stronger as a party.

However lately, while she started off wanting to give President Obama a chance, for the past few weeks in her columns, she seems to be slowly coming to the conclusion that this guys doesn’t really seem to know what he’s doing. Coincidentally enough, this was also around the same time she stop appearing on MSNBC as much. Weird, huh?

Anywho, this week she opined on what we can expect from Dear Leaders joint lecture session of Congress this coming week…

…the great mass of Americans, the big center, will, I strongly suspect, not be listening. Mr. Obama has grown boring. And it’s not Solid Boring, which is fine in a president and may be good. It’s sort of Faux Eloquent Boring, especially on health care. The president likely doesn’t know this, and his people won’t have told him because they don’t know it either, but Mr. Obama always has the same sound, approach, logic, tone, modulation. He always has the same stance. There’s no humor or humility in it. News is surprise, and he never makes news.

The past 10 months, the president has lessened and not increased the trust of the big center. He did a number of things wrong, but one has not been noticed much, or noted. He moved too quickly, before he’d earned the right to change a big chunk of American life. You earn that right by establishing trust. Absent crisis, leaders have to show, over a certain amount of time and through a series of actions, that they’re sober, sound, farsighted, looking out for the middle. In addition, of course, middle America is worried about two dramas, the economy and war, and he’s showing he’s worried about a third drama, health care, which they’ve put to the side. His concerns do not coincide with theirs. Which makes him, not them, look out of touch.

He could always surprise everyone by saying he made a mistake and he’s going back to the drawing board to work hand in hand with Republicans. That would be interesting, and could be quite productive. But no one expects a climbdown at this point. And so he will go on, and win something, some piece of what he wants, and “Obama Wins Health Care Battle” will wind up in the headlines, and it will be a catastrophic victory, won at the price of losing the big center.


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