Mitt Romney has been noticeably quiet. Honestly, I’m sure a great deal of it had to do with the ObamaCare debate…what with it being eerily similar to the RomneyCare he passed in Massachusetts. And to any of my open-minded and tolerant liberal progressive friends who are offended by the phrase “ObamaCare,” IDontCare.
Back to Mitt, because while he hasn’t been jumping out in front of a news camera everytime the President sneezes (like a lot of his presumed opponents in the 2012 primary), he’s been more behind the scenes raising money, travelling the country, and helping out various candidates in primary’s and run-off elections. His most notable endorsement was Nikki Haley in South Carolina, where I believe he was the first to endorse.
There’s still time, however, for a pro wrestling style run-in where he hits POTUS with a chair and disappears into the crow. This chair shot comes in the form of criticism of his leadership, or lack there of, during the Gulf oil spill…
In a crisis, the leader must gather the experts — federal, state, local, public and private — not to discover who is to blame but to secure their active and continuous involvement until the crisis is resolved. There is extraordinary power inherent in an assembly of brilliant people guided by an able leader. In virtually every historic national crisis, our most effective leaders gathered the best minds they could find — consider the Founders in Philadelphia, Lincoln with his “Team of Rivals,” Roosevelt with scientists and generals seeking to end World War II, Kennedy with the “Best and Brightest” confronting the Cuban missile crisis.
What happens when men and women of various backgrounds, fields of expertise, and unfettered intellectual freedom come together to tackle a problem often exceeds any reasonable expectation. Ideas from one may cross-fertilize the thinking of another, yielding breakthroughs. The president of MIT told me that the university spent millions of dollars to build a bridge connecting two engineering departments that had been separated by a road — the potential for shared thinking made it more than worth the cost.
But even a gathering of experts won’t accomplish much unless a skilled leader uses their perspective to guide the recovery. So far, it has been the CEO of BP who has been managing the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The president surely can’t rely on BP — its track record is suspect at best: Its management of this crisis has been characterized by obfuscation and lack of preparation. And BP’s responsibilities to its shareholders conflict with the greater responsibility to the nation and to the planet. The president must personally lead the effort to solve the crisis. He cannot delegate this quintessential responsibility of his presidency in the way he delegated the stimulus bill, the cap-and-trade bill and the health care bill. It may be an instance of learning on the job, but it is a job only he can do.
I still don’t think it’s fair to hang blame on the President on the oil spill. It’s a tragic accident and I don’t know what else he can be doing other that scuba diving down there himself with plaster and concrete. I also don’t think it’s fair for him to blame everything on Fox News and for his followers to still be blaming George Bush. Politics sucks.
As long as the meme is that Obama’s lack of experience shows more and more with each issue that comes up, and the Hillary Clinton was right aboot this guy all the time, it provides Mitt Romney a more targeted line of attack. Instead of attacking over appointees no one has heard of or the fact that White House staffers got drunk at a BBQ over Memorial Day weekend, Romney can highlight Obama’s lack of experience while drawing on his own experience to say what he would do differently.
2012 (or 2011) is still some time away, but it might work.