With the rush to get health care reform passed before August, I've been fraught with anxiety. Nothing else Obama /Rahm has rushed through Congress is working. Yet everything had to be done "immediately" or the world as we know it would collapse upon us. The media has given all these rushes to judgement carte blanche.
They are abrogating their responsibility. One more time a 1000+ page bill is likely to be passed without it being read, what's more, debated.
For months now I've felt our young President was moving too fast and relegating too much to his chief of staff and Nancy Pelosi who in turn are using the opportunity to forward their own agendas which are not exactly pure in intent.
I've been torn over my own opinion. For a time I felt it is because I can no longer begin to comprehend the pace with which things are moving. Bloggers of a different generation seem to bear that out; it's an energy thing. Or is it?
Finally, a Democrat close to my own age has come forward with an opinion piece in Friday's Wall Street Journal, Obama Needs to 'Reset' His Presidency.
Ted Van Dyk is no slouch of a Democrat. He served as Hubert Humphrey's assistant during the Johnson White House years and has been active in Democratic politics for over 40 years. He's seen the good, the bad and the ugly. When he validates what I've long been thinking, I'm back to believing we more mature types have of a base of wisdom for which we need not apologize.
He begins with mention of the number of retreads from the Clinton years back in top positions. He shows where Rahm's tactics have been detrimental to the good promised in the campaign. He talks about the inordinate cost of these programs. Money this country no longer has and should not continue to borrow. He warns that if proposals and expectations aren't scaled back to a healthy level, the 2010 mid term elections could bring all good intentions to a grinding halt. He warns about continually digressing from the starting point; changing the rules as things move along rather than setting them at the start.
The administration is beginning to look foolish when continually back tracking. To state, as Biden did, the magnitude of the economic problem was underestimated, shame! Obama people were involved long before the Bush administration was out of office.
The Bush administration can no longer be blamed for everything. Obama has had the reigns for six months. That the stimulus is back firing is not Bush' fault. That the Iraqi government is putting more restrictions on our troops, as I read just this morning, is not Bush's fault. The escalation of the war in Afghanistan is Obama's. It's his war. Not Bush's.
Perhaps one of the most important pieces of advice Mr. Van Dyk gives is for Obama to stop campaigning. Get off Television. Get behind the desk, roll up the sleeves and take command. Back track Rahm Emanuel to his position as chief of staff rather than shadow President.
The goodwill with which Obama was elected is still strong but chinks are beginning to show in the armor. Slow down, take a deep breath and listen to those who know the ways of politics and ego. For the moment they still have your best interests at heart. It won't last, however, if ego supercedes the man we thought we were supporting. When a man of Mr. Van Dyks stature, a fellow Democrat, takes you to the woodshed, listen. If you don't, others will follow. And in the end, desert you.