Tuesday, April 10, 2012
What's So Likeable About President Obama?
By Aaron Goldstein on 4.10.12 @ 6:08AM
Begging to differ with Ben Stein.
Last week, Ben Stein took President Obama to the woodshed over his ignorance of the U.S. Constitution following his comments that it would be unprecedented for the Supreme Court to overturn legislation enacted by Congress despite the fact the Court has been doing just that for more than two centuries. Stein went as far as to suggest that this deficit of knowledge means Obama is not qualified to be President. For good measure, Stein also took Obama to task for his abandonment of missile defense as well as his hatred and contempt for the oil companies.
Yet the most striking thing about Stein's essay is his last two sentences:
I actually find Mr. Obama likeable and upbeat most of the time. But in this case, he showed way too much of another side.
Stein is, of course, entitled to his opinion about President Obama's personal disposition. But this is hardly the first time that Barack Obama has "showed way too much of another side."
What's so likeable about a man who berates small-town America for getting bitter and clinging to guns and religion and having antipathy to people who aren't like them? If anything, it is Obama who is bitter and has antipathy to people who aren't like him. In this case, that would be the majority of the American people. Yet these remarks did not prevent him from winning the 2008 election.
Speaking of which, what's so likeable about a man who repeatedly reminds his adversaries that he won the election? What's so likeable about a man who while abroad describes his country as "arrogant, derisive and dismissive"? What's so likeable about a man who abandons our allies while bowing to our enemies? What's so likeable about a man who says things would be a lot easier for him if he were President of China? Yes, life would be easier for him. He could put the Catholic Church under his thumb and do away with his opposition, our independent judiciary and our free press. Life, however, would be a great deal harder for us.
What's so likeable about a man who states that a local police department acted stupidly when by his own admission he wasn't there and didn't have all the facts before him? What's so likeable about a man who berates a reporter for not letting him finish his answers during an interview? In fact, all the reporter did was to have the audacity to correct him about his margin of defeat in Texas during the 2008 election.
What's so likeable about a man who invites one of his chief critics to sit in the front row to listen to a key public policy speech only to publicly lambaste him? What's so likeable about a man who on the one hand demands civility and on the other accuses Republicans of wanting "dirtier air, dirtier water and fewer people with health insurance"? What's so likeable about a man who blasts questionable language by Rush Limbaugh but grants a waiver to Bill Maher for far more egregious language after Maher donated more than a million dollars to one of his Super PACs?
Nevertheless, I recognize the reality on the ground. Despite the fact that President Obama has behaved in a less than likeable manner on numerous occasions throughout his presidency he remains more popular than his policies. In a just released poll by Third Way, a liberal think tank, swing independent voters in a dozen battleground states, gave President Obama a favorability rating of 57% as opposed to 41% for Romney even though on average these swing voters measure themselves as right of center on the political spectrum. Fair or not, perception is nine-tenths reality and it could be this perception of Obama's likeability that keeps him in the White House for another four years. Yet I cannot help but wonder how many of these swing voters who view Obama favorably are aware that he wishes he had the authority of the President of China much less are aware of his statement questioning the authority of the Supreme Court.
It would come as no surprise if most of these swing voters were not aware of these things. After all, the mainstream media has a vested interest in President Obama's re-election. To quote Bernie Goldberg, the mainstream media is still in the midst of a "slobbering love affair" with Obama as demonstrated by Associated Press chief Dean Singleton's speech last week full of undying devotion to the 44th President. The AP might as well rename itself Pravda. Meanwhile, MSNBC can run Obama singing "Let's Stay Together" and "Sweet Home Chicago" on a continuous loop.
The good news in all of this is that with the election less than seven months away there will be ample opportunity for President Obama to put his unlikeable side on full display especially if the Supreme Court does overturn Obamacare in June. However, the bad news is if Obama were to fall the mainstream media wouldn't make a sound.
To read another article by Aaron Goldstein, click here.
Posted by Brett at 3:11 PM