Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Obama enablers

Fred Barnes with a good read.............

As a rule, the press is the scourge of presidents. They’re expected to endure unending scrutiny, mistrust, and badgering—plus hostility if they’re Republicans—by a hectoring herd of reporters and commentators in the mainstream media. But there’s an exception to the rule: President Obama.

It’s counterintuitive, but Obama has been hurt by the media’s leniency. Both his presidency and reelection prospects have suffered. He’s grown lazy and complacent. The media have encouraged him to believe his speeches are irresistible political catnip, though they aren’t. His overreliance on words hasn’t helped.

The kind of media pressure that can cause a president to sharpen his game, act with urgency, or take bolder steps—that has never been applied to Obama. If it had, I suspect he’d be a more effective, disciplined, energetic, and popular president today. Ronald Reagan is a good role model in this regard. When the media attacked him over gaffes in the 1980 campaign, “Reagan responded like all competitive men by working to improve himself,” says Reagan historian Craig Shirley. “Experience taught him to be better and try harder.” He took this lesson into the White House.

I don’t want to exaggerate the media’s baneful influence on Obama. It’s hardly the main reason for his decline. It’s a secondary reason, and it continues to have an impact.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Same thing with the primaries. Once he was the frontrunner, he became God. The democratic party swung into protection mode to shield him from challenge. He has lived in a bubble for almost 4 years now.

I hope the republican primary is a nasty slugfest. I hold no personal affection for any of them and we need to have our candidates vetted, unlike the democrats. No more McCains. We want someone who is going to fight.