Why I Don’t Judge the President

by Dan on August 21, 2009

I try to avoid negative news as much as possible, but I can’t escape the massive criticism that the President is getting over his new healthcare plan.  Beyond that, there’s the indisputable truth that certain things Obama promised during his campaign haven’t happened, and certain things he said he would put an end to are still going on.

Too quick we are to assume that this means something bad about Obama’s character.

Maybe we suspect the  President said whatever would get him into office, and now he’s just doing what he wants.

Another idea is that the President meant what he said, but is too incompetent to get the job done.

I don’t believe in either of these statements, nor do I defend or disapprove of anything Obama has done in the White House thus far.

How can I take such a neutral stance?

Because I don’t know shit.

And neither do you.

As much as we’d like to assume that the governmental processes are transparent, it takes a high level of insanity to believe this, when considering the evidence.

If you’ve ever worked in a the lower levels of company of 500 people or more, ask yourself how much you know about what happened behind the closed doors of the CEO and the Board of Directors meetings.  Did you really have any idea?  Sure you’d hear some whispers in the wind, but 99% of your information would come from a supervisor who had heard from another supervisor and so on.

What happens if “classified information gets out?”  In a Fortune 500 company, the company could go bankrupt, resulting in thousands of people losing their jobs and savings.  It sucks, but it’s a minuscule effect compared to the possible consequences of a government leak.

What could happen if the United States’ secrets got out?

The economy could crash (for real this time; this current state actually isn’t so bad compared to some other countries right now).

We could be hit by a terrorist attack that destroys an entire metropolis instead of some buildings in an otherwise intact major city.

A health crisis could break out that would render most of our workforce useless.

This isn’t chicken little talking about the sky falling.  These are very real issues for other countries that make our problems look like a joke.  Yes, not being able to send your children to college is bad, but as far as I can tell, the vast majority of families facing hardship still can eat and still have cable TV.

Before I digress any further, let me illustrate some  scenarios of what possibly could happen when you get in the White House as President.

Your name is Barack Obama, and it’s your first day bringing the country to recovery.

Day 1:

Obama:  Ok, let’s get cracking.  I think for our first accomplishment as an administration, we should get rid of Guantanamo Bay and stop holding political prisoners who’ve done nothing.  Also we need to quit this torture.

General:  It’s not that easy Mr. President.

Obama: Excuse me?

General:  Well we tried releasing a few dozen of the “non-convicted” prisoners, and found that 90% of people we let go are involved in a terrorist attack in Afghanistan the next three months that kill 200 people or more.

Obama:  What? I never heard that!

General: Of course not, do you think we want to let Al Queda know that we know this?

Obama: Yes… of course not.  Sigh.

General:  And the last five people we tortured gave up principle Al Queda figures that the public doesn’t even know exist.

Obama: (nods) I understand.  Carry on.

Day 5:

Obama: Can’t believe it’s Friday already.  Let’s see about getting some worldwide environmental and labor standards for our trade partners.  We’re a huge world power so it’s about time we exercised our influence.

General: Bush tried that seven years ago, then three years ago, then just recently so he could end his office on a good note.

Obama: Wait, what?  I thought he was just playing golf all day.

General: No, he actually did the best he could to put that policy in motion.  China won’t budge.  They said if we publicly state these standards of ours to anyone, they won’t trade with us at all.

Obama:  Wait… at all?

General:  Yes, no more relationship with China, period.  Oh yeah, Japan isn’t interested either.

Obama:  I guess we can’t tell the American People this?

General:  Would you want to?  Would telling them make anyone look good at all?

Obama:  Sigh…

Day 22:

Obama:  General, did you check out that suspicion I had about Pakistan?  I was telling you yesterday I think they were working with Iran to bomb us on Christmas Eve.

General:  Yes, good work with that! You were totally right.  We found the masterminds responsible, and they’re all in jail.  What’s more, Pakistan has privately issued us an apology and given us full rights to inspect all of their facilities randomly for the next ten years.  Mr. President, you have single-handedly saved the good city of Boston from becoming another Hiroshima.

Obama: Wow, what a great victory for my administration twenty-two days in!  Let’s call a press conference.

General:  You’re not serious, right?

Obama:  Huh?

General:  You want to reveal to the entire world how we foiled a huge attack against us, and get everyone worried about how we could be attacked again by two huge world powers?  You think that makes us safer?

Obama:  If I can’t talk about saving our nation from impending doom, what can I talk about?!

General: Well there’s healthcare…

Obama:  Sigh…

Day 100

Obama:  Ok, I’ve talked to three of our top government scientists, and they have a way to turn sand into energy!  One square ton of sand will power the United States for years at a time!

General:  Yeah, we got that memo.  We’re going to have to nix it though.  Last thing we want is Iran realizing they can make a nuclear weapon out of sand.  They have a lot more of that than we do, you know?

Obama: (banging head against his desk)  I want to go home.

I could go on, but I think you get the point.  There is a lot going on in the oval office that we have no idea about.  Not only are there successes we never hear about, but also threats that they can’t reveal unless it’s too late and need us to prepare for the shock.

This isn’t even counting all the motions that Obama is sincerely trying to pass that can’t make it through red tape and bureaucracy on both the Republican and Democratic sides of Congress and the Senate.

There’s a lot of corporate, partisan, and international influence on everything the President can get done.  Am I saying he has no power?  Obviously not, since Presidents can differ so much on their policies.

All that I’m saying is that the situation is not nearly as simple as it looks.  You don’t’ know what’s going on, I don’t know what’s going on, and no matter how much the press likes to pretend, they have no idea either.

Just live your own life and rest assured that politics will take care of itself.

–Dan

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