Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Let Obama BE Obama

Remember during the 2000 election when everyone wanted Al Gore to loosen up and be less "stiff?" All that nonsense reached its height when the story broke that Naomi Wolf was consulting with the campaign on how Gore could express a more "alpha male" personality. The only thing American voters got out of that was to see Gore look like an awkward phony.

Fast forward to 2012 and there is no end of people who, every time things look difficult for the Obama campaign, feel free to give their arm chair advice about how he needs to get angry. That advice is just as ridiculous as what Gore received.

Let's start with what we know about President Obama's personality. We've watched him now for over 4 years and have both seen how he tends to react and heard him spell it out for us. He doesn't have a temper and is best suited to being a "counter-puncher." Before he acts, he tends to think things through.

What we know about human beings is that whether those kinds of things are genetic or learned, they tend to be pretty deeply rooted by the time someone is the President's age. In other words, if he tried to act otherwise, he would come off as phony as Gore did.

Whether we like it or not, this is the President we have. And I tend to like it.

The truth is that when people want him to get angry, they're really telling us more about themselves than anything else. In other words, they're suggesting what THEY would do in any given situation.

What I would suggest is that they don't understand President Obama's reactions and it would behoove them to spend a little time being curious about that before they venture into telling him what he should do.

For example, some people who rush to judgement about all this make the assumption that he doesn't get mad because he's a coward and is afraid to fight. I seriously thought we had put that one to rest a while ago. The man has nerves of steel. He has clearly shown that to be the case.

So doesn't that make you just a little curious about his style? The way I see it, he has NO problem with fighting. Its just not his style to do so by trying to punch someone in the nose (figuratively).

While it may not be a good approach for everyone, we all could learn a thing or two from President Obama's approach to fighting. Thinking about that always takes me back to a magnificent diary by AikidoPilgrim in which he defined the President's style as bearing a lot of resemblance to the Aikido Way.

If you prefer to get mad and rage about the insanity of Republicans these days...feel free to do so. But let's let Obama BE Obama rather than try to make him over in our own image. If for no other reason, I respect him too much for that.


  1. I very much doubt that BHO doesn't get mad. Furthermore, I very much doubt that he doesn't want to re-arrange a large number of faces and not all of them Republican. That's the difference between me and the Prez. I joined the Marines during a war to kill people. He joined his neighbors ... ALL of neighbors. Not just the nice ones who agreed with him.

    I blame Michele. I truly think she is the anchor that makes him work thru the anger to try to be the best BHO he can be. Yup. It's all her fault.

    1. Agreed. The President likes to win, and he works very hard to create situations where he does. Romney and his kind can feel like winners almost all the time, because they had a head start. The President worked for his, and people who have to earn their wins know you need to be strategic about things, about all things. The GOP froths at the mouth, 24/7, and has a network or two (and rents space on the others) on which to do it. The President cannot win on their terrain, so almost obviously he doesn't choose to fight them on it.

      People who are actually in a bad situation, economically for the most part in our case, do not need someone to piss off on their behalf. They are not so stupid as to think that a President pissing off will help them. People want a clear articulation of an understanding of their actual situation and a workable plan to move forward in a way that will be beneficial.

      Well, we have less than 24 hrs until the Court rules on the ACA, and if they strike down enough so it's unworkable you will see a lot of people who realize that they liked the bill all along, because they'll miss its provisions.

  2. Yeah, if there's one quality that annoys me the most about pundits as a whole, it's the psychological projection. A lot of pundits on the left want the President to show anger and kick republican teeth in because it's what they imagine themselves doing. What I don't think they've ever gotten is that there are way's to beat these idiots without resorting to shouting matches and ruling by fiat.

  3. Heads of state don't normally express anger like most people. It's tacky and it clouds one's better judgement. The GOP wins if the President snaps publicly. It's better to do what he's been doing. The GOP allowed their prejudice to get the better of them and they can't even run a decent candidate. "The President wants to hire more teachers and firefighters.." is a bad thing now. The GOP even exposed themselves by voting for Ryan's bs budget. There's a lot more I can say about this. The President is doing fine.


    1. Exactly. President Obama knows full well that he would play into his opponents' hands if conducted himself as the "angry black man." Even as it is, wingnuts see him as "petulant" and prone to "temper tantrums" (projection city, here we come).

      On the contrary, the President needs to be even more statesmanlike than a white politician -- just like a female president would need shore more "nerves of steel" and less "emotion" than a male. Sad but true.

      That aside, personally I like people in leadership positions who are even-tempered and reasonable. They make me feel safer. A president with a short fuse and the finger on the red button -- not so much.


    2. Too bad we don't have a "like button" here...

      .."personally I like people in leadership positions who are even tempered and reasonable. They make me feel safer."

      This member of the choir says a resounding AMEN!!! to that comment! I, personally, may be volatile, passionate & get the blue meanies but I really want my Prez to be a better person than me & HE IS!


  4. My guess is that he hasn't given up hope that justice Kennedy might have one of his moments where he is a decent person. It's also my guess that the president and his staff have got several very well crafted plans drafted to react to any of the potential outcomes once the ruling is handed down. It was his administration that pushed for an expedited ruling and he knows that his strength is his counterpunch.

  5. Why is it that so many people want to remake this President into some fictional image rattling in their heads? I'm so sick of "PBO should do this, do that, say this." If these people are so knowledgeable, so much better at being a president& a leader then why aren't they?

    I like my President just fine the way he is & I appreciate the job he is doing in the face of unpresidented obstruction. He's got my vote & my boots for walking his campaign.

    Just saying.....


  6. There are countless conservative blogs that dismiss President Obama as an amateur, in over his head, or a narcissist. They , too, are projecting.

    I like Mr. O just the way he is. He's a strategist. And I'm pretty sure he'll be re-elected.

  7. I think it is more than projection. They have a need to immasculate him! He is everything they are not and can never be in their lifetime.