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Saturday, October 22, 2016

As President Barack Obama heads into the final half of his final term, many of us Americans wonder whatever happened to the fresh promise of that cheerfully charismatic optimist who dominated the political stage back in 2008.

Some of those who voted for him now say they’re sorry they did. A poll by USA Today/Suffolk University finds, among those who say they did vote for him in six states that have key Senate races this fall, as many as 1 in 7 say they regret it.

Of course, it also is significant to note that some of those folks are liberals who think Obama has been too conservative. I am thinking, for example, of Cornel West, the celebrity activist-intellectual who told Time magazine he didn’t vote for anybody in the 2012 presidential election. To me, that was essentially a vote for Mitt Romney, but I don’t expect Professor West to brag about that.

Obama’s slump isn’t all that special. Every two-term president in recent decades has suffered a dip in approval halfway through his second term. But Obama’s slide is startling for a man who, only two years ago, became the first Democrat since FDR to win a majority of the popular vote in two elections.

That’s why you won’t see him campaigning alongside Democratic candidates in close Senate races. They’re delighted to receive the money he helps to raise but they don’t want to be seen with him.

Why has the thrill gone? I can think of three big reasons:

One: Public impatience. After six years in office, any president has been seen and heard too many times to satisfy the public’s relentless appetite for something fresh and new.

“We claim that a president is tired or looks tired,” wrote presidential scholar James Mann in a recent New York Times op-ed, “when what we really mean is that we are tired of him.”

Two: An anti-incumbent reflex in news media. The most powerful media bias, I often have argued, is our bias against any political narrative that sounds like old news. Our current president looks less exciting than the menagerie of wannabes on the horizon.

Three: Obama’s own distaste for the politicking that is an inevitable and, in many ways, essential part of presidential leadership.

Leon Panetta, a former defense secretary and CIA director under Obama, added fuel to this long-running narrative in recent interviews to promote his new memoir.

“I think the difference is that [President] Bill Clinton [for whom Panetta also worked] likes politics, likes the engagement in politics,” Panetta told Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly. “Barack Obama does not like that process of engaging in politics, and I think that hurts his presidency. It hurts him in terms of getting things done.”

Yet as a fair historical accounting will show, Obama did get some things done. He reversed the recession with a stimulus that injected billions into the economy. Recovery has been sluggish and low-wage workers have not benefited as much as upper-income earners. But unemployment is down, so is the deficit, and the stock market, for all of its bounces, has hit record highs.

The president’s health care plan still suffers in the polls, but not enough for Republicans to carry through with their plans to make attacks on “Obamacare” a central theme of their midterm campaigns.

As for social issues, the Obama era has reversed the conservative culture wars, particularly in women’s rights, same-sex marriage and reproductive rights, among other issues.

Yet there’s little doubt that he could have done more had he engaged his relentless opposition more effectively early on. He still has two years. He still faces such weighty issues as immigration, Ebola, the Islamic State, Iran nuclear talks, new trade agreements, federal budget disputes and who-knows-what crises that we have not even imagined yet.

Gary Younge, at Britain’s liberal newspaper The Guardian, observed that Obama’s campaign slogan, “Yes we can,” seems to have become, “At least he tried.” The next two years offer him a big opportunity to try harder.

Email Clarence Page at [email protected].

AFP Photo/Brendan Smialowski

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Copyright 2014 The National Memo
  • Independent1

    Obama’s numbers have not been sliding. The Rasmussen presidential polls taken daily, they’ve remained steady between 46% and 49% for the past 30 days. In fact, they’ve been ranging in the 48-49% the majority of the time. My sense is that any “sliding” is the work of polls with a right-wing bias.

    • charleo1

      The last midterm with a two term Republican President, was in 2006. And, seen George Bush’s approval numbers fall into the low 30’s. Which is rock bottom. As the Republican Party has it’s loyal 33%, of followers, that will hang in there, and support their guy, no matter what. And although Obama’s numbers are markedly better than was the case with Bush, in this period. (Bush made history in this respect.) There are those who hold a great deal of importance to having some poll somewhere, or something in which to point, that validates their oft stated indictment that President Obama, is the worst President in our Nation’s history. He’s not of course. Yet, I can’t count the number of times over the past couple of weeks, how Obama’s supposedly slipping approval numbers, was going to hand the Democrats as big of a shellacking in 2014, as Bush’s Party received, after his 6 years office. It won’t. Because Obama is not as unpopular as Bush was. Primarily because, he doesn’t deserve to be. The fact remains, and
      shall always, that the overwhelming number of the most serious of Mr. Bush’s problems in 2006, were made by none other, than Mr. Bush himself. As was the overwhelming number of serious problems
      that faced Barack Obama, on his first day on the job. Created by none other than Mr. Bush, himself.

      • Independent1

        Charle, I agree completely. Here’s a couple articles from the Washington Post published back in 2009 that substantiate your post should some wandering trolls come by that have amnesia:

        President Bush has presided over the weakest eight-year span for the U.S. economy in decades, according to an analysis of key data, and economists across the ideological spectrum increasingly view his two terms as a
        time of little progress on the nation’s thorniest fiscal challenges.

        And this:

        The number of jobs in the nation increased by about 2 percent during Bush’s tenure, the most tepid growth over any eight-year span since data collection began seven decades ago. Gross domestic product, a broad measure of economic output, grew at the slowest pace for a period of that length since the Truman administration. And Americans’ incomes grew more slowly than in any presidency since the 1960s, other than that of Bush’s father.

      • Great historical tid-bit to take into the election in 2 weeks. As U point out, the biggest difference being that Obama is no scofflaw, but rather hindered & impeded from doing the job he was elected to do, by bitter, childish Republican & T-party conservatives. This leaves his fate yet again, in the hands of the voting public. Whether WE, THE PEOPLE take that job SERIOUSLY as facts demand, remains to be seen… Great take!!!

  • Katela

    Cornell West is a cerifiale a**shole.

    • marriea

      Probably a very envious one at that.

    • Elliot J. Stamler

      No…he is and always has been a Marxist-Leninist communist. Not of course a party member-he’s not that dumb. Most reds..and there are still a number of them..have like worms burrowed into our Democratic Party to try to corrupt us and West is a good example. But he wasn’t successful enough so he didn’t vote in 2012. Or perhaps he really did…for whomever the Communist Party did endorse.

      • At least he’s not the ‘Hunchback’ from Southern desert & Western Rocky Mountains…

      • … least he’s not the ‘Hunchback’ from the Southern Plains or the Western Rocky Mountains… See my comments above, for reference!!! U don’t even know what a ‘marxist’ is, or that they’re forgotten to history – except by conservatives that romance about their authoritarian insanity & backwards economics…

  • poppabear42

    I will say this again, No one person can run this country, and when all of the elected officials do the jobs that they are elected to do, there are still some major problems.
    When you hear people talk about any branch of our elected officials, being a bunch of, “Do nothing” politicians, and they are telling the truth, it means that those “Do nothing” politicians, are the blame for any, and all problems, from the smallest problem, to the most major problems that we have in this country.
    I cannot understand, how one of the most important branches of our government (Congress), can take a vacation nearly every other week, when they are some of the most important elected officials, that are responsible for helping any president run this country.
    And when they do happen stop by their job sites, helping this president is the very last thing on their minds.
    As a matter of fact, congress only stops by, long enough to disrupt everything that this president has tried to do, to help the citizens of this country, that really need to be helped.
    I guess it is because the citizens that really need help, are not rich enough to contribute to their parties elections, like the Koch family.
    As bad as our roads, bridges, and so many other dangerous problems, that we have in this country, that are just falling apart, and need immediate attention, and will create millions of good paying jobs…Guess what, that “Do nothing” branch of government will n

  • Eleanore Whitaker

    I’m sorry. But, these days? Who can trust a single word you read in the media? Start at Point “A”…who owns the media today? A handful of ultra rich, ultra greedy, ultra control freak media titans who loathe President Obama. Why? He isn’t THEM. And when rich old white men are into building their strictly self-indulgent little Empires, you get what we in the US have today…A handful of rich white media billionaires like Rupert Murdoch, Ted Turner, Charles and David Koch, Adelson and Zuckerberg all feasting from the same media trough in hope of becoming the world’s richest white man.

    Freaks of nature never face the realities that they put their pants on just the way we ALL do…one leg at a time. They have their weaknesses and their fallibility. One of those “fallibilities” is the fat between their ears.

    They expect us to just fall for every anti-government, anti-president line of BS they demand be printed in polls, the media and all while they shovel tens of millions into their favorite clones: the GOP.

    In retrospect, US history will show that what the GOP did deliberately and with malfeasance of intent was to demolish a Democratic president minute by minute, hour by hour. The joke is that these jesters of Big Money think there will never be a price to pay for their acts against the government, the people and the president we chose twice. Everything, everything, everything in this life has a price to be paid for the things we say and do.

    • highpckts

      Karma is Hell! I just wish I could be around to see it happen but these paybacks take time!

      • Eleanore Whitaker

        Sometimes karma is swift and cruel. Not sure why. All it takes is a tiny kernel of error to set karma off in the payback direction.

        • 1standlastword

          For Karma to take effect people have to be unconscious about the results of what they do so that they continue doing it until finally they realize the error of their ways as the undesirable consequences fall upon them like a ton of bricks. That said, I can’t see the greedy and corrupt in politics stopping their self defeating behaviors especially since there is so much more blood money to be hoarded.

          This explains why America is committed to fighting endless wars

      • 1standlastword

        High, the F’ers doing this won’t be around either and they know it. They are motivated by death anxiety. I’m mad as a polecat because their is not enough decency in the country to make them pay for their sins RIGHT NOW!!!!

        • highpckts

          I hear ya! I want all of them in jail!!

    • VERY well articulated & accurate to the ‘inth’ degree. I’m also sure, for the opportunity to do SOME GOOD for the nation, President Obama would do this all again… One things for sure, his is a vast improvement over the administration of his predecessor…

      • Eleanore Whitaker

        As a Republican female of 33 years, there is nothing and I do mean “NOTHING” anyone can tell me about Republican men. They can’t be objective if their lives depend on it. They lack the ability to cut the aprons strings of their billionaire cronies. They loathe progress for the good of all because as selfish little pigs, they live in excess they call “normal.”

        There is no one who can tell me what I saw and heard at GOP meetings. The bulls all slinging the manure at each other. Good thing too…the rest of us just get to clean up after them.

    • Dominick Vila

      A low approval rating during a president’s second term is becoming the norm, regardless of performance or record.
      Considering how much President Obama accomplished during his first six years in office, you would think his approval rating would be in the 90% range. It isn’t. The man whose policies helped us overcome the worst recession since the Great Depression, the man who policies contributed to the largest number of private sector jobs created in recent decades, with the exception of Bill Clinton, the man who championed and signed the Affordable Care Act, a desperately needed change to the most expensive and exclusive healthcare system in the world, the man who reduced spending and borrowing, managed to cur the Federal government deficits by 2/3, the man that ordered the raids that eliminated OBL and led to the capture of al-Libby, the man who put the cost of our crusades where it should have been all along, the man who got us out of Iraq and reduced our presence in Afghanistan substantially, and the man who has fought for equality while enduring savage attacks and deliberate obstructionism, should be regarded as one of the best Presidents this country had since FDR.
      Instead, he has to hide in order to avoid impacting the chances of Democrats running for office. A highly effective demonization campaign by the GOP, a media more interested in sensationalism that real journalism, and a team of inept Democratic strategists, managed to transform a man who has dedicated every ounce of his being since he was inaugurated into a man who has lost confidence in his fellow citizens, a man who finally understands that no matter how hard he works, and how effective his policies and record are, will not get any credit for it, not because his policies have not contributed to the economic recovery and well being, but because who he is and because for some destroying an opponent is part of the game when the only objective is to win elections.

  • pmbalele

    Did you say-“Some of those who voted for him now say they’re
    sorry they did?” That is the dumbest statement or speculation the article
    has made. First it depends on who is
    writing. If it TPs, Repubs or right-wing
    media, these have been angry that racial minorities are in the WH. Ask the
    people at FoxNews -They have never said positively about President Obama. They
    always find fault not credits. But ask
    us in the Black neighborhood, you will find we wish he had another term. This
    because we are happy we elected and re-elected him. Look at state level – for
    instance in Wisconsin. People elected Scott Walker. After that they regretted
    and there was chaos in Wisconsin. Did FoxNews or right wing media talk bad
    about Walker? No. So saying that those who voted for Obama now regret is stupid
    statement hyped by right wing. Did Obama cause Benghazi No; but the right wing
    media made a big deal; Did Obama cause ISIS -No. Bush caused when he killed Sadam
    who had controlled ISIS, Did Obama cause Ukarine – No. Some people wanted to
    align themselves with Russia. Who hates Obamacare -right wing media who are paid
    by insurance for ads. The economy is booming-but the right-wing media is
    whining -not enough. So that statement is dumb to dupe white readers-certainly
    not us Blacks.

    • jmprint

      I think your statement is absolutely correct. If the democrats were to pointing out President Obama’s accomplishment, i.e., Allison Grimes should have said yes, I voted for him and proud of it. And he could have accomplished a lot more had it not been for all the obstruction the T-party initiated. I stopped donating after I saw that.

      • pmbalele

        I hope you’re not a woman and young. TPs and Repubs have vowed to enact Sharia law if they grab the House and Senate. Then you will regret like the people of Wisconsin who voted for Scott Walker. I know FoxNews and right-wing brain-washed you. But stop and think about how these Repubs and TPs think about others and especially women. Please vote with me and Demos on November 4.

        • jmprint

          I believe you you misread or misunderstood my post. I wouldn’t vote for a republican, (gag me)
          FOR YOUR INFO I VOTED TODAY DEMOCRATIC ALL THE WAY. Don’t wait vote now, and take some with you.

          • pmbalele

            I planned a day off on November 4. Thanks.

        • 1standlastword

          You said: “I hope you’re not a woman and young. TPs and Repubs have vowed to enact Sharia law if they grab the House and Senate.”
          Then maybe we need to keep Michelle Bachmann around to see that this doesn’t happen…LOL! Just joking of course

          • pmbalele

            Michele Backmann husband does not want his wife in group with people Don Trump, Herman Cain or Gov. Sanford. That is why she is retiring from politics.

          • iamproteus

            “That is why she is retiring from politics.”

            I was hoping it was because she actually realized that she is a complete idiot and totally unsuited to rational thought and action. Oh, well. Another dream dashed.

    • 1standlastword

      You have so eloquently illustrated how the people who hold the levers of power prefer greed and moral corruption in the character of their leaders. I have come to think that this world belongs to them

      • pmbalele

        Thanks. Tell me what GOP did for the last 5 years -in fighting with TPs.

        • 1standlastword

          Nothing…we are on our own

    • Barrington September

      These racists, ultra right-wing Republicans and their unpatriotic & crazy Tea-pooper comrades do not care about TRUTH, FACTS, LOGIC, HISTORY or the best interest of the American people.

      Another example of their racial hatred and willingness to destroy America and harm its people as long as Obama has no good accomplishments:

      The U.S. surgeon general acts as the nation’s top health spokesperson but has yet to weigh in on concerns regarding the spread of Ebola (or enterovirus D68). The reason is simple: There is no surgeon general. President Barack Obama’s nominee, Dr. Vivek Murthy, has yet to be confirmed by Congress. Nearly a year after President Obama chose a Brookline doctor to be the next surgeon general.
      The well qualified nominee is still waiting to be confirmed by the Senate, even as the administration seeks public health leadership amid the Ebola scare.

      The truth is that Sen. Rand Paul (a Republican) has a hold on the nomination, so until the Kentucky senator lifts his hold, there can not be a confirmation vote. Senate Republicans are preventing the nation from having a Surgeon General even during the Ebola crisis. This tells you how callus and uncaring these Republicans are about the USA and American people.

      Dr. Vivek Murthy, a Harvard and Yale graduate who cofounded a
      political group that advocated for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), has been working as an internal medicine physician at the very prestigious Brigham and Women’s hospital, awaiting an up-or-down vote that may never come.
      Perhaps, because he is both an ethnic/racial minority and a supporter of the ACA, they would deny Dr. Murthy the opportunity to serve in this vital and necessary public health leadership position.

      • pmbalele

        You’re right. Today FoxNews admitted Repubs and TPs have no policy if they win both houses. Now how can you expect John Boehner to think. You can telll the guy is empty head.

      • iamproteus

        Well, according to the GOP, it’s Obama’s fault that we don’t have a Surgeon General. “If he (Obama) would nominate someone we approve of, we would have a Surgeon General.” As in so many other instances in the recent past, the GOP stance is one of “Do as we say and we’ll get along just fine! If you don’t, we’ll kill the hostage!”

  • FT66

    I am stunned the writer of this article pretends as if he doesn’t understand how the system works. I am 120% he really does. Pres. Obama is not a dictactor and it is not allowed at all in the country. The man had very good ideas to make CHANGES. He tried his level best to implement what he campaigned for, at the same time being threatened with law-suits if he dares to do so. I also suspect the Advisors surrounding him are bit scared or they have never been there for the job. I try to think his very first term when he had both Chambers. The man showed he was there for the job until the opposition side started to complain that he is tackling a lot at the same time. All blames should be thrown to us who have failed to hand him the gears he needs to do the job.

    • highpckts

      Amen! We are a Nation of instant gratification! Selfish and arrogant! We wanted this President to wave his magic wand and change everything right now! Is the President tired? I would think so after battling half of Congress for nothing! They give him NOTHING!!

      • jmprint

        Yeh they do, they give him a bad names, they give him grief, they gave him gray hair. I hate the republicans in congress. Believe it or not that is the first time I have used that word hate.

        • FT66

          I use the word “HATE” most of the time. Don’t be afraid to call a spade, a spade. That is the reality. A spade has never called a “BIG SPOON”!

          • And never call a liberal truthful or tolerant.

        • … it’s really hard to hate people who lack the ‘social maturity’ (as I call it) to interact & engage w/people different from themselves. They’re a clan. A tribe. A ‘confederacy’ that lacks any outsider input. No one has told that that ‘incest’ is wrong, so of course, they don’t understand that it is. What we have to do is teach them – while they sit on the sidelines for the next DECADE & watch as families of different backgrounds shows how the ‘genetic’ variations are a vast, far SUPERIOR improvement over the dangerous in-breeding that produces the same derelicts, maniacs & cognitively deficient product(s) election after election, year after year, until we again, get a ‘hunchback’ generation, like those that ran amok, trashing the White House from 2001 thru 2009!!!

    • marriea

      THANK YOU!!!!

    • Pin-point, laser sharp accurately CORRECT!!! & I ALSO give Mr. Page all the credit for saying what we all have been seeing, but has gone ‘unmentioned’ for the most part, in the media (corporate-wise). Most especially, the corporate media’s ‘anti-incumbent fetish during election cycles such as this (when a stumbling Prez is trying his best to make allies of the voting public, but is a victim of his own success of succeeding early on, but due to undermining & sabotage by detractors, is simply stuck in ‘THEIR’ muddy entrapments) & their prognosticating – if not ‘leading’ the mood of the public toward abandonment – AGAIN! American’s know what benefits them. If American’s want the ‘goods’, they know what they need to do! Vote in a Democratic majority to Congress & KEEP the Senate majority Democrat & Independent. W/plenty of time to have figured this out by now, they know jobs are superior to war, expanded trade is better than stalled diplomacy & cohesion among/between the branches is better than stalemate & hostility. If the nations want’s a productive Congress & Senate, we KNOW full well Republican’s, T-partiers – ALL conservatives must be sent home & LEFT THERE for the next decade…

  • stcroixcarp

    The Republican controlled House of Representatives is what I regret! President Obama has not been able to do anything positive. My regret is that I spent so much time and money getting Obama reelected that I didn’t work to defeat my fathead congressman! I am thankful that Obama was reelected,

    • THANK GOD he has not been able to do MORE to divide and destroy our country. Hopefully, once the right wins the midterms, we can remove this tyrant from our country.

      • 1standlastword

        The question that should be on the lips of all is what will the right do with the spoils of war???

        Oh…and then will we survive it!?

        • Hopefully, our country will be transformed back to what the Constitution and our laws dictate. We had a system of checks and balances, until the Emperor decided to ignore our laws. I’m hopeful that the right will restore our country back to a country of law, and return to our system of checks and balances.

          • 1standlastword

            You are too naïve!!! The ones who have the gold get to make and break the law…that is the problem!

          • I actually do agree. Both parties are corrupt, as is our entire government. Our representatives are only out for themselves. They want to keep their very lucrative positions. Unfortunately, the liberal policies have taken us down a very dark road, and it is imperative that we get conservatives into office to help undo the damage already done by the liberals.

          • midway54

            I see: So in order to right the situation in your view it is necessary that one corrupt party be succeeded by the other corrupt party whose members are also out only for themselves.

          • As it always seems to be, the lesser of two evils. What I would like to see is ALL career politicians removed rom office and replaced with those that will follow our Constitution, laws and system

          • 1standlastword

            You have more faith than me. I think what we need to fix our mess is a new Messiah and nobody around fits that bill

          • So true, and it certainly was not the Emperor.

          • midway54

            At this point, then, the government of this Country is no longer under the Rule of Law but lawless. Meanwhile, the “Emperor” rules without limitation while the House rightwing majority is helpless and can only sit as powerless, anxiety-filled spectators.

          • We really do need that hope and change, but not under a liberal regime. They want to change things far too much, and far too quickly. They seem to have no regard for our Constitution, laws or system, in that it interferes with their agenda.

          • Macynra

            You are so ignorant, it hurts my brain. It isn’t Democratic laws that the right leanig Supreme Court are throwing out these days. The only change your precious GOP is looking for is vouchered Medicare and a write off of all the money owed to SSI to effectively end retirement hopes of the coming generations.

          • Sand_Cat

            Yeah, yeah. Keep spouting that late-night-on-crazy-right-websites crap.

          • All true, even if you do want your head in the sand cat.

          • midway54

            Mine was a comment in sarcasm to kenndeb criticizing the content of his post.

          • Sand_Cat

            And what party could you possibly think will do that? Certainly not the GOP.

          • An we have seen what a megalomaniac liberal is like. I’d rather go with the GOP.

      • Terry Allen

        Your speech bears an intriguing resemblance to Sarah Palin’s many rants about Obama, although I confess you seem somewhat more well-spoken than she.

        Dubya was way more of a tyrant and we let him steal the election in 2004 (well, John Kerry helped). I doubt the right will do anything in 2014-2016 to upset the Obama administration beyond trying to keep him in the same box they’ve had him in since 2009. I mean, why would they want a Biden Presidency? That might make Biden look good, and no Republican wants any Democrat to look good.

      • joe schmo

        Let’s just hope he doesn’t use that ‘executive fiat’ too much more…….

  • Macynra

    Oooh, 1 out of 7 who voted for President Obama now regret it! I guess that sounds alot more negative than 6 out of 7 who voted for him still support him and his efforts regardless of the BS that the mainstream media spits out every day.

    • IRS policy vendetta. Mortgage disaster inaction. Imposing austerity cuts resulting in the horrors at Benghazi. NCLB. Hundreds of billions lost from the treasury due to conservative, ‘supply-side’ tax cuts. Going BACK to war in the Middle East. Fast & Furious. No ‘renewable,’ Green energy policies). The list goes on. The ‘list’ also comprises EVERY failed policy dimension left over from the GWB conservative administration. If U know enuff about the last administration, U know full well that these policies originated THERE & President Obama was erroneously advised to continue them. His ‘before’ & ‘after’ election policy ‘frames’ are more than plain & they made NO MENTION of keeping in place AT ALL – any of the policies of his predecessor. But he did, to the frustration of the nation – but none more than his LIBERAL/PROGRESSIVE constituency…

  • jmprint

    And as long as people like Clarence keep saying his rating are low, people start to repeat, they are real good at repeating even if there is no truth to it.

  • M.j. Zuzich

    I still think that Obama’s lack of experience in government is what we’re all seeing here. In this case, his lack of a Chief of Staff on par with Ram Emmanuel, seemingly is letting this President get into too many ‘sticky wickets.’

    • “… his lack of experience…” Please reveal to us a ‘PRESIDENT’ who EVER came into the job w/’experience’? Anyway, there’s only the fact that he’s not in there all alone (tho by the performance of the Secret Service, no one would know any better…) & as such, his advisers – which I’ve castigated for YEARS now, have done a lousy job. We have to face facts – this man brought baggage w/him. Being a ‘non-White’ Man in an ALL White sorority is an awesome ‘cliff’ to scale. A near 90 degrees to be exact. He wants – no – NEEDS TO BE LIKED & the 2nd guessing is an innate, racist dimension of it. Look how conservatives & ‘conservative’ Dems treated him in the 1st 2 years? Rebellion, defections, desertions (by voters in the ’10 Mid Terms). As such, there is no ‘slump.’ Athletes, business Men (& Women for that matter), average, ordinary hourly male workers (of color) suffer the same thing, when things go wrong at the shop. It can’t be ‘… an ordinary cycle indicative to the situation…’ – it HAS TO BE somebody’s fault!!! He is, in other words, the most ‘CONVENIENT’ target – not helped by the socio/psychological ‘baggage’ being carried. We’re just now, as American’s, seeing the real, ‘STARK’ manifestations of ‘REAL’ American racism played out in big media America & it ain’t pretty. We can’t hide from it anymore. Refusing to talk about it won’t make it go away this time, so let’s just DEAL W/IT so all our pathologies are out of the way by November 4th (if that’s not too much to ask & too soon)…

      • M.j. Zuzich

        If you want to carry on a dialogue, you really should understand what was actually said. Please, go back and re-read only the first ten words I’d put down. Then, if you want, we can talk.

      • M.j. Zuzich

        If you want to carry on a dialogue, you really should undertand what was actually said. Please, go back and re-read only the first ten words I’d put down. Then, if you want, we can talk.

      • Lonek5

        I couldn’t agree more. Your comment Sir is spot on…thank you! Unfortunately, racism is the great debacle not only in government, politics but in the socio-economic society we live in. It is the indirect tactic to fail Obama’s administration by the 1% sensationalized by the poor and the uneducated right wing.

  • 1standlastword

    I’m depressed as HELL because the country doesn’t want change! Healthcare was jacked up and nothing was done about it till Obama made some half measures that help some but not all. The bail out didn’t signal change in any way at all. Those bail out made the rich F’ers who caused the problem richer and as for the 99%…you know the story. No change is possible on the foreign front because of our history of imperial failures: We are going to be engaged in permanent war FOREVER! On the home front, the corporate gangsters of the world haven’t experience any change in their revenue systems with Obama: As a matter of fact they have gained momentum innovating and employing schemes to steal from the country with the help of the IRS and Congress. Regarding the social issues, I don’t see at all how anybody in politics has done anything to promote change for Gay Rights and Women’s rights. The F’ing politicians are all over the place here and finally THEY have surrendered to the will of we the people but only partly when I consider the closely held corporations BS. I think Obama has been very unlucky as to be the first Black POTUS after the country and the world at large suffered the assaults of 8 years of Bush. Obama came along at the wrong time. Had he come after Clinton he would have had a more successful presidency. Fate really has a sense of humor!

  • ExRadioGuy15

    Yep….as I’ve written many times, comparisons of President Obama and FDR are not really accurate. When Republican Progressives and Moderates launched the first Republican Progressive and Moderate Revolution (which ran from 1930-1966), this country had the good sense to elect Democratic majorities in the US House and US Senate to help FDR bring the country out of the GOP-caused Great Depression. If GOP Progressives and Moderates launch the second revolution, they can give President Obama the same thing that FDR had, which would allow him to fix the massive damage done by the GOP.

  • Angel Perea

    THE INCONVENIENT TRUTH: So why is this President accomplishing less? Hum.. It’s all the Presidents’ fault? Or just maybe, Out of Touch GOP? Speaker Boehner’s comments is an “admission that the core issue is: “House Republicans don’t want to solve the basic policy problem we face, which will require accepting uncomfortable trade-offs, preferring doing nothing — allowing the status quo to fester — is politically easier.” Meanwhile, McConnell and Senate republicans have established a historical record of filibusters and blocking a significant number of the President’s appointments as never before! .It is now clear that for the majority of us ordinary Americans see that those republican “do nothing” over the last several years have rapidly to seal its fate as a minority party. So how are these Republican orthodoxy and these Grand non Achievements working out for your pocketbook issues? Do anyone really think that most intelligent thinking Americans are that stupid to reward irresponsible behavior?

    • SPOT ON!!! Excellent take & especially U’r final line!!! We, the PEOPLE understand very well what’s happened these last 5 years. Unfortunately, we’re also prone to deception, via propaganda. The pain & suffering inflicted UPON the American people wasn’t by the HAND OR POLICY ACTIONS of President Obama. We also know whose policy actions this suffering is the result of, as well as the ‘HANDS’ guiding it. Knowing these simple FACTS lets us know what need be done this & every election from now on, until Republican conservatives & T-partiers know how to behave among adults, in public (office)…

  • Elliot J. Stamler

    Sorry Mr.Page but while much of what you write is correct giving the president as much of a pass as you have is wrong—IT IS HIS FAULT. As a staunch Democrat who strongly supported him I put the entire blame on HIM—his foreign policy has been an unmitigated disaster…his own gov’t appointees, Secs. Panetta and Gates, have pointed out his deficiencies. Your few critical comments were pinned down and vividly explicated by Halperin and Heilemann in DOUBLE DOWN. The President does not have what it takes to be a president-that’s the bottom line. He just doesn’t. If he did then we Democrats would be romping to victory next month based on his own administration’s domestic record. He has a fundamental psyche/personality unsuited for the presidency and frankly we’d be better off if he resigned and let Joe Biden take over. I like the president very much personally but he is fully responsible for this debacle and I am one of millions of Democrats who have lost faith in him.

    • 1standlastword

      Eric Holder should have been tougher on the criminals who caused the Great Recession and those who lied us into 14 years of preemptive war.
      Those two events are the most devastating in terms of lingering consequences for our country.
      When the long causal chain of events tied to those crimes caused more misery the same old cockroaches that triggered global misery came back to criticize Obama and that influenced our corporate media fed the misplaced anger voters.
      You are right. Obama is simply not a political animal.
      Obama needed a sheriff-in-town to call out the liars and crack heads when needed. When the turtle man made his declaration as to his main priority he should have been rode out of town and not leading his campaign for re-election today
      During the first address to the nation when that dirty bastard Joe “what-the-???” his name is called Obama a liar, disrupting his first address to the nation, he should have been escorted out of the gallery and sanctioned!
      Obama squandered too much of his potential by tolerating too much incivility!

      I thought he owed his resurgence to Bill Clinton after the second Democratic convention. Clinton (a political animal) told the liars…you lie and this is why!!!!
      In a better situation Bill Clinton would have been Obama’ VIP.
      As I said below, Obama was eight years too late and maybe 16 years too young as a statesman

    • jmprint

      I don’t understand why you and others like Panetta and Gates want to put ground troops in Iraq, that’s exactly what ISIL wants, to kill, our young soldier and then have them parade the crime on TV. You guys want to play up to them. I think President is the smarter man.

    • Barrington September

      Your irrational rant and all of the mostly BS nonsense which you spewed out against President Obama makes me believe that your next career move ought to be as a talking head on FOX News.

      This president, Mr. Obama, has faced what no other president has faced since our modern history, dating back to the 1930s. When was the last time that a US Congress has refused to do anything that would benefit the American people and solve many of our national problems simply because they wished to destroy the legacy and reputation of a sitting president.

      No other president has had to deal with overt racial hatred and the obstructionism, blocking, ignoring and burying of positive & productive legislation on a routine basis on the level that Obama has faced. And, as a black man, he knows that he cannot be seen as being angry, hostile or furious. He has to be cool, calm & collected, while he seethes inside, and rages behind clossed doors.

      The Democrats in Congress and other Democrat elected officials and well-known politicians, should have stepped up and been willing to fight …. they are part of the problem, BUT … all they care about is their next election.

      History shall vindicate this president … and he shall rank higher than the over rated Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush and many other presidents. He shall rank towards the top.

    • latebloomingrandma

      No–it would be a true disaster if we went all in in yet another middle eastern war. I am grateful that this President indeed has a thoughtful analytical way of decision making, unlike his predecessor.
      And I haven’t read Panetta’s book yet, but Gates was rather balanced in his opinion of Obama. Too much has been made of his “criticism.” Many wish he had a different personality and would be a more effective President, but a person cannnot change personalities or who they are. Only LBJ was LBJ. Yes he was effective with getting things done, Viet Nam notwithstanding, but he was also an obnoxious, crude, SOB. Much is made of Nixon’s intellect, but he was also dangerous and nuts. Reagan brought his acing skills to the job and played the President to the hilt. Even Tip O’Niell commented that Reagan never read his briefs and had to be constantly coached. Fifty years from now, we will know Bush’s and Obama’s successes as President, and where they place in the pantheon. I won’t around.

    • holyreality

      “The President does not have what it takes to be a president-that’s the bottom line.”
      No man has what it takes, none since JFK who foolishly rebelled against his masters.
      Obama’s signature foreign policy-Don’t do stupid st*ff is not a disaster. His State Department eventually did stupid moves, but not what you would see on the nightly “news”.
      While I condemn his instigating the Ukrainian coup, allowing the Wall Street scammers to proceed, and his persecution of whistleblowers, I still support him over any outright fascist from the right.

  • howa4x

    I voted for him 2x but he like other democrats runs from too many fights. He was elected by the liberal wing of the party and like Clinton reads the polls before making a stand. He accepted republican plan for health care instead of demanding a public option, and allowed Pelosi to be vilified. He ran from the solar crisis and fired Van Jones when the heat got too much, and didn’t go after wall st bankers. He came late to same sex marriage, and doesn’t fight for democratic principals but does give good speeches. He is trying be a centrist, but can’t because the republicans moved so far right. I will give him some slack on the fact that the republicans didn’t give him one vote as democrats did for Bush. On energy he went with the Koch bros and fracking even though it too has environmental problems.
    He was smart to stay out of Syria and to limit our involvement to air strikes. We need to make the mid east a rear view mirror type of place. Once we are energy independent we can say goodbye to the snake pit.
    He has two years now to show the world what kind of president he is. He will have a rabid republican congress and lets see if he fights them or rolls over. Then we will know who the real Obama is.

    • Whatmeworry

      He refused to remove trial lawyers from the HC money trough because they are the single largest contributors to the Dem party

      • latebloomingrandma

        So what? A drop in the bucket compared to the Koch-pit.

        • holyreality

          The Kochs are but a player in the very large pit. Every POTUS is a puppet to these vipers in this pit.

          • joe schmo

            Just as Soros, Steyer and the Hollywood elitists are for your camp. Get over it.


          • holyreality

            You miss the point. You are so distracted by polarity you miss that this is one pit, or more accurately higher on the pyramid.
            The POTUS has been a puppet to these crooks since at least Eisenhower. He warned us. Denying this, refusing to consider these hidden puppet strings will keep you prisoner to your convictions.
            These big money guys we see in public like the Kochs, Soros or whatever are mere handmaidens to the upper upper echelons of our oligarchy.
            There was a university study that proves modern America is an oligarchy, our democracy no longer abides.
            I am over it.

        • Whatmeworry

          Seriously? Trial lawyers cost the HC $400B a year

    • holyreality

      I’m glad he didn’t fastrack Keystone’s pipeline.
      This stall led to major energy players abandoning facilities and potential facilities that would feed the pipeline tar sands bitumen”oil”.
      I also appreciate how he allowed the TPP to remain on the back burner.

  • etherbunny

    No disappointment in voting for him twice. My problem is our sytem.

  • Whatmeworry

    Seriously?? This clown was ALWAYS over his head. He neither had the skill set brain power or ability to be president. 6 straight years of blaming the other guy and never looking in the mirror to see who is the real problem. 2016 can’t come soon enough to end this night mare

    • sleepvark

      whatmeworry, your posting shows you to have the mental capacity of the red haired retard that graced the cover of mad magazine for so many decades. Not too ironic that you name yourself after that iconic moron. Perhaps you are trying to operate under the it takes one to know one protocol, but it ain’t working.

      • Whatmeworry

        Your post reflects your name sake sheep furk. Pretty typical of Obama lovers

        • Whatmeworry is Dan M Ketter

          Your post reflects your name maxkettter

        • sleepvark

          whatmworry, you seem to know a lot about beastiality, other than how to correctly spell the words. Perhaps it’s from your extensive personal experience, your failed 3rd grade education level leaving you unable to correctly access human activity sites. My condolences.

          • Whatmeworry

            It’s 3 more than you have competed

          • sleepvark

            whatmeworry, you funny little girl. Your tantrums are so cute!

          • Whatmeworry

            ayuk ayuk thanks Goofy

          • Whatmeworry is Dan M Ketter

            dannyboy here was an educated desk clerk at Ford Motors

      • Whatmeworry is Dan M Ketter

        even forrest gump would consider dannyketter a retard

    • Barrington September

      “This clown”??? Really? Perhaps, you need to look in the mirror. No president since Franklin D. Roosevelt was confronted with the ‘grave’ and complex problems Barack H. Obama faced … and Roosevelt had it easier … he never had to be seconded guessed by every mentally challenged nincompoop with a PC, iPhone, iPad or talking head on TV or the Internet. And … he never had to deal with racial bigotry.

      When Roosevelt went to war, the US Congress supported and funded the efforts.

      President Obama gets no Congressional support and is not allowed to legally close the POW camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and house them at secure federal facilities in the USA and try them in civilian courts. During World War II at least 425,000 German/Nazi prisoners of war lived in 700 POW camps throughout the United States. Many escaped and were quickly
      The current US Congress refuses to provide funds for such detention in America or such trials … there are only little more than 100 international terrorist suspects detained at Guantanamo
      Bay, and beginning with President Clinton, the US has successfully tried and convicted terrorists in American civilian courts.

      • Whatmeworry

        The grave and complex problems were of his and his fellow dem’s making. It was actions like the community reinvestment act that was the cause of the whole housing disaster. Your are right that Barak’s and Holder racial bigotry have been an impediment in having this country move forward but like most morons he continues to enflame race relations.
        Obama hasn’t been allowed to close Gitmo for good reasons he can’t be entrusted to enforce this countries laws. The POW’s that were interned in the US during WW2 were POW’s. The moooslims captured in Afghanistan and Iraq would have been hung during WW2 so your analogy is pure hog wash.
        No $$$ for trials ??/ Seriously??? Barak has spent $110M paying countries to take these so called non terrorists. Hasan has yet to be prosecuted and his actions happened in 2009

        • Whatmeworry is Dan M Ketter

          didja google those figures dannnnnnnyboy

    • Whatmeworry is Dan M Ketter

      dannyboyketter looks in the mirror and sees a fatter archie bunker

  • Barrington September

    I am just disgusted by the Obama-haters. I hate to debate because most people on these blogs think that American & World history began in 2009 during the Obama era. Those of us who study history and who were alive and involved as adults from the 1960s up until now … and have carefully and thoughtfully paid attention to politics, international affairs and economic growth & unemployment data and various domestic and diplomatic & international policies, can point to many disasterous decisions, weaknesses, blunders, diplomatic failures, poor public policies and etc. of the presidents who were in office. Many of whom were lauded as great!

    Only presidents Obama and George W. Bush really had to function in this very modern 21st Century Internet, mass media, smart phones and news cycles that never end and the constant scrutiny of every minor action or inaction and more ‘pontificating’ talking heads experts (or idiots) on 24 hour media than teachers in k-12 classrooms.

    Most people in their wildest dreams have no idea how difficult it is to function under such intense & often unfair scrutiny, because for the most part, we no longer have news journalists, we mostly have opinionated “talking heads” and reporters and ‘news people’ trying to score the biggest hit, uncover a scandal or sell adverticements.

    • latebloomingrandma

      50 years ago, President Kennedy allegedly was having multiple affairs, but this was kept from the public. Reagan didn’t have to put up with the internet blogs or the 23 hour “news” channels. After 9/11, rendering an opposing opinion to Bush was deemed unpatriotic. Now–anything goes. All kinds of falsehoods are thrown at this president, and “news” organizations and pundits are so dedicated to promoting these false narratives, that people find it hard to determine the truth. The only thing not yet known about our President is how many times he goes to the bathroom in a day.

  • joe schmo

    “I think the difference is that [President] Bill Clinton [for whom
    Panetta also worked] likes politics, likes the engagement in politics,”
    Panetta told Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly. “Barack Obama does not like that
    process of engaging in politics, and I think that hurts his presidency.
    It hurts him in terms of getting things done.”

    What? It simply means Obama HATES the United States so why bother.

    “The thrill is gone,” is an understatement. This Man has single handedly taken this country down into the drink. Like a child stomping his feet because he didn’t get his way, Obama’s immature attitude has cost America its identity.

    “But unemployment is down, so is the deficit, and the stock market, for all of its bounces, has hit record highs.”

    1)Unemployment is certainly not up if you count all the people out there working 2-3 part time jobs,

    2) Deficit –

    Just for the record and in case the chart is too hard to read, the
    national deficit was just over $400 billion in 2008. In 2009, it was
    right at $1.4 trillion. This was due, in large part, to the massive
    stimulus spending undertaken by President Obama and his liberal friends
    in Congress. It has declined since that time, but it is still well above
    the levels we saw during the Bush administration. To make the claim
    that Obama has reduced the national deficit by 50% is ludicrous and I
    will not allow it to go unchallenged.

    I’ll be the first to admit that President George W. Bush was no true
    fiscal conservative. I would point out, however, that he was faced with
    situations that few modern presidents have had to deal with. That
    doesn’t make him a fiscal conservative, but it does help explain, at
    least partially, why his administration spent so much money. Regardless
    if you like him or not, you can not ignore those facts.

    On the other hand, President Obama has done nothing but blame Bush
    for his woes as President, fiscal and otherwise. I’ve always heard it
    said, numbers do not lie. As much as he tries to lie his way out of the
    box, with his liberal supporters backing him up every step of the way,
    President Obama can not ignore the numbers.

    His administration is spending more money than they are taking in,
    thus driving the national deficit up by billions of dollars. As a
    result, the national debt was at $16.7 trillion in October. It was $10.6
    trillion when he took office in 2009. That’s an increase of 57%. As
    much as President Obama would like us to ignore these numbers, they tell
    the tale of a President who has spent more money than any previous
    holder of that office.

    3) Stock Market –

    The US has lowered interest rates to the point where it is actually more
    profitable for many companies to borrow money and use the proceeds to
    buy back their own shares, thus eliminating the need to pay dividends on
    those shares. Gordon T. Long of Macro Analytics recently ran the

    Long goes on to illustrate the
    point using Apple and IBM, and concludes that buying back stock, even at
    today’s elevated levels, is a profitable arbitrage.

    What does this mean? The short answer is that the bull market is fake, fueled primarily by companies looking to save money on taxes rather than invest in undervalued shares.In effect they are, with the government’s help, tricking both their shareholders and individual investors into buying overvalued equities inorder to generate bigger year-end executive bonuses for themselves.Arguing for the validity of this cynical conclusion is the fact that corporate insiders are selling their personal shares while directing their companies to buy back those same shares.

    • Eleanore Whitaker

      Hey! Schmomo….How do you go from “does not like the process of engaging in politics….to “Obama HATES the US?

      You’re an absolute jerk. How on earth did such a little Daddy’s boy turn into such a covetous, moron and political scoundrel?

      What’s the matter Schmomo? President Obama not kissing your rich ass or Big Daddy Warbucks rich ass? Isn’t it just too damn bad your Big Daddy Warbucks has to pay taxes (although, never his true fair share) like we all do?

      You hate Obama..because you hate yourself more. You can’t get out of bed a single day without feasting on hate. When I think about it, a Daddy’s boy like you was bred on hatred, greed and covetousness.

      President Obama hates the US? Sure..that’s why he took on a job your Big Daddy Warbucks could with all of his moolah, right? That’s why President Obama got saddle with 2 BS wars Bush and Cheney knew they couldn’t pay for but your Big Daddy Warbucks certainly could.

      No matter what your pathetic, sorry attempts are to demean this president, ANY President is better than the 8 miserable years your Herr Cheney imposed on us. Banks aren’t getting bail outs…why? Wall Street isn’t on the verge of collapse..Why? Because your Big Daddy Warbucks is Savior of the World? Or because a decent, honest president has no patience for cheats and covetous morons like you and your Daddy.

      Poor Lil Schmo…his days of getting away with corruption and conniving to get rich are OVER. Let’s all cry rivers for him…NOT.

  • Ocean Sprayz

    The myth of Obama is little more than an ever-shifting mirage of illusions conjured up to exploit the sympathies of the gullible and the ignorant.

    • Eleanore Whitaker

      And the swaggering, drawling of Cowboy Bush being Cheney’s political prostitute was better?

      You are ignernt and gullible…because all your kind want is your own self-indulgent way. Fine. You can have you way..just not with MY or anyone else’s tax dollars supporting your lazy red state asses.

      The worst records in education? Nearly all of the red states. The worst records of welfare? Red states. The worst records of phony disability claims? The red states..It’s beginning to look like “ignernt,” lazy and gullible are the perfect excuse for mouths like your to bitch and whine for more federal revenues the rest of us are paying for. Get off your ass and get a life!

  • holyreality

    “At least he tried.” makes a sad epitaph for the Obama administration, especially before he is officially a lame duck.

    It is mystifying how Democrats refuse to find their backbone. If Obama was a GOPer, he would be a hero up next to St Ronnie himself. He halved the deficit, doubled the DOW, gave away everything to the insurance industry for a pittance of new rules, reduced government jobs growth that would make libertarians blush.
    But craven Dems love to abandon their standard bearers hoping for something I cannot imagine would ever satisfy them. Al Gore wouldn’t touch Clinton with a ten foot pole, same for Carter.
    Democrats will accept victory if it is handed to them on their terms, Republicans will fight bitterly and fiercely to win.
    The GOP is a party on the verge of extinction, yet they continue to frame the debate while Democrats cower and quake wondering why they keep losing to a party that constantly marginalizes themselves.

  • cobra614

    I respect Clarence Page’s OPINION about It’s not about Obama but it is about us which is glaringly true…Those who voted for him ignores to their ignorance that there has been and still is an ongoing conspiracy against this president since the night of his inauguration..Let’s at least acknowledge this as being FACT..this means from jump street Republicans have said NO to everything that he proposes. Are those who voted for him not realize that they are choosing Style over Substance when they make meaningless comments like “he looks tired” so this means “we are tired of him” which is BS. The office of the presidency ages you because of the stresses that comes with the office..Reagan was the only one that didn’t display any grey because he dyed his hair but every other president in history from Ford to Clinton to Bush, all of them displayed the rigors of being POTUS. In spite of the obstruction, this president has gotten a lot done but due to the Dumbing Down of Americans in the country especially those who voted for him let alone the ones who didn’t, we have a huge polarity and divisiveness in this country because they don’t give him any credit..Let’s not pretend that RACE has not played a factor in this because we know many in this country are very upset that a black family occupies their precious White House..A MSNBC political pundit wrote an article asking the same question…”where is that old Obama?”..Obama has not gone anywhere..He is still cleaning up the colossal mess that Bush left for him. Everyday he wakes up there is either more BS from Republicans or there is another crisis with connections to the former ISIS…Now BS Republicans are using the Ebola issue to score political points by preying on the stupidity of ignorant Americans who are paying attention to the fear mongering and they they use it to distract them from the REAL issues forgetting that they won’t pass the minimum wage…won’t pass pay equity, won’t pass unemployment benefits, won’t pass veterans benefits, won’t pass ENDA, won’t pass the VRA which is a huge problem in this election with this voting restriction issue, and they do not believe in climate change and to top it all off they still are talking about repealing the ACA which for all Americans.., If Americans do not take any of this in consideration when they go to the polls then they are truly ignoramuses because choosing Style over Substance makes us the laughing stock of the world…yes the whole world is watching and it is not pretty…. .

  • Angel Perea

    THE INCONVENIENT TRUTH: So why is this President accomplishing less? Hum.. It’s all the Presidents’ fault? Or just maybe, Out of Touch GOP? Speaker Boehner’s comments is an “admission that the core issue is: “Dysfunctional House Republicans don’t want to solve the basic policy problem we face, which will require accepting uncomfortable trade-offs, preferring doing nothing — allowing the status quo to fester — is politically easier.” Meanwhile, McConnell and his Senate minority republicans
    have staged 420+ filibusters since he became Minority Leader in 2007. This established historical record of filibusters to blocked a significant number of the President’s job creation legislation and appointments as never before despite elections results by the majority of Americans. It is now clear that for the majority of us ordinary Americans see that those
    republican “do nothing” over the last several years have rapidly seal its fate
    as a minority party. So how is Republican orthodoxy and these Grand non-Achievements working out for your pocketbook issues? And finally, has everyone forgotten the republican created govt. shut down that wasted $27 billion in our taxpayer funds? Does anyone really think that most intelligent thinking Americans are that stupid to reward irresponsible behavior? It is the responsibility of our National Press to accurately identity each of these anti- American extremist hypocrites! There was a time when senator’s reason together to the general good of American people! FACT CHECK –find out the inconvenient recorded truth: