Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sounds like you really like O (O for Obama)

Recently a friend made that comment.

Well, I like O (President Barack Obama) much better than any other politician in my lifetime.

Most people when they criticize O need to understand that he is first and foremost a politician. That is the professional field of endeavor, good or bad, from which we elect our Presidents. A politician utilizes strategic and tactical political skills to accomplish change in a political environment, and so it only makes sense (unfortunately) that a politician would fill that role. Secondly, the opposition to O need to understand that in most every proposal or recommendation for change O has made he has qualified it as something that will have full effectiveness over time; change cannot possibly happen by 6:00 tomorrow morning. America’s obsession with immediatism and instant gratification is one of its major weaknesses.

In my view, America has three additional pervasive weaknesses: capitalism, narcissism, and militarism. American free-market capitalism is not an authentic form of free-market capitalism. However, even if it were pure, it would not solve the problems, particularly that of greed. It is not government intervention in the marketplace that creates greed and criminality. Of course, Socialism is not the answer either. The narcissist is obsessed with nationalism and patriotism, the need for immediacy, personal gratification, and it is all about me and to hell with you. Militarist are the warriors, gun owners, and defenders of violence. They believe that negotiation is analogous to appeasement. They are zealot patriots and nationalist, and the ones who believe that if we did not have a military we would not have a country.

One should not expect O to be the all -- everything -- for all people. They should not expect the man to bat 100 all of the time. One should not expect that no more than they should expect their favorite baseball team to win every game in every season and always to win the World Series. The Olympic committee rejection of Chicago as the site for the 2016 Olympics will provide a great example of this, because you will find the conservative right will (even though I have not yet witnessed it, but will be pleasantly surprised if they do not) pontificate what a loser O is.

I am an American. As such, I feel that it is imperative to participate in America. When it comes to making a decision on whether to cast my vote on any particular issue or person for office, I have the choice to vote or not to vote. I have made the decision (contrary to a prior belief that a not to vote decision would be meaningful as a protest vote, which I realized that in the end that that act would be an act of acquiescence) that not to vote at all is unacceptable.

I voted for O, not because I am a democrat, republican, independent, anarchist, libertarian, communist or socialist, but because I felt of all the candidates O addressed Americas strengths and weaknesses, challenges and opportunities, and the important issues with clarity, confidence, and with a view which was as close to my view as is possible.

He has liberal views, but then again no one who voted for him should have expected him to have a conservative view. However that does not make O a communist, fascist, or socialist, for conservatives are not lacking in their own particular kind of socialism, it just depends on ones bend as to whether they support the disadvantaged or the wealthy.

As far as O’s rhetoric and ability to convey ideas, unarguably there may not be many who can surpass him. It all comes down to whether you believe what he says is in his heart; I have no convincing proof that it is not. No one will ever know the essence of a person’s veracity until they acquire the ability to read minds. As with anyone’s rhetoric, I receive and understand it with that caveat in mind.

As far as those Americans who fear the condition of statism: since the founding of our nation every American should have been as concerned with those prospects, with every president since Washington, not just O. The reality is that we have progressively been governed under the evolved conditions set by our particular socialistic cast of state: an American style quasi-socialist state.

Short of revolution, it is imperative that the free-market anarchist and free-market capitalist come to the reality that we must work within our current systems to build improvements that benefit Americans, tweaking, changing, or improving existing systems where and when we can. To yield to America’s propensity for immediacy, to change a system hastily, would have disastrous results and would be irresponsible.

When O was inaugurated, in consideration of all that was headed into the abyss for our country, how can Americans expect anyone to solve the economic quagmire and the problem of two ongoing wars within a nine-month tenure in office? Furthermore, from my management experience, folks expect a manager to respond and have a proposed solution STAT even if an immediate solution may not be possible (i.e. not possible within existing legal, economic, political or operational conditions), and so many people have that very same expectation of the Obama administration. Such a view is not pragmatic.

Although he is not perfect in everyway, he does not do everything as I would like to have them done, my expectations are nevertheless very high. Yes, I do, at the end of the day, like President Obama.