Wednesday, April 29, 2009

100 Days

Might as well, Mighty Swell...
Tonight, President Obama gave a prime time news conference on his 100th day in office, and everyone seems to want to give him a grade. As a teacher, who has seen front line action in the grade inflation wars, you'd have to give him at least a B+, and probably higher, but it's too early to tell, so it's just a progress report.

To be honest, compared to the presidents since JFK, and I really wasn't that aware of government policies at 10 years old, this guy is a freakin' A+! He's sharp, concise, and thoughtful, and going for it full tilt.

I'm unfortunately a little scared of the crazies being whipped into a frenzy by Fox News, and I sure hope the Secret Service is doing their job. I think America is too invested into this one person, and if we should lose him, it would be difficult to go on with the same energy.

I would like to say a word about the "torture thing." I know there are many on the left who are unhappy he's not actively trying to put Dick Cheney in prison, and seemingly uninterested in prosecuting anyone for the abuses of the past administration. I heard a phrase on the Stephanie Miller show, which I usually catch a few minutes of in the morning on the way to work, where she says "Obama's playing chess, while the rest of us are playing checkers."

I think he cannot allow himself to be seen as spending any energy gunning for the crooks from the previous administration, but the wheels of justice are grinding away, and I could see an unavoidable, inexorable collision ahead where some of the crooks will pay.

So, I think he's doing great, and as long as we don't all perish in an H1N1 pandemic, I look forward to a brighter future for once!

What do you think?


Tyree Johnson said...

I think your commentary is on target. Unfortunaruley I think the media establishment plays the American public like we're adolescents with ADD and unfortunately we react as though that's true. That makes the days to come even more challenging.

There is a profundity to Obama's calm, constant approach to the tsunami of complex problems he has has faced that I deeply appreciate. The chess vs checkers metaphor seems apropos. I beleive it's imperative that those of us who believe in the values that further human discourse and harmony will continue to support those efforts in a similar manner. Therefore we can't let hating the hate mongers be a disattraction. So like any great chessmaster, let's play the board with the endgame in mind as a winning strategy.


dfung said...

Well said, Geoff! And now, my bit and a 1/2...

My favorite moment of the conference was when he said:

...if you could tell me right
now that, when I walked into
this office that the banks were
humming, that autos were
selling, and that all you
had to worry about was Iraq,
Afghanistan, North Korea,
getting health care passed,
figuring out how to deal with
energy independence, deal with
Iran, and a pandemic flu, I
would take that deal.

Some people may feel that that's being a bit flip, but I can't think of a better illustration of the breadth of issues that he's faced in the first 100. I had to find the transcript of the conference to get that quote, and scanning it reminded me that he was thoughtful, informed, and engaged on this wide range of issues.

I don't know that I believe that Fox News stirs up the crazies. The crazies will be crazy regardless of what FN says. Sure, they'll get a bunch of Limbaugh bobbleheads bobbing, but I don't think there's much more effect than that.

That doesn't understate the importance of O himself though. He and his composed manner are the reason to have hope when there's been so little unqualified hope before.

I'm actually sort of suprised that you didn't liken Obama to another charismatic guy who owns the room and makes all the obvious right moves that were right in front of you but unreachable by anybody else.

Yes, he's an awful lot like Steve Jobs. Apple would be a nice place without him, but with him it's a great one. Whether he's driving of facilitating others, you can feel confident that the boss "gets it", and that the journey will be worth it even if it's painful along the way.

OK, that's my bit and a half!

David Fung