President Barack Obama has often said one thing, and done another, both in his tireless years of campaigning and now in the White House. However, more people are starting to take notice.
Aside from the greater issues, those of philosophy and intention that can be spun and rationalized by changing moods and circumstances (such as saying government is the only hope for the economy, followed by a speech 20 days later in which the individual American worker is the only hope for the economy), Barack Obama has issued orders and suggestions to the American public about how best to live our lives and represent our nation.
The problem is he does not take his own advice, and now in power he is not the careful, studied icon of last year, but a more human figure, and humans' have weaknesses, they make mistakes. And with the press always watching, it is only a matter of time before his all-important approval numbers begin to fall.
In the spirit of bipartisanship and assistance to both Obama and his staff, here is a short list of recent things he should try to keep more low profile (maybe Rahm can mention it to Stephanopolous and Carville during their daily phone calls.)
1. "We can’t drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times ... That’s not leadership. That’s not going to happen." On Obama's first full day at the White House, however, he cranked up the heat in the Oval Office to 77, according to his own right hand man David Axelrod. "He's from Hawaii...he likes it warm." (He also likes serving and eating 100 dollar wagyu steaks.
2. "She's a monster," said Samantha Power about Hillary Clinton in March 2007. Obama promptly rebuked her and forced her to very publicly resign, showing his opposition to dirty politics and attack techniques. Now the Associated Press reports, as Obama personally attacks private citizens such as Limbaugh and executives who spend money without his approval, that Samanth Power has been given a senior foreign policy job at the White House where she will work closely with Secretary Clinton.
I would continue, what with the executive order banning lobbyists and the lobbyist he hired days later, Geithner's tax omissions, the claim of "bipartisan" attempts while shooting down any and all alternatives, but its rather nauseating.
If Obama truly wants to maintain his unprecedented popularity and not devolve into a rich-man's Jimmy Carter, he will plug these cracks quickly and keep reelection in the forefront of his mind. But something tells me his ego, gone unchecked for so long, does not fully permit the possibility of defeat.