HOME   //   PROFILE   //   RSS

Left And Right - Quit Miscasting President Obama At Your Peril
by John Jazwiec

(I know it has been over a month since I last posted. Frankly, besides a tremendous workload in my day-job, I can't keep up with Trump's daily reality show, the lack of gun reform leadership, the stock market being overvalued and the danger of deficits to fund people that can't positively effect an economy who's GNP is 70% based on middle to lower class consumption. Tariffs? Not a zero-sum game. Even a Economics 101 student understands the multiplication of money and trade. Tariffs along with the resulting inflation, will both drive deficits higher and drive interest rates higher to attract investors to buy our debt ).

What bothers me is the miscasting of President Obama not just from the right, but also the left. So I am going to try and provide some some facts along a broader spectrum.

Obama the politician. Guess who was the last northern Democrat to win more than one term before Obama? Answer - FDR. Clinton won twice as a southern Democrat and Carter won once as the same. Ditto for LBJ and Truman. Except - to LBJ's credit on civil rights - his Democratic successors have had to give up the deeper South. Which makes Obama's electoral mandate even more striking

Obama the Reagan naive optimist. Despite the tribalism of the two parties, Reagan and Obama saw an innate goodness of America. Despite the obstructionist elements they faced every day, they nonetheless saw America as an exceptional country.

Both were pragmatists with Obama calmly taking on the immanent collapse of the US economy. Obama staffed his first term with Tim Geithner (NY Fed Chairman as Secretary of the Treasury) and Robert Gates - a Republican - as Secretary of the Defense. Obama, instead of demand side stimulus - enacted a $700 trillion mix of spending and tax cuts. Under great pressure from the left - understanding how banking really works - he didn't tear down the banks and their pay/talent pool.Obama promised the people to disengage from two wars and enact health insurance reform. Finally, his landmark HCRA, was lifted from the 1994 GOP plan, instead of swinging for the fences on a socialist universal health care insurance. 

Obama didn't understand the GOP threat to his presidency. He couldn't have predicted, that days after his inaugural, the entire GOP plan was to vote no on everything to minimize his presidency. Having said that, he was reelected with a healthy electoral majority. 

The US Republic requires the US president to be both head of state and chief of the executive branch. As the head of state, like the differences of England's PM and Queen, Obama was respected by our allies for his continuity to American values. 

The earliest 45 best presidents since Obama left office. No president in history - with such little time for historians to evaluate his performance - has entered the rankings as the 12th best president like Obama. Trump? 45th best.

Perhaps to a fault, the Obama presidency was no-drama with Obama driving the car less than the speed limit with two hands of the wheel. Now all we have is drama with a president recklessly driving the car.

Finally, there were no scandals in the Obama presidency. 

My right-wing friends have no reason to not demonize Obama. That's what they do.

But I am a centrist. So when I see the left bending towards socialism - as a response to Trump's Kleptocracy - they are making a huge mistake. They have may not have learned that a left-center presidential candidate is the only way to defeat Trump. 

There is a reason that Obama was elected twice - that seemingly has been "lost" by the last election. His coalition is only getting younger. It hasn't disappeared. He popularity amongst the voters is 20 points higher than Trump. The only reason he lost the coalition wasn't Trump. He lost it by a mistaken calculation that the American people - who want change - nominated a listless candidate who lacked any thing concrete along with the vestiges of a Clinton White House with a past for disdainful ghosts in her family dynamic. 

In short, 40 years of a widening income gap and the eroding of the middle class, has left the US with two dangers: The empty promises of a far-right president or the promises and irresponsible promises of the far-left. 

Tomorrow we will find out whether a center-right Democrat can make an impact in a Pennsylvania House district that voted for Trump by a healthy 20 points. Conner Lamb - the Democrat center-right candidate - is the best way for the Democrats to regain their momentum by running to the center.

The critical question, is will the Democrats pay attention to the Conner Lambs of Pennsylvania and the Doug Jones of Alabama? Will they take their cues and model themselves as a Obama centrist? Or we they attempt a reactionary jump to the far-left policies of Bernie Sander?

As to my right wing friends, assuming the Democrats continue to attract young - men and women - with centrist positions - given changing attitudes amongst new voters - just how long can they make and enable far-right thinking and expect to win elections in the longterm?

All of this gets us back to whether the left and right will continue to wrongfully miscast President Obama's presidency. 


What is exciting is young people.
The question in future domestic policy.... can you be social without being a socialist?

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Leave a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

From athletic scholar and satirist to computer programmer to CEO success, John Jazwiec brings a unique and often eccentric perspective to business and supply chain challenges. Exploring how they can be solved through the leadership and communication insights found in untraditional sources. This CEO blog demonstrates how business insights from books on history to the music of Linkin Park can help challenge and redefine “successful leadership.” Read Jazwiec’s Profile >>

Hierarchy of corporate success

What does it take for businesses to break out of bad habits and succeed?
Download John’s free white paper >>