Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

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Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Thu Feb 05, 2009 1:37 pm

Sen. Graham Blasts Obama On Lack Of Leadership

According to Graham, Obama is having televised lunches and writing editorials, but is not involving himself in negotiations over the stimulus bill.

I'd say it is too early for me to chime on his leadership skills. We knew going in that he lacked experience, but he may be a quick study. This is his first test. If the stimulus bill fails, it will reflect poorly on him, and he will have to work hard to regain credibility as a leader. If he salvages it, it will give him credibility as a leader. The world is watching.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Giant Communist Robot » Thu Feb 05, 2009 2:19 pm

In reading Obama's book, "Dreams of my father," I gathered this is a guy with a lot of experience dealing with different personalities with differing agendas. He's practical. I hope this experience gives him skill. By some strange chance, he may be the best qualified for these challenges we now see.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Trumpetmaster » Thu Feb 05, 2009 2:46 pm

Shapley wrote:Sen. Graham Blasts Obama On Lack Of Leadership

According to Graham, Obama is having televised lunches and writing editorials, but is not involving himself in negotiations over the stimulus bill.

I'd say it is too early for me to chime on his leadership skills. We knew going in that he lacked experience, but he may be a quick study. This is his first test. If the stimulus bill fails, it will reflect poorly on him, and he will have to work hard to regain credibility as a leader. If he salvages it, it will give him credibility as a leader. The world is watching.



I agree with you Shapley..
It's WAY TOO EARLY for anyone to be making these judgements..........
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Giant Communist Robot » Thu Feb 05, 2009 3:06 pm

It's WAY TOO EARLY for anyone to be making these judgements..........


Doubt is one thing, but its not an error to base an opinion on the information we have. You might argue its not enough or enough of the right kind--this sidesteps the issue, though. Its still possible to form an opinion. I suspect many find it hard to criticize his performance and rather than say something good will say its too early.

You have no opinion on his cabinet choices? No feeling one way or another about any of them? What about the stimulus package? Can't tell one way or another how look at it? What about those two cabinet choices who withdrew because of tax reasons? How long to wait before forming an opinion about that? The Al-Jazeer interview? Too soon for that?
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:06 pm

Giant Communist Robot wrote:I suspect many find it hard to criticize his performance and rather than say something good will say its too early.


I have no problem criticizing him, but I do want to give him the benefit of the doubt. He has only been in office for two weeks, so I'm not prepared to make a judgement on his overall performance. He set a deadline of Feb. 16 for the passage of the stimulus bill. It if passes in that time, then he gets points, if it doesn't, then he has failed his first real leadership test. I'll refrain from comment until then unless, of course, he excels or screws up in some remarkable way.

You have no opinion on his cabinet choices? No feeling one way or another about any of them? What about the stimulus package? Can't tell one way or another how look at it? What about those two cabinet choices who withdrew because of tax reasons? How long to wait before forming an opinion about that? The Al-Jazeer interview? Too soon for that?


None of his cabinet choices are brilliant, IMHO, but he could have done worse on some. I'm afraid that Hillary Clinton's appointment was a bad idea. Not just because I don't like Hillary Clinton, but because I think she will be battling with him for the limelight, and I believe he will find that she is more concerned with her own success than his. Of course, I could be wrong. Then again, perhaps he knows this and her appointment is part of a scheme to 'bring her in line'. Time will tell.

I have commented recently regarding why the press wasn't hammering him over his vetting process, as they did Sen. McCain regarding his choice of Sarah Palin. Lo and behold, such a question appeared in yesterday's news. The answer, they claim, is that the appointees lied to the person responsible for vetting them (as they apparently lied to the IRS), and that Mr. Obama's vetting process is the most rigid ever, etc., etc.

Speculation is that Presidnet Obama chose al-Arabiya for his first interview for the same reason that President Bush chose them, to favour Saudi Arabia and give a boost to al-Jazeera's relatively moderate competitor. However, one commentator says they were his first choice because it is known that they'll lob softballs at him, rather than hammer him with hard questions.
I don't pretend to know enough about either the President or the news outlet to make an educated guess.
Last edited by Shapley on Sun Feb 08, 2009 9:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:28 pm

Giant Communist Robot wrote:In reading Obama's book, "Dreams of my father," I gathered this is a guy with a lot of experience dealing with different personalities with differing agendas. He's practical. I hope this experience gives him skill. By some strange chance, he may be the best qualified for these challenges we now see.


I expressed my concerns about his authorship during the campaign. Many political leaders have written books early in their careers: books about the world situation, biographies of notable persons, books on political issues and even children's books. Barack Obama wrote a book about himself. Later, after winning a seat on the U.S. Senate, he wrote another book about himself. Then, in 2008, after abandoning that seat (despite his claim that he wouldn't do so) in favour of higher office, he released a third book, also about himself. He seems to be his favourite subject.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Giant Communist Robot » Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:51 pm

Shapley! You're well informed! Obviously better than I am!

I just finished "Cancer Wars," by R. Proctor, and it has a chapter in it called "Doubt is our Product." Its about the P.R. campaign conducted by the tobacco industry , uh, begining in the early '60s I think. The technique was to withhold an opinion on results of clinical tests showing cigarettes as a health hazard. By cautiously pointing out possible flaws and stating they needed to wait for more evidence the tobacco industry was able to look objective. This objectivity allowed millions of smokers to feel it was ok to continue smoking, in spite of the evidence.

I don't wish to seem combative, Shapley, but you have toe'd the party line in the past so much it seems unlikey you would have an objective opinion about Obama's leadership performance. Say something good about him and maybe I'll believe you!
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:03 pm

Giant Communist Robot wrote:I don't wish to seem combative, Shapley, but you have toe'd the party line in the past so much it seems unlikey you would have an objective opinion about Obama's leadership performance. Say something good about him and maybe I'll believe you!


Nah! I used to work for a tobacco company.... ;)

No! Seriously, I think he seems to be a smart guy, but I think he's in over his head. He'll either learn to swim or he'll drown. I believe he can learn to swim, but I'm not sure he can learn quickly enough. He's still trying to use campaign tactics to govern, and I don't think that's going to work. Sooner or later, he's going to have to get out from the front of the camera and actually employ leadership tactics. Ronaldus Maximus used to bypass the Congress and go direct to the people to press his agenda, but he was faced with an adversarial Congress. This Congress is on the President's side, or so we're told.

You will remember that President Clinton made a number of mis-steps early in his career. They even talked about 'on the job training' back in those days, and the press was willing to forgive him because of his youth, his lack of experience, etc., etc. I don't think President Obama will be given as much leeway, largely because the stakes are higher and they spent so much capital telling us that he does have the experience and he is ready to lead.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Haggis@wk » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:39 pm

Giant Communist Robot wrote: This objectivity allowed millions of smokers to feel it was ok to continue smoking, in spite of the evidence.


Do you honestly know anyone who smoked but didn't think it was a hazard? I sure don't. I started smoking in the early '60s and I always knew it was a hazard. Heck, I can remember my grandmother telling me in the '50s that smoking was bad for your health. The lawsuits and battles against the tobacco companies was probably the beginning of the Federal Government's campaign to convince all Americans that they were too stupid to run their own lives and its only gotten worse.

As for Obama, I'm just tired of people holding out that he's somehow different from every other politician in America; he isn't.

I maintained from the very beginning that he was lying to the American electorate. He promised things that he never intended to fulfill. For instance, twice in the last two weeks he’s violated his campaign promise -- the "Sunlight Before Signing" pledge – when he said he would not sign any non-emergency bills without offering the public five days to review and comment on the legislation.

When someone asked his Administration about the broken pledge they advised that he would keep the pledge “in the future.”

I am certainly a critic of his because I believe he will try to fundamentally change our form of government and our way of life. There’s at least 58 million people who share that same concern so while I’m in an electoral minority, it’s still a sizable one.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Giant Communist Robot » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:03 pm

Do you honestly know anyone who smoked but didn't think it was a hazard?


For some reason I can't remember the '60s.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Haggis@wk » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:08 pm

Giant Communist Robot wrote:
For some reason I can't remember the '60s.


Well, I didn't do dope and USAF only let me drink 3.2 beer until 1969 so I was relatively sober for much of the 60's.... :rofl:
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Thu Feb 05, 2009 8:59 pm

Haggis@wk wrote:I maintained from the very beginning that he was lying to the American electorate. He promised things that he never intended to fulfill. For instance, twice in the last two weeks he’s violated his campaign promise -- the "Sunlight Before Signing" pledge – when he said he would not sign any non-emergency bills without offering the public five days to review and comment on the legislation.


I figure there are two probabilities (actually three). If he made the promises actually intending to keep them, then he is naive. If he made the promises but didn't intend to keep them, he is a liar. Or, of course, he could be both. This can be said of him at least as far back as his 2004 pledge not to run for the Presidency during his first term as senator.

I believe he is both a naive, and a liar, but at this point I'm willing to concede that he could simply be naive.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Trumpetmaster » Fri Feb 06, 2009 7:16 am

Giant Communist Robot wrote:
Do you honestly know anyone who smoked but didn't think it was a hazard?


For some reason I can't remember the '60s.



:rofl:

life has become a blurr......... :rofl:
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:09 pm

Obama's Tardiness Sets Him Apart From His Predecessor

Obama has been routinely late to events and news conferences, including the ones at which he reversed Bush's orders. This has led to an already familiar refrain from the Obama camp: "He's running late."

The president was nearly 30 minutes late Wednesday for the ceremony at which he signed a bill to expand children's health care. He was 10 minutes late Thursday to a memo signing at the Energy Department.

Even before the inauguration, Obama wasn't a punctual sort; he arrived late to a Jan. 8 news conference on the economy that was aired live by broadcast and cable networks.

When it comes to following the clock, Obama closely resembles Bill Clinton, who was famously late to events when he was president. By contrast, Bush despised being late and punctual to a fault. He set the tone early in his presidency -- he arrived at the Capitol five minutes early for his inauguration.

"To me, being tardy, it's got to be one of two things," said presidential historian Doug Wead, who advised both Bush and his father, George H.W. Bush. "Bad organization that can be corrected, or it's arrogance. It sounds to me like this is arrogance."

Mark Lindsay, a Democratic consultant and former senior White House adviser to Bill Clinton, disagreed, explaining that Clinton was late sometimes because he was making accommodations for logistics or average citizens.


Or, pulling up his pants ...
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Giant Communist Robot » Fri Feb 06, 2009 1:12 pm

I think he seems to be a smart guy


Well, Shapley demonstrates his objectivity. As far as his being smart, I don't know. He doesn't impress me as the kind of person "bristling with facts and ideas." I do believe he is a deep thinker, though, and has one-on-one people skills. Maybe slow but thorough.

I maintained from the very beginning that he was lying to the American electorate.



I'd say he wasn't specific about his plans during the campaign, and if he chooses different plans than those he proposed, maybe there's some leeway there. Lying means these plans that are different are the ones he always intended. Can't be proved, but one can suspect. I suspect all politicians are liars.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Fri Feb 06, 2009 1:23 pm

Giant Communist Robot wrote:[I'd say he wasn't specific about his plans during the campaign, and if he chooses different plans than those he proposed, maybe there's some leeway there. Lying means these plans that are different are the ones he always intended. Can't be proved, but one can suspect. I suspect all politicians are liars.


During the campaign, several campaign staffers told groups of supports that then-Senator Obama couldn't be held to his statements on the campaign trail. He would, we were told, have the availablility of data as President that he did not have access to as senator, and his decisions would be made accordingly. This was said, I believe, to placate various groups that had been angered by remarks he made to other groups with different goals and concerns. Had we not had that fair warning that he was not being honest, I might have chalked his reversals up to naivety.

You're probably right, most politicians are likely dishonest. That doesn't mean we have to like it, or excuse it.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Giant Communist Robot » Fri Feb 06, 2009 1:28 pm

You're probably right, most politicians are likely dishonest


To win swing votes, they must appeal to groups (lie to them) out of their mainstream. Or vice-versa.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby shostakovich » Fri Feb 06, 2009 9:00 pm

I prefer someone who comes late to do good rather than early to do damage.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Sun Feb 08, 2009 10:06 am

Haggis@wk wrote:Do you honestly know anyone who smoked but didn't think it was a hazard? I sure don't. I started smoking in the early '60s and I always knew it was a hazard.


I remember my first cigarette, a Fatima, which I smoked in my neighbor's shed with a freind. I was incredibly sick by the time it was finished, sore throat, couching, hacking, puking. I was only twelve, but I knew enough to know that was not a healthy thing. I've only tried them a couple of times since, with similar, though milder, results. I never took up the habit.
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Re: Is Barack Obama the right leader for America?

Postby Shapley » Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:12 am

Quod scripsi, scripsi.
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