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Opinions & Editorials Discuss David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama at the General Forum; I Miss Barack Obama David Brooks FEB. 9, 2016 As this primary season has gone along, a strange sensation has ...

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Old 02-10-2016, 12:16 AM
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Default David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

I Miss Barack Obama

David Brooks FEB. 9, 2016

As this primary season has gone along, a strange sensation has come over me: I miss Barack Obama. Now, obviously I disagree with a lot of Obama’s policy decisions. I’ve been disappointed by aspects of his presidency. I hope the next presidency is a philosophic departure.

But over the course of this campaign it feels as if there’s been a decline in behavioral standards across the board. Many of the traits of character and leadership that Obama possesses, and that maybe we have taken too much for granted, have suddenly gone missing or are in short supply.

The first and most important of these is basic integrity. The Obama administration has been remarkably scandal-free. Think of the way Iran-contra or the Lewinsky scandals swallowed years from Reagan and Clinton.

We’ve had very little of that from Obama. He and his staff have generally behaved with basic rectitude. Hillary Clinton is constantly having to hold these defensive press conferences when she’s trying to explain away some vaguely shady shortcut she’s taken, or decision she has made, but Obama has not had to do that.

He and his wife have not only displayed superior integrity themselves, they have mostly attracted and hired people with high personal standards. There are all sorts of unsightly characters floating around politics, including in the Clinton camp and in Gov. Chris Christie’s administration. This sort has been blocked from team Obama.

Second, a sense of basic humanity. Donald Trump has spent much of this campaign vowing to block Muslim immigration. You can only say that if you treat Muslim Americans as an abstraction. President Obama, meanwhile, went to a mosque, looked into people’s eyes and gave a wonderful speech reasserting their place as Americans.

He’s exuded this basic care and respect for the dignity of others time and time again. Let’s put it this way: Imagine if Barack and Michelle Obama joined the board of a charity you’re involved in. You’d be happy to have such people in your community. Could you say that comfortably about Ted Cruz? The quality of a president’s humanity flows out in the unexpected but important moments.

Third, a soundness in his decision-making process. Over the years I have spoken to many members of this administration who were disappointed that the president didn’t take their advice. But those disappointed staffers almost always felt that their views had been considered in depth.

Obama’s basic approach is to promote his values as much as he can within the limits of the situation. Bernie Sanders, by contrast, has been so blinded by his values that the reality of the situation does not seem to penetrate his mind.

Take health care. Passing Obamacare was a mighty lift that led to two gigantic midterm election defeats. As Megan McArdle pointed out in her Bloomberg View column, Obamacare took coverage away from only a small minority of Americans. Sanderscare would take employer coverage away from tens of millions of satisfied customers, destroy the health insurance business and levy massive new tax hikes. This is epic social disruption.

To think you could pass Sanderscare through a polarized Washington and in a country deeply suspicious of government is to live in intellectual fairyland. President Obama may have been too cautious, especially in the Middle East, but at least he’s able to grasp the reality of the situation.

Fourth, grace under pressure. I happen to find it charming that Marco Rubio gets nervous on the big occasions — that he grabs for the bottle of water, breaks out in a sweat and went robotic in the last debate. It shows Rubio is a normal person. And I happen to think overconfidence is one of Obama’s great flaws. But a president has to maintain equipoise under enormous pressure. Obama has done that, especially amid the financial crisis. After Saturday night, this is now an open question about Rubio

Fifth, a resilient sense of optimism. To hear Sanders or Trump, Cruz and Ben Carson campaign is to wallow in the pornography of pessimism, to conclude that this country is on the verge of complete collapse. That’s simply not true. We have problems, but they are less serious than those faced by just about any other nation on earth.

People are motivated to make wise choices more by hope and opportunity than by fear, cynicism, hatred and despair. Unlike many current candidates, Obama has not appealed to those passions.

No, Obama has not been temperamentally perfect. Too often he’s been disdainful, aloof, resentful and insular. But there is a tone of ugliness creeping across the world, as democracies retreat, as tribalism mounts, as suspiciousness and authoritarianism take center stage.

Obama radiates an ethos of integrity, humanity, good manners and elegance that I’m beginning to miss, and that I suspect we will all miss a bit, regardless of who replaces him.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/09/op...?smid=pl-share
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Old 02-10-2016, 08:22 AM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

Brooks is what passes for an acceptable Conservative in the NYT Left wing media complex. A nominal Republican he can be relied upon to criticize other Republicans on cue from his pay masters.

The OP is a sloppy wet kiss for Obama's failed Presidency beginning with the ridiculous claim his administration has been free of scandals.
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Old 02-10-2016, 12:54 PM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

Scandals are usually perpetuated by the media. If it were not for the blue dress proof, Clinton would not have had any scandals either. I guess Brooks gives Obama a pass on things like leaving Iraq to be taken over by ISIS. And how about ousting Gaddafi and allowing ISIS to take over Libya. And how about Yemen, closing our embassy and running away. I guess to the media all these thing were A-OK. And no mention of doubling US military deaths in the M.E. The left thinks that no one has died at war since Obama has been in office, and why is that? Because the media stopped reporting deaths after Obama came into office.
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Old 02-10-2016, 06:35 PM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

Quote:
Originally Posted by [QUOTE
Dog Man;801755]Scandals are usually perpetuated by the media. If it were not for the blue dress proof, Clinton would not have had any scandals either.
Actually, If you remember the blue dress started with the right trying to find something on Clinton. If you remember they jailed Susan McDougal? Remember Travelgate? Remember Rose law firm? Remember they were accused of killing Vince Foster? Running drugs. The right tried everything they code and ended up finding out Clinton lied about consensual sex with a woman. The right has been diving the country ever since.
Quote:
I guess Brooks gives Obama a pass on things like leaving Iraq to be taken over by ISIS. And how about ousting Gaddafi and allowing ISIS to take over Libya. And how about Yemen, closing our embassy and running away. I guess to the media all these thing were A-OK. And no mention of doubling US military deaths in the M.E. The left thinks that no one has died at war since Obama has been in office, and why is that? Because the media stopped reporting deaths after Obama came into office.
[/QUOTE]Americans wanted out of the ME. Polls showed it. Obama went to congress to see if they wanted to sign onto more military action and they didn't. Obama asked that our military stay a little longer in Iraq and that our personnel be immune from Iraqi law enforcement. It wasn't accepted. So you complain that you wanted to stay in the middle east. But like most on the right you lose your memories quickly. You forget people wanted out. yoi forget all the money we spent, you forget all the years of training we were doing. Funny we train Americans in months but war hardened Iraqis take years to train. Especially when we are paying private contractors from companies friendly to the Bush administration. But nobody is responsible for Isis is Obama. Not the dictators who ran those countries, Not the war Bush started. Nobody but Obama.
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Old 02-11-2016, 06:34 AM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

David Brooks is hardly a conservative.
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Old 02-11-2016, 07:22 AM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikeyy View Post
Americans wanted out of the ME. Polls showed it. Obama went to congress to see if they wanted to sign onto more military action and they didn't. Obama asked that our military stay a little longer in Iraq and that our personnel be immune from Iraqi law enforcement. It wasn't accepted. So you complain that you wanted to stay in the middle east. But like most on the right you lose your memories quickly. You forget people wanted out. yoi forget all the money we spent, you forget all the years of training we were doing. Funny we train Americans in months but war hardened Iraqis take years to train. Especially when we are paying private contractors from companies friendly to the Bush administration. But nobody is responsible for Isis is Obama. Not the dictators who ran those countries, Not the war Bush started. Nobody but Obama.
Lots of reports of sleaziness and worse, material on the Clintons, but it's always ignored by democrats. If ten percent of it is true, then they are major low lifes. Bill takes rides on a pedophile's plane a dozen times, but it never got reported in America's major news. link below from English source.

Flight logs reveal trips Bill Clinton and Alan Dershowitz took on Jeffrey Epstein's private jet | Daily Mail Online
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:54 AM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

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Originally Posted by MrLiberty View Post
David Brooks is hardly a conservative.
Oh geeez, Why didn't I see this coming.
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:57 AM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

Another guilt by association post that is way off the topic of the thread.
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Originally Posted by larryr View Post
Lots of reports of sleaziness and worse, material on the Clintons, but it's always ignored by democrats. If ten percent of it is true, then they are major low lifes. Bill takes rides on a pedophile's plane a dozen times, but it never got reported in America's major news. link below from English source.

Flight logs reveal trips Bill Clinton and Alan Dershowitz took on Jeffrey Epstein's private jet | Daily Mail Online
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Old 02-11-2016, 11:27 AM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikeyy View Post
Americans wanted out of the ME. Polls showed it. Obama went to congress to see if they wanted to sign onto more military action and they didn't. Obama asked that our military stay a little longer in Iraq and that our personnel be immune from Iraqi law enforcement. It wasn't accepted. So you complain that you wanted to stay in the middle east. But like most on the right you lose your memories quickly. You forget people wanted out. yoi forget all the money we spent, you forget all the years of training we were doing. Funny we train Americans in months but war hardened Iraqis take years to train. Especially when we are paying private contractors from companies friendly to the Bush administration. But nobody is responsible for Isis is Obama. Not the dictators who ran those countries, Not the war Bush started. Nobody but Obama.
So I guess it comes full circle back to Bush, Hillary, and everyone else that voted to go to war in Iraq. Although you can blame Obama and Hillary for the Libya fiasco. Has Hillary done anything right with foreign affairs? It seems she is always on the bad end of decisions.
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Old 02-11-2016, 12:24 PM
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Default Re: David Brooks: Conservative Political Writer Pens Editorial on Barack Obama

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Originally Posted by Dog Man View Post
So I guess it comes full circle back to Bush, Hillary, and everyone else that voted to go to war in Iraq. Although you can blame Obama and Hillary for the Libya fiasco. Has Hillary done anything right with foreign affairs? It seems she is always on the bad end of decisions.
The region is in flux ever since the Iraq war. You can't "Blame" it on any American now. It's a religious conflict in the ME. We can't fight their battles for them.
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