First I did a double take. He said what? I read it again and the shock waves followed.Sadly, we're probably stuck with this brand of non-leadership for six more years. Do you really think his media lackeys who have private dinners with him are going to be tough on him come 2012? After all, when the Washington Post fawningly reports "Obama gets laughs at first Gridiron Club dinner as president," they're no longer members of the media. They're willing accomplices, trading in the souls and supposed objectivity to party with the cool kid. They're become state-run media and don't mind anyone knowing it. Obama's in over his head and he knows it. The media is in the tank and they know it. Scarily, neither of them seem to care the rest of us know it.
A beleaguered President Obama has told aides it would be so much easier to be the president of China, The New York Times reports.
There are two ways to read the remark, which is attributed to anonymous aides. One is that Obama resents the burden of global leadership that comes with the American presidency. The other is that he longs for an authoritarian system, where he need tolerate no dissent.
Under either or both interpretations, his confession carries a dose of self-pity that means Obama has hit a wall.
He is in over his head, and he knows it.
Even before the horror in Japan, the president faced a litany of nightmares. From Libya to Iran to Afghanistan to gas prices, unemployment and rising debt, Obama is surrounded by serious trouble.
His responses range from halfhearted to wrongheaded. Nothing is working. Unhappy voters already repudiated his first two years and might fire him when they get the chance. It is a moment that brings home the truth of the sign on Harry Truman's desk: "The buck stops here."
Yet my suspicion is that it's not the problems per se that have Obama envying a lower rung on the global ladder. It's that he regards them as endless distractions that keep getting in the way of his transformative agenda.
He is a man of the faculty lounge who wants a blank slate so he can remake the nation into a more perfect place, as he sees it. Remember, he greeted his election with the messiah-like claim that future generations would say, "This was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal."
But damn it, the country and the world won't cooperate. Because he has no significant experience that would give him a framework for any other response, he is reduced to vaporous platitudes that dispirit allies and embolden adversaries.
He wants America to be less exceptional and more like every other nation. He's uncomfortable with our status as the No. 1 superpower, as he made clear with his apology tours and by submitting to the lowest common denominator in the United Nations.
He talks about wanting Moammar Khadafy to go but takes no action to make it happen and even signed on to an arms embargo that the State Department says bars our supplying the rebels.
As The Wall Street Journal wrote, the rising slaughter reveals "what the world without US leadership looks like."
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