Obama: Branding vs. Performance

Posted by on Jun 14, 2010 in Politics | No Comments

I like Barack Obama. Voted for him. Contributed to his campaign. But I wouldn’t call myself a “raving fan,” cause well he isn’t liberal enough for me and he has in fact broken some campaign promises that might be considered pretty unimportant by a vast majority of the public, but they matter to me. With that said, three stories that have run about Obama in the last few days  got me a little panicked the administration is getting way off course.

The first is Tim Dickinson’s devastating Rolling Stone article laying out very specific problems with Obama’s response to the BP oil spill—from delays in cleaning up the Minerals Management Service, distrusting scientists who correctly reported the spill was much bigger than BP said, and waiting more than a week to declare the crisis “an Oil Spill of National Significance.”

The second is Roger Simon’s interview with Obama in which his self-defense about how he’s handled the BP oil disaster sounded more then a little whiny. IMHO it also raises some questions about whether he’s capable of fighting the battles he needs to move the country forward.

And finally a piece by Matt Bai’s Democrat in Chief? in the New York Times Magazine, which seems to highlight that Obama and his team seem more focused on protecting the “brand” that they believe galvanized millions of new voters in 2008, as a means to potentially realign American politics for a generation, than actually helping Democrats hold the House and Senate.

They are all worth a read. But pretty depressing if you are an Obama fan.

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