Obama Revisited

Posted on September 30, 2012 by

Shifting from short and snappy political commentary to longer-form autobiographical narratives helped me cope with my anxiety over this election. Feeling more confident now, I took at look at how my thinking about Barack Obama has evolved.

No Wimps, my first blog post in May, 2009, was an appeal to friends, peers and colleagues to hold off criticizing the new president, noting that “It’s our job right now to close ranks, reach across religious, ideological, racial, ethnic and party lines and help Obama unite our country and, in the process, marginalize divisive right wing elements…”

How naïve was that?

Less than a year later, when Republican Scott Brown won Ted Kennedy’s Senate set, I conceded in These Results Don’t Spin that the electorate was “revolting against this president and his party.”

I was in a full slide into political despair when Republicans took the House in November, 2010. Is the President a Political Amateur? I asked, “…a leader who is simply unprepared for the job?”

My spirits started to lift, of course, when Republican took center stage during their primaries. In Ten Reasons for Obama’s Comeback, which I posted nearly a year ago, I anticipated (even though I exaggerated) our advantages, including:

• Growing public doubt that Republicans offer a serious alternative

• Occupy Wall Street has changed the national conversation

• Progressives are less obsessed with what the president is doing wrong

• Americans like the guy

See any evidence that my observations serve a psychological function?  Do we all interpret facts to avoid emotional pain (just as some Republicans are now doing by denying the polls)?

And if we lose next month?

Too awful to imagine.

Comments (5)


  1. Betty Madden says:

    We are in the final minutes of the presidential election and the polls can distort and distract us and take our focus off the end game in these last 34 days with mail in ballots starting to be counted Oct.9 about 1/3 of the country will be voting by mail and those votes will be counted over the next four weeks. Election day starts Oct.6 and runs through Nov. 6 so we are all in all the way to the final election day Nov.6.

  2. nodrama says:

    What we all forgot or hadn’t realized that our job does not stop at the voting booth. If we are vested in certain results we have to invest our time and our energy in getting it done. If there is something we and our president want to do, unless we are en mass behind him there is no way he can push back alone against the entire right wing that is pushing up against him. Our big issue now is not to assume it’s in the bag and not only go to the polls but make sure everybody we know who is voting like us make it to the polls as well.

  3. We all need to volunteer …phone banks, mail outs…whatever. Early voting is both good and maybe not so good. And let us not forget the Republican “October Surprises!” I’ve been putting up yard signs (with permission) and most people are supportive–but then there are some who are not. Talk is nice, action better.

  4. Stella Resnick says:

    I think it’s naive to expect someone to assume the presidency and be able to hit the ground running and accomplish everything he promised in a campaign. I always expected there would be a learning curve. I voted for a value system that represented my values and he has accomplished a great deal given the hostile environment he has been subjected too. I fully expect him to have learned important lessons during his first term to become one of our greatest and most effective progressive presidents in his second term.

  5. Brad Cagle says:

    I write this having listened to the end of the second Presidential debate…

    It is not enough to just believe in the free market and therefore be worthy of re-election.

    Government IS directly responsible for creating the set of rules, a stable currency, a stable banking system, an accountable stock, commodity, currency markets… Government IS directly responsible for or perhaps a result of the notion of Rule of Law, our Legal System, from which commerce is transacted whithin the Free Markets. In fact Government is the foundation of the entire Western style free market system…

    Stop apologizing for the role of Government to the few spoiled brats that cry and say they are the People….

    Nit Wit Romney, a pig in a poke? That’s right, it is not and never will be funny.

    Who is holding the fire to the feet of the elitest American government? Time to stand up and lead the Nation….

    Hope all is well with you and your family, Lou…

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