Obama’s overarching code is his greatest weakness. The conundrum is – his core guiding principle, however ineffective in building a lasting legacy, crutches his personal popularity even among policy foes. The Koch brothers can’t spend enough, Karl Rove can’t undermine enough, and the GOP can’t demonize enough to Nixonize Obama. His Teflon personality deflects the harshest.
But what brings him down is a return to his fundamental: COMPROMISE, which translates into poor bargaining skills accentuated by an eagerness to preemptively concede bedrock oaths previously showered on his base scarred with disappointment. Obama is his own worst enemy.
An endearing metaphor comes from the comic strip / TV hit, Peanuts. Charlie Brown is about to kick the football which Lucy holds when suddenly she jerks it away as he’s about to go for it. Charlie lands on his back disappointed that Lucy let him down. Yet Charlie Brown repeats the same mistake game after game, season after season, year after year. He’s too gullible for his own good.
Charlie Brown is Barack Obama, and Lucy is the Republicans. Charlie wants to believe Lucy, and that’s the problem. His desire to believe the best contradicts reality, and, thus, Charlie (Obama) lands flat on his back every time.
One could argue Lucy is at fault for being so deceitful, so cruel. But the naivety of Charlie is the root cause. Sweet, innocent Charlie is a popular, character, yes. But he never makes a successful kick.
Barack Obama’s speech at the 2004 Democratic Convention thrust him into the White House four years later. He captured the idealistic hope for most Americans with his Red State – Blue State language.
Delegates in Boston wept as they tuned into Obama that night, then stood to their feet and cheered. Here was a young African-American man addressing the U.S. and world about the crippling gridlock that mo
st recognize as the nation’s Achilles heel. Here stood Obama confronting that weakness with words full of promise and hope for a new beginning, an American solidarity that would ignite a renaissance to tackle the nearly insurmountable.
Obama passionately spoke: “It's what allows us to pursue our individual dreams, yet still come together as a single American family: "E pluribus unum," out of many, one.
Now even as we speak, there are those who are preparing to divide us, the spin masters and negative ad peddlers who embrace the politics of anything goes.
Well, I say to them tonight, there's not a liberal America and a conservative America; there's the United States of America.
There's not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America; there's the United States of America.
The pundits, the pundits like to slice and dice our country into red states and blue States: red states for Republicans, blue States for Democrats. But I've got news for them, too. We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states.
We coach little league in the blue states and, yes, we've got some gay friends in the red states.
There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq, and there are patriots who supported the war in Iraq.
We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.”
Wasn’t Obama aware that Republican leaders met on the night of his first Inaugural to plan his destruction? Did he not hear Mitch McConnell tell the world that the Number One goal of the Republican Party was to make him a one-term president?
Lucy’s behavior is predictable, but Charlie is too idealistic for his own good. His desire to be liked supersedes his desire to win. Our team, the progressives, lose every time – not due to the movement’s growth and demographic majority – but because of leaders’ damning proclivity: the naivety of idealism neutering reality.
Dem leaders and Obama promised the base, “Social Security is not on the table.” For the sake of compromise with Republicans, they broke that promise. Obama set the $250,000 in stone, then compromised it to almost double. The list goes on.
Meanwhile Lucy Republicans in key state legislatures are preparing to gerrymander future national elections whereby only Republicans can win those major electoral tabs despite losing the popular by 5 to 10 percent in each.
Where are the Beltway Charlie Dems? Still lost in an idealistic dream of unity, they can’t see what Lucy’s up to because they’re blinded by their desire to get along with her.
Barack Obama will not have a successful second term unless he discards the red state – blue state fallacy. Why he can’t see this is a mystery.