I, like so many others, gave time, money and heart to get President Obama elected. Regrettably, I have been greatly disappointed. It is not due to his lack of legislative accomplishment. Given the contentious and intransigent opposition faced, I sincerely believe he has been adept at getting some good legislation passed.
But, I have been waiting to see his moment of courage. From my friends, I hear that he is pragmatic; he has always been in the middle; he is a man of compromise. In most situations being pragmatic and a man of compromise is wise. If you have a crowded room and more guests come than there are seats, you compromise; you are pragmatic; you let a few people in, and ask some to stand. But, if the same situation applies to a crowded lifeboat, being pragmatic and compromising is not a viable solution. Our lifeboat is full.
Pragmatism involves choosing an action with the least risk ; this usually makes sense. An empty building is burning; stand outside; call the fire dept and let it burn. If your child is in the building the choice of action involves a tougher question, and you don't always chose the pragmatic action of waiting for the fire engines to pull up. Our building is burning, and little Johnny is screaming for help.
Then there is the issue of honesty. I have been through almost 50 years of elections yet I remain naive enough to believe that the overall theme of a candidate's doable promises should be kept. To not keep doable, significant promises simply equates to lying.
In Madison, Wisconsin the labor movement is at risk of being obliterated by the GOP. Our President says a few words of support at the beginning of the crisis and now, not a word. His press secretary answers the question of whether the President will get involved with a non-answer. Political pundits say the President is waiting to see how the public of Wisconsin poll. Wisconsin will be critical in 2012.... He is just being pragmatic.
For those who have not seen President Obama's 2007 stump speech in Spartanburg, I ask you to click
You will see our President issue unequivocal words of support for the labor movement of our country.
I ask my Obamapologist friends: Do our unions not deserve a few word of support from our President? Perhaps, he chooses not to "walk the picket line" but how much courage does it show to ignore the situtation? Yes, showing support might have negative consequences. But acting in the face of risk is what courage is.
All I have seen out of this President is pragmatism. I hopefully await courage and honesty. Hopefully, by the time you read this blog entry, it is no longer relevant because Barak Obama did the courageous thing.