Sunday, June 26, 2011

Both Sides Now

I've looked at clouds from both sides now...Joni Mitchell

We have a President who can see all sides of every issue, and Maureen Dowd is not happy about it. It's not the seeing that's annoying, it trying to be on every side that is.

In Afghanistan, he wants to go but he wants to stay. He’s surging and withdrawing simultaneously. He’s leaving fewer troops than are needed for a counterinsurgency strategy and more troops than are needed for a counterterrorism strategy — and he seems to want both strategies at the same time. Our work is done but we have to still be there. Our work isn’t done but we can go.

On Libya, President Obama wants to lead from behind. He’s engaging in hostilities against Qaddafi while telling Congress he’s not engaging in hostilities against Qaddafi.

On the budget, he wants to cut spending and increase spending. On the environment, he wants to increase energy production but is reluctant to drill. On health care, he wants to get everybody covered but will not press for a universal system. On Wall Street, he assails fat cats, but at cocktail parties, he wants to collect some of their fat for his campaign.

...

He does not seem deeply affiliated with any side except his own.

Exactly.

He seems to either lack the instinct or desire for leadership. My guess is that if there were such thing as a credible Republican alternative, and he could get nominated, he would win.

But Obama might dodge that bullet. Or one of the many incredible Republicans might get elected.