The president was in “Afternoon of a Faun” mode, a rural deity playing on his panpipes in the woods. Then, suddenly, he stood very still as he sensed electoral danger.Obama has no intention of coming up with a "very specific plan". He may say that he "feels your pain" but only when he grouses that the electorate is a pain in the butt. He's got his. He dances around the White House every night saying "it's mine, it's mine, it is all mine" like Scrooge McDuck did with his piles of gold coin. The only thing that drives Obama is how to win the 2012 election. He has already told the electorate that they are going to have to dig themselves out of the the 2008 Little Depression.
After assuring Obama that she was a supporter, an Iowa mother named Emily asked the president at a town hall at the Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah what had gone wrong.
Standing in a setting that was Martha Stewart-perfect — a red barn with an American flag, surrounded by white pines, red cedars and pink zinnias — the president looked breezy in khakis and white shirt. But he seemed to tense up as Emily spoke.
“So when you ran for office you built a tremendous amount of trust with the American people, that you seemed like someone who wouldn’t move the bar on us,” she said. “And it seems, especially in the last year, as if your negotiating tactics have sort of cut away at that trust by compromising some key principles that we believed in, like repealing the tax cut, not fighting harder for single-payer. Even Social Security and Medicare seemed on the line when we were dealing with the debt ceiling. So I’m just curious, moving forward, what prevents you from taking a harder negotiating stance, being that it seems that the Republicans are taking a really hard stance?”
The president defended himself with a tinge of resignation: If the crazed bullies put a gun to your head, you must surrender.
“Now, I know that people would like to say ‘Well, just do something to get these guys under control,’ ” he told Emily, adding: “You don’t want to reward unreasonableness. Look, I get that. But sometimes you’ve got to make choices in order to do what’s best for the country at that particular moment.”
The answer must have seemed lame even to Obama because, on the spur of the moment, he felt backed into doing what many in his White House and party wish he had done long ago. He told Emily he would put forward “a very specific plan to boost the economy, to create jobs and to control our deficit.” (But not until September.)
Driving through Midwest cornfields in his opaque, black, custom-made, $1.1 million “Matrix” bus, our opaque president found himself in The Field of Dashed Dreams. If you don’t build it, they may not come.
Here's the most telling bit in Maureen Dowd's article:
In Decorah, he said: “Everybody cannot get 100 percent of what they want. Now, for those of you who are married, there is an analogy here. I basically let Michelle have 90 percent of what she wants. But, at a certain point, I have to draw the line and say, ‘Give me my little 10 percent.’ ”I for one don't want a Mrs. Obama running in 2016 like the politico-aristocrat Clintons ran husband and wife presidential campaigns and I don't want to see father-son-son-grandson politico-aristocrat families like the Bushes or the Kennedys. America deserves better than that. The country isn't a "family business" to be handed down within the family. It needs real political giants willing to take on the powerful money lobbies and all the vested interests.
Maybe Michelle should be the one negotiating with the Republicans.