Fish Wrap: Obama Reasserts His Authoritih!

No, really. Seriously. That is what their headline says: “In Week Of Tests, The President Reasserts His Authority.” Question for the Times: when did he actually assert his authority in the first place?

After two months in which an oil gusher seemed to underscore the limits of his powers, President Obama spent the last week trying to reassert control over a triumvirate of forces that almost always test a new president’s authority: the military, the markets and the lobbyists.

Mr. Obama’s much-needed victories, nearly a year and a half into a presidency that was saddled from the start by two wars and a terrifying financial plunge, may not prove to be lasting. (sigh)

His firing of Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal for what appeared to be an attitude of disrespect and disdain for the civilian chain of command does not make success in Afghanistan any more likely. The financial regulatory bill that was agreed upon in Congress on Friday reverses two decades of increasingly blind faith in the ability of financial markets to regulate themselves, but few think it will stop Wall Street’s constant effort to route around Washington in pursuit of profits.

First, the disrespect and disdain was not for the “civilian chain of command,” except in the most charitable spin. It was disrespect and disdain for Obama, Biden, and others personally and professionally. And, yes, he was right to recall the general and would have been well within his right to fire him, rather than let him resign. The finance bill? That was all Congress. Lobbyists? Again, that legislation passed, which will surely not pass muster when it hits the Supreme Court, was again, all Congress.

Still, add those together with the use of raw presidential power to force BP to set up a $20 billion fund for victims of the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, and the conclusion is unmistakable. George Bush and Dick Cheney may have left the White House, but the argument for an extraordinarily strong executive lives on.

Great, he strong-armed BP to provide the money now that the oil spill has ended and the cleanup is done…….what’s that? It hasn’t? Oil is everywhere and the federal government is blocking most attempts to clean it up and protect the coastline?

Face it, Obama has little authority, other than what is provided by the office he was elected to, but, doesn’t know how to wield it. He bullies, he badgers, he insults and demeans. He launches blame storms. He outsources legislation. He is disengaged from the everyday tasks, and what is going on under his office. Not surprising in the least, being a product of the Chicago political way and having never had a real position of leadership in his life, not to mention consistently skipping the hard votes. No one is quite sure how he will react in a situation. He is unstable.

OK, that’s not entirely true. We know PeBO will play golf when the going gets tough. Compare that to Bush, who wasn’t perfect (and not really a Conservative, when it came to domestic affairs), who said “I understand everybody in this country doesn’t agree with the decisions I’ve made. And I made some tough decisions. But people know where I stand.” Liberals decried Bush for saying he was “The Decider.” At least he actually made decisions. He provided a stable Executive office atmosphere. With Obama, the office is unstable, and, add that to what is going on in the Democrat Congress, it is no wonder this is a jobless recovery. Businesses aren’t going to take the chance.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach

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