What Happened?

No one can put this together in such a concise manner than Victor Davis Hanson. Here he remembers how mesmerized America was with Obama right after the election last year:

” And now? On every issue – more bailouts, more stimuli, more deficits, higher taxes, statist health care, cap and trade, diplomatic apologetics, the shunning of natural gas, oil, and nuclear in favor of “millions of green jobs” subsidized by billions in federal “stimulus” – the Obama position polls 5-15 points below 50 percent.

After Van Jones, Anita Dunn, the Skip Gates mess, the “tea-bagger” slurs, the attacks on Fox News, the Copenhagen dashes, the bowing, the apologizing, the reordering of creditors, the NEA obsequiousness, the lackluster overseas-contingency-operation front, the deer-in-the-headlights pause on Afghanistan, the pseudo-deadlines on Iran, Guantanamo, and health care, the transparency and bipartisanship fraud, and dozens of other things, Obama simply does not have the popularity to carry unpopular legislation forward. Indeed, he is reaching a point where he may poll more negatively than his agenda does. “Let me be perfectly clear” and “make no mistake about it” are now caricatures.

So where are we at twelve months? Obama showed the country his vision of where he wanted us to go; he had both houses of Congress, a toady media, and enormous personal popularity – and he is getting nowhere. Why? Because most Americans are vehemently opposed to taking their country in the direction that Obama, Pelosi, and Reid would prefer.”

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Nothing could be more true than that last statement. People liked Obama. They still like Obama. But they don’t like the policies. At all. What does that tell us? Liberalism, in it’s truest form, is being rejected. Completely. You would think this administration would learn that, but clearly, they haven’t:

Michael Graham at NRO

When confronted with the fact that Brown ran against Obamacare, denounced the president’s policy on captured terrorists, and opposes Obama’s planned tax increases, Gibbs replied: “That may be what he campaigned on but that’s not why the voters of Massachusetts sent him to Washington.”

You elected the 41st “no” vote, but you were saying “yes” to Obamacare. You replaced Ted Kennedy with a Republican, but you really wanted more liberalism.

Boy, Massachusetts really must have the dumbest voters ever. We can’t seem to do anything right – not even send a message to Washington. But I think we voters are getting the message liberal Democrats are sending back to us.

Talk about a disconnect.

At the beginning Obama was convinced that he could ride the wave of his popularity and take the country left. With the Democrat majority in Congress, it would seem to be an easy thing to accomplish. But he forgot about one thing….the will of the American people.

Now this “Spending freeze” is throwing a bone to us, even though Obama campaigned against a spending freeze. I’m all for a spending freeze, but as spokesman for the House Minority Leader, Michael Steele pointed out, Given Washington Democrats’ unprecedented spending binge, this is like announcing you’re going on a diet after winning a pie-eating contest.”

The irony here is that the right will argue that this is but a small drop in the bucket of spending, and yet the left will scream it’s head off for the spending freeze. Because there is no spending they don’t love (except for the military). But I think Obama is realizing that if he doesn’t lean to the right on something, he may get even lower approval numbers. And unfortunately that is the only thing this spending freeze is about. Perception.

So, what happened? What happened is Obama is not governing in any manner that he campaigned. No bi-partisanship. No transparency. He promised a different Washington, and all we got was the same old thing.

Imagine if Obama had put jobs first. If he had given incentives to small businesses, and cut the capitol gains tax, lowered tax rates, slowed spending growth, allowed more free trade and less intrusive regulation. Imagine if he had sat down with Repbublicans in crafting a health care bill, and had rejected the unpopular ideas, and combined the good ideas to come up with a true bi-partisan health care bill. One that he could have been proud of and that really helped Americans. Imagine if he had taken security more seriously and appointed someone who really knew what they were doing as Homeland Security Secretary, and had caught the pantybomber before he got on that plane. Imagine if he had refused to let a terrorist be tried as a criminal instead of an enemy combatant. Imagine that he hadn’t gotten into beds with unions. Imagine if he had showed strength instead of apology to other nations in his travels. Imagine if he had refused to let his staff play ridiculous talking points games trying to insult a news organization by saying it wasn’t one. Imagine if he had shown Presidential grace and refused to answer to radio talk show hosts or lower himself into a local issue and have a silly “beer summit,” or embarrass himself in trying to get the Olympics in what was obviously a payback.

Imagine all that, and you would have an economy turning around a lot faster, a decent health care bill passed, and people feeling safe. And you would have had a President that did what so many American hoped he would, and rise about the pettiness of Washington and do the right things.

Obama took an opportunity of historic proportions…and blew it.

We can only pray that he learns from his mistakes going forward, and LISTENS to the American people. As long as he has people like Robert Gibss and Rahm Emanuel at his side, I doubt that will happen.

crossposted at KathleenMcKinley.com

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