The Next President Will Disappoint

Discussion in 'Politics' started by sargon20, Aug 25, 2008.

  1. sargon20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2006
    Messages:
    11,369
    Likes Received:
    2,099
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Atlantis
    Time for a reality check..............

    The next president will disappoint you

    Forget the promises; there's only so much a president can achieve.

    By Andrew J. Bacevich

    August 24, 2008

    On inauguration day, a new U.S. president is a demigod, the embodiment of aspirations as vast as they are varied. Over the course of the years that follow, the president inevitably fails to fulfill those lofty hopes. So the cycle begins anew, and Americans look to the next occupant of the Oval Office to undo his predecessor's mistakes and usher in an era of lasting peace and sustained prosperity.

    This time around, expectations are, if anything, loftier than usual. The youthful and charismatic Sen. Barack Obama casts himself as the standard-bearer of those keenest to fix Washington, redeem America and save the world. "Yes, we can," Obama's anthem proclaims, inviting supporters to complete the thought by inserting their own fondest desire. Yes, we can: bring peace to the Middle East; reverse global warming; win the global war on terrorism.

    Yet Sen. John McCain's campaign has been hardly shy about fostering grandiose expectations. Speaking earlier this month, while most Americans were fretting about the cost of oil, McCain uncorked one of his patented straight-talking promises: "I'm going to lead our nation to energy independence." As far as McCain would have us believe, you can take that to the bank.

    Will the next president actually bring about Big Change? Don't get your hopes up.

    Regardless of who wins Nov. 4, we should temper our expectations of what George W. Bush's successor will accomplish, especially on foreign policy.

    In reality, presidents don't make policy; administrations do. To judge by the cadre of advisors they've recruited, neither candidate holds much affinity for outside-the-box thinkers. Obama's "national security working group," for example, consists chiefly of Democratic war horses, including former secretaries of State Madeleine Albright and Warren Christopher and former national security advisor Anthony Lake -- a group that is not young, not charismatic and not known for innovative thinking.

    McCain's national security team features a strong neoconservative presence, including pundits such as Max Boot and Robert Kagan, along with hawkish Washington insiders such as Randy Scheunemann and James Woolsey. All figured prominently among advocates of invading Iraq; none has yet to repent. Agents of change? Not likely, unless having a go at Iran qualifies as creative thinking.

    The very structure of American politics imposes its own constraints. For all the clout that presidents have accrued since World War II, their prerogatives remain limited. A President McCain will almost certainly face a Congress controlled by a Democratic and therefore obstreperous majority. A President Obama, even if his own party runs the Senate and House, won't enjoy all that much more latitude, especially when it comes to three areas in which the dead hand of the past weighs most heavily: defense policy, energy policy and the Arab-Israeli peace process. The military-industrial complex will inhibit efforts to curb the Pentagon's penchant for waste. Detroit and Big Oil will conspire to prolong the age of gas guzzling. And the Israel lobby will oppose attempts to chart a new course in the Middle East. If the past provides any indication, advocates of the status quo will mount a tenacious defense.

    Then there is the growing gap between American power and the demands of exercising global leadership.

    The limits of American power are most obviously apparent in the realm of military affairs. For McCain, Iraq remains the central front in the war on terrorism, and he'll stay as long as it takes to win. Obama's central front is Afghanistan, and he wants to bolster the U.S. commitment there. Their disagreement masks a more fundamental problem: The next commander in chief will inherit an intractable troop shortage. The United States today finds itself with too much war and too few warriors. That alone will constrain a president conducting two ongoing conflicts.

    A looming crisis of debt and dependency will similarly tie the president's hands. Bluntly, the United States has for too long lived beyond its means. With Americans importing more than 60% of the oil they consume, the negative trade balance now about $800 billion annually, the federal deficit at record levels and the national debt approaching $10 trillion, the United States faces an urgent requirement to curb its profligate tendencies. Spending less (and saving more) implies settling for less. Yet among the campaign themes promoted by McCain and Obama alike, calls for national belt-tightening are muted.

    Above all, there is this: The rest of the world doesn't take its marching orders from Washington and won't, no matter who happens to be president next year. Governments will respond to American advice, threats or blandishments precisely to the extent that doing so serves their interests, and no further. This alone sharply restricts what Bush's successor will be able to accomplish, whether dealing with allies such as Israel and Pakistan or with adversaries such as Iran and North Korea.

    Will the tone and tenor of American diplomacy under either a President Obama or a President McCain differ from what we have seen over the last seven years? Yes, and probably in ways that most nations -- and many Americans -- will welcome. But no matter how much charisma or straight talk emanates from the White House, the world will remain stubbornly intractable.

    In matters of substance, Big Change will remain elusive. The next president will leave his own imprint on U.S. policy. It just won't be nearly as distinctive or dramatic as the most enthusiastic Obama and McCain supporters have talked themselves into expecting.
     
  2. marleyisalegend

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2007
    Messages:
    5,587
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    2
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    charlotte
    ^Good piece.
     
  3. Penis Aficionado

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2007
    Messages:
    2,135
    Likes Received:
    18
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Texas
    Also, if we are bailing out all the banks to the tune of $2 trillion, like Jim Kramer says will happen, that won't leave any resources for the "change" either candidate wants to achieve.
     
  4. Xcuze

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Messages:
    2,979
    Likes Received:
    4
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    In a treehouse
    Dont all presidents disappoint? No man can deliver Utopia. Maybe you should have tried a woman...
     
  5. sargon20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2006
    Messages:
    11,369
    Likes Received:
    2,099
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Atlantis
    No human can deliever Utophia. It doesn't exist on this planet.
     
  6. Domisoldo

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Messages:
    4,079
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    23
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    Folks, let's be positive here.

    Instead of obsessing about what our next POTUS cannot accomplish, let's rejoice in the knowledge that he will not possibly be able to un-accomplish as much as our current one.
     
  7. Fuzzy_

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Messages:
    4,001
    Likes Received:
    475
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Wuziland
    Obama did his best to un-accomplish the war and pulled the troops out. Now, the people who wanted ground troops in the Middle East 11 years ago are doing it again today.
     
  8. h0neymustard

    h0neymustard New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2012
    Messages:
    2,700
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United States
    You mean the dems huh?
     
  9. Bardox

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    2,145
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    348
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    U.S.
    Good OP. Every President disappoints. Haven't seen a politician yet that lives up to the promises they make.
     
  10. Fuzzy_

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Messages:
    4,001
    Likes Received:
    475
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Wuziland
    The GOP controlled Congress and the White House in 2003? Who knew!
     
  11. sargon20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2006
    Messages:
    11,369
    Likes Received:
    2,099
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Atlantis
    They sure do. It's as if their spectacular failure has had no bearing whatsoever on their ability to still have influence. In private industry they would have been given more time 'to spend with the family' and never to be seen or heard again. But in the public sphere why they're born again. I blame the corrupt 'liberal media' for never ever calling them the liars and crooks they are.
     
  12. tiggerpoo

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,468
    Likes Received:
    28
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Columbia, Missouri, US
    Well, President Obama hasn't disappointed me. On the contrary, I think he's great.
    Sure he hasn't achieved all he said he would, but he was aiming very high.
    Nothing wrong in having a dream. Actually we're supposed to have a dream.
    But they don't always come true.
    I give him and First Lady Michelle an A+
    Yours

    Tigger
     
  13. h0neymustard

    h0neymustard New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2012
    Messages:
    2,700
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United States
    He will be remembered as the one president to out fuckup Carter.
     
  14. Boobalaa

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
    Messages:
    5,626
    Likes Received:
    1,045
    Gender:
    Male
    :biggrin1::biggrin1::biggrin1:What Reality Check!? You're posting something that was published six years ago! Please don't treat this as prophecy..Besides, Politics and politicians "Create Realities" depending on various variables depending on the situations and circumstances at any particular time and place! It's Politics as usual. ..Except this time, The President happened to be Black:wink:
     
  15. Hoss

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Messages:
    12,050
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    398
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Eastern town
    President Obama hasn't disappointed me. I told people back in 2008 that he was a mistake for us to elect, and it turns out I was right.
    Even as he goes on and on about the grand job he is doing, poll after poll shows that the American people don't agree. The percentages are against him.

    Thank our lucky stars that Hillary will take over in a few more years!
     
  16. ConanTheBarber

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2011
    Messages:
    4,371
    Likes Received:
    473
    Gender:
    Male
    So was the OP.
    D'oh.
     
  17. sargon20

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2006
    Messages:
    11,369
    Likes Received:
    2,099
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Atlantis
    And Americans are stupid. How many voted for the Iraq War? Upwards of 80%? And re-elected Bush even after knowing how clueless he was. And Iraq the biggest debacle of the century that Hilary voted for and Obama was against. The war that continues to 'gift' the U.S. with its outcomes. Hillary pa-leaze!!
    :eek:
     
  18. DrewB323

    DrewB323 New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2013
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    2
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Houston
    Obama was an aspirational and inspirational candidate for president to many people, although largely unqualified by most standards. We wanted and expected him to be a unifying leader, which is more than any other president has been able to accomplish in a very long time. In fact, I don't think he has very good leadership qualities. Under his presidency we reduced spending, and reduced our military presence in Iraq and Afghanistan. We also enacted the ACA, which will, in time, be transformational for the US healthcare system. Unfortunately, the ACA implementation had a drag on an already sluggish economy. He has advanced equal rights for Gays and Lesbians, moved to address undocumented citizens, and made education more accessible. He is certainly not apolitical, in fact, he only increased the partisan divides in our political system. In my estimation, he is neither a great president not a terrible president.
     
  19. b.c.

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Messages:
    9,259
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,666
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    at home
    He's turned around an economy from one of recession to recovering, albeit slower than what we'd hoped. The ACA, though far from perfect has allowed those who could not get or afford health coverage to attain it, and provided greater protections to those of us who did, he's reduced taxes on the middle class (thought no one seems to know it), and he's engineer the withdrawal from TWO wars initiated by his predecessor, even as SOME are now calling on him to start up a third, and as for his alleged divisiveness, well, that'd depend on whom you ask.

    All in all not TOO shabby I think, considering the level of opposition and the documented conspiracy on the part of the GOP, to undermine his presidency.

    But then, I guess one can find fault with anyone, if one tries, and I've come to the conclusion that Obama could NEVER have done a good enough job, for SOME.
     
    #19 b.c., Sep 22, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2014
Draft saved Draft deleted