November 4, 2013

"Obama unable to govern like he campaigns"... a painfully funny front-page teaser at the L.A. Times...

... takes us to a more-painful-because-they're-serious headline: "Why can't Obama run the government as smoothly as his campaign?" Subhead: "The president increasingly seems to be battling top-level management failures as much as policy or political problems, observers say."

Remember when Obama, running for President in 2008, was asked what executive experience he had and he said running his campaign was executive experience?
Well, you know, my understanding is, is that Governor Palin's town of Wasilla has, I think, 50 employees. We have got 2,500 in this campaign. I think their budget is maybe $12 million a year. You know, we have a budget of about three times that just for the month. So, I think that our ability to manage large systems and to execute, I think, has been made clear over the last couple of years. And, certainly, in terms of the legislation that I passed just dealing with this issue post-Katrina of how we handle emergency management, the fact that many of my recommendations were adopted and are being put in place as we speak, I think, indicates the degree to which we can provide the kinds of support and good service that the American people expect.
Manage large systems... provide the kinds of support and good service that the American people expect.... 

Back to the L.A. Times:
As a candidate, he vowed to restore government competence to earn back trust, and to make a case for expanding the government's role in people's lives.

"We simply cannot afford to perpetuate a system in Washington where politicians and bureaucrats make decisions behind closed doors, with little accountability for the consequences … and where outdated technology and information systems undermine efficiency, threaten our security and fail to serve an engaged citizenry," Obama said in 2009...

"It seems to be that this White House has no chain to the top, even just the conventional 'protect the boss' standard that ought to be in place everywhere," [said Bob Stone, project director of the Clinton-era government reform effort]. "When something is about to burst, you warn the boss. That's both a management issue and a political issue.... It's hard to see that the president has really had any interest in actually managing the government."

30 comments:

pm317 said...

I remember in one campaign stop he was talking derisively (about Hillary and other politicians) -- he didn't name her but (paraphrasing) what he said was that 'these people got their chance and could not make it happen' and implication was that it is time to give new people like him a chance. Compelling argument for the obots then but I guess they just traded a good talker for someone who had learned a hard lesson and would have worked to make it work, whatever it was.

Dam is breaking (see the WSJ article on the cancer patient losing her insurance).

Jane said...

We've heard this claim -- that Obama is a stellar manager because he managed his campaign so well -- repeatedly. But to what extent did Obama actually manage his campaign, rather than having had the luck to hire a few really good campaign strategists?

Henry said...

A man running for President thought 2,500 employees was a large system.

There was never, ever, any mystery about how naive and narcissistic this man was. The words came out of his mouth.

Oso Negro said...

Sadly, and not for the first time, it is easy to observe the phenomenon well known to seasoned corporate veterans - the affirmative action hire failing in a role they were not prepared to handle. America voted for a mellifluos mulatto, and that is what we got. Strangely, I am reminded of a mandatory diversity film I was once require to watch. It was called a "Tale of O". You can see it here

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-aVITBmSmUo

I suspect one day people will be shaking their heads over it while visiting the "Museum of Politically Correct Practices".

Mark said...

Obama doesn't scale well.

Tank said...

What makes anyone think Zero was "running" his campaign? He had pros to do that while he did what he does, con. Speeches. Lie. Demonize. Strike down strawmen. Pose false choices.

He is still doing well what he has always done well.

The one big program he passed is suffering from a bit of reality where the rubber hits the road, and the mark starts to realize ... hey, what happened?

Didn't you say ....?
Where dat guy go?

Does his act qualify as shucking and jiving?

To shuck and jive:


To shuck and jive" originally referred to the intentionally misleading words and actions that African-Americans would employ in order to deceive racist Euro-Americans in power, both during the period of slavery and afterwards. The expression was documented as being in wide usage in the 1920s, but may have originated much earlier.

"Shucking and jiving" was a tactic of both survival and resistance. A slave, for instance, could say eagerly, "Oh, yes, Master," and have no real intention to obey. Or an African-American man could pretend to be working hard at a task he was ordered to do, but might put up this pretense only when under observation. Both would be instances of "doin' the old shuck 'n jive."

pm317 said...

Obama doesn't scale well.

well put..He should have just stuck to his community organizing.

Bob Boyd said...

Obama has been "...battling top-level management failures..."
Uh-oh. Wait 'til Obama finds out. When he reads this in the newspaper he's going to be madder than anybody.

pm317 said...

Running his campaign well? That is another myth. He had to be dragged over the finish line in the primary by the asslicking media, that was even after cheating in the caucuses to rack up his delegate count. It was all there from the start. From day one, his minions have been paranoid about exposing his incompetence and unreadiness.

Clyde said...

To campaign, one must only speak well and smile on cue. Governing, however, requires one to DO THINGS. Obama can speak and smile, but he has never had to deliver the goods. Like a snake-oil salesman, he's had to keep moving on to find more marks. However, once he reached the position of POTUS, there were no new marks to find. He managed to flimflam enough of the rubes to get re-elected, but funny thing: The snake oil is not making people get well. It's making them sicker. And this time, he can't pack up his patent medicines in his wagon and move on to a new town. Unfortunately for him, more and more of the marks have gotten wise to him.

John Vaci said...

This is an open attack from Hillary. Her campaign: "You should have elected me." You need only to read the headline.

MadisonMan said...

A President from the Senate. Those were the lamentable choices in 2008.

Thanks for nothing, political parties.

Auntie Ann said...

To govern is to choose.

A campaign that is flush with cash doesn't have to make many difficult decisions about what to spend money on--it can do everything.

Choosing whether to do an ad buy in Cleveland is not quite on the same level as deciding to level Tehran...or the Republican House.

Obama had almost no experience actually making difficult and consequential decisions when he took office. This is what shocked many people about his election: he was a complete novice with vanishingly little actual experience in elected office and none as an executive. He was absent or voted present on a massive number of votes during his time in elected office. This is a man who had never actually had to choose, and he wasn't very good at it: he left much of his "agenda" up to Pelosi and Reid. After five years, it's not clear he's improved very much.

TMink said...

Perhaps he is better at lying than at decision making.

Perhaps.

Trey

TMink said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jacksonjay said...


No one is giving him credit for being "really good at killing people" in his job! That is definitely a promise that he repeatedly made in both campaigns!

Period!

Illuninati said...

By now I'm so cynical I'm not convinced that Obama thinks he has a serious problem with Obamacare. He knows his political future will not change because of the glitches in Obamacare. Most of the people who are losing their health insurance are probably middle class folks who are not his strongest supporters anyway.

Some marginal Democrats in middle class neighborhoods might lose their seats, but with a good rousing hate campaign close to the 2014 elections to arouse their base the Democrats should do just fine; perhaps they might even pick up the house.

Although Obama doesn't share his core values publically, from his actions I suspect that his main objective while in office is to facilitate the Islamization of the United States. This is probably where he spends his time.

It is a mistake to underestimate your opponent. I think Obama is probably a gifted manager whose skills are employed in projects which he considers much more important and long lasting than a smooth rollout of Obamacare. What could be more important to a man from a Muslim family in Kenya than to be known as the man who took America away from the kafirs and brought it into Dar Islam? That would elevate him into the stratosphere in Islamic circles on par with Saladin.


PB Reader said...

I recall a conversation I had with an old friend in academia shortly after Obama's election. I said he would be a disaster of epic proportions, but my friend insisted he was going to lead us into a new, better place. Due to our friendship we didn't discuss it any further, but moved on to other things.

Other than Christmas and birthday cards we haven't conversed much other than to update on events in our personal lives. This friend called me up this weekend to tell he she was wrong and I was right. She feels she made a terrible mistake in voting for him and believing in him.

Big Mike said...

The Democrats kept pushing the line that Sarah Palin was just the mayor of Wasilla. In fact she was governor of the only state in the union which borders on two foreign countries. (Unless you count Florida as bordering the far-away Bahamas, Cuba, and Caribbean countries.) And the State of Alaska has way more than 2500 employees -- 63,000 as a matter of fact.

And no candidate runs his own campaign team. Everybody knows that.

Levi Starks said...

At least now we know we can trust them to pick a better Democrat president for us next time. They've learned so much now that we're a year into Obama's second term.

Strelnikov said...

"Obama unable to (fill in the blank) like he campaigns."

Larry J said...

Well, you know, my understanding is, is that Governor Palin's town of Wasilla has, I think, 50 employees. We have got 2,500 in this campaign.

And this just shows how in the tank the press was for Obama in 2008. No one bothered to ask him:

1. What does that have to do with her ability to be VP or your qualifications to be president?

2. You do know that she's the governor of Alaska, not just that town, right? How many state employees are there in Alaska? Can you see Alaska from your vantage point with your head so far up your ass?

Stephen Reynolds said...

Operating a Blackberry and an I-Pod does not make you technologically saavy, nor does having someone else run your campaign for a limited period with one objective, mean you know how to manage. Of course I knew that in 2008.

khesanh0802 said...

@pm317

See the WAPO (!!!) http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/for-consumers-whose-health-premiums-will-go-up-under-new-law-sticker-shock-leads-to-anger/2013/11/03/d858dd28-44a9-11e3-b6f8-3782ff6cb769_story.html

averagejoe said...

Except that Obama intentionally pronounced the name of Wasilla as "Wa-silly", like a sophomoric, smartass, condescending dick would do. But yeah, he had such a "first-class temperament" and such a clever crease in his pants...

cubanbob said...

The sad fact is that Sarah Palin would be a for more competent chief executive on day one than Obama is today. So far she has been pretty much on the mark in pointing out the idiocies of ObamaCare from it's initial proposal through today but somehow she is considered the dumb one by the left.

Big Mike said...

@cubanbob, it's called groupthink. And if one doesn't go along with the group then one is ignorant or evil. Pronounced e-e-e-e-vil. The possibility that they might be wrong requires more introspection and humility than you'll find in a lefty.

Hyphenated American said...

Even in the interview, Obama apparently did not know the difference between governor and mayor - he called her a "governor", and then talked about her being a mayor.

If you like your insurance, you can keep your insurance.

It's one thing when you are confused about your opponent and so are the voters, and you get elected. It's another when you tell people that they can keep their insurance - and then they find out that they cannot.

Obama was great talking how great a president he would be if elected. It's another thing that he had to actually work as president. Two different things.

RecChief said...

the problem is that he governs just like he campaigns. speeches full of empty words, nothing concrete except poll numbers

Big Mike said...

Or maybe the way he campaigns makes it impossible to govern. When you take to the podium to call people names, send your spokespeople out to accuse people who disagree with you "terrorists," and things like that, they aren't going to be inclined to cooperate much with you.