January 13, 2017

"Part of the job description is also shaping public opinion. And we were very effective, and I was very effective..."

"... in shaping public opinion around my campaigns. But there were big stretches, while governing, where even though we were doing the right thing, we weren’t able to mobilize public opinion firmly enough behind us to weaken the resolve of the Republicans to stop opposing us or to cooperate with us. And there were times during my presidency where I lost the PR battle."

Said Barack Obama.

55 comments:

Henry said...

And now the biggest stretch beckons.

Original Mike said...

"Poor messaging" is always the lament of the loser.

Paul said...

"Cooperate with us"?

When did Obama cooperate with the Republicans when they had control of Congress?

It was 'my way or the highway' for Obama and crew.

Six more days and this turd will finally flush.

MayBee said...

Never that he had a bad idea.

Gk1 said...

I think this is consistent with what Ann was lamenting about Obama back in 2010. For someone who was all about big government and wanting government to do more he had very little interest in the mechanics of making it work effectively. He was only the salesman for big government and that was about it. He willing to acknowledge he was not always able to close the sale and that is as close as a candid statement we can expect from Obama.

Ann Althouse said...

Is he suggesting that Democrats cooperate with Trump? It seems more as though he's admiring "the resolve of the Republicans" to oppose and not cooperate — admiring it now as he hopes the Democrats will stand up to Trump.

Original Mike said...

"Part of the job description is also shaping public opinion. And we were very effective, and I was very effective..."

Another part of the job is negogiating with Congress, which he didn't even try to perform.

rhhardin said...

If it weren't for bad communications, nobody would ever win an election.

Nonapod said...

This is the classic Obama (and more broadly, Progressive) refrain whenever some grand government project fails: it failed because I/we didn't message it properly, not because it was a fundamentally bad idea. Imagine if your doctor told you that your treatment failed because it wasn't explained clearly enough to you. Idiocy.

wendybar said...

He is f*ing DELUSIONAL!!!

DAN said...

Anyone who ever worked in advertising or PR knows the dog food story. A new dog food, a dazzling campaign, poor sales, lots of hand-wringing, what-ifs. Why oh why? And the old-timer sez finally, "Dogs don't like it."

tcrosse said...

I think Obama saw the resolve of the Republicans to be wilfully obtuse. How else explain that they chose not to buy what he was selling.

Michael K said...

It seems more as though he's admiring "the resolve of the Republicans" to oppose and not cooperate — admiring it now as he hopes the Democrats will stand up to Trump.

I agree and the looney ways the Democrats are trying to obstruct will cause greater losses.

They have to hope that rolling back regulation and encouraging job growth will not work.

I think they should have learned from Reagan that it does work but they don't seem very open to learning.

Socialism is a 19th century ideology and has never really worked. In some well structured well educated societies like Sweden, it has survived but the introduction of Muslims is going to end that experiment.

Venezuela is as pure a version of Socialism in all its glory as we have seen since the Soviet Union collapsed.

Curious George said...

"I’m proud of the fact that, with two weeks to go, we’re part of the first administration in modern history that hasn’t had a major scandal in the White House."

It was non-stop scandal you POS. The fact that the press didn't care, and your AG was as crooked as you, as it all that saved your bacon.

"President Barack Obama: But we couldn’t even get a hearing (on Merrick Garland). Trying to get the other side of the aisle to work with us on issues, in some cases, that they professed, originally, an interest in, and saying to them, “Hold on a second. You guys used to think this was a good idea. Now, just because I’m supporting it, you can’t change your mind.” But they did."

More crap. Obama blocked the Alito nomination but that was different. Because.

Lie.

mikeski said...

7 more days.

madAsHell said...

"....but this is not who we are."

mockturtle said...

Maybe he left out an Alinsky page or two.

AJ Lynch said...

Obama had the message in 2008 but I feel almost any non-Republican candidate would have also won easily. The electorate was sick of Bush and wars and then the economy crashed so Obama's vaunted political skills are probably overrated.

mockturtle said...

"....but this is not who we are."

Oh, man! That little gem pissed me off more than anything Obama has ever said. It made me want to stand in front of him and scream, "Don't tell me who I am, you obnoxious shithead!"

Chuck said...

In honor of The Current Occupant, last night I played the YouTube video of the late great Dan Hicks, with his Hot Licks, singing, "How Can I Miss You When You Won't Go Away?"

The overriding fact, in all of the moronic/myopic griping about how Republicans in Congress wouldn't let Barack get anything done, is that Obama came into office with a big Democrat majority in the House, and a supermajority in the Senate. And he proceeded to blow it.

That is an indictment of the Obama history. And a cautionary tale for Republicans in 2017, who don't even have the sort of numerical electoral mandate that Obama had.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

"Part of the job description is also shaping public opinion."

Joseph Goebbels, call your office.

John said...

Or maybe, just maybe, you knew that you'd never win the PR battle based on the content of your ideas and chose to implement them through Executive Order and regulations through over-zealous, agenda-driven department bureaucracies.

You knew better and the only way to change our unwashed minds was to just do it rather than ask if we wanted - or needed - it.

Curious George said...

"Chuck said...
And he proceeded to blow it."

How did he blow it Chuck?

robother said...

Oh sure, the Democrat Dog Food Company has gone bankrupt, but those pristine bags of Obama-Bits are now high status collectors' items. Branding to sell more of a product is so Twentieth Century. Branding is literally its own reward now.

MayBee said...

admiring it now as he hopes the Democrats will stand up to Trump.

But Obama, even in his last days, has decided to govern by surprises and executive orders.
So if Trump follows him, it won't matter how much the Democrats stand up to Trump.

Chuck said...

Curious George said...
"Chuck said...
And he proceeded to blow it."

How did he blow it Chuck?

Ramming through Obamacare on a pure party-line vote. Effectively telling Republicans -- and much of Congress, in fact -- to go fuck themselves. Doubling the national debt. Adopting a far-left social/cultural ideology in practically every aspect of Administration policy.

Jupiter said...

"But there were big stretches, while governing, where even though we were doing the right thing, we weren’t able to mobilize public opinion firmly enough behind us to weaken the resolve of the Republicans to stop opposing us or to cooperate with us."

Even though they were doing the right thing! Those pesky Republicans.

Curious George said...

"Chuck said...
Curious George said...
"Chuck said...
And he proceeded to blow it."

How did he blow it Chuck?

Ramming through Obamacare on a pure party-line vote. Effectively telling Republicans -- and much of Congress, in fact -- to go fuck themselves. Doubling the national debt. Adopting a far-left social/cultural ideology in practically every aspect of Administration policy."

Dude, that's who he and the Democratic Party are! What good are those majorities if they aren't used. It's not a cautionary tale for the GOP...immigration (including the wall), Islamic refugees/immigration, war on terror, Obamacare repeal and replace, all are supported by the majority of Americans.

jacksonjay said...

In spite of the endless TV appearances by Smiley, Beloved Michelle and Slo Jo, Groper of Distinction, they were unable to sell their bullshit! Hollywood, the music industry and academia pitched in, with no success! Maybe Chuck Schumer can make a difference.

BTW, what happened to that Team of Rivals talk? Remember when Barry was so brave and confident? Now the Trump Cabinet is supposed to be in lock step!

Birkel said...

Shaping the narrative =/= dealing with reality

Fabi said...

It's not a cautionary tale for the Republicans in 2017, it's a fucking roadmap -- kill or be killed. Chuck wants to surrender. Unexpectedly.

Chuck said...

Oh bullshit, Curious George.

Even the Trump cabinet doesn't buy that shit!

We had Jeff Sessions saying that obviously he is not going to countenance any religious tests for immigration. Sessions, Pompeo and Mattus all said there won't be any "waterboarding." The Wall is going to hit a wall in Congress when there is no plan and no hope of getting Mexico to pay for it. Repealing Obamacare is just a complete disaster, if you repeal all the parts that Trumpkins don't like and keep the parts that Trump says he likes. Fer instance... You eliminate all mandates, but keep "pre-existing condition" protections? What happens then is that nobody under the age of 40 gets insurance until they get sick, and then the buy a policy that covers exactly what they've got. Like a homeowners insurance policy that you can buy real quick while the fire department or FEMA are on their way to your house.

I am not going to be lectured by some Trumpkin on what "the polls" say. Trumpkins love all the polls when they go their way, and sneer at the polls that don't go their way.

FullMoon said...

Obama got what he wanted, a low level race war.

Quayle said...

Yeah, robother's dog food analogy is apt.

We were the only restaurant in town but we finally had to close because we didn't explain the dishes well enough on the menu.

Yancey Ward said...

Obama has his "I am only wrong when I underestimate how wrong my opponents are" act down pat.

John said...

Obama got what he wanted, a low level race war.

Give him a break. He's still a relatively young man who needs a job to keep him busy until full retirement. If he had done anything to improve conditions, where would he find work where his Community Organizing skills could be of value?

GRW3 said...

Like Your Plan - Keep Your Plan was very effective marketing, until the lie is proven. After that, the dogs won't eat the dog food.

Bay Area Guy said...

Shorter Obama:

You can fool all of the people some of the time; and some of the people, all of the time; but not all of the people all of the time.

n.n said...

He's still working on spinning the narrative to rationalize his adventures in social "justice" from Tripoli to Damascus to Kiev. So far, he has appealed to the Pro-Choice quasi-religion as a crutch with little effect.

Real American said...

You mean "I WON" and "THE DEBATE IS OVER" and "THAT'S RACIST" aren't convincing arguments? Simply amazing.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

"I had the entirety of the Media behind me along with every pop culture celebrity you can think of and we all relentlessly pounded away at our opponents using every weapon imaginable--up to and including maligning people who merely disagreed politically as vicious racists--and still I failed to win over enough Americans to get my full agenda through. I really am the most impressive orator, and politician, and, well, man to ever be President, though."

Sad. Heck of a firearm salesman, though: gotta give him that.
Helped destroy the Dem. party's hold on power nationwide and helped sell hundreds of thousands of "extra" guns. Thanks, Obama.

Owen said...

Ann Althouse @ 12:09: "Is he suggesting that Democrats cooperate with Trump? It seems more as though he's admiring 'the resolve of the Republicans' to oppose and not cooperate — admiring it now as he hopes the Democrats will stand up to Trump."

I think you are on to something there. Obama was never any good at doing the work of governing. He was all about stirring up emotions and preying on them. This is the dramatic art: to simplify, to create opposition, conflict, suspense, to lie in the cause of art, with himself as ringmaster. He hopes to keep the fight going, especially now that his "legacy" is at issue and he cannot be blamed for any further moves, instead he can blame any and all others for failing to meet his lofty hopes.

Narcissism is a pathological form of self-dramatization. The whole world becomes the stage, every other person becomes a prop or an extra or at best a foil for one's own story.

Don't expect this to change.

mccullough said...

Serious question: was Obama better, worse, or about the same overall as W. I think they were about the same. Obama had Obamacare, which is the worst part of his presidency. The Iran deal might turn out to be worse, but it's too soon to tell. W had Iraq, NCLB, and Medicare Part D, not to mention the Department of Homeland Security with the unionized jobs programs known as the TSA.

The overarching economic and fiscal policies of the country have been on the same trajectory for about 25 years. The disastrous let's have everyone buy a house and go to college and then turn those loans into financial instruments of mass destruction long pre-date both W and Obama. So I give W a pass for the financial meltdown and Obama a pass for most of the stimulus since there was actually a financial meltdown. Also, for the weak economy, I give Obama a half-pass since globalization and automation long pre-date him. Job creation occurred, though it was a lot of food service and retail heavy. Obama's EPA, however, was out of control and for that he deserves a lot of blame. And although W. was a huge amnesty fan as well, he didn't try to legalize them by waving his wand (though he didn't do shit to stop them from going here and would have waved his wand if someone had suggested it to him).

So we've had 16 years of anemic leadership.

Pianoman said...

Beware the Me Monster: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vymaDgJ7KLg

Birkel said...

Almost, mccullough. Almost.

Obama turned the Stimulus into a permanent part of the budget by using continuing resolutions, thereby adding more than TEN TRILLION DOLLARS in debt.

Iraq was nowhere close to that expensive in dollars or deaths. But the deaths are indirect and stupid people will forget that cuts to other programs (including the military which prevents deaths worldwide) are because of Obama's spendthrift ways.

Both grew Leviathan which hopes to enslave or kill us. But one put Leviathan on steroids.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

That's probably about right, mccullough. You don't cover the effect of judicial appointments, though, and that's pretty important. W. and Obama both expanded the size and scope of the federal government--Obama probably more just because he was happy to do it, but W. in arguably worse ways because expansions done for "compassionate" reasons are even tougher to get rid of.

Honestly I'd be happy w/anemic leadership if it meant a reduction of power/reliance on the federal government for every damn thing. Anemic central leadership combined with an expansion of central/centralized power, though, is a bad combo, and you're right that both W. and Obama were solidly in that path.

The Godfather said...

To paraphrase Longfellow, "Whom the gods would destroy, they first give a Congressional majority." The worst thing that happened to Obama was that he came into office with Democrats in control of both houses of Congress, and they were pliant Democrats. He became the great Collosus just by telling the Democrats to jump, and they jumped (and said, Please tell us if you want us to come down). He didn't learn to deal with opposition. Once the Republicans recovered enough to act as a blocking force, Obama was unable or unwilling to deal with them. Republicans are easy to roll -- ask Bill Clinton -- but Obama didn't even try.

Trump faces the same danger. He comes into office with both houses of Congress in Republican hands. Congressional Republicans want to support him -- or, more accurately, they hope that he will support the Republican agenda. Trump has little or no political experience, and like Obama he seems to think that getting elected President is an adequate substitute for such experience. It's unlikely that will work any better for Trump than it did for Obama, unless Trump is smarter than Obama.

Actually, if I'm correct that the "intellectual" Obama is actually quite simple-minded, there is a possibility that Trump may meet this challenge. I'm not optimistic, but it could happen.

khesanh0802 said...

I think Bush and Obama may have been equally bad. However I think Obama is going to win the overall prize because of the Iran deal. Terrible deal with a country that will not adhere to it. We handed the Iranians billions in the deal and we are going to get that shoved where the sun don't shine. Much of that money has already made it to the new public enemy#1 - Russia - through the purchase of surface to air missiles and contracts for the construction of nuclear plants. It will only get worse. I will predict that the Iranians will say that they no longer have to adhere to the "treaty' as soon as Trump puts a little pressure on them.

Jim at said...

Yep. That's it, Obama.

You simply didn't run your mouth enough for us stupid rubes to figure out what's best for us.

I hope you forgive us all.

Unknown said...

Althouse is absolutely right. Obama is motivating and cultivating this resistance. It's only the beginning. It's great he's staying in DC, the legitamate President Obama rubbing the nose of the illegitimate Trump in it.

Fernandinande said...

DAN said...
A new dog food, a dazzling campaign, poor sales, lots of hand-wringing, what-ifs. Why oh why? And the old-timer sez finally, "Dogs don't like it."


Trump's new, but this thread is about Obama, so who's the dog food, Obama or Trump?

I guess it's Obama because his dog just bit some girl - she almost lost an eye! - because it was mad at him, and maybe his dog food too.

hombre said...

"... where even though we were doing the right thing [and the majority of the media was pimping for us], we weren’t able to mobilize public opinion firmly enough behind us ...."

There, fixed.

Or: "Although most of the people were never gullible enough to be fooled by the bullshit we were peddling most of the time, we were able to fool nearly all Democrats all the time."

Michael Fitzgerald said...

"And there were times during my presidency where I lost the PR battle." With nearly every major newspaper, television station and media outlet supporting him, he still lost. Fucking loser. Weakling. Pussy.

Joe said...

Obama is motivating and cultivating this resistance.

I don't see it. Obama has been extremely detached throughout his career. As an ex-politician, I don't see him suddenly engaging in the process. I think he's going to quickly get bored of the whole thing and slip off to retirement.

glenn said...

Dear Barry. You got the job because you lied to us. You lost the PR battle when we found out.