Earlier on this blog I've stated my Article of Faith regarding Obama: No matter what Obama becomes involved in, he will make it worse. So I do have an idea of the small irony involved in now choosing to discuss the President's seeming detachment from important events and issues. You'd think I'd be glad for any instance where he'd have the grace to leave well enough alone, but somehow I find this aspect of his behavior to be disturbing, if not alarming.
For example, in the past two weeks or so we've had a number of events unfolding, including the budget controversy in Wisconsin; the ongoing battle between Quadaffi's government forces and the rebels in Libya; and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, with the resulting destruction and loss of death.
I think it would be fair to say that of these three situations, the one the White House has been most focused on has been Wisconsin. The President and Sec. of State Clinton have essentially abdicated any leadership role regarding Libya, so on this question we've been witnessing the odd spectacle of the French president leading the charge in finding a way to stop Quadaffi from committing a massacre against his opponents, which clearly is what he will do if he reconsolidates his power.
Obama did find it necessary to have a useless press conference addressing the problem of rising oil prices, but as far as I know he hasn't made anything more than a perfunctory statement about the disaster in Japan. I think the Japanese deserve better. Is it inconceivable that Obama could have given a short address restating our long and close relationship with Japan as partners in freedom, pledging our government's support, and calling for Americans to support charities that will help in the recovery? Just a thought.
Instead the President spent the best part of a Sunday playing golf, looking happy and unburdened as can be, then spent the evening (behind closed doors) at the annual Gridiron Dinner, where reporters and politicians engage in the fiction that they actually have a sense of humor and that they aren't all in on screwing the rest of us over.
What's been demonstrated here is that of all that has gone on in the world in the last two weeks (quite a lot, really), the event that the White House has found to be most important has been the one that most directly affects Obama's reelection prospects. Not surprising, I suppose, but it would be nice to have a president who doesn't think his main task as President is to get himself reelected.