Finish What Job?

Barack Obama is asking to be given the chance to finish the job. The trouble is, he never started it.

13 thoughts on “Finish What Job?

  1. @artiofab

    You fail to take into account the sociopathy of todays Republican party. Were they as insane back then as they are now, the Japanese would still be in camps- and those were Amercian citizens, so they enjoy more protection under the law then those poor souls at Gitmo.

  2. @mhenriday, I don’t think that closing Gitmo is “everything”, I listed it as an example of a notable achievement that Obama swung for and missed, to see if Whimsical would state that Obama was an idiot for trying to close it. Whimsical thinks so, which, I’ll get to in a moment.

    As an American who is convinced that America’s military outreach is one of three main features that are draining America’s economy for little reason (the other two being our resistance to public healthcare and our unwillingness to tax successful people and corporations), I think an “everything” that a POTUS could try to accomplish would be transforming the US military into a less bloated and less imperialist-wannabe institution. It’s unlikely any POTUS could actually accomplish such a thing, but I don’t think that trying (and making some progress towards the goal) reveals incompetence or idiocy.

    @Whimsical, you are a posteriori assuming that closing Gitmo is an impossibility, based on one person’s attempts to close it. And I want to give credit to the Obama administration for what they have accomplished: despite an extremely toxic political environment and a lack of help from his own party, let alone the opposition, the population of Gitmo has lowered. …and not just through prisoner suicides.

    But why settle for such light accomplishments? The U.S. government has a history of making tragic decisions (e.g.: locking up 110,000 Japanese and Japanese-Americans into internment camps) that were correctable (e.g.: these people were all released within 3 years, while a war was still going on). If it was possible to end the internment of 110,000 people during World War 2, I find it odd to claim that less than 300 people (as of January 2009, down to 167 now) couldn’t be given the same release during peacetime.

    Sure, closing Gitmo is _difficult_. So was deciding to send our armed forces into Iraq for no reason, but that didn’t stop Bush from doing it.

  3. “Obama tried for everything and ended up with nothing. Does that make him an incompetent idiot?”

    On Gitmo, sure. He was an idiot to think that the Republicans would allow it to be closed, and incompetent to wast epolitical capital trying.

    But here’s the thing- there isn’t a person on the planet that would not have gotten the exact same results. Gitmo was never gonna be closed, war crimes trials are never gonna be held, CIA folks are never going to be indicted. And there isn’t a person that could be put in that office that could make that happen.

    On issues that actually MATTER- ones where progress had a chance of being made, Obama did as well as could reasonably expected of him.

  4. «Obama tried for everything and ended up with nothing.» Closing Guantánamo is «everything» ?!! That would seem to be setting the standard for «everything» rather low. «Does that make him an incompetent idiot?» Perhaps yes, perhaps no – but the question itself certainly does seem to reflect upon the intelligence of the person who posed it….

    Henri

  5. You see, that’s the problem with the left- they view a President who tries for everything and ends up getting nothing as some sort of inspiring liberal hero, instead of seeing him for what he really is- an incompetent idiot.

    “As President, I will close Guantanamo”
    August 2, 2007

    “This is me following through on not just a commitment I made during the campaign, but I think an understanding that dates back to our founding fathers, that we are willing to observe core standards of conduct, not just when it’s easy, but also when it’s hard. ”
    January 22, 2009, signing an executive order to close Guantanamo within a year

    *crickets*
    January 22, 2010, or January 22, 2011, or January 22, 2012…

    Obama tried for everything and ended up with nothing. Does that make him an incompetent idiot?

  6. @michael

    I have NEVER said Obama has done a “great” job. I have said, and I stand by “Obama has done the best job that can be reasonably expected of him, under the circumstances”. The problem is, the left- especially people like Ted and Alex parted company with reasonableness a long time ago.

    @Alex-
    “You mean that there’s not one thing Obama could have done that he didn’t? That he — literally — did every single thing in his power? ”

    That would not have resulted in him winding up with nothing? You’re damn straight he did everything in his power to avoid that. You see, that’s the problem with the left- they view a President who tries for everything and ends up getting nothing as some sort of inspiring liberal hero, instead of seeing him for what he really is- an incompetent idiot.

    Give me a President who tries for a little and gets it over one who tries for everything and ends up with nothing any day. It’s a marathon, not a sprint- the left used to know that.

    “Obama did a few things, but did those things really improve the economy by more than a token amount?”

    Given that most economists say that when you look at the economy as a whole, the answer is an unqualified yes, I’m gonna have to go with them on this. Paul Krugman is far more qualified to accurately predict the state of the economy than you.

    “I just don’t buy that Obama did everything he could.”

    And I just don’t buy that anyone could’ve done any better. To expect otherwise is to indulge in the worst kind of Monday-morning quarterbacking/wishful thinking that there is.

    “He’ll get to the finish a lot faster than Obama, and then the rebuilding can start.”

    Unfortunately for everyone, the rebuilding is NOT going to be the boon you believe it to be. And you know this, because you’ve admitted you’re heading to Canada if Romney wins. If you actually thought there would be some glorious rebuilding, you’d have the moral courage to stand by the position you wish on the rest of us. Disappointing, but not surprising.

  7. @ Glenn – excellent article, and for the rest of you pundidiots lost and focused on stirring and digging through your own personal favorite issues…. has it ever ocurred to anyone that there may NEVER be enough ‘good-paying’ jobs available again? – that it may be impossible for Romney, Obama or anyone to ever “fix” the economy and get the USA back up to its (g)old “standard”? Better wake up, guys, the USA can longer compete with the rest of the world in quality or price, and the corporations, the real movers and shakers, are going to make sure that they are safe and successful at the expense of the people. Welcome to the effects of global competition and not having recognized or planned for it…..

  8. Obama is in over his head; so are his fan-boys. So I’m going to send you all to read about some things that have never–and probably never will be– lodged into your consciousness, despite having flowed over and around you for years.

    I have little hope in making any points with fundamentalist Democrats–it is a religion of sorts, you know–but here it is:

    How Do You Take Your Poison?

    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/how_do_you_take_your_poison_20120924/

  9. You can claim that Obama could’ve done more (which is incorrect)
    0_o

    In related news,
    American President George Bush grimaced, sighed, rambled and chuckled under his breath on Tuesday, before saying he could not think of a single mistake he had made since the September 11 attacks.

    “I wish you’d have given me this written question ahead of time so I could plan for it,” Bush joked before taking a long pause.

    “I’m sure something will pop into my head here in the midst of this press conference, with all the pressure of trying to come up with answer, but it hadn’t yet.”

  10. More like “Let him finish what he started to plan to do, eventually.”

    “You can claim that Obama could’ve done more (which is incorrect).”

    Okay. I’ll bite. How is that incorrect?” You mean that there’s not one thing Obama could have done that he didn’t? That he — literally — did every single thing in his power?

    “What you cannot do when 99% of economists will tell you that Obama has taken several actions that have improved the economy over the last three years is to claim that Obama “never started” the job.”

    Ted is, I suspect, employing metonymy. If someone gives me a big job to do, and I go out and buy some pens and paper, a few binders, pour myself a cup of coffee, organize my desk, refill the stapler, sharpen a few pencils, put a new blade in my Xacto knife … “Jesus Christ and all the Saints, Alex. Are you ever going to get going on this?”

    “What? What? I started at 9 this morning. I’ve been busy all morning. I bought some pens and paper, a few binders …”

    Obama did a few things, but did those things really improve the economy by more than a token amount? Did it all amount to anything more than sharpening some pencils? For example, the unemployment rate has dropped. But most of the “new” jobs pay less, have fewer benefits, and have limited opportunities for growth. Additionally, millions of people aren’t even counted anymore or, in the case of college graduates, were never counted because they have no employment history. The “benefit” of lower unemployment pales in comparison to the very real fallout involved: $15/hr doesn’t cover the mortgage, house maintenance, saving for retirement, and so forth. An entire block of people (much bigger than the Boomers) is facing a future in which they will work harder than ever, for less money, and at the end, they will be unable to retire.

    I just don’t buy that Obama did everything he could. Wait. I’ll agree that he did everything he could when it came to something important to him. He did everything he could to ensure that George W. Bush and his master Dick Cheney will never answer for their dirty tricks. He did everything he could to ensure that he has the right — the self-given, God-given, right of kings and emperors — to kill anyone he chooses to via drone.

    But when it came to the American people? I see too many empty storefronts and too many people digging through trash cans for deposit bottles and scraps of food. O’s singular “achievement” of the health care reform was actually a blank check to the insurance industry. After a couple of years, someone will finally initiate an investigation to determine if the health providers engaged in price fixing. Eventually a government report will conclude they did. The companies will be fined an amount equivalent to their profit margin for three days. The companies will appeal, tying up the case for years. Eventually, they’ll settle for a fraction of the fine. The executives, instead of being arrested, strip-searched, deloused, jailed, brought to trial, and sentenced, will be given eight-figure golden parachutes.

    Let him finish what he started? That’s why I’m hoping Romney will win. He’ll get to the finish a lot faster than Obama, and then the rebuilding can start.

  11. When Whimsical argues that the alternative to President Obama is unimaginably terrible, and, what’s more, will move US politics to the right so no one as far left as Obama will be able to get elected again (and by ‘as far left as Obama’ I mean somewhat to the right of Reagan), I have to agree.

    But when Whimsical argues that Obama has done a great job, given the constraints, I have to say, ‘Obamabot’.

    The Stimulus helped the auto workers, especially the union leaders, and also provided more tax cuts for the rich, but did not incarcerate the guilty or exonerate the innocent: those who had been scammed into taking out sub-prime mortgages were incarcerated while those who scammed them were assured that the government would guarantee their bonuses. Bush’s costly wars were, for the most part, replaced by drone wars at much lower cost, but with no more justification for (cheaply) killing goatherds. Still, if one is going to commit crimes in the name of the American people, doing it as cheaply as possible puts less of a burden on the American taxpayer.

    While Obamabots say the Obama Healthcare plan will eliminate the 27% who are deadbeats getting the very best healthcare the US has for free while also saying that Obamacare will make healthcare available to the 27% who were previously unable to access any healthcare (rather a contradiction there, but Obamabots know how to appeal to both right and left), it looks like Obamacare is just going to guarantee massive profits for insurance CEOs that paid the appropriate baksheesh to Obama and Roberts.

    So I can’t find that Obama was a good president, but neither can I find him a bad president, just mediocre.

    And I also think ‘mediocre’ is vastly better than R&R who would make mediocre look like Mt Rushmore material, if they had a chance. Which, mercifully, they don’t.

  12. Oh, utter, UTTER ODS fueled bullshit.

    Its so sad- I can tell from your archives that the truth USED to mean something to you. Now all that matters is a chance to bash, regardless of what the facts are.

    You can claim that Obama could’ve done more (which is incorrect). You can claim that you would’ve done it differently (which is irrelevant). What you cannot do when 99% of economists will tell you that Obama has taken several actions that have improved the economy over the last three years is to claim that Obama “never started” the job.

    Not without looking like a laughable partisan hack rather than a serious political cartoonist, anyway. And you wonder why no one takes you or your ideas seriously? Fact free BS like this is why.

  13. This is one of your best cartoons ever, Ted!

    My other all time fave was the one called “Democrats are easy to please”, & showed a couple of prisoners in a prison courtyard. One prisoner says to the other one, even as they’re being tortured, something like: “Well, at least the guards are women & people of color!”

Leave a Reply