Site Search:
 
TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International
Korean Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Korean Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Chait: Obama Is a Great President. Yes, Great.
Goto page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Korean Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> Current Events Forum
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Kuros



Joined: 27 Apr 2004

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 12:03 pm    Post subject: Chait: Obama Is a Great President. Yes, Great. Reply with quote

http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/10/barack-obama-is-a-great-president-yes-great.html

Jonathan Chait wrote:
I supported Obama [in 2007] because I judged him to have a keen analytical mind, grasping both the possibilities and the limits of activist government, and possessed of excellent communicative talents. I thought he would nudge government policy in an incrementally better direction. I consider his presidency an overwhelming success.

. . .

Obama overcame fierce resistance in Congress in order to craft, as part of Obamacare, a revolution in paying for quality rather than quantity. He eliminated billions of dollars in useless subsidies to banks funneling (at no risk) government loans to college students. By dangling federal public-education grants, Obama unleashed a wave of public-school reform, over the objections of the most recalcitrant elements of the teachers union movement. And he forced Wall Street to accept financial regulations that, while weaker than ideal, were far tougher than anybody considered possible to get through Congress.

. . .

Obama can boast a record of accomplishment that bests any president since Roosevelt, and has fewer demerits on his record than any of them, including Roosevelt. The only president that comes close in gross positive accomplishment is Lyndon Johnson, whose successes were overwhelmed by his failures to such a degree that he abandoned his reelection campaign. The immediacy of the political moment can — and usually does — blind us. (In the aftermath of September 11, 2001, the wide and even bipartisan sentiment prevailed that George W. Bush was exactly the right sort of person we would want to have as president at that moment.)

. . .

[B]y the standards of a financial crisis, the United States suffered through a relatively shallow trough and has enjoyed a fairly rapid recovery. (Here is a chart laying out the comparison between the United States and other comparably afflicted economies.)

. . .

Obama’s notable success in containing the damage has not redounded to his benefit for another, even more historically durable reason: Voters tend to blame or credit incumbent politicians for the state of their lives utterly regardless of responsibility. This is not even limited to things like the economy, where politicians can affect the outcome. Voters reward or punish incumbents based on the weather or the success of local sports teams. Mitt Romney’s campaign theme attempting to assign all blame to Obama for the state of the economy is a clever manipulation of this long-standing form of irrationality. In 2004, Romney dismissed any attempt to blame George W. Bush for the decline of jobs under his watch as “poppycock.” In his most condescending tone, Romney explained that of course outside forces were to blame — those outside forces being the vastly milder 2001 recession — and that attempting to hold Bush responsible for the economic record of his term was sheer stupidity. Now Romney has made that very theme the central basis of his presidential campaign.

. . .

The second indictment of Obama is that he failed to redeem the broader vision of trans-partisan governance he campaigned on. The reason this happened is that the Republicans' leadership in Congress grasped early on that its path to returning to power required Obama to fail, and that they could help bring this about by denying his initiatives any support. In a meeting before Obama’s inauguration reported by Time’s Michael Grunwald, the House Republican leadership instructed their members on exactly this strategy. GOP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has followed the same strategy. GOP House members and senators have admitted, some of them publicly, that their leadership prevailed upon them not to negotiate with Obama.

Partisan strife between Congress and the president has gone on for decades.

. . .

What can be said without equivocation is that Obama has proven himself morally, intellectually, temperamentally, and strategically. In my lifetime, or my parents’, he is easily the best president. On his own terms, and not merely as a contrast to an unacceptable alternative, he overwhelmingly deserves reelection.


Behold, a Great President.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
newb



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Location: Korea

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 3:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The last I remember, he ended up killing four Americans probably sitting at the white house watching 'em die. The next day he blames stupid video and apologizes to Muslims for many weeks.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Titus



Joined: 19 May 2012

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

newb wrote:
The last I remember, he ended up killing four Americans probably sitting at the white house watching 'em die. The next day he blames stupid video and apologizes to Muslims for many weeks.


Yup. Egg on my face for trusting the government version on the killing. The whole thing is a steaming pile of dung.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
fosterman



Joined: 16 Nov 2011

PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

newb wrote:
The last I remember, he ended up killing four Americans probably sitting at the white house watching 'em die. The next day he blames stupid video and apologizes to Muslims for many weeks.


2 more days and it will all be over!
Obama will stay in the white house and your Mitt will be heading back to UTAH to join his fellow Alien baby friends
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Ya-ta Boy



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: Established in 1994

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2012 5:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Define 'great' please (without moving the goal posts).


Once upon a time a long time ago, someone I don't remember asked Mao what he thought of the French Revolution. He is supposed to have said, "It's too soon to tell."

That is an apt response. In the more or less 5,000 years of human history, if 200 years is too soon to tell (and it is) then how the heck can you judge 4 years? A decade or so ago I asked a pro-North friend of mine if he thought Washington or Lenin/Mao was the more important historical figure. He naturally said the commies. I just raised my eyebrows...and didn't ask him his opinion on political matters again. Why bother to ask an illiterate his opinion of 'War and Peace'?

No matter what the conservative movement thinks of Obama, he is an historical figure. The mere fact of him being black and elected president is a major historical event in our history. The Right cannot deny him that. They can whine, *itch and moan all they want, but they cannot erase him. (The Egyptians tried to erase various pharaohs by cutting out their names from tomb inscriptions, but it didn't work all that well.) Go for it if you must.

Had he dropped dead of a heart attack on the afternoon of Jan. 20, 2009, he would still be listed in the history books.

BUT...he didn't. He survived and has made a record of major achievements. They are not as great as they could have been--the opposition party committed treason (in my judgement) in attempting to block whatever he did. They partially succeeded in their efforts, but did not come close to blocking everything.

I can't know what history will judge as his greatest achievement beyond his election, but I have to suspect that passage of some kind of health care that progressives have wanted for a century will be high on the list. It should have been better, but the small-minded among us were strong enough to prevent a better bill. Oh well. Maybe in the future it can be strengthened.

He was able to move gay rights ahead in a major way. Maybe there will be a reaction in the future against this, but I doubt it.

Possibly most significantly, he pushed a stimulus bill through Congress that didn't really want to do it. Within a very short time, the economy began to recover. Not a minor thing. Twice in a century conservative mismanagement of the national economy created a disaster for the public--the world public--and twice a Democratic president rescued the economy. Maybe not as fast as everyone wanted, but far better than what the GOP had to offer. Once is a fluke; twice is a coincidence. Next time around, it will become clear to the public that conservative economic policy leads to inequality and the Dems (not as strongly as they should) stagger toward a better deal for the middle class rather than an abject surrender to the plutocrats.

Obama may well be on a level with FDR when it is all done. Reagan may well be on a level with Hoover. Mid-way in his administration is a bit too soon to say.

Presidents get unfairly blamed when the economy is bad and unfairly credited when the economy is good; Romney has been saying that he will create 12 million new jobs in 4 years without doing anything--spiffy! Several groups whose job it is to predict that sort of thing say the same thing. The economy is strengthening. Whoever is elected will get the credit. Obama laid the groundwork for it. It is only fitting he get the credit. If he does..
Very Happy

If that happens, as it should, then Reagan and his trickle down anti-government crap will be consigned to the dust-bin of history along with Communism, as it should.

Then, along about 2042, when the conservatives have suffered through the agony that I have had to put up with since 1980 will stumble back into power in time to put in place their newest iteration of wretchedness in time to wreck the economy just like they did in the 1920's and again after 1980, and for 30 or 40 years the progressives will gnash their teeth like I have had to do. Once is a fluke. Twice is a coincidence. The third time people will realize that three strikes and you are out, meaning that the workers' paradise will finally arrive.

Very Happy

In the meantime, Viva Obama Exclamation Exclamation
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Kuros



Joined: 27 Apr 2004

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2012 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ya-ta Boy wrote:
Define 'great' please (without moving the goal posts).


Didn't you read how Chait introduced it?

Chait wrote:
I thought he would nudge government policy in an incrementally better direction.


That was the most hilarious part! Great = nudging gov't policy incrementally.

The self-denial is remarkable.

Ya-Ta Boy wrote:
Presidents get unfairly blamed when the economy is bad and unfairly credited when the economy is good;


Yeah, Chait advanced that point, too. Too bad its bunk: Americans significantly blame Bush more than Obama for the bad economy, including half of Republicans. That poll is from June, 2012.

Chait's article displays a remarkably unaware confirmation bias.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
Ya-ta Boy



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: Established in 1994

PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2012 2:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kuros wrote:
Ya-ta Boy wrote:
Define 'great' please (without moving the goal posts).


Didn't you read how Chait introduced it?

Chait wrote:
I thought he would nudge government policy in an incrementally better direction.


That was the most hilarious part! Great = nudging gov't policy incrementally.

The self-denial is remarkable.

Ya-Ta Boy wrote:
Presidents get unfairly blamed when the economy is bad and unfairly credited when the economy is good;


Yeah, Chait advanced that point, too. Too bad its bunk: Americans significantly blame Bush more than Obama for the bad economy, including half of Republicans. That poll is from June, 2012.

Chait's article displays a remarkably unaware confirmation bias.


Usually you are articulate. I guess everyone is entitled to a failure once in a while. I have no idea what you disagree with.

The part about blame...

Generally speaking what I wrote is true: People over-blame and over-praise presidents for economic performance. It is a historical fact. Presidents are only one part of several influences. However, people tend to concentrate praise and blame beyond what is deserved.

This time enough people remember what a disaster conservative economic principles are. Finally. At last.

Anyway, I'm working on a new idea. I have been waiting for the pendulum to swing...and maybe it swung in '92 and Clinton was the pivot, not Obama...or Cuomo (?) next time. One way or the other, 19th Century conservatism is not the future of the country.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
comm



Joined: 22 Jun 2010

PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2012 5:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ya-ta Boy wrote:
Possibly most significantly, he pushed a stimulus bill through Congress that didn't really want to do it. Within a very short time, the economy began to recover. Not a minor thing. Twice in a century conservative mismanagement of the national economy created a disaster for the public--the world public--and twice a Democratic president rescued the economy.
...
Presidents get unfairly blamed when the economy is bad and unfairly credited when the economy is good...

Yeah, it seems like some people do unfairly blame/credit Presidents.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Kuros



Joined: 27 Apr 2004

PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2012 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ya-ta Boy wrote:
Kuros wrote:
Ya-ta Boy wrote:
Define 'great' please (without moving the goal posts).


Didn't you read how Chait introduced it?

Chait wrote:
I thought he would nudge government policy in an incrementally better direction.


That was the most hilarious part! Great = nudging gov't policy incrementally.

The self-denial is remarkable.

Ya-Ta Boy wrote:
Presidents get unfairly blamed when the economy is bad and unfairly credited when the economy is good;


Yeah, Chait advanced that point, too. Too bad its bunk: Americans significantly blame Bush more than Obama for the bad economy, including half of Republicans. That poll is from June, 2012.

Chait's article displays a remarkably unaware confirmation bias.


Usually you are articulate. I guess everyone is entitled to a failure once in a while. I have no idea what you disagree with.

The part about blame...

Generally speaking what I wrote is true: People over-blame and over-praise presidents for economic performance. It is a historical fact. Presidents are only one part of several influences. However, people tend to concentrate praise and blame beyond what is deserved.


You asked me to define 'great.' Great means to display excellence to bring about clearly superior results. But Chait argues that Obama is great because he brought about incremental change. No, that is not greatness. By that standard, Obama never even aimed for greatness.

Secondly, you argue that

Ya-Ta Boy wrote:
Presidents get unfairly blamed when the economy is bad and unfairly credited when the economy is good;


Nevertheless, I showed you polling data only six months old. It demonstrates that two-thirds of Americans blame Bush and only half of Americans blame Obama for the economy. Americans, as a whole, understand that Obama cannot be entirely blamed for the mess he inherited.

Quote:
The polls showing that most voters saw the economy as the key issue only added to the mystery of how Obama beat the odds. The answer may be that, in their gut, voters understand that the United States is not recovering from a normal recession, but from the worst crisis since the Depression, and therefore they chose to give Obama four more years, just as they did for Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1936.

. . .

Voters seemed to choose, intuitively if not deliberately, the historical and global perspective of Harvard economists Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhardt, who argue that the relevant point of comparison is not the dozen or so recessions the United States has seen since World War II, but the very different case of systemic financial crises. These are more traumatic and rare, and by this standard, the United States is recovering lost per capita output faster than it did following previous systemic crises, from the meltdown of 1873 through the Depression, and also faster than most of the Eurozone nations following the systemic crisis of 2008.


So Chait's claim is demonstrably wrong, namely that:

Chait wrote:
Obama’s notable success in containing the damage has not redounded to his benefit for another, even more historically durable reason: Voters tend to blame or credit incumbent politicians for the state of their lives utterly regardless of responsibility.


There has been due regard for responsibility.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
falco



Joined: 26 Nov 2005

PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I asked a pro-North friend


What is a pro-north friend? Just curious.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Ya-ta Boy



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: Established in 1994

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
...It demonstrates that two-thirds of Americans blame Bush and only half of Americans blame Obama for the economy.


Hmmm...2/3 + 1/2 = 7/6?

What is that? Libertarian math?

I know that I hurt your feelings with my contempt for your hero, Ron/Rand Paul. You also know that I am not the only one who has those feelings for him. It was not personal toward you. The Democratic Party, the vast majority of the GOP, and a good deal of the rest of the American public feels the same.

You are entitled to your views about libertarianism and federalism and the rest of it. That is not to say that any of it is right. Wink

To return to the topic of the thread: IS OBAMA great?

Up to the election, I was not sure. I certainly wanted him to be great. I wanted him to be an FDR/Reagan figure. I wasn't at all sure he was. I want him to be more liberal than he has governed, but at the same time, I wasn't sure he was.

Since the election, I have had to change my mind.

Of course he is.

It is now clear that he has created a governing majority that will last longer than his time in office. It is not as leftist as I wanted it to be, but it is certainly far, far farther left than it was on Jan. 19, 2008.

In my life-time, conservatism has stood for white supremacy, government by the top 1%, male dominance (patriarchy), and social/economic inequality.

I have no idea whatsoever why anyone who actually lives in the 21st Century would have any sympathy for the conservative movement in the US.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
visitorq



Joined: 11 Jan 2008

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 12:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ya-ta Boy wrote:
I know that I hurt your feelings with my contempt for your hero, Ron/Rand Paul. You also know that I am not the only one who has those feelings for him. It was not personal toward you. The Democratic Party, the vast majority of the GOP, and a good deal of the rest of the American public feels the same.

You are entitled to your views about libertarianism and federalism and the rest of it. That is not to say that any of it is right. Wink

You have zero credibility on anything. Libertarians have been consistently correct.

Quote:
To return to the topic of the thread: IS OBAMA great?

He is great at reading from a teleprompter. That's about it.

Quote:
It is now clear that he has created a governing majority that will last longer than his time in office. It is not as leftist as I wanted it to be, but it is certainly far, far farther left than it was on Jan. 19, 2008.

If you had it your way we'd all be living under a Stalinist regime. The economy would collapse and anyone who disagreed would be branded a racist and shipped off to a gulag.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
geldedgoat



Joined: 05 Mar 2009

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ya-ta Boy wrote:
I know that I hurt your feelings with my contempt for your hero, Ron [edit] Paul. You also know that I am not the only one who has those feelings for him. It was not personal toward you. The Democratic Party, the vast majority of the GOP, and a good deal of the rest of the American public feels the same.


Two groups lost the GOP vote for Ron Paul: the evangelicals and the warmongers.

Quote:
Of course he is.

It is now clear that he has created a governing majority that will last longer than his time in office. It is not as leftist as I wanted it to be, but it is certainly far, far farther left than it was on Jan. 19, 2008.


Presidential greatness for you is defined not by what is accomplished for the country as a whole or even fulfilling (hell, even trying to fulfill) fundamental campaign promises, but in securing a legacy? Petty.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Kuros



Joined: 27 Apr 2004

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ya-ta Boy wrote:
Quote:
...It demonstrates that two-thirds of Americans blame Bush and only half of Americans blame Obama for the economy.


Hmmm...2/3 + 1/2 = 7/6?

What is that? Libertarian math?


Rolling Eyes

You were so curious about this that you neglected to click on the link I provided you. Gallup asked Americans whether they blamed Bush, and then asked them whether they blamed Obama for the economy. Thus, there are two questions: 2/3ds blamed Bush when asked the first and 1/2 blamed Obama when asked the second.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
Titus



Joined: 19 May 2012

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 7:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kuros wrote:
Ya-ta Boy wrote:
Quote:
...It demonstrates that two-thirds of Americans blame Bush and only half of Americans blame Obama for the economy.


Hmmm...2/3 + 1/2 = 7/6?

What is that? Libertarian math?


Rolling Eyes

You were so curious about this that you neglected to click on the link I provided you. Gallup asked Americans whether they blamed Bush, and then asked them whether they blamed Obama for the economy. Thus, there are two questions: 2/3ds blamed Bush when asked the first and 1/2 blamed Obama when asked the second.


What % would blame Clinton? The major deregulations w/r/t finance happened under Clinton. That's down the memory hole, but is worth repeating, given that Obama reanimated the "economists" who convinced Clinton to head down that path.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Korean Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> Current Events Forum All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2013 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International