President Obama has had an evolving line of excuses to explain why the economy is still so awful. Let’s see if we can follow the logic.
1. You are better off than you were four years ago.
2. Even if you are not better off than you were four years ago, things are getting better.
3. Even if things are not getting better, it’s President George W. Bush’s fault.
4. Even if it isn’t Bush’s fault, it’s the “head winds” that are at fault.
5. Even if it’s not the head winds’ fault, it’s the inside-the-Beltway tone that is to blame.
6. Even if you can’t blame the tone, it’s the Gang of Six’s fault for screwing up the grand bargain that made Obama up the ante on taxes after the House speaker thought that we had a deal.
7. Even if it’s not the Gang of Six’s fault, it’s the Republicans’ fault.
8. Even if it’s not the Republicans’ fault, it’s the 24-7 media coverage that is to blame.
9. Even if media are not to blame, change is hard and comes only from the outside.
10. Even if change comes only from the outside, you have to elect Obama.
In short, nothing is ever Obama's fault. The euro or Congress or Bush is always in the way. But here’s the thing: Something is always happening. The good presidents succeed anyway. (President Ronald Reagan never whined that he was dealt “a bad hand.”) Obama’s disdain for making things happen from the “inside” is just taking excuse-mongering to a whole new level. Because, of course, if we expect presidents to actually help improve things, then he hasn’t done his job very well.
Moreover, he’s suggesting that the job is impossible for him unless he is dealt a superb hand, the world is prosperous, the Democrats control Congress and media are even more compliant than they already are.