Analysis & Opinions - The Huffington Post

A Lack of Bombast

| December 15, 2015

Notwithstanding the triumph of the climate talks in France (which was not his alone), many Americans continue to view President Obama as weak and indecisive.

Apart from the usual racial tropes, there is something deeper going on here. Obama doesn't fit with the usual American's idea of what a president should be like. (Neither, for that matter, did Jimmy Carter who, unlike Barack Obama, failed his major Special Operations mission (Iran, 1980) and paid for it at the polls that November.)

America, drawing on its border macho, seems to need a president like Teddy Roosevelt: aggressive in his gesticulations but down deep prudent in the steps he takes. (According to Teddy's biographer, Edmund Morris, had he not died in 1919 of a congenital heart condition, he would have become president again in 1920.)

You might say that President Obama is too cerebral for an American president in the 21st century. He is not a "Rough Rider" nor a recipient of the Medal of Honor, as TR was 103 years after the charge at San Juan Hill.

Barack Obama's tenure, particularly his second term, is studded with peacemaking deals, from the Iranian nuclear agreement, to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, to the re-opening of relations with Cuba, and to now the accord on climate change. His first term brought us the Affordable Care Act. When are we going to back off our disappointment at his clear lack of bombast?

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation: Cogan, Dr. Charles G..“A Lack of Bombast.” The Huffington Post, December 15, 2015.

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