Bye Obama, Part I

by on Mar.27, 2017, under Leadership, Politics & Patriotism

Initially I wanted to reflect on both the achievements and the shortcomings of the Obama Presidency but president Obama used his final days in the office to enumerate his achievements. At every opportunity afforded to him he reminded us that he was the best gift to the world between 2009 and 2016. Two particular moments illustrate this better: his final UN speech and the farewell address in Chicago. First, I agree with some of his achievements with amendments. Secondly, I disagree that Obama gave his full farewell speech and as such I consider Obama’s farewell speech in Chicago to be part one of the full speech that he could have given. This article is part two of the Chicago speech. I believe that both Obama’s farewell address and my observations captured in this article form a good starting point for a neutral observer who is interested in a complete picture of the Obama’s presidency.

The American society changed a lot under Obama’s presidency; it is wise to leave the evaluation of the impact of the Obama’s presidency to historians. Here I will deal with the immediate outcomes of his presidency.

Domestic Front

When Obama looked into the eyes of the American people and told them that if you like your doctor you can keep him or her under Obama Care, which turned to be false, he was not just being economic with truth but he left Americans with evidence that politicians should not be trusted.  Obama left politics worse than he found it yet he had campaigned on platform of changing politics.

Obama led the nation by executive orders rather than dialogue, he made laws by his pen. He planted seeds for the merger of the legislature and executive, against the constitutional wisdom of separation of powers. My hope is that Obama will not be sad if his successor borrow a leaf from his beloved leadership playbook: uses his pen to reverse the numerous executive orders. Obama’s inability to work with congress to make laws, made him a cheerleader of the courts that took on powers of parliament to make laws instead of just interpreting the law. Obama left the principle of separation of powers in disarray. This is not a small thing, it is planting seeds that will eventually destroy democracy.

Obama doubled the American debt, a huge feat. If you double the debt of a nation of 240 years in just 8 years, and preside over the worst/slowest recovery from a financial crisis in 240 years, surely how can the growth of the economy by less than 2% be an achievement?

Obama depleted army (the guarantor of the American peace and security) by reducing funding. On the other hand Obama demoralized law enforcement officers (blaming them without evidence as they performed their duties), short of inciting the public against law enforcement officers no wonder over 60 law enforcers were killed in line of duty in 2016 alone.

America is a divided nation: racial tensions are at the highest levels in the recent years; Americans cannot agree on anything important. Either parliament (Congress or Senate) has very little to nothing that both sides of the divide can agree on. If things continue the way they are America will soon disintegrate. The truth is that Obama did not create the division but he fueled it by inaction and partisan approach to governance.

Chicago, Obama’s adopted hometown, had over 700 murders and over 3000 gun related violence incidences in 2016 alone. Chicago status in 2016 gives a keen observer an insight into what the Obama presidency was all about. Chicago is also a reminder that America is a nation at war with itself.

Part II on foreign outlook is coming in mid April 2017.

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