Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Bottom line: President Obama has no plan, other than to run for President next year. He has become the perfect negation of leadership: President Nobama.

Photo - Fox News

Nobama. Kind of like Buddhist conceptions of the union of all and nothing. It's not just a name. It is a way of being. It is a new paradigm.

By his account during his nationally televised speech last week the President is the only reasonable guy in Washington, because he wants a "fair" and "balanced" approach to fixing the spending mess he's given us. By the way, he had nothing to do with this mess, it was inherited. He's been President for 3 years, but apparently has nothing to do with the current state of the economy.

But what is his fair and balanced approach? We don't know.


The President wants the rich to pay more taxes, because that's "fair" and "balanced." He doesn't actually say pay more taxes; he says give up "tax breaks."

Today I figured its been a week. It's a Saturday morning and Mrs. EO is not around right now to enforce her will. I thought I would check on the internet to get details on what the President thinks is reasonable.

There are some interesting articles on the present debate. Here's one, on the differences between the Reid plan (Democrat/Senate) and the Boehner plan (Republican/House).

Harry Reid: 'splaining
Photo Credit

John Boehner: I'm just saying.
Photo Credit

Here's another one from the NYT indicating that both plans would create a drag on the economy by reducing government spending, but that the House plan was much less of a problem.

It fascinates me that leaving money with taxpayers and not giving it to the government to spend will create a net drag on the economy. Won't it just create a drag on stuff the government likes to spend money on? Won't the money get spent by the taxpayers on something else, which won't drag, but take off? Or does the money just disappear if the government doesn't tax it and spend it on a government program? So if we cut taxes to zero, the economy would collapse entirely?

I never knew that.

Here's an article suggesting the biggest current sticking point is what will happen if one side or the other backs out of the additional negotiations that everyone agrees will be necessary.

More fascinating to this poor boy are the articles I couldn't find. When you type in "obama tax plan" or "obama debt ceiling plan" you get zippo details. Nada. I searched a long time on the internet to find something - ANYTHING - to tell me how much exactly President Obama was proposing to raise taxes and cut spending.

No luck.


This may be due to my inadequate internet search skills. But I think not. I think that the President has no plan, other than to make sure he doesn't suffer too much political damage through this process and hurt his chances for re-election next fall. To that end he will continue to refuse to supply details, and will continue to talk only in the most general terms, using focus-group happy words that will appease potential independent voters.

This may be good politics, but it is bad leadership. Take a wise position that benefits the country and then defend it persuasively. That's leadership.

It is the opposite of Nobama.

I think the President had enough of hard policy fights with terrible political repercussions when he pushed Obamacare through Congress and got hammered in the 2010 Congressional elections.

For a long time he refused to get down in the weeds on the details with Obamacare, if you remember. He told all the Congressional folks agonizing over the firestorm created by the Obamacare debate not to worry, the public would like it plenty once it was passed.

Turned out he was wrong on that political judgment. Witness November, 2010.

He's letting Congressional leaders take the political heat of actually making policy choices that they can be criticized for. He's not going to get suckered into actually engaging in this debate, like he did at the end of the Obamacare fight. Congress is on its own.


The President is going to stay vague and above the political and ideological fight, no matter what happens to Congress or the country. It lets him criticize Republicans for not "compromising" with him, while affording him the luxury of not actually proposing anything against which a compromise could be measured.

In ordinary life, who would put up with this?

Maybe there is a plan, but the President is not actually letting anyone know what it is! That is the gist of an article in the L.A. Times. This possibility raises the interesting philosophical question whether having a plan, but not communicating it to anyone, actually qualifies as a "plan" in the ordinary sense of the word.

Kind of like if a tree falls in the forest with no one to hear it, does it actually make a sound?


Let me know if you find out what the President actually wants. I'm tired of looking and I have a list of things to do around the house that Mrs. EO gave me this morning. Mrs. EO has been very clear about the details.

I am thinking of telling her that that her plans are unreasonable and I want her to compromise instead of being so political. I'm not going to tell her what I want. I'll just keep taking shots at her irresponsibility until I get what I want. Which I'll figure out when I get there.

I'll just keep saying "Nobama, baby."

I'll let you know how that works out.