Obama: Man vs. President

September 4th, 2009

The uproar over President Obama’s proposed “Welcome Back To School” broadcast is really telling, and I hope its telling him something, i.e., “People don’t trust me!”

These excerpts from an article in the The Detroit Free Press indicate that there is a lot of concern from parents and the schools over what Obama might say:

When President Barack Obama gives a televised address to students in schools across the country on Tuesday, some metro Detroit school districts won’t be broadcasting it.

Districts throughout the suburbs have been hit with complaints from parents who are worried about their children hearing a message from Obama that they won’t have a chance to preview. …

Mike Reno, a member of the Rochester Board of Education, said the idea behind the message is noble, but the timing is bad because of the politically charged climate.

It’s a shame, really, but he did get himself into this politically-charged situation with all of his flim-flam tactics on health care and his economy-destroying-in-the-name-of-green Cap and Trade proposal. How can you trust someone who shows absolutely no regard for American traditions, American institutions, the core of hard-working American taxpayers, or the free enterprise system that made this the richest country on earth?

If our last Democratic president, Bill Clinton, had proposed an opening day message to students, there would have been very little fuss by conservative politicians or conservative parents. Clinton may have had some different political views from these conservatives, but he was not a radical and no one would even hint at any radical ideas coming from his mouth in a broadcast to school children. President Obama, however, is a different story.

I imagine that Barack Obama, the man, is a very nice person who means well. He seems funny and caring, which are great personal attributes, but in his current position he is not Barack Obama the man, he is President Barack Obama, a president who only seems to care about the small minority of Americans who have trouble getting through life. Nothing wrong with caring about that minority, but it is very wrong to care only about them at a considerable expense to those who are not troubled, those who provide the fuel for the engine that drives our economy.

Barack Obama the man also cares a great deal about the environment and has become a disciple of Al Gore, who believes, like Chicken Little, that the sky is falling (possibly tomorrow). Again, nothing wrong with Barack Obama the man wanting to keep air pollution at a minimum. President Barack Obama, however, needs to exercise some common sense judgment and not try to save the environment all at once and virtually shut down all industry while doing it. He is the President of an industrial society and he needs to understand that any industrial society will do some damage to the environment just by existing. Any problems that manufacturing and industry are causing to the environment, however, are very small and can be adequately addressed over the long term. And that is a big part of President Obama’s problem — he, like some little kid, wants everything now. More to the point — he wants credit for everything now.

For those who care about America’s image in the world, its wonderful having a black man as president — it shows the world just how diverse and open-minded our society is. How will it look, however, when this first black American president drives our economy into the ground?

(This article was also posted at My View from the Center.)

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5 Responses to “Obama: Man vs. President”

  1. Brian Bagent |

    Mike Reno, a member of the Rochester Board of Education, said the idea behind the message is noble, but the timing is bad because of the politically charged climate.

    This is the problem. None of our elected servants are allowed to have noble ideas: they are not nobility, which would place them above us. They are our servants, which places them beneath us. They may provide advice, as any good house steward would do, but at the end of the day, the master of the house makes the final call.

  2. Harvey |


    Interesting take — and of course you are literally right!

    Thing is, its hard to conceive of the President of the United States being beneath us. He has powers we could never have, he influences every aspect of our lives and every word he says publicly is heard around the world — if this defines our servant . . . we must be Gods!

  3. Elizabeth Barrette |

    I’m very disappointed that so many people consider “study hard in school” and “think about your personal goals” to be potentially inappropriate for children. America may be in trouble, but it’s not the President’s fault — it’s more the fault of parents who are alarmed by messages like that.

  4. Brian Bagent |

    Elizabeth, it is not inappropriate for children to hear those messages, it is inappropriate for the president to be delivering them.

    Harvey, I am reasonably certain that the president and the rest of the neo-liberals believe it is a noble idea as well. The hubris of it is enough to make one wretch.

  5. Harvey |


    IF that’s the president’s message, i.e., “study hard in school” and “think about your personal goals”, without subtext or subtle messages it’s not bad — the problems are: 1) parents don’t know what he is going to say (if the text has been released I don’t know about it) and 2) They, for very good reasons based on his behavior as president, don’t trust the man and ASSUME there will be some political overtones or subtleties that they don’t want their children to be exposed to.

    Is there a problem with being cautious or want to shelter your child from what they obviously feel may be dangerous ideas?

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