Skip to main content

The Absolute Necessity of Enacting a Progressive Agenda
Those words jumped out at me from a comment while I lurked through one of the day's more prominent Obamabot pie fights solely for personal amusement. I tried, but could not think of a single time in American History when "The Absolute Necessity of Enacting a Progressive Agenda" was a somehow winning political idea, not even the New Deal, when everything was discussed largely in terms of recovery and jobs. What an odd point of view to bring to a discussion in a place ostensibly focused on Democrats winning elections. What an odd point of view to bring to an assessment of Barack Obama's performance as a politician.

This is not META. The words inspired me to write a diary, but not a meta diary. Another title for this diary might be

A Better Appreciation of Barack Obama as a Politician
Every American President has the same job: Win the office. Win it again. Leave a legacy. They all do the same job, though not all get the 2nd term. Some of those legacies have been good and lasting. Some harmful and lasting, etc. etc.

From the day I decided to support Barack Obama's candidacy, I have believed, without wavering, that I understood how he would approach the Presidency and how he would govern and deal with whatever challenges his particular era threw up at him. This was touched upon in my very first diary on this site. Perhaps by illuminating my understanding of Obama as a politician I can help others appreciate some reasons for continuing to support the President and his initiatives while keeping our many areas of specific policy disagreement more tacit for reasons of (gasp) political expediency.

Please continue.  

Nothing the President did in the recent dust-up surprised me because, at each turn, he acted pretty much as I've always thought he might in such a situation. Hence, nothing the President did disappointed me or diminished my enthusiastic support for his Presidency. I thought he made mistakes, but I expect him to. I don't think him infallible.

I never imagined that this President had been elected to fulfill the "absolute necessity of enacting a progressive agenda". Talk about fairies and unicorns. I just hoped that he might help progressively minded thinking to nibble away at some of the anti-American realities that blight the American Dream. That's what the wing-nuts do, effectively, alas, about abortion. They nibble at it, here there, and very much in the state legislatures.

But the President only represents 1/3 of a 3 part government and he doesn't always control what gets put on his plate. Likewise, he has to pick and choose his priorities and, when he can, his fights. All effective politicians do this.

Jimmy Carter was a good President in bad times. He became a one-term President for it, but he lacked Barack Obama's political skills. I believe that in the end, historians will look back on Barack Obama's 2 term Presidency and find, both in his reelection and in his 2nd term, a legacy more in tune with some "absolute necessity of enacting a progressive agenda" than many might now dare dream. I have found it always helpful to view current political events through the lens of American History.  

Speaking of comparative Presidential History, I recommend that anyone who wishes to really understand Barack Obama the politician should read 7 or 8 books about Abraham Lincoln. I guarantee you that Barack Obama has.  

 

Poll

Books About Lincoln and His Presidency? I've read

50%1 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
50%1 votes
0%0 votes

| 2 votes | Vote | Results

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site