The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Hit the Road

In days past, Time and Newsweek were America's most popular news magazines. Both have lost significant readership and both are a shell of what they once were. Over the four years of the Obama administration, both have been strong advocates for the president's policies and performance and both are Obama-friendly. It was with some surprise, therefore, that I noted that this week's Newsweek has a cover story entitled: "Hit the Road, Barack: Why we need a new president."

Written by conservative writer Niall Ferguson (no friend of Barack Obama), the magazine presents a broad-based indictment of Obama's accomplishments (or lack thereof) in both domestic and foreign policy.

After noting the historic nature of Obama's ascendance to the Presidency, Ferguson states:
In his inaugural address, Obama promised “not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth.” He promised to “build the roads and bridges, the electric grids, and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together.” He promised to “restore science to its rightful place and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost.” And he promised to “transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.” Unfortunately the president’s scorecard on every single one of those bold pledges is pitiful.

It's a lengthy article with plenty of facts and anecdotes, It discusses the economic miscalculations and failures that have occurred during the Obama presidency, the failure of much of Obama's foreign policy, and worse, the failure to lead his party and the nation as a whole. In closing, Ferguson writes:
Mitt Romney is not the best candidate for the presidency I can imagine. But he was clearly the best of the Republican contenders for the nomination. He brings to the presidency precisely the kind of experience—both in the business world and in executive office—that Barack Obama manifestly lacked four years ago. (If only Obama had worked at Bain Capital for a few years, instead of as a community organizer in Chicago, he might understand exactly why the private sector is not “doing fine” right now.) And by picking Ryan as his running mate, Romney has given the first real sign that—unlike Obama—he is a courageous leader who will not duck the challenges America faces.

The voters now face a stark choice. They can let Barack Obama’s rambling, solipsistic narrative continue until they find themselves living in some American version of Europe, with low growth, high unemployment, even higher debt—and real geopolitical decline.

Or they can opt for real change: the kind of change that will end four years of economic underperformance, stop the terrifying accumulation of debt, and reestablish a secure fiscal foundation for American national security.
Over the past three years, every one of Ferguson's arguments has been discussed in this blog. So Ferguson's positions come as no surprise. But what really is surprising is that Newsweek has given an Obama-critical argument a national platform. It's about time. It's also something for the Obama campaign to be really, really worried about.