Barack Obama has been America’s president for over two years now. During his election campaign he was full of charm and excellent rhetoric. The appeals of “hope” and “change” won him support throughout America and the world. Has his presidency fulfilled its promise? Lena Miteyko investigates.
Barack Obama – a man hailed for his breathtaking oratory skills that eventually saw him come through victorious in the US elections. The impact of his speeches conveyed a real sense of political movement and transformation, away from the previous regime of George W. Bush. Over two years have passed since his election victory and we must ask: Have we seen the changes Obama so beautifully articulated in his captivating speeches? The simple answer is, no.
Amongst his pledges, a massive reform for American health care was proposed. The idea was for it to be more government-driven, subsequently opening the doors to people who otherwise could not afford it. Unfortunately, it seems that Obama’s vision was only a poorly calculated risk and somewhat naïve, as it sharply opposed traditional American principles that have been embedded into the minds of numerous congressmen and senators. Passing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) has only become another burden on the state that has certainly not followed its original intentions.
Not only has healthcare been poorly tackled, foreign policy has been another area of concern, especially regarding the nuclear deal with Russia. The partnership has been a one sided affair, with Russia reaping the benefits of Obama’s consent. Considerable criticism has come from the Republicans too. They have claimed that there is no need at all to limit nuclear weapons as Russia would have done so anyway, given its deteriorating arsenal. It is therefore apparent that Russia has been the clear victor, keeping a keen eye on America’s nuclear weaponry. The result of this treaty has only provoked further internal debate and speculation against the president himself. A bold move Mr Obama, but again miscalculated and seemingly self inflicted…
If we consider the American economy, we again encounter problematic policies that restrict economic growth. Unemployment has been the biggest problem of all, currently standing at 9.2% nationwide. Effective measures have not been implemented to combat this; no wonder why the economy isn’t growing. Obama has not controlled government expenses either; policy on taxation was intended to aid this but instead it has had the opposite outcome. Raising taxes has only hindered financial freedom for people, which is a fundamental ingredient required to stimulate the economy. Forget about stimulation though – that’s impossible if expenses aren’t controlled in the first place. Expanding the war into Pakistan isn’t helping to keep the lid on expenditure, and by combining these factors alone it is impossible to ignore that the economy under Obama’s control is unquestionably unstable.
There are clearly flaws in the leadership of President Obama, however not all the blame can be put on him. It is impossible to ignore that the deficit left by Bush was enormous to say at the least, not forgetting the accompanying burdens he passed on too. But if we examine leadership ability alone, then Bush’s assertiveness lacked hesitancy, unlike Obama who seems to continually question his administration with regards to the sustainability of his policies. A similar predicament was faced during the presidential years of Jimmy Carter, who allowed draft dodgers to illegitimately return to Canada without facing sanctions.
Events like these, and the way they were approached reflect the covert yet strong ignorance evident in Barack Obama. It is all well and good to shine during an election, but coming through a presidency successfully is far greater challenge. Even though the problems encountered by him were of a tall order, Obama’s ‘charm’ has lacked substance and it is clear to many that he has indeed become the American foe.
To read Lena Miteyko’s other articles visit Lena Miteyko’s Politics On Toast blog. This article is (C) Politics on Toast.