Saturday, July 17, 2010

Too Many Have Forgotten The Meaning Of 'Disgrace'

But that must be what happens when you are incessantly taught that everyone is a winner.

Here’s Greenwald on the subject of Obama’s excuses:
Imagine a man who is up for a sales job at a company in crisis. He tells his prospective boss that not only will he rescue sales but he’ll also lower costs, turn out a better product, get the competition to cooperate instead of compete, raise wages, improve the food in the company commissary, and redecorate the offices to boot. This man then gets hired. For a year, sales continue to lag, and everything else stays the same. The new employee explains that the guy who used to have his job left behind an unconscionable mess, which has made it very hard to do the things he had promised in the interview phase. After a year and a half, sales hit an historic low, the product is being recalled, competitors have formed a guild and are pulling ahead, everyone at the company has taken a salary hit, a few people have gotten food poisoning in the commissary, and the offices are more dilapidated than ever. On top of that, vendors can’t get him on the phone, he’s insulted his co-workers, and he’s taken more vacation time than the company allows. The boss finally asks him what’s gone wrong. “I could never have lived up to your expectations,” the man says.
It’s not just the blaming and the excuse-making itself, it’s the fact that such behavior is unprecedented in a president in my lifetime. What’s more, it’s that nearly half of the American public isn’t yet turned off by this sort of thing in a POTUS. Back when I was growing up, such an approach by a president would be unthinkable and even (yes, I know this isn’t PC) unmanly. It just wasn’t done; it was weak and unseemly and showed lack of leadership.

The fact that it now seems acceptable is probably a result of the decades-long abdication of the idea of personal responsibility, beginning in the school system with the self-esteem movement. Obama may be the first president who not only is a product of that system, but more importantly, was elected by people raised in that system. He knows his audience well.

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