Hey Heff -
I see your post invited a flock of "I told you so" posts and emboldened a few of the "birther" and "Manchurian/Kenyan secret Jihadist" crew to pipe in as well.
I think time spent reflecting on what powers you might have embibed the President with would serve you well. It apeears you placed to much expectation in the President when he was first elected, but placed your dissapointment on hold for four years...he's got an election to win? right? Then a few months into second term...all that stocked-up disappointment came due? Your expectations were over-sized. He was always the "best alternative".."the lessor of evils" any way you slice it, but no messiah.
You mentioned "Executive Orders" as a hoped for method to change the course? Long ago, before he took office, President Obama derided President Bush as issuing too many executive orders, declared them dangerous to democracy.
Number of Executive Orders by President...
William J. Clinton
George W. Bush
And Pres. Roosevelt who you spoke of?
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Alas...YES...President Obama could go the way of Roosevelt...but circumventing the balance of powers...the representitives of the people?...for a greater good? Bleed the Democracy to save it? For as wacked out as the GOP is right now and as frustrated as I am with them, if the President went on an Executive order spree or otherwise nuetered the other branches of government, even for the greater good...I would stand beside the crazy GOP and demand his impeachment or trial. I would rather watch America fail as the democracy our founders designed...watch the "great expirement" fizzle out or explode...than to see it survive as some mutant of what it once was. .....Of the people...like it or not....even when we disagree.
Aside form that, executive orders can be reversed with a swipe of the pen, legislation on the other hand?...
In the end I predict Pres. Obama's 2nd term will get more done than you expect, but not as much as you would like.
And by the way...think Lincoln...not Roosevelt.
CH: Have you looked back in history, particularly at the second terms of other presidents, for inspiration?
There are all sorts of lessons to be learned both from past presidents and my own first term. I've said this before, but one of the things that happened in the first term was that we had so many fires going on at the same time that we were focusing on policy and getting it right, which means that we were spending less time communicating with the American people about why we were doing what we were doing and how it tied together with our overarching desire of strengthening our middle class and making the economy work.
I always read a lot of Lincoln, and I'm reminded of his adage that, with public opinion, there's nothing you can't accomplish; without it, you're not going to get very far. And spending a lot more time in terms of being in a conversation with the American people as opposed to just playing an insider game here in Washington is an example of the kinds of change in orientation that I think we've undergone, not just me personally, but the entire White House.
edit on 5-3-2013 by Indigo5 because: (no reason given)