David Frum reads David Brooks so you don’t have to, and concludes:
Brooks says Obama is too passive and withdrawn? That’s it? What about the threat to the Constitutional republic? What about deliberately wrecking the US economy so as to impose a secular socialist regime upon the ruins?
Yet Brooks has laid out the most useful and effective critique of Barack Obama for Republicans in 2012: The job has overwhelmed the man. He’s not an alien, he’s not a radical. He’s just not the person the country needs. He’s not tough enough, he’s not imaginative enough, and he’s not determined enough.
In the throes of the worst economic crisis since the 1930s, the president ran out of ideas sometime back in 2009.
In the face of opposition, Obama goes passive. The mean Republicans refused votes on his Federal Reserve nominees and Obama … did nothing. Would Ronald Reagan have done nothing? FDR? Lyndon Johnson?
With unemployment at 10% and interest rates at 1%, the president got persuaded that it was debt and interest that trumped growth and jobs as Public Issue #1.
I actually think there’s something to this critique.
Pres. Obama’s patient, instinctively bipartisan style and deference to Congress are generally good things– but not when facing an opposition party dedicated entirely to creating fights and regaining power, without any policy beliefs whatsoever.
But… it’s hard to see how this would lead anyone rational to vote for the GOP and against Obama. Yes, it’s bad that the national discussion is about debt and interest rather than the catastrophe that is unemployment. But the solution is not to vote for the party that pushed debt and interest as the country’s primary concern; it’s to elect more Democrats and fewer Republicans.