The problem the blogosphere was having, to the extent that its a problem, is that Obama has tended to work hard and methodically in a very unshowy and uncampaigner-y way. He’s fantastically busy—just looking at his white house flickr page makes me tired because the guy is always working—but in a very real way he’s less available to his supporters/voters than he was on the campaign trail. He’s done less explaining and exhorting than I think they wanted. The reason they wanted him to be more visible is because so much of his policies and our progress was mired in the House and the Senate. People could see that his stated goals—our stated goals—were going down the tubes and they at least wanted some major sign from Obama that he felt their pain and their rage.
That, to me, is the meaning of all the almost pathological tea reading of the white house and its various flotsam and jetsam. Sometimes it seems like a kind of “No Parrots were killed on the M1 today” sort of news as each constituency came out and said “no progress on my issue” or “senate went backwards for me today.” Because Obama is viewed as at the top of a pyramid of power, or at least in a pivotal position between the House (where he works closely with Pelosi) and the Senate where he used to be a member people have a lot of inchoate feelings about how he needed to be more involved, more obvious, in saving the failing health care bill.
In other words, I think a lot of people’s expressed feelings of angst were relieved by the SOTU speech because at least Obama got up there and said, more or less directly “yeah, I’m with you all. Just like I’ve always been.” It needed to be said because people needed to hear that.
Friday, January 29, 2010
A comment re-posted, without comment
Via Balloon Juice, this, from commenter aimai: