When James Carville, one of the key players in Bill Clinton’s 92 election, was asked if he had any advice for President Obama, he said “panic.”
After observing that Democratic Senators are not happy, presumably with the President, Carville recommends four things.
1. Fire somebody.
2. Indict people, namely Wall Street that caused that current crisis.
3. “Make a case like a Democrat.” Ouch.
4. “Hold fast to an explanation.” I think this means, more generally, stop being all over the map all the time. Say something and stick to it.
Read the entire piece, it’s not long and is quite good.
It might help if some of those Democratic Senators, and Democratic House members, went on the record for once. The President and his team think they’ve done a fine job, that the public simply doesn’t get how good they are. That means the fish is rotting, as the old (incorrect) saying goes, from the top down. Firing staff isn’t going to help when the boss is part of the problem. Democrats need to realize that privately urging the President to change course isn’t working. The man needs, the country needs, an intervention before we get a GOP president, Senate and House.
NB As someone just pointed out to me, yes, the President seems to have switched gears in the past week since the jobs speech – i.e., switched into fighting mode. I hope that’s true. We learned during previous battles that sometimes a speech was nearly all we got. So, yes, I remain skeptical – in part because a big part of the problem is simply the man the President is. It’s hard to change who you are. To let yourself fight back. To let your staff fight back. To stop pulling punches because it would be “mean” or might be taken as “partisan.” I guess a part of me feels awfully burned at this point. This blog came to Barack Obama’s defense (during the primaries) long before it was cool. It’s one thing to disappoint people who didn’t expect much from you anyway. It’s another to disappoint the true believers. The latter are a lot harder to win back.
But I’m winnable. I just need to see a real change in the President and the White House. Perhaps the jobs speech was a sign of that change. We’ll soon know.