Tales From the Hilltop
An intelligent, yet Devil's Advocate view of the world

Episode Fifteen: One year down, three (or seven) to go….

One year ago, the world shouted in triumph.

For it was on Jan. 20, 2009 that the free world the official ascension of its new leader, President Barack Obama. A lot of people hoped and prayed for this day: the rise of the first black president of America, and now it was here. Mostly, on the promise that “change” was coming to America, us citizens galvanized together and chose him to be our new commander-in-chief.

So, in the last 365 days, what have we seen? Most people will say for the most part….nothing. The country is still has a 10% unemployment rate. We’re still fighting the infamous “War On Terror”, for which most people have no idea why, gas is still ridiculously high, and (of course) health care still has no definite future.

So, exactly what’s been good about this last year that warranted all that fanfare from Election Night 2008 up until Mr. President’s inauguration? Well, there has been some strides in rebuilding the financial industry that was in near shambles when he took office, mostly due to the government bailouts. The stock market has soared to heights not seen in years, and President Obama has made very good strides to improve relations with other world leaders and other countries. That should count for something, right? I mean, he was given the Nobel Peace Prize for his promises to bring peace to the world, right?

As I hold no political allegiance to anyone, I try to see the body of work for what it is. There are some things about this administration that I – along with many other Americans – are displeased with. The main complaint is that the “change” we were so desperately promised has yet to show itself. Also, many feel that the policies and bureaucracies that the president told the world he’d shy away from, he’s finding himself doing the exact opposite.

Of course, he is not solely to blame for this year-long stalemate. I blame most of the media, whose love affair with Mr. Obama was taken to unchartered heights. Almost from the beginning, the new President was hailed as the greatest thing to happen to American politics since a young JFK graced the oval office. He was given awards, recognition, and high praise for banding together the collective psyche of America back together after the previous administration tore it apart. Of course, a president is only as good as the politicians he’s able to make things work with. Unfortunately, as he is a Democrat, his political opponents in office, the Republicans (and some Democrats as well) have tried to make his life a politicial hellhole.

I think the biggest deterrent of his adminstration is the one universal concept people simply can’t – or won’t – exercise anymore: patience. I go back to President Obama’s speech on the night he was elected. The one thing that I took from that speech is that we all would have to recognize the fact that the issues facing this country would not be fixed in a month, year, or even four years. Also, that he would be the first to say that he is not, and would  not be a “Messiah” like the media dubbed him, and he could not usher this country and world alone. He would need the collective effort of everyone to bring this country along. Now, I understand that presidents will face opposition from the representatives, Senators, and sometimes the general public; however, I’ve honestly never seen a president have to deal with this much in-house (and out) turmoil as much as this president has in such a short peroid of time.

All in all, I gave him a C+ for a year evaluation. He’s done some good things for this country, tho it seems to be overshadowed by the continuing employment rate. He’s lifted the spirits of Americans and people over the world, but still has a ways to go. I guess that’s why Presidents gets four years to make their mark instead of one. So, the last thing I’m going to say on our President is this: Rome wasn’t built in day, and America won’t be re-built in a year.

You put it together….and give the guy a chance while you’re at it. But him growing a bigger pair of balls couldn’t hurt, either.



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