Saturday, June 2, 2012
What will President Obama do?
Criticism is tough to take. Nobody likes finding out that they are wrong, nor do we like to have our mistakes or flaws pointed out to us. Many times, we ignore criticism because we assure ourselves that it is mistaken or just plain wrong. But sometimes it is accurate. This is what can make a leader into an exceptional one. The best leaders take criticism and use it to improve themselves. Being able to judge yourself accurately is tough because we are the most prejudiced person in the world when we think about ourselves. Accurately judging criticism about yourself is hard in part because of this prejudice and the emotions that go along with it. President Obama is not very good at accepting criticism. This is apparent with his sensitivity to the many attacks that all public figures endure. Nobody likes that, but his reactions indicate to me that he has a great deal of trouble accepting that others do not see him the way that he sees himself. This trait is connected to his prejudices about other things as well. President Obama does not adjust to changing conditions well. Just look at President Obama’s actions since the elections of 2010. A good leader would adjust to the defeat the Democrats took in 2010. President Clinton changed his strategy and made many rather good changes to his policies after the Democratic defeats in 1994. President Obama has reacted by pushing the same policies, just pushing much harder. He is not bending with the greater resistance that he is running into. He is increasing his pressure in an attempt to offset this greater resistance. This leads me to believe that he is not a graceful loser. Nobody likes to lose. However, it is a part of life. We simply can’t win all the time. Someone who is not very good at taking criticism would be vulnerable to not being a good loser. I had a lot of problems with these issues growing up. I still do today, but am better equipped to handle it as I have developed strategies over the past 35 years to help. Of course, I am not under the pressure that he is. In this case, I am worried about what this man will do if he believes that he will not win re-election. President Obama is not moderate. A moderate would have made adjustments after the elections of 2010. A moderate would not have signed a law so that ‘YOU can find out what is in it’. A moderate would have added input from the opposing side in order to make the law more acceptable, and not signed it into law so that the opposition can find out how good (or bad) that law is. And it is not like this was a minor law about speeding. This was ‘fundamental CHANGE’ the like this country has not seen since the Great Depression. It can be little wonder that the political opposition has dug in its heels and is refusing to cooperate. To be surprised at this is another indicator of President Obama’s lack of ability to see political opposition as having any valid stance. Not exactly a moderate viewpoint. President Obama has also indicated how he is willing to bypass the U.S. Constitution because it prevents him from doing “The right thing”. In his view, the ‘right thing’ to do is for the U.S. public to re-elect him to continue to ‘fundamentally Change” America ‘because it is the right thing to do’ even if we, the American public, disagree. President Obama believes that he can run our economy better than we can. This is certainly not a core American value. This is ‘Fundamental CHANGE’ indeed. It is obvious that America needs a lot more of these CHANGES. To run the risk of the opposing party undoing his CHANGES before they can fully take effect would be dangerous. So the actions to prevent this can easily become much more drastic than in a normal or common situation. This reduces the limits of actions that might be taken because the issue is seen as so important combined with the belief that he really knows better. In other words, drastic action is justified simply because “It is the right thing to do”. This is why I am so worried about this fall and winter. If President Obama believes that he will lose, it just may unleash a flurry of extreme actions that only desperate, extreme situations demand. What few limitations he has left will be gone. It will be far better if he believes that he will win, no matter what the reality is.