Patterico's Pontifications

8/28/2008

Consider This — If Obama served 8 years as PRESIDENT, it would be the longest period of full-time employment in the same job in his entire life.

Filed under: General — WLS @ 8:08 pm

Posted by WLS:

After Columbia he spent a year in a New York business, a year in a NY non-profit, and then headed to Chicago where he spent 3 years as a “community organizer.”

Then he went to law school, returning to Chicago in 1991.  He did some community organizing, then was an associate for a Chicago law firm for three years.  After that he was to the State Senate – a part time legislature — and served as a lecturer at the Univ. of Chicago law school — another part-time gig.  He was involved in a variety of community organizations during this period.

His Senate seat is the first full-time job he has had since his law firm days — but he’s only been in that job for 4 years.

So, serving 8 years at POTUS would be his longest stint in any position of full-time employment in his life.

46 Responses to “Consider This — If Obama served 8 years as PRESIDENT, it would be the longest period of full-time employment in the same job in his entire life.”

  1. His Senate seat showed a lot of time away, too. With his low frustration level for opposing viewpoints and his comfortable-shoe approach to mass fandom, I’d say he’s definitely a not-ready-for-primetime-Socialist.

    Vermont Neighbor (a066ed)

  2. How do other presidents stack up on that? Dubya, Reagan, etc…? I know bush sr. was vp for 8 years. But what about the rest? I ask because my guess, my gut feeling, tells me its rare for someone to be the type to rise to the presidency AND stay in the same gig for 8 years.

    kirby (51eaec)

  3. You are assuming that he can get elected (doubtful) and then re-elected (very doubtful).

    Hazy (c36902)

  4. kirby,

    George W. Bush worked in the oil business from 1975-1987 and helped manage his father’s successful Presidential campaign in 1987-1988. From 1989-1994, Bush managed the partnership that purchased the Texas Rangers baseball team. He was elected Governor of Texas in 1994 and re-elected in 1998, serving a total of 6 years before he was elected President in 2000.

    Ronald Reagan was an actor for more than 2 decades after graduating from college, and he served as President of the Screen Actors Guild during that time. He was elected Governor of California in 1966 and re-elected in 1970. He ran for President in 1976 but narrowly lost to President Gerald Ford. Reagan was the GOP nominee in 1980 and beat Jimmy Carter in the general election. He was re-elected in 1984.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  5. …There are actually folks that DON’T know Reagan was an actor for ages?

    Wow. Times change, I guess?

    Foxfier (15ac79)

  6. “Comment by DRJ — 8/28/2008 @ 8:31 pm”

    So besides Reagan and his time as governor, we have Bush’s time in the oil business as potentially more than 8 years. But didn’t he have different jobs at that time?

    You see my point right? Anyone that is the type to rise to be president is unlikely to stay in the same job for 8 years. They’re on the way up. I think its a poor measure for fitness for 8 years as president that it will be the first time that they spend 8 years anywhere.

    “There are actually folks that DON’T know Reagan was an actor for ages?”

    I did know that, but the way I see it he had different jobs at that time. Maybe we define things different, but if you’re drawing a paycheck for a different gig, you’ got a different job in my book.

    kirby (23c2b4)

  7. Your headline sells your story short.

    It’s not just the longest period of full-time employment in the SAME EXACT JOB, it’s the longest period of full-time employment, period.

    Daryl Herbert (4ecd4c)

  8. DRJ –

    You left out the job that I think Reagan would have listed first – 8 years as host of GE Theater.

    Glen Wishard (02562c)

  9. If he serves ONE term as president it would be longer than any other full time job he’s currently had.

    Tony B (611a97)

  10. He hasn’t yet been in the Senate for four years.

    Tony B (611a97)

  11. kirby,

    In Reagan’s years as an actor, actors were generally “owned” by the studios who held their contracts and they worked when and where the studio told them to work. That’s one of the reasons Reagan changed from a liberal to a conservative.

    Bush was an oil and gas operator from 1976-1988 and he operated under different corporate names and with various investors. He was not an employee so he didn’t have different jobs, but he employed people and was responsible for making payroll so they were paid. He was an owner/investor and his job was to oversee the success or failure of his companies. He was successful at attracting investors but not as successful at finding oil and gas.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  12. I had read or always heard that Reagan’s first jobs in radio helped him develop his verbal and ad-lib skills. Not just for live on-air situations, but also in landing work. Convincing a station owner of his talents by doing a ‘broadcast’ next to an elevator. Quick thinking on his feet..

    Vermont Neighbor (a066ed)

  13. I thought Harry Truman was generally goaded by his mother-in-law for not having a job and for living with her while married to Bess (money shortages).

    Vermont Neighbor (a066ed)

  14. Barak Obama has very little experience in one job, but that’s not the troubling factor.

    What’s troubling is his lack of executive authority, whereby he proves that he can actually handle running an organization. He has almost no experience at all running any organization, and his Senate experience is lackluster, at best.

    He has no track record of executive or political authority, and he wants to be President. It is stunning that he has made it this far, and not in a good way.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  15. kirby –
    Doing different specific things for the same employer without a gap in employment is the same job– shoot, most folks consider anything you do while employed at the same source to be “the same job.” Thus, my dad had the same job for 30 years– even though he went from sprinklers in the summer and feeding in the winter to being second in command for the ranch.

    Foxfier (15ac79)

  16. If he served eight years as President, then the issue of lack of experience ceases to exist. Right? I mean we can then say that yes, he has kept a job for up to eight years.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  17. Right. Then the issue would be his track record — the same thing that dogs his hero, Jimmy Carter, to this day.

    Icy Truth (f54eb3)

  18. What should also be considered is that with his credentials he could of held a high paying wall street job for his entire life.

    Oiram (87d286)

  19. I don’t know that POTUS is the place to gain experience. Acknowledging he has a lack of experience now is rather surprising from you though. I thought you supported him?

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  20. “credentials ” Oriram (10:05) what are those (that he has) specify please…

    Lord Nazh (ce25e3)

  21. What should also be considered is that with his credentials he could of held a high paying wall street job for his entire life.

    — Ya know, the only thing worse than drinking the kool-aid is spitting it up. That line is straight out of his bio.
    Either he has presidential-level qualifications or he doesn’t.

    Icy Truth (f54eb3)

  22. I don’t agree….his credentials represent potential.

    With his potential, he has voted “present” more than any legislator, possibly in the entire country. That doesn’t even give him the credit for making mistakes, and learning from them, since he didn’t take any chances. With his potential, he has failed to see that many of the relationships with those of his choice leave so much to doubt and question. With his potential, he has asked people in his campaign to attempt to silence political speech by attempting to get the DOJ to investigate people and groups that oppose him, a reference to his potential as a teacher of Constitutional Law.

    Obama’s credentials have not been improved upon to a level that may reflect Presidential leadership, as shown by his actions. When you add his literally complete lack of accomplishments in the areas he has any experience in, such as the Senate, you are left with nothing to build upon except the things you can research and find out about…

    Like the Chicago Annenberg Project, access to which has been all but denied, and the research into has brought out the attacks to stop that information from being released.

    So, his credentials are: He won’t make decisions about things he is asked to do (his vote: present); he will choose relationships with those who hate America, or want to destroy her; he will reject the simple concept of the First Amendment, of which POLITICAL SPEECH was the primary reason for its’ existance, in exchange for hiding information about his experiences; he will threaten and intimidate people and groups who act in opposition to him, no matter the facts.

    Some credentials….

    And, besides that, he’ll raise taxes on the only people in America who actually pay them…..

    reff (b68a4f)

  23. It is interesting that the closest he has come to executive experience is being hidden from us because he did it in association with a left-wing terrorist.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  24. Can Obama be fairly described as having been a Senator for 4 years? He quit his first sentate job for the second.

    I think it makes much more sense to say that If Obama served a single 4 year presidential term, that would be his longest time on one job.

    He famously promised not to run for president, and I think he knew he could have a nice cozy career for decades in the senate.

    of course, it’s not Obama’s youth. Clinton (a very unexperienced guy) had tons more experience than Obama does. And it’s a contest, so Obama’s experience is relative to Mccain’s.

    Anyway, I think this blog is actually overpriase.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  25. love2008 –
    Did you really just say that if he did the job for four years, then he’d be qualified for the job?

    Foxfier (15ac79)

  26. The same could be said of other Presidents. FDR practiced law for five years (starting at age 26) was Assistant Sec of the Navy for seven years, ran for VP, caught polio and retired for seven years, and finally came back to serve as Governor for four years.

    Teddy Roosevelt never had a steady job either.

    Nixon’s first steady (eight-year) job was as Vice President.

    RIch Rostrom (09ec82)

  27. On Teddy:
    http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1906/roosevelt-bio.html
    Three years as an “ardent reformer.”
    Two years off because his mom and wife die– and STILL he actually did something.
    Six years in the Civil Service Commission.
    Two years as gov of NY, interrupted by the party choosing him as VP, assassination making him prez.

    Much different than the “Community Organizer” Obama.

    For FDR:
    A democrat; among other things, he spent *eleven years* as a Governor of New York.
    Even Wiki caught that.

    Foxfier (15ac79)

  28. On Nixon: so, the military isn’t a steady job?

    9 JAN 1913 Born in Yorba Linda, California
    15 JUN 1942 Appointed Lieutenant (junior grade) in U.S. Naval Reserve
    1 OCT 1943 Lieutenant
    3 OCT 1945 Lieutenant Commander
    10 MAR 1946 Relieved of active duty
    1 JUN 1953 Commander in Naval Reserve
    1 JUN 1966 Retired from Naval Reserve

    Foxfier (15ac79)

  29. Rich – Do you really want to compare the experience level of Obama at this stage of his life (47) with that of FDR and Teddy Roosevelt?

    Unless you’re joking, the fact that you even ask this question shows the detachment from reality necessary to support Obama.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  30. Oirem (#18) wrote (emphasis mine):

    What should also be considered is that with his credentials he could of held a high paying wall street job for his entire life.

    With his Columbia political science/foreign relations degree, he could not have gotten a high paying Wall Street job. He could have gotten — and did get — a modestly paying job doing financial research for a business publishing company few have heard of, but with a name he’s been very, very careful not to mention later because it’s the exact opposite of the narrative arc he’s trying to promote: “Business International Corporation.”

    With his Harvard Law degree and, in particular, Harvard Law Review experience, he could indeed have gotten a job as an associate at a major New York law firm (most of them are in mid-town nowdays), and those certainly do pay well. Whether he could, or would, have held it is entirely another question. During several years as an associate at the law firm he worked for in Chicago, including three during which he supposedly was there full-time and then several more part-time as “of counsel” when he was in the Illinois state senate, Obama logged fewer billable hours than he’d have been expected to log in two years at one of those New York firms.

    I’m not suggesting he’s lazy by any means. And certainly he can show a great deal of sustained focus when he wishes to — as, apparently, during law school and his presidential campaign. Other times in his life, there’s no evidence of that sort of tenacity.

    In fact, the more apt comment regarding his law school degree is that he seems mostly to have wasted it.

    Beldar (00a6c7)

  31. Obama: the incredible lightness of his resume.

    Perfect Sense (9d1b08)

  32. Inconceivable that he could ever get re-elected. If he does get it he will make Carter look like a great president.

    Peg C. (48175e)

  33. Tony B.

    If he serves ONE term as president it would be longer than any other full time job he’s currently had.

    He hasn’t yet been in the Senate for four years.

    Right, but the U.S. Senate isn’t the only full time job he’s had, is it? FWIW, he served in the IL Senate for 8.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  34. I am no fan of Senator Obama, but Wikipedia reports he taught Constitutional Law for 12 years.

    Still, no executive experience.

    Charlie on PA Tpk (8485ef)

  35. That would be 1992 to 2004. He was an IL Senator from 1997 through 2004, so the smart money says teaching con law wasn’t a full time gig during that period. I’m not sure it was during the first five years, either, but at least that’s plausible.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  36. I am no fan of Senator Obama, but Wikipedia reports he taught Constitutional Law for 12 years.

    He wasn’t a full-time professor, was he? He had other jobs at the time, right?

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  37. am no fan of Senator Obama, but Wikipedia reports he taught Constitutional Law for 12 years.

    That is pretty much of a stretch.

    JD (75f5c3)

  38. Has anyone picked Slobberman and Mathews up off of the floor ?

    JD (75f5c3)

  39. and why, pray, would not having the same job 8 years running be a fault?

    On the contrary, it could perfectly well be viewed as being slothfull or narrow-minded.

    This is nothing but an attention-grabbing headline (to which I admitedly bit >;-)

    Smirkingman (291fa1)

  40. Smirk-
    it’s important because sticking to a steady job and doing it well says a lot about the dedication that someone has. You can shine a boss for a year or two, but when you get three or four years along it gets really clear if you’re putting in good work.

    Re: Obama teaching:
    http://www.factcheck.org/askfactcheck/was_barack_obama_really_a_constitutional_law.html
    He lectured in three classes a year and turned down offers to join up full time.

    Foxfier (15ac79)

  41. Is that how you smirk? 😉

    Icy Truth (f4b203)

  42. His understanding of Costitutional law is as lightweight as his schedule of teaching it. Apparently the folks who run the U of C Law School are either overly impressed by a Harvard degree or like the messiah’s socialist bent, or both.

    I mean, seriously, how difficult can it be to understand “Congress shall make no law…”? Even the average second grader in today’s public schools could give a reasonable interpretation of that!

    In other words, experience doesn’t mean squat. Practice doesn’t make perfect, it makes permanent. What little he has done only shows me the change he wants is to drive this country further into socialism and further from any values that have any meaning outside of “feel-good”.

    Carlos (57248c)

  43. 27 Foxfier: FDR was Governor of New York for four years (1929-1933), not eleven years.

    28 Foxfier: No, wartime military service is not a long term “steady job”. It certainly did not last eight years.

    29 Apogee: The issue raised by WLS in the post is not the quality of Obama’s experience. It is that Obama has never held a full-time job for as long as he wants to hold the Presidency, i.e. eight years. That was also true of FDR, TR, and Nixon when they were elected President or Vice President. That fact is an unarguable reality, regardless of one’s opinion of the relative quality of their experiences.

    BTW, my opinion of Obama’s qualities is fairly negative – and my opinion of his positions is extremely negative.

    RIch Rostrom (09ec82)

  44. I know this is off-topic, but does anyone know why so many of the democrats are actually excited about McCain’s VP choice? I keep seeing this excitement, but don’t know where it is coming from. (Do they think this makes it impossible for McCain to win since Palin is so conservative?)

    yourlilsis (55a281)

  45. Comment by yourlilsis — 8/30/2008 @ 11:43 am

    I think they’re whistling past the graveyard because they’re shocked and scared. If it’s really because they think being conservative loses elections, they’re just stupid because almost all of their candidates have to pretend to be more conservative than they really are to get elected.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  46. yourlilsis, the Democrats are excited because they think that they will get away with sneering at a woman’s accomplishments because she’s a Republican – apparently oblivious to the hypocrisy and irony.

    SPQR (26be8b)


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