Patterico's Pontifications

3/11/2009

Obama and the “Too Much, Too Soon” Syndrome

Filed under: General — Karl @ 11:56 am

A mere 50 days into his administration, Pres. Obama is rejecting the suggestion that he is trying to do “too much, too soon” — a criticism from Obama supporters like Jim Cramer and Warren Buffett that is resonating at outlets like the L.A. Times, ABC News and an article by William Galston at The New Republic.

Pres. Obama retorted that FDR “didn’t have the luxury of choosing between ending a depression and fighting a war,” while White House flack Robert Gibbs gave the extended dance remix of FDR’s “burning house” argument for Lend-Lease at Monday’s press gaggle.  Putting aside the evidence that FDR’s policies prolonged the Depression, which was only reversed by WWII, Galston’s TNR piece recounts how Roosevelt in fact delayed most of the programs that did not bear directly on the economic emergency.

As a warning, Galston notes a different historical example:

After a week in office, another newly minted president mused in his private diary, “Everybody has warned me not to take on too many projects so early in the administration, but it’s almost impossible for me to delay something that I see needs to be done.” That president was Jimmy Carter, who–true to his word–sent a flood of proposals down Pennsylvania Avenue, so many that Congress soon bogged down in near-gridlock. By the end of his first year, American were beginning to wonder whether Carter could get things done and–worse–whether he was up to the job.

Galston could have added Bill Clinton as another example of the “too much, too soon” syndrome, as BusinessWeek observed in May 1993.  For that matter, the Clintons had a track record of blaming their failures on trying to do too much, too soon.  Obama can take comfort in the fact that Clinton was reelected, though his ambition was a big factor in the Democratic midterm Congressional losses of 1994.

That President Obama seems to be following the “too much, too soon” path of Carter and Clinton should not be a big surprise.  Obama’s election continues a 16-year cycle favoring relatively inexperienced Democrats preaching the gospel of Hopenchange.  Victory apparently breeds hubris in such presidents that causes them to ignore the lessons of history — or get just plain get them wrong.

Update: CNN reports: “With the White House seemingly comparing the nation’s economy to a house on fire, some congressional Democrats are asking, where’s the fire truck?” (h/t Allahpundit)

Update x2: The president before Carter on the 16-year cycle was JFK, who also had trouble getting his ambitious agenda through Congress.

–Karl

101 Responses to “Obama and the “Too Much, Too Soon” Syndrome”

  1. Except for one paragraph, I agree with this Camille Paglia piece. Obama is surrounded by incompetent fools. Unlike Paglia, I thank God for this fact.

    Mike K (8df289)

  2. Karl – Yup, the bestest transition EVAH!!! How about that Charles Freeman exit statement? We ain’t gonna be stymied by no dirty Joooo lobby if I have my say!!! It makes you wonder how many others like Freeman that Obama has already put in place, apart from Samantha Powers, I mean.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  3. Hey, I know, let’s talk to the moderate Taliban!

    What, the Taliban itself says there is no moderate Taliban?

    Nevermind.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  4. What did Cramer and Buffett expect handing-over the keys to the leader of the Marxist-Leninism ageneda… The MSM knew what they were doing…

    phreshone (aad71d)

  5. I am not a SOCIALIST!

    I just play one in the Oval Office.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  6. FDR “didn’t have the luxury of choosing between ending a depression and fighting a war,”

    Fortunately for America, FDR’s “War on Business” was cut short in ’38 when it became clear there would be an actual war…

    phreshone (aad71d)

  7. Pres. Obama retorted that FDR “didn’t have the luxury of choosing between ending a depression and fighting a war,”

    This means – according to Mister Realist’s standards – that we cannot believe anything Obama has to say since he can’t get this history right. ( E.g., that FDR spent nearly a decade “fighting” a depression before he had to fight WWII … )

    SPQR (72771e)

  8. War on Poverty – Lyndon Johnson

    War on Prosperity – Barack Obama

    Aren’t they sort of the same thing just viewed from opposite ends. Class Warfare, it’s what’s on the agenda!

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  9. Karl – Wasn’t Robert Gibbs also taking the baldly risible position that Buffet was criticizing Washington in general and not Obama? These people are clowns!

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  10. He’s doing too much too soon…and yet we’re almost two months in, he’s got a friendly Senate, and he still doesn’t have all his senior appointments in, and we have senior civil servants from other countries complaining that they have no idea who to contact. Maybe if he did that, he wouldn’t be doing too much too soon. (Whether they would be doing too much, whether too soon or at all, would of course be another matter.)

    Rich Fader (fdbff9)

  11. You can’t blame Baracky, Karl. It’s the teleprompter what sets the agenda.

    happyfeet (71f55e)

  12. Wow, mo mention of NPR by hateyfeet? Is that growth?

    timb (287acc)

  13. mo mention of NPR by hateyfeet? Is that growth

    I meant “no” and not “mo”. Maybe I should stop typing and most of y’all happy?

    I’ll consider

    timb (287acc)

  14. Wow, no mention of facts by timb? Is that surprising?

    Still think that brown people should live under tyrants, timmy boy?

    Steverino (69d941)

  15. I’m not the subject here, steve.

    Of course, neither is happyfeet, so let’s you and I forget our thread-jacking and let people talk about Karl’s nostrums.

    See you back here after comment 50 when all that’s left is the ad hominems and calls of “douchenozzle”

    timb (287acc)

  16. feets!

    daleyrocks, you’ll be glad to know that Andrew Sullivan got his post up blaming you-know-who for Freeman’s fate even before Freeman got his rant on. Ironically, Sullivan noted that the MSM had ignored the story before now, which isn’t what you would expect from the you-know-whose who control the media.

    Karl (f07e38)

  17. Meghan McCain says that Ann Coulter is like totally anti-cemetery and stuff.

    happyfeet (71f55e)

  18. Karl, more on topic, how does Al Gore’s popular vote victory factor into the constant 16 year cycle you’ve been citing since the primaries?

    After all, didn’t George W. run on a platform of changing Washington by bringing back “integrity” and “respect”? Doesn’t that count as “change.”

    It seems to me Obama and Carter were elected not due to “change,” but to disgust and failure with previous Republican administrations

    Whereas Clinton only had Perot to thank for being elected. “Change” had as much to it with it as it did for Eisenhower or Taft or Garfield.

    timb (287acc)

  19. FDR “didn’t have the luxury of choosing between ending a depression and fighting a war” ???

    Obama really said that? My God.

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  20. timmah – Stop butting in. People here were having a private conversation.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  21. timb,

    The out-party is always going to campaign on change; the question is when it works. The postwar 16-year cycle falls pretty neatly — 60, 76, 92, and 08. The US public was not “disgusted” with Ike. For that matter, each of these elections has been pretty close, looking at the ratio of winner/loser (by that measure, 08 was very close to 92). Gore’s pop vote victory in 2000 supports the theory, rather than undermining it — it showed the weakness of the change argument off the 16-year cycle. And political scientists still debate the ultimate impact of Perot in ’92 — would Perot voters have bothered to vote had he been off the ballot, etc.

    Karl (f07e38)

  22. I agree with Happyfeet; it’s that evil teleprompters fault!

    Pons Asinorum (87c424)

  23. Okay, and this begs the question of why you keep citing it?

    As you may not know, I don’t often agree with you (and you are a bot sensitive to criticism), but I do respect your work. Every time you post it, you are attempting, as I read it, to de-legitimize Democratic Presidents and administrations by implying they are only elected because the crazy American people has a 16 year hiccup.

    Just curious and, you’ve might have addressed it earlier (in other words I will follow a link to an earlier post). Oh, and 2008 was not close.

    timb (287acc)

  24. You’re implying a lot. During the primaries, I cited it to show that conditions were favorable for the Dems. It has a generational component — and as I’ve mentioned here — also has to do with parties (generally the GOP) spending out their political and intellectual capital. That’s less than ‘disgust with failure” (again, see 1960), but not so foreign to your view, I think. It’s the opposite of a crazy hiccup, but an observation about the natural ebb and flow of political fortunes in the US. And if you do the ratios of winner/2d place votes for each election for the last century, you’ll find that the 16-year cycle elections are all in the Top 10, and that ’08 is right next to ’92. I do have a link for it, but must dash. I’ll try to work it into a future posting somewhere down the line.

    Karl (f07e38)

  25. implying=infrerring

    Karl (f07e38)

  26. timb: “Whereas Clinton only had Perot to thank for being elected. “Change” had as much to it with it as it did for Eisenhower or Taft or Garfield.”

    OMG, I have to agree… change!!!

    GM Roper who wants DRJ back on Patterico's Pontifications (85dcd7)

  27. I have not bothered to read what you previously wrote on this, but I will snarkily and angrily criticize it, nonetheless.

    JD (21ab8e)

  28. We ain’t gonna be stymied by no dirty Joooo lobby if I have my say

    Yeah, I could not believe my eyes when I read that howler, despite the many forewarnings from the estimable Saudi Arse – Licker. He’s sure proving how bought and paid for his integrity is -just two degrees from the left of the Truthers.

    Dmac (49b16c)

  29. First we have this:

    Wow, mo mention of NPR by hateyfeet

    Then this gem:

    so let’s you and I forget our thread-jacking

    Does he even read his screeds before he posts?

    Dmac (49b16c)

  30. Change you can believe in: Trickle-up Poverty!

    AD - RtR/OS (61af24)

  31. Ouch, from Jake Tapper.

    Obama & Earmarks: One Year Ago This Week

    Candidate Obama said then (regarding Jim DeMint’s bill to put a moratorium on earmarks for 2009) “we can no longer accept a process that doles out earmarks based on a member of Congress’ seniority, rather than the merit of the project. We can no longer accept an earmarks process that has become so complicated to navigate that a municipality or non-profit group has to hire high-priced D.C. lobbyists to do it. And we can no longer accept an earmarks process in which many of the projects being funded fail to address the real needs of our country.”

    Today, of course, President Obama will sign into law more than 8,000 earmarks for FY 2009, part of the $410 billion omnibus spending bill.

    Change!

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  32. “Change” had as much to it with it as it did for Eisenhower or Taft or Garfield.

    Comment by timb

    Pardon me but it is not yet comment 50.

    Taft was elected because TR chose him and chose not to run. Eisenhower was elected because of unhappiness with Democrats and war weariness with Korea so it was actually quite similar to the Obama election, except of course Ike was competent.

    Garfield I can’t remember. I was quite young at the time.

    Mike K (8df289)

  33. “FDR “didn’t have the luxury of choosing between
    ending a depression and fighting a war”

    If someones attacks you, you don’t have the luxury of responding later. However, this is not the case with health care, etc. We do can put away our discussions and possible action on these front until such time as we have a stronger economy. What a moron.

    Lily (967487)

  34. Lily – When did the Great Depression start?

    When did the U.S. enter World War II?

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  35. daleyrocks, I think she’s calling Obama the moron.

    SPQR (72771e)

  36. Daley, I think Lily was agreeing that Nobama is a moron, but coming at it from the other side, meaning we do have the option of setting some stuff aside to deal with the real issue.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  37. Lily, FDR was elected during the height of the Depression. He was inaugurated in March of 1933. Japan attacked us, and Germany / Italy declared war on us in December of 1941. That’s about 8 years of luxury. Maybe I am mis-reading you; who is the moron?

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  38. Got it. Sorry.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  39. President Obama is doing what he does best. WHen has he ever started a job or activity and finished it?

    In his youth, he scurried around from place to place. As a student he changed colleges several times. He never stayed in a job for more than 2 years. He was US Senator for less than 3 years before he started campaining for the Presidency. And as President he is already bored. He just cannot focus on the economic crisis because he has to move on to several projects without actually competently handling them.

    Obama may be sufferering from attention deficit disorder or hyper activity due to his past use of cocaine.

    Obamarket (1429a8)

  40. Uh oh….a majority of economists give O an “F”. I wonder if anyone will notice (besides the WSJ)?

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123671107124286261.html?mod=djemalertNEWS

    Cankle (8aa31a)

  41. Obama is trying to do everything at the same time. That’s better than being accused of doing too little too late. Make a list of all he has had to do over these 50 days tell me what could have waited. Domestic issues? Foreign affairs? Health care? Or the economy? Desperate times call for desperate acts.

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  42. embryonic stem cell federal funding
    abortion federal funding

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  43. Emperor, you focus on the economy like a laser beam. Had he done so, he would have had Republican cooperation.

    Mike K (8df289)

  44. Tarp II
    Setting definitive timetable for troop withdrawals in Iraq
    Abandoning missile defense system for Eastern Europe
    1st – Stage Detroit auto bailout
    Second – stage bailout for AIG
    Mortgage bailout for homeowners who made less than six of their first payments on their properties
    Abandoning school choice voucher program in DC
    Abandoning secret ballot rules in union elections

    Dmac (49b16c)

  45. I have to agree with Mike K. Had Nobama focused directly at the economy/housing/finance situation, he could’ve done wrong-headed things with the support of Rinos and a few other moderate-leaning Republicans. His whole agenda approach has alienated him from nearly all Republicans.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  46. Agreeing to direct talks with the Taliban
    Agreeing to direct talks with Tehran
    Agreeing to kowtow to Russia on missile defense
    Attacking a private citizen

    Dmac (49b16c)

  47. Appointing tax evaders to high orifice.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  48. Had he done so, he would have had Republican cooperation.

    Comment by Mike K — 3/11/2009 @ 4:45 pm
    He did. And the Reps? Not so much support from them. Remember?

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  49. You asked for some answers, then immediately change the subject. Same old song and dance.

    Dmac (49b16c)

  50. Comment by Dmac — 3/11/2009 @ 4:56 pm
    No I didn’t! Your list is subjective.

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  51. Lovey, as usual, didn’t read Mike K’s comment, else the answer would’ve been different.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  52. Shorter Lovey: Make a list and I’ll reject it and I’m right.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  53. Are you really saying that everything on that list should not have been given priority? Really?

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  54. Name anything on that list that is important in restarting a stalled economy. Name anything on that list that is important if the stalled economy doesn’t restart.

    Name anything on that list that bothers you.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  55. Are you going to sit there and say in all honesty John, that Obama has not given the economy most of his time? Honestly? That is going to be a tough sell for you folks here.

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  56. Redirect not accepted.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  57. Comment by John Hitchcock — 3/11/2009 @ 5:10 pm
    It’s called multi-tasking, John. The economy is not the only clear and present danger in the country today. Though it has taken front and center. Or are you going to make the argument that for e.g., he should not have (1) Announced his intention to close Gitmo. A campaign promise. (2) Announce plans for withdrawal from Iraq. (3) Pursue a bill to stimulate the economy. Judge righteous judgment, John.

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  58. Number 55 is a false premise and outside Lovey-set parameters. Lovey has chosen not to respond to comments within Lovey-set parameters.

    And PM John Keys has a thing or two to say about Nobamanomics.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  59. And your new 1 and 2 should not have been done. Remember before you say anything further that my daughter did 15 months in Iraq as a prison guard. And yes, she went to sleep listening to incoming mortar fire in the distance.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  60. #3 Hey, I know, let’s talk to the moderate Taliban!

    What, the Taliban itself says there is no moderate Taliban?

    Nevermind.

    Comment by daleyrocks — 3/11/2009 @ 12:08 pm

    By all means, talk to the “moderate” head choppers. But whatever one does, never let Republicans into the room during budget negotiations.

    Alinsky-Rule # eleventy for radicals-or something like that. And rule # eleventy-fourty-Don’t field inquiries from your closest ally regarding economic meltdowns.

    Chris (a24890)

  61. Why do you insist on using “Lovey”, when you can see my current handle? Would you prefer I call you something other than John? I could think of something.

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  62. I have decided that an obtuse ego-boost grab is inappropriate, especially considering the lack of logic, facts, understanding, etc coming from the mouth (fingers) of the character formerly known as Love2008.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  63. Comment by John Hitchcock — 3/11/2009 @ 5:29 pm
    And you call yourself a christian John. Christians don’t look for a fight with people who don’t want to fight with them. But you are really trying your best to be a jackass, here. Very hard, John. Let it go!

    Emperor7 (1b037c)

  64. Lovey, now that you got that out of your system,

    Name anything on that list that is important in restarting a stalled economy. Name anything on that list that is important if the stalled economy doesn’t restart.

    Name anything on that list that bothers you.
    Comment by John Hitchcock — 3/11/2009 @ 5:10 pm

    Can you do that?

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  65. Others such as the Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman, believe Obama did not go far enough with his stimulus.

    Andrew (288aa4)

  66. Name anything on that list that is important in restarting a stalled economy.
    From Dmac’s list, though highly partisan, I would dare to choose TARP 2.

    Emperor7 (1b037c)

  67. Lovey,
    If his focus has been so direct on the economy, why has he blatantly failed to appoint 17 out of 18 senior people in Treasury (never mind that the one he did appoint was a tax cheat)? That’s beyond ridiculous. You’d think his transition would have at least identified a few of them, right?

    http://hotair.com/archives/2009/03/11/why-has-obama-neglected-treasury/

    Cankle (8aa31a)

  68. Lovey, really, you should rethink your premises.

    You don’t have any reason to believe that TARPII will succeed when TARPI hasn’t succeeded. Why thrown good money after bad? Isn’t that just magic thinking?

    steve miller (c76b20)

  69. Its pretty comical to see people call the stimulus bill “Obama’s” when he had almost nothing to do with its contents – it being nothing but a grabbag of leftover Democratic pork and wishlists.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  70. Steve, the better point is TARPII is the only thing out of Dmac’s list that Lovey considers imperative in restarting the economy. The rest of Dmac’s list could’ve waited. Nevermind my three items Lovey didn’t even consider.

    So, Lovey has capitulated on Dmac’s other items, and succeeded in proving the point Lovey tried to counter.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  71. Comment by John Hitchcock — 3/11/2009 @ 6:21 pm
    Where you not referring to Dmac’s list?

    Emperor7 (1b037c)

  72. Lovey, there was a list where Dmac contributed twice and I contributed twice. I even allowed for your selection of Dmac’s contributions when I pointed out you could only find one item in his contribution that you found of imminent importance.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  73. What do you have against TARP 2, John? Or are you just trying to up a fuss over nothing?

    Emperor7 (1b037c)

  74. More accurately, Lovey, since you cannot support all the other items in “the list” as imperative to the economy, how can you continue to support all the other items in “the list” as imperative to do, despite the economy?

    And, what of the 3 items I contributed to “the list”?

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  75. #65 Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman. What did the esteemed Prize Committee base that award on- his liberal bona fides and bullshit theories as espoused in the traitorous NY Times? Yeah, imagine those intellectual and empathetic giants- Yassir Arafat, Nobel Peace Prize, Jimmuh Carter Nobel Peace Prize, Algore a Peace Prize for his bogus AGW. Love how he avows it is settled science and time for talking is done. Funny how little was accomplished during the Clinton reign against AGW. Should have implemented that Kyoto Treaty farce so they could now claim that the cooling off over the past ten years was due to saint algore’s efforts. All of the assclowns mentioned above only show that the Prizes are worthless, except to further line crooks’ pockets. Seriously what has Krugman actually done to warrant praise or scientific excellence. I nominate Obama’s Treasury secretary for the next Econ. Prize.
    Also nice to see the media buffoons praising card check for unionization. Don’t bitch when consumer prices skyrocket to cover added labor giveaways. Why don’t we just make minimum wage $50 an hor while we’re at it? Or just drop a few trillion dollars out of planes.
    Amazing how the media makes every effort to figuratively fellate Obama and his minions. The magic negro is on cover of another men’s magazine and we learn his various officials and he would make a dynamite basketball team. Of course Ear Leader is a bit worn out with all that work crossing his desk. Can’t be those Kenyan long distance runner genes; must be all that cocaine and ciggies in the system over time?

    aoibhneas (0c6cfc)

  76. Had he done so, he would have had Republican cooperation.

    Comment by Mike K — 3/11/2009 @ 4:45 pm
    He did. And the Reps? Not so much support from them. Remember?

    Comment by Emperor7

    Actually, he had a pussy roundup in the Senate. Had he tried to deal with the economy, he would have had real cooperation.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  77. He can’t fail fast enough for me. The sooner we can get rid of this incompetent Marxist the faster we can undo the damage.

    With luck, the magnitude of his failure will ensure that the Secular Progressives who’ve co-opted the definition of liberal will be roaming in the wilderness for eons.

    irongrampa (8332bb)

  78. Others such as the Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman,

    Is that the same Nobel group that has given terrorists like Arafat their highest honor, or the I’ll – validate – any – dictatorship’s – election – BTWIalsohatetheJoooos Jimmah Carter?

    You do realize that Krugman was a paid advisor to Enron, don’t you, Andy? Quick, send him to the gallows!

    Dmac (49b16c)

  79. Others such as the Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman, believe Obama did not go far enough with his stimulus.

    I agree: Obama didn’t have enough real stimulus in the bill. In fact, very little of it was real stimulus, which is why they have to pass another pseudo-stimulus bill.

    Steverino (b12c49)

  80. How about that Charles Freeman exit statement?

    It would have been a perfect rant had Freeman not inexplicably neglected to quote from the Protocols of Zion.

    Ooooops. I’m making another “libelous” attack on Freeman’s good name. Hope I get something extra for that from my paymasters in Tel Aviv. . .

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  81. http://www.cnn.com poll on Obama’s performance so far. Please go vote.

    The msnbc poll asking people to grade Obama’s performance is still coming in at a 60% F.

    spinninginCA (0f5593)

  82. Karl, from #24, thanks. I was reading too much into your analysis. Again, I doubt you and I agree on too much politically, but I did admire your analysis on PW and I wanted to thank you for taking the time to answer my question.

    As a weird follow-up, you made a huge point in the primaries, borne true by the final results, of how important the ground game is (you weren’t the only one, obviously, but you did a yeoman’s work). Do you think the same thing holds true for legislative elections?

    In ’94 and ’98 and ’02 and ’06 (i.e. the last four midterms), it seems one of the national parties was able to nationalize the electorate in those elections and found themselves gaining seats. Does that trend rebut the ol’ Tip O’Neill maxim or does the existence and growing power (perfectly predictable) of the Blue Dog caucus mean that Congressional elections are still local phenomena?

    Oh, and this is not some sort of demand/question like I get asked by other commenters here, i.e., if you don’t have the time or inclination to research it, I understand.

    Let me re-iterate, thanks, Karl.

    timb (8f04c0)

  83. http://news.yahoo.com/s/mcclatchy/20090311/pl_mcclatchy/3186392

    This is a story about Obama and earmarks. All of you who are claiming the mainstream media other than fixed noise is liberal can ram that argument right up your poopers.

    Ed from PA (d99227)

  84. One only good thing I can see out of Obama so far is his stance on merit pay for teachers employed by, natch (since he’s lukewarm at best regarding vouchers for private schools), public schools. So with that microscopic speck of value from the current White House in mind, the saying of the day is: Even a broken clock tells the correct time twice a day.

    Mark (411533)

  85. All I can say is: When is a grown-up going to come in and help this poor man?

    There are plenty of old men in the Democrat Party that can help him. Please, let your tired, old ’60s ideas go and help the new President be something other than another Carter-esque joke.

    The future is too important.

    Ag80 (3e2c59)

  86. timb,

    Without researching it, I would suggest that O’Neill’s maxim has been less than axiomatic for some time. In ’82, a lot of Reps. who came in on Reagan’s coattails lost because we were at the depth of that recession (not local in scope, really). In ’86, the Senate went Democratic as the Reagan Admin started to run out of steam (Iran-Contra would break big right after that election). In contrast, ’98 defied the usual 6-year inch, probably as a reax against Clinton’s impeachment (again, a national issue).

    That’s not to say that a ground game doesn’t matter in midterm Cong races. They can matter more, as media is less involved = less attention. Very few challengers win without a good ground game. Right now, I would say ’10 will depend on the national economy. If it’s still bad, Dems face an ’82; really bad, a ’94. If things are looking up, the GOP will have a much rougher go, esp. if they continue to flail as they have the past few months. But I’ll likely delve a bit more in future posts.

    Karl (8966b4)

  87. Why should the rest of the country pay for these few?

    Turns out most of the foreclosures are centered in a few dense clusters.

    Joe (17aeff)

  88. On March 10, 2009 our President said: “I reject a system that rewards failure …” Right, just keep giving money to those failed companies! – What about an excellent teacher, Mr. President? I believe you are covering up the wrongful dismissal of Illinois teacher Cecil James Roth because it would expose the fact that the ISBE condones subjective evaluation plans to fire teachers that districts don’t like, but don’t have valid reasons to dismiss. Illinois Senator Obama, a lawyer, improperly failed to respond to my written plea for help in the discipline of attorneys misconduct in the dismissal hearing. Roth was not an unsatisfactory teacher! He just asked that two administrators be disciplined for verbally abusing him before other teachers. He had four Excellent Evaluations before the abuse. VoteNoParty member: Cecil James Roth

    Cecil Roth (fce3e1)

  89. Cecil James Roth is spamming every site he has time to. It’s really very, very, very, hard for a teacher to be fired in Illinois. My homeroom teacher in high school, for example, was a paranoid schizophrenic that never spoke coherently and everyone was afraid to walk near to. Ignore him.

    nk (31b2d3)

  90. It’s not that he’s doing too many, it’s that all the things he’s doing are wrong, closing Gitmo,
    cutting back on energy exploration, reversing the
    abortion ban, raising taxes on everything, spending more money than Croesus on a bender, cutting defense,there’s certainly things I left out.

    narciso (996c34)

  91. In other news, best transition EVAH!

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  92. The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the – Web Reconnaissance for 03/12/2009 A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day…so check back often.

    David M (447675)

  93. FDR didn’t have the luxury of choosing between ending a depression and fighting a war???? This statement displays a shocking ignorance of history. I can forgive someone for believing the New Deal ended the Depression — that is, after all, the dominant hegemonic discourse & all — but at least get your dates straight!

    Also from the same article, the idea that JFK didn’t have the luxury of choosing between civil rights and sending a man to the moon. Putting aside JFK’s notorious lack of enthusiasm for civil rights (at least compared to RFK), the Apollo project was, in policy terms, the very definition of a “luxury.” You might as well say JFK didn’t have the luxury of choosing between escalating Vietnam and sending troops to the Bay of Pigs.

    sierra (4be1ff)

  94. […] is small wonder Obama is having a tough time pushing this line. His own supporters do not buy it. The establishment media does not buy it (as the Politico itself notes). Democrats in Congress do […]

    The Greenroom » Forum Archive » 100 days: What Obama does not want you to read (e2f069)

  95. […] turn of the 16-year cycle, and here we are again. As in the late 1970s, Californians are again poised to reject the big […]

    The Greenroom » Forum Archive » The ghost of Noonan past (e2f069)

  96. […] Wolffe’s fight scenario is the more plausible, as it fits with Pres. Obama’s general “too much, too soon” approach. He does not want a perceived crisis to go to waste, and likely has calculated that his […]

    The Greenroom » Forum Archive » Sotomayor or Healthcare “reform”? (e2f069)

  97. […] regardless of whether government is divided or united. Inexperienced Democratic presidents elected every 16 years or so since WWII promise Hopenchange, and always run smack into the reality of our messy little […]

    The Greenroom » Forum Archive » The more things Hopenandchange… (e2f069)

  98. […] Update x2: The Politico has more on Congressional Democrats pushing back against Obama’s ”too much, too soon” agenda. (Where have I heard that phrase before?) […]

    Patterico’s Pontifications » The Emperor’s New Trainwreck (e4ab32)

  99. […] Pres. Obama was facing — and rejecting — criticism that he was trying to do “too much, too soon.” At that time, I wrote: That President Obama seems to be following the “too much, too soon” path […]

    The Greenroom » Forum Archive » Diagnosing Obama’s problems is not rocket science (e2f069)

  100. […] his administration, Pres. Obama was facing — and rejecting — criticism that he was trying to do “too much, too soon.” At that time, I wrote: That President Obama seems to be following the “too much, too soon” path […]

    Patterico’s Pontifications » Diagnosing Obama’s problems is not rocket science (e4ab32)

  101. […] Sounds familiar. ___Hat tip: Patterico’s Pontifications. […]

    Quote of the Day — Jimmy Carter – blogan (c80ceb)


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