How is President Obama like the United States?
Answer: both get blamed whatever they do.
In the continuing antics of the US House of Representatives, the Boehner team wants President Obama to wait for their permission to do anything. After they’ve played about with the federal law-making system till it’s completely broken, they want the President to just leave it lying broken and bleeding in the halls of the Capitol.
So, if the President tries to make the Affordable Health Care Act, which Congress passed in 2010, phase in more smoothly, they sue him.
But they expect him to act when they don’t know what they want. Then it’s the President’s fault for not doing enough. Why isn’t he acting faster to solve the child immigration crisis brought on by a law passed by Congress and signed by his predecessor in 2008?
On the international scene, similarly, other countries sit around waiting for the U.S. to solve the latest problem, and then everyone blames us for whatever we do or don’t do.
We broke Iraq, in Colin Powell’s term, so we own it. and of course we and we alone are responsible for saving people being massacred there.
According to an AP story today,
This is going to be a long-term project” that won’t end and can’t succeed unless Iraqis form an inclusive government in Baghdad capable of keeping the country from breaking apart, Obama said at the White House….
“We can conduct air strikes, but, ultimately, there’s not going to be an American military solution to this problem. There’s going to have to be an Iraqi solution that America and other countries and allies support,” he said.
In other words, the country that Western powers artificially carved out after World War I will be broken till the U.S. finally lets its pieces go their separate ways. Till then, while everyone else watches, we’ll be sending in bombing missions and advisors and security forces to protect our security forces.
Afghanistan–we also broke it, and it’s still broken too. Western Europe broke Ukraine by trying to tear it out of the Russian orbit, and Russia’s Putin rushed in and picked up a prime chunk of it.
And then there’s the 70-year piece of tragic theater playing out between Israel and Palestine. The cooped-up people who have been killed in large numbers recently are inhabitants of Gaza, which is part of Palestine, which was part of the Ottoman Empire, which was broken up by the Western powers after World War I. Even their next-door neighbor Egypt won’t let needed supplies in over the border. Everyone’s waiting for the US to fix that disaster too.
If we do anything (other than give both sides money and equipment) it’s our fault, and if we don’t, it’s our fault too. Over generations, the US has created a culture of dependency, and now we can’t break the cycle. I don’t mean just the culture of dependency of Palestine, Israel, Egypt, Iraq, and Afghanistan; I mean the dependency of the world, waiting for us to do something.
It makes you think the people in power better not keep breaking things, doesn’t it? Except the culture of dependency on the US, that is.
When legislators and countries won’t do their job, there is gridlock. Gridlock isn’t good for anyone, at least anyone who believes in democracy.
In the US House of Representatives, the people in power aren’t taking the responsibility to do their job, which is to pass laws for the benefit of the country. If Americans are paying attention, they will go to the polls in November to say what they think about irresponsible legislators.
And the countries of the world aren’t taking the responsibility to do their job, which is to advance their own citizens’ interests while trying for good relations among countries, which is also in the interest of their own citizens and all citizens of the world.