Defending Obama's Oil Spill Leadership

As news reports over the weekend made clear, the so-called “top kill” measure to plug the oil leak in the Gulf was unsuccessful and continued general unease over the government’s reaction to the enviro-catastrophe is growing.

Many in the general public—the unlearned, it is obvious—have become decidedly unpleased with President Barack Obama’s leadership in the aftermath of the BP leak. A new poll this week reveals 51% of Americans disapprove of the President’s handling of the spill. Even those who previously received an orgasmic thrill up their legs at the sight of President Obama are starting to turn on our dear leader. Heretics!

There has been considerable ire from some who wished President Obama showed up to the region affected by the leak. So little, these critics know! They somehow think the President can just drop the work that needs to be done in order to show some real leadership on the ground. It’s just not realistic.

Did these selfish critics somehow expect the President to not meet with the NCAA men’s basketball champion Duke Blue Devils on the May 27? We’re not talking the Huskies or Bruins here—this is the Blue Devils team and when you make a meeting with head coach Mike Krzyzewski, you damn well better keep it. It makes little sense to console the men and women in the Gulf who are losing their local businesses to the spill, when there is a tremendous photo-op with an award winning sport’s team (did you see how diverse the photograph was? The team is filled with black and white players; this is a post-racial America, people!).

Those who graciously understood the importance of meeting with a college basketball team, have, however, grown upset over the President’s decision to have a private luncheon with former President Bill Clinton. I have it on good authority that White House head chef Cristeta Comerford had already prepared spiced pork belly and a side of greens topped with fresh raspberry vinaigrette. I don’t know where you grew up, but when someone makes you a meal, you eat it—you don’t let it go to waste, especially when it’s cooked by a chef featured on “Iron Chef America.” Plus, President Obama had a lot of planning to do with President Clinton to explain their potentially illegal job offer to Joe Sestak, the future runner-up for Pennsylvania senator.

Being President is exceptionally stressful, particularly when you’re under-qualified and are surrounded by incompetent staff. A weak argument can be made that the President should have been delivering a moving speech about the blah blah blah of coming together after a tragedy blah blah blah, but then, he wouldn’t have been ready for the long weekend, where he would skip a Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Ceremony so he can vacation in Chicago, the Mecca of ethical, sound politics.

It appears silly to have to defend our President—a Nobel Peace Prize winner and all-around good guy—because, who are we, the general public, to question a man of such stature and respect as to the decisions he makes? We’re in a post-9/11 world, people.

We don’t need a President to hold our hands and get us through a tragedy of un-told scope. We had that in President George W. Bush, and what good did he do (besides a healthier economy, lower taxes, and an actual war on terror)?


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