Skip to comments.History Will Judge Obama on Actions, Not Words
Posted on 11/06/2013 2:58:43 PM PST by Kaslin
History judges a leader exclusively through his actions and their ultimate results rather than through fleeting words. It appears that U.S. President Barack Obama is finally putting the brakes on his mouth after flooring it down Hope-and-Change Highway for most of his tenure.
Remember the Syrian crisis that dominated chatter for months before all but vanishing? Recall how critics were talking about grievous incompetence and even possible impeachment? Fast-forward to today, and just try to start a conversation with, "Obama really botched the situation in Syria." Now that the Russians have overseen a plan for the destruction of that country's chemical arsenal and reeled in its leader, to what "botched" Syria situation would this even refer?
History records plane crashes, not turbulence -- although those on the flight itself might chatter about it. And therein lies the problem: the increasing disconnect between reality and the virtual world as people become more engrossed with social media and its real-time nature. Far too many observers are obsessed with second-by-second minutiae and the slightest twitches. The leader of a nation isn't tethered by social media or news feeds, nor should he be. In fact, that would make him unfit for leadership.
As a leader, you set the narrative, and that means not responding to people with their own agendas -- much like football players don't spend the game yelling into the stands at the fans of the opposing team. Arguably no recent American president understood this better than George W. Bush. It could be that Obama is now starting to get it, too.
Whether one agrees with him or not, Obama has been working to push through major reforms in areas ranging from health care to immigration to gun-control legislation. For all of its flaws, Obamacare is the most ambitious social safety net to be introduced in America in decades. A dramatic overhaul of immigration laws is likely to follow.
Presidents have a tactical decision to make: Either they can keep talking and painstakingly explaining their choices (as former U.S. President Bill Clinton was famous for doing throughout the turbulence of his mandate), or they can rhetorically retreat and let actions and outcomes speak for themselves. Bush was a fan of the action-over-rhetoric strategy, having all but eliminated any defensive communications efforts and preferring to let history write itself.
"Caution: Subjects are less prominent than they appear." That tagline should be attached to information that emerges from the tireless 24/7 news and information onslaught. In the moment, anything and everything can seem important, but only time can properly contextualize it. Polls are taken every few days. Only the latest one counts, and there's always another one coming right up.
When faced with a crisis, a smart leader asks himself: "Will history ascribe importance to this event? If so, what will be the greater context?" It is precisely with those questions in mind that a politician should speak -- or not. It's a mark of wisdom rather than arrogance not to be goaded into responding to things that don't meet these criteria for response. A leader, after all, is elected to lead, not to have his chain yanked by anyone who gives it a tug.
History doesn't have to be decided today, and it certainly won't be decided by self-appointed gatekeepers. The smart leader understands that no one comes home from a vacation and focuses on the five minutes of turbulence during return flight. For all the flack Bush received for his aggressive foreign-policy moves in response to the September 11th terrorist attacks, a June 2013 Gallup poll showed that his domestic approval rating had climbed to 49 percent after bottoming out at 32 percent in the last year of his final term. What did he do to earn such a substantial bump in popularity? Nothing that he wasn't criticized for during his presidency.
French presidents, from Jacques Chirac to Nicolas Sarkozy, are consistently more popular in the rearview mirror, after the dust has settled and the scope of their accomplishments becomes clearer.
Facts and truth don't need hand-holding. They find their way into history all by themselves.
But Barry’s history is already being rewritten by the hard left/liberal/progressive...
When the Obama saga is written; may history also judge the democrat party and it’s media.
History will judge congress, also, and the Supreme court for allowing him to get away with all of the things he’s done to them, their peers, through abortion, Obamacare, and the out of control spending.
It’s wise to make oneself known to one’s progeny, or they might wonder.
And Karl Rove beware.
Oh I mean the entire congress, the lack of opposition is very much at fault, here
He’ll be remembered for his lies.
Who gives a flying crap how he will be judged? Pap pieces like this are stupid - ooh and aahh I should be impressed with her analysis? I care that my damned country is disappearing brick by brick and republican prick by prick.
We serve the politicians now and we have like 10 or fewer people actually trying to lead at a national level: S. King, M. Lee, West, Palin, Paul, Cruz, Walker, possibly Perry, Bachman, and radio hosts Levin, Rush and a handful more. That’s it!!!
Excuse me if I don’t give a rat’s butt about how 0bamma will go down in history...I hope stone cold except for flamming heat from a poker saying to quote an old Far Side cartoon: “Is it hot enough for you?”.
Of course, sure, I do hope and pray he turns to Jesus, but as of how I think 0bummer has his fingers in his ears. He’s about as evil as it gets.
History will be written by the liberals who made FDR a hero worthy of Mount Rushmore.
Unfortunately, they no longer teach history in our schools and colleges. “History” will be what they SAY it will be not factual history. Believe me when I say Odumbo will be the “Crown Prince” of his time if the media and educators have anything to say.
Too bad he will not go down in flames along the way.
no, history will judge him both on his anti-American, anti-Christian, anti-Jewish, and pro-IslamoNazi actions....
AND on his inability to be truthful with the American public about himself or his policies or actions.
He will be judged on both, his deed AND his words.
It would be impossible to ignore either...
I’m curious to know who will even be able to read our history. They will either be chinese or space aliens or illiterate hordes
yea right - i really believe that for the first (partly) black ‘affirmative action’ president...he’ll always be the ONE!
We need to put on the mind of Ronald Reagan.
Just think what millions of Ronald Reagans would do to the blowhard lefties.
Who writes the history is just like who counts the votes.
Kaslin, please know my post is directed at the author, not you.
EXACTLY...communist always lie about the past...so it will be here cause that’s where we already are...
“Whether one agrees with him or not, Obama has been working to push through major reforms in areas ranging from health care to immigration to gun-control legislation.”
In other words, Obama’s been doing his level best to convert the United States into a carbon copy of the old Soviet Union.
..... And as well .... history will also judge the Republicans on their true actions and not their empty words.
Those will be the facts. How they're evaluated will depend on who's doing the evaluating. Freedom lovers will see his administration as moving America significantly further away from being a free republic under the U.S. Constitution with a free market economy, and closer towards a Socialist state. As a libertarian, I hate what FDR did and what Obama has/is doing. But government dependents and "progressives" of course will think it's great.
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