Obama’s very effectiveness as a president is widely viewed as being in serious question. He is unable to convince people that the stimulus program is working. His health care reform program is under attack from a variety of interests. On the Afghanistan war, he seems indecisive.
Combined with his lack of executive experience, his seeming inability to resolve political problems affect his ability to govern. Obama’s quick trip to Copenhagen to lobby for Chicago’s bid on the Olympic Games-and then to be rejected-seemed to indicate poor staff work and a trivialization of priorities. Allowing General Stanley McChrystal to lobby the public to affect the president’s decision on Afghanistan weakened Obama’s authority. A confident president would have fired the general as Truman did with MacArthur and Bush did with Shinseki. The situation blended into comic relief when Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize while fighting two wars and planning on a third.
Around the world, supporters of Obama worry about his failure to change Bush policies and to solve pressing problems. They see demonstrations in front of the White House by Obama supporters disappointed that he hasn’t changed the “don’t ask, don’t tell” military policy as he promised in the campaign. And those who want an end to the Afghan war or least an exit strategy are acting out in Congress and around the country. […]