Sunday, May 6, 2012


Everything the president does is political. He can’t have dinner, go to church, go for a run, or anything else without thinking of how it affects his political career or his ability of passing and enforcing legislation that he believes to be the right direction for the country. Bush didn’t just go to his ranch in Texas and chainsaw some wood without having a meeting about how the media will cover that event and President Obama also understands that everything he does will be spun in the media for political gain or for political loss. 

Anyway, I don’t mind that. It’s ok for politicians put on a show for the public. I like a guy that can chainsaw some wood or picks brackets for March Madness and those things are fine for a president to do but they don’t matter that much and I wish the media didn’t over emphasize these things.  I wish the media could focus more on the policies and accomplishments that a president has made. When a president does do some political theatrics to highlight a policy or accomplishment I wish the media would see that as a legit way to highlight what they have done and the direction they want the country to go. Those things are important because based on what we see these guys do we will decide to vote for them or not.  

A few days ago President Obama went to Afghanistan to sign an agreement with the Afghan government and give a speech to the troops still serving there. This just happened to be on the same day as the anniversary of the death of Osama Bin Laden. Well, we all know that’s not true. Of course, President Obama went to Afghanistan on that exact day to remind us of his administrations accomplishments of one year ago. But is that a wrong thing to do? Should he have gone on a different day or not have gone at all? I would say that reminding the American people that it was on his watch and it was his decision that ended up killing Osama Bin Laden is not a deceptive political tactic. It just reminds us of President Obama’s record. And I feel it is important for us to be reminded of his foreign policy record because I feel the democrats have been painted unjustly as week on foreign policy. 

Over the past year President Obama and the Democrats have shown a lot of restraint in shamelessly promoting their own foreign policy accomplishments but there does come a time when the American people should be reminded about what the record is.  

Lately there has been a lot of criticisms for the following ad about Obama’s decision on killing Osama Bin Laden and the contrast to what Romney might have does if he was in office. 

This ad seems to be fair in that it takes Romney’s actual words and uses them in context to ask the question “What would Romney have done.”  Romney seems to have made clear that the war on terrorism should not include spending excessive resources going after one man. And it seems clear to me that if the operation would have failed Romney would now be attacking Obama for wasting resources and lives going after one man. 

Romney’s response to the ad is that he would have made the same order that President Obama did and that “even Jimmy Carter would have given that order” (meaning killing Osama)

This does not seems to be in line with Romney’s previous statements and it seems to be fair to contrast what President Obama said he would do and then actually did do with what Romney said he would actually have done and then what he now says he would have done. Of course, in any situation there are nuances and room for explanations but my point is that the actions of President Obama with the handling of the killing of Osama Bin Laden and his actions one year later in reminding us what was done and what might have be done under a Romney administration were totally fair. 

It could be argued that President Obama has not handled all aspects of his administration and/or campaign fairly but in this circumstance I think it should be recognized that he has.  

A fair possible criticism of President Obama is that the killing of Osama Bin Laden was excessive and unnecessary and that the risks taken were not worth the potential disaster that could have happened. I’m not inclined to agree with this argument but at least it would be a respectable and consistent argument coming from the right. The argument could be that the potential loss of American lives going after one man who at that point was not functionally the leader of Al-Queda as well as the international law that was broken going into sovereign country that we are not at war with has a much bigger down side then an upside.  Weather this mission was a success or a failure the risks taken were not worth the potential disaster. 

I don’t agree with those statements but it would be a compelling argument to me. I would respect someone making that argument even though I would disagree with them. Possibly Ron Paul is making that argument but other than him I have only heard from conservative media that President Obama is using the death of Bin Laden for political gain and that inferring that Romney would not have made the same call is somehow unfair.   

President Obama, when asked to respond to excessive celebration in regard to the anniversary of the death of Bin Laden and also the inference that Romney might not have made the same decision that he did, gave an appropriate response that you can hear for yourself below. 

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