HUCKABY: Time for Obama to own the messes in America

I was channel surfing the other day and ran across that old Robert Redford/Barbra Streisand movie, "The Way we Were." Now I'm not a fan of Streisand's political views, but she does have nice legs and a nice set of vocal chords, so I watched part of the movie. Plus, I love the theme song. Remember how it goes?

"Memories, light the corners of my mind; misty watercolor memories, of the way we were."

Almost brings a tear to your eye, doesn't it? I began to reflect on a few misty watercolor memories of my own, and I hearkened back to the nostalgic days of August 2008. I know it seems longer, but it really was only three years ago.

The delegates of the Democratic Party were about to convene in Denver and nominate Barack Hussein Obama as their presidential candidate. I'm not sure the city was the only thing a mile high that week. There was an aura of invincibility around Obama. He was received like a rock star everywhere he went and his mantra was always the same. He was going to offer "hope and change, hope and change, hope and change."

Well, we have had plenty of change -- I'll give him that.

Obama was going to close Guantanamo Bay, bring all the troops home, solve everybody's health care problems, make sure everybody had a job and provide everyone with a college education -- all at the taxpayers' expense, of course.

How is that hope and change working out for the rest of you? I'm not really digging it myself.

We are still in Iraq and Afghanistan. My home has dropped in value by about 125 percent, but that's OK because gasoline prices have increased by 125 percent, which makes it balance out, I suppose. My insurance rates have increased by about 25 percent, which counteracts the fact that my 401(k) has declined by about 25 percent. Maybe that's what Obama meant when he promoted more balance in the economy. Groceries have gone up, my blood pressure has gone up, unemployment has risen and the national debt has tripled.

Of course none of this is Obama's fault, and he has a whole list of whipping boys at his disposal. During the president's first State of the Union Address in 2010, he continually spoke of the problems he had inherited and John McCain could be seen mouthing the words "still blaming Bush." A lot of people criticized McCain for this, of course, and said he was disrespectful and had a sour grapes attitude because he lost the '08 election.

But that was a year and a half ago and Obama and his backers -- yes, Obama still has backers -- are still blaming Bush, along with the Republicans, the tea party and anybody else they can find to point a finger at. But George W. Bush isn't president anymore and hasn't been for almost three years.

I learned a long time ago that you'd better be careful what you wish for because you might get it. The majority of the electorate wanted Barack Obama, and he wanted to be in charge of the nation. He ran a race full of promises. He was elected. He got his wish. He is the leader of the free world. Now he needs to own his position.

Harry Truman inherited the presidency during one of the most critical times in our nation's history and had to make many tough, tough decisions. World War II -- and not the New Deal -- had ended the Great Depression and the Germans were all but defeated when Truman was sworn in, but the war in the Pacific was still very much in jeopardy and reconversion to a post-war world would offer a number of challenges. Plus Truman would have to deal with a plethora of social issues and the beginning of the Cold War -- which would soon erupt into a shooting war in Korea. Times were tough.

Harry Truman didn't have a placard on his desk that said, "I inherited this mess." He didn't have a placard that said, "The Republicans are holding me hostage." Harry Truman had a placard on his desk that said, "The buck stops here." Can I get a witness?

Truman also had a mantra. "If you can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen."

President Obama, you are the president of the United States. You had all the answers in August of 2008.

"Can it be that it was all so simple then, or has time rewritten every line?" Now is the time to stop blaming everything and everybody but yourself and fulfill some of those rosy campaign promises.

"If we had the chance to do it all again, tell me would we? Could we?" Lord, I would like to think not.

We the people will get one more shot to get it right in 15 months. It may be our last best chance to save this country. I've had all the change I can stand, and am rapidly running out of hope.

Darrell Huckaby is a local educator and author. Email him at dhuck08@bellsouth.net. For past columns, visit www.rockdalecitizen.com or www.newtoncitizen.com.


billyp66 4 years, 1 month ago

Thanks for the article. I really enjoyed it. I admit I really thought Pres Obama was going to make changes. I do not like him blaming others. Thats nonsense he does that. He is in charge and he should be taking the blame. I am a democrat and a white male. So even I am disgusted with Pres Obama



SarahTodd 4 years, 1 month ago

I freely admit that I have, at times, been quite disappointed with Obama's performance. I feel that he should have pushed much harder when he had the majority in both houses to do the things that were right to do and what he promised to do: close Guantanamo Bay, bring our troops home from Iraq & Afghanistan, fight for working people, etc. I blame a lot of those first two years on weak leadership in the Senate. Harry Reid nearly peed his pants any time a Republican whispered the word filibuster. However, I also know that with the GOP fighting tooth and nail every measure he put out, it was going to be a tough row to hoe. When the Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says in October of 2009 "'The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president", well you know it wasn't going to be pleasant. I don't mind that he points out that the mess we are in is completely someone else's fault. What I mind is him being so "meh" about it. Get mad, dang it! Get in their faces and tell them that they caused this mess and we don't appreciate having to clean it up for them while they are still making things worse. Show me some fire!


SarahTodd 4 years, 1 month ago

I see my comment regarding Harry Truman and a number of his quotes doesn't show up. Didn't like what he had to say?


joanneraatz 4 years, 1 month ago

I wish The Newton Citizen would hire Sarah Todd as a full time columnist. Readers deserve some BALANCE!

and - Harry Truman's quotes ARE wonderful.


Angelica65 4 years, 1 month ago

President Obama did try hard to close Gitmo. He was even willing to refurbish old prisons to bring the prisoners to which also would have meant more jobs. BUT Congress would not back him up on it. He cannot close it without Congress's backing. They backed GW when he opened it but they will not back President Obama to close it. Of course the media didn't pay any attention to the fact because it's not negative press which seems to be all they want to do. The information is out there people. Don't believe something just because this idiot says so.


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