Sunday, January 3, 2010

What has Obama done in his first year?

[Written on January 3, and never posted until February...]

It’s worth remembering that America is a vast and cumbersome machine, designed to resist deep change. That this one man has moved the country a few key, structural degrees in one year, and that the direction is as clear and as strategic as that first embraced by Reagan and Margaret Thatcher (in the opposite direction), is under-appreciated. But the shift is real and more dramatic than current events might indicate.
I forget, is Andrew Sullivan a conservative, or middle-of-the-road? Anyway, here's the piece he wrote for Newsweek, on how much Obama has achieved in his first year. I don't follow details enough to know what I think overall.

I don't think the healthcare plan is adequate, and if individuals are required to pay for healthcare insurance, I think that's unconstitutional, but I am thrilled that we are talking about this, and may get something for lots of people.

I don't like his insistence on waging war in Afghanistan. But I sure don't feel 'betrayed' - I knew going in that he wouldn't be exactly the leader I want. It's our job on the left to push for saner policies.

I don't think Obama has a clear understanding of what's needed for education policy, and that's my biggest disappointment.

However much I disagree with his policy choices, I still have hope that the man intends his actions to be moral. At my parents' house, they were watching something called The People's Choice Awards (I think), and the camera kept panning to the Obamas. I can't help liking him ... But the more time goes on and he picks policies that are not helpful, the more I know we need to struggle.

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