• Tips gratefully accepted here. Thanks!:

  • Recent Comments

    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Who gets their stuff?
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Who gets their stuff?
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Who gets their stuff?
    Niles on Who gets their stuff?
    William on Who gets their stuff?
    William on Who gets their stuff?
    William on Who gets their stuff?
    William on OooOOOoooo, Snap! That’s going…
    Catscatscats on OooOOOoooo, Snap! That’s going…
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on OooOOOoooo, Snap! That’s going…
    bellecat on OooOOOoooo, Snap! That’s going…
    bellecat on OooOOOoooo, Snap! That’s going…
    Kathleen A Wynne on The reason I won’t be voting f…
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on The reason I won’t be voting f…
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on The reason I won’t be voting f…
  • Categories


  • Tags

    abortion Add new tag Afghanistan Al Franken Anglachel Atrios bankers Barack Obama Bernie Sanders big pharma Bill Clinton cocktails Conflucians Say Dailykos Democratic Party Democrats Digby DNC Donald Trump Donna Brazile Economy Elizabeth Warren feminism Florida Fox News General Glenn Beck Glenn Greenwald Goldman Sachs health care Health Care Reform Hillary Clinton Howard Dean John Edwards John McCain Jon Corzine Karl Rove Matt Taibbi Media medicare Michelle Obama Michigan misogyny Mitt Romney Morning Edition Morning News Links Nancy Pelosi New Jersey news NO WE WON'T Obama Obamacare OccupyWallStreet occupy wall street Open thread Paul Krugman Politics Presidential Election 2008 PUMA racism Republicans research Sarah Palin sexism Single Payer snark Social Security Supreme Court Terry Gross Texas Tim Geithner unemployment Wall Street WikiLeaks women
  • Archives

  • History

  • RSS Paul Krugman: Conscience of a Liberal

  • The Confluence

    The Confluence

  • RSS Suburban Guerrilla

    • Broken heart
      I never really had a broken heartYou don’t believe me, just look at my chestThe way some people like to run and hideI never really, reallyI never really had a broken heart. Dr. Dog:
  • RSS Ian Welsh

    • Bernie Sanders vs. Elizabeth Warren
      Many supporters of Sanders or Warren have become rather vicious to each other. The claim from the Warren supporters is that their candidate is the candidate of ideas, having put out tons of policy proposals. (Sanders has 25 last time I looked, so he’s not shy on this.) She’s younger, and it’s important to some […]
  • Top Posts

  • Advertisements

Not Ready On Day One

The White House admits they blew it with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, but the explanation makes things worse:

Barack Obama ‘too tired’ to give proper welcome to Gordon Brown

Sources close to the White House say Mr Obama and his staff have been “overwhelmed” by the economic meltdown and have voiced concerns that the new president is not getting enough rest.

British officials, meanwhile, admit that the White House and US State Department staff were utterly bemused by complaints that the Prime Minister should have been granted full-blown press conference and a formal dinner, as has been customary. They concede that Obama aides seemed unfamiliar with the expectations that surround a major visit by a British prime minister.

[…]

Allies of Mr Obama say his weary appearance in the Oval Office with Mr Brown illustrates the strain he is now under, and the president’s surprise at the sheer volume of business that crosses his desk.

A well-connected Washington figure, who is close to members of Mr Obama’s inner circle, expressed concern that Mr Obama had failed so far to “even fake an interest in foreign policy”.

A British official conceded that the furore surrounding the apparent snub to Mr Brown had come as a shock to the White House. “I think it’s right to say that their focus is elsewhere, on domestic affairs. A number of our US interlocutors said they couldn’t quite understand the British concerns and didn’t get what that was all about.”

The American source said: “Obama is overwhelmed. There is a zero sum tension between his ability to attend to the economic issues and his ability to be a proactive sculptor of the national security agenda.

“That was the gamble these guys made at the front end of this presidency and I think they’re finding it a hard thing to do everything.”

[…]

The real views of many in Obama administration were laid bare by a State Department official involved in planning the Brown visit, who reacted with fury when questioned by The Sunday Telegraph about why the event was so low-key.

The official dismissed any notion of the special relationship, saying: “There’s nothing special about Britain. You’re just the same as the other 190 countries in the world. You shouldn’t expect special treatment.”The apparent lack of attention to detail by the Obama administration is indicative of what many believe to be Mr Obama’s determination to do too much too quickly.

The Sunday Telegraph understands that one of Mr Obama’s most prominent African American backers, whose endorsement he spent two years cultivating, has told friends that he detects a weakness in Mr Obama’s character.

“The one real serious flaw I see in Barack Obama is that he thinks he can manage all this,” the well-known figure told a Washington official, who spoke to this newspaper. “He’s underestimating the flood of things that will hit his desk.” A Democratic strategist, who is friends with several senior White House aides, revealed that the president has regularly appeared worn out and drawn during evening work sessions with senior staff in the West Wing and has been forced to make decisions more quickly than he is comfortable.

He said that on several occasions the president has had to hurry back from eating dinner with his family in the residence and then tucking his daughters in to bed, to conduct urgent government business. Matters are not helped by the pledge to give up smoking. (emphasis added)

First of all the statement that there is “nothing special about Britain” is a diplomatic faux pas of the highest order.  Even if that is Obama’s personal opinion it’s not something you say out loud.  If I was Hillary I would find out who said it and transfer the person to our embassy in Antarctica along with the person who embarrassed her by mistranslating Russian.  (If I was either of those people I would defect to Cuba or some other nation without an extradition treaty before Hillary gets back from her overseas trip.)

As for the admission that Obama is overwhelmed – who could have predicted it?  Was there anyone who kept saying all last year that Obama was inexperienced and unqualified?  Did anyone warn that he had never accomplished anything or held a full-time job before?  Anyone besides 18 million Hillary supporters I mean.  Remember how the sippy-kup kidz from the kool-aid kingdom said “experience doesn’t matter?”  They were wrong.

Last of all, if Obama is “too tired” maybe he should knock off the speeches and campaign trips to Ohio and Indiana  and focus on his work.  If he’s worn out then he should stop holding White House concerts and cocktail parties so he and Michelle can schmooze with celebrities and get some sleep instead.

Advertisements

Inside joke

While we’re all waking up and getting our act together, this is an open thread.