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Obama is an Invisible Force   November 15th, 2008
But he continues to avoid influencing politics       


More observations...

Yet another report of how Obama is, apparently intentionally, trying to avoid giving any hints as to how he will govern in January. I can still understand his uncharacteristically humble position that there's only one president at a time and he must yield to Bush. But the world is at the brink of an economic crisis and everyone wants--and needs--to know what the president-elect is going to want to do in 2 months.


President-elect Barack Obama is an invisible force as foreign leaders and Congress convene separately in Washington, the economy at center stage.

One sentiment runs below the crosscurrents as a summit of world leaders wrestles with a global crisis this weekend and Congress in the week ahead struggles with rising unemployment and an ailing auto industry: What would Obama do?

Obama is staying away, ensconced in Chicago, unwilling to make any public show of political influence before he is sworn in to office Jan. 20. Indeed, his break with Congress will be complete on Sunday when he officially resigns his Illinois Senate seat.

If Obama's position on the economic crisis is significantly different than Bush's then the world needs to know that so we don't spend two months going down one road only to have Obama reverse course in January. If the economy is as a bad as everyone is saying then two months is a long time to be kept in the dark as to Obama's solution. And I wouldn't be surprised if world leaders at the G-20 conference are reluctant to commit to a course of action without knowing whether or not the U.S. will adhere to the plan beyond January.

Indeed, that very point is mentioned in the previous link:

"You can imagine the difficulty from the perspective of the participants," said David Lewis, an expert on the presidency at Vanderbilt University. "You don't want to put a lot of effort into doing something when you know that the arrival of a next administration might undo all the work you have done or might undercut an administration that you want to see what they have to offer."...

Many at the summit will have their eyes trained on Jan. 21.

"Given Bush's lame duck status, it's probably not clear to participants what to make of what he brings to the table," said Jared Bernstein, an economist who served as an unofficial adviser to the Obama campaign.

Obama's lack of a clear position on the economic crisis and his constant avoiding of "influencing" politics prior to January 20th is having a detrimental effect on the ability of the world to respond to the crisis

Additionally, the famous change.gov website indicates the following agenda:

The Agenda

President-Elect Obama and Vice President-Elect Biden have developed innovative approaches to challenge the status quo in Washington and to bring about the kind of change America needs.

The Obama Administration has a comprehensive and detailed agenda to carry out its policies. The principal priorities of the Obama Administration include: a plan to revive the economy, to fix our health care, education, and social security systems, to define a clear path to energy independence, to end the war in Iraq responsibly and finish our mission in Afghanistan, and to work with our allies to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, among many other domestic and foreign policy objectives.

That's currently the entire content of the "agenda" page. They apparently have a "comprehensive and detailed agenda" but they don't indicate on the website what it is, nor are they willing to drop any hints to the country or to the world before January 20th. For a campaign that prided itself on their ability to communicate, why are they now being so quiet about their plans?

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