When Did The 'Micromanaging President' Become 'President Passerby'?
Color me skeptical that the President was above the fray, as King Henry II supposedly was before his knights slaughtered Thomas Beckett. The idea that Obama is merely "President Passerby", as Dana Milbank has dubbed him - not a bad guy, just completely out of the loop, is a fairly new one.
Remember how early in his presidency, the "passerby president" was known as the "micromanaging president"?
Oh, I do.
Back then, he was a brilliant hands-on guy, who could do a better job than most of the people he hired to do it .... as he once said himself.
Obama had always had a high estimation of his ability to cast and run his operation. When David Plouffe, his campaign manager, first interviewed for a job with him in 2006, the senator gave him a warning: “I think I could probably do every job on the campaign better than the people I’ll hire to do it,” he said. “It’s hard to give up control when that’s all I’ve known.” Obama said nearly the same thing to Patrick Gaspard, whom he hired to be the campaign’s political director. “I think I’m a better speechwriter than my speechwriters,” Obama told him. “I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors. And I’ll tell you right now that I’m gonna think I’m a better political director than my political director.”
Here's an article from August 2009 in the WSJ:
Many presidents have directed policy from on high, shunning the details of most issues. Mr. Obama has adopted a different style, particularly when it comes to economics, as he and his team wrestle with the worst financial crisis the nation has faced since the Depression.
In a White House ritual new with this administration, the president gathers with his advisers every weekday morning for an Oval Office update and debate on the economy. The breadth of topics is wide, from the underemployed to childhood obesity, and Mr. Obama often dives into the minutiae.
In the sessions, according to those who attend, the president sometimes chafes at his advisers' limitations, quizzing them on points raised by critics or asking them to do justice to a view other than their own. At times he quotes from letters sent to the White House to counter a stance taken by his team.
Yet we're asked to believe that this same guy had no inkling about the DOJ’s covert seizure of the Associated Press’s phone records until Monday, and had no idea that the IRS was targeting conservatives until Friday?
He had no idea that Benghazi was an al Qaeda attack until weeks later, and has no idea how the talking points were changed?
As Sara Noble at the Independent Sentinel dryly noted, the White House also didn’t know that terror training camps were sprouting up all around the Benghazi consulate, or anything about the 200+ attacks in Libya prior to the 9/11 attack. The White House certainly didn’t know about the security requests.
And we can go on and on.
Obama didn’t know his BFFs Jay-Z and Beyonce were going to Communist Cuba on holiday. He doesn’t know how they got the visa to go.
The White House said that in the Boston terror attack there was no indication of terrorist activity. They didn’t know about the Russians’ warnings to us about Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
The White House didn’t know about the thousands of illegals who were recently released from prison by Janet Napolitano as part of the faux sequester cuts.
The White House absolutely didn’t deceive over the impact of sequester. They didn’t know anything. The White House said they didn’t cancel the White House tours.
The White House didn’t know anything about the Petraeus scandal. They conveniently learned about it the Wednesday after the election. The DOJ was investigating the Director of the CIA and the White House didn’t know.
The White House didn’t know about the Fast & Furious operation.
The White House didn’t know about the SEC/Goldman Sachs charges until after they were made public.
The White House didn’t know it had ordered General Stanley McChrystal to ”Defeat the Taliban. Secure the Population.”
The White House didn’t know that Jon Corzine was a raging incompetent. In fact, Joe Biden said that he was the first one they called when they had a financial question.
The White House didn’t know a Mao Tse-Tung ornament was hanging on their Christmas tree for three years in a row though it was mentioned each year.
In 2011, Barack Obama told Bob Woodward that he regretted criticizing Paul Ryan at his budget speech last year. Obama said he would not have attacked Paul Ryan if he would have known Ryan was going to attend the speech. It’s quite miraculous that Obama didn’t know because Obama personally invited Paul Ryan to hear his speech.
Barack Obama didn’t know Bill Ayers was a domestic terrorist even though they were colleagues and Ayers launched Obama’s career.
Barack didn’t know about Jeremiah Wright’s anti-white, anti-Jewish rants even though he sat in his church for 20 years.
Barack has carried that ability to not know into the White House – he didn’t know a member of a terrorist Muslim group was invited to the White House for a meeting with senior aides. Barack just didn’t know.
This is a "know it all" president until the information he knows become inconvenient. Then he becomes "the passerby president."
I ain't buying it.
Looks like I'm not alone: