In honor of the 44th President

In honor of the 44th President

As the Presidency of Barack Obama enters its final hours, I wax nostalgic and remember fondly the breath of hope his victory in 2008 gave many of us in the face of frightening national and world events.  His impressive fifty state grassroots campaign for President of the United States bore the embodiment and inspiration of his book, The Audacity of Hope Eight years ago President Obama and Vice President Biden assumed the reigns of national leadership in the wake of the worst economic meltdown since the Stock Market crash of 1929 and proceeded to rebuild the nation’s financial credibility among other monumental tasks.  After two terms of his predecessor, President Obama’s articulate speech alone went far to restore a sense of pride in national leadership.

   

Barack Obama’s Presidential campaign took place at that special moment in the history of the Republic where all the planets aligned just so and he emerged as the right person for the right time.  As anyone who has ever been immersed in campaign politics will tell you, nothing can disappoint like a politician.  Anyone who thinks any one person can be all things to all people has not yet reached full maturity.  It is my firm belief that President Obama will not be remembered historically for all of his accomplishments as much as he will be remembered for all he had to heft against in order to achieve them.  He will be remembered for his quiet dignity in the face of brazen and confrontational opposition.

 

Do I think he could have done better in certain areas and perhaps played different policies to a more beneficial result?  Certainly.  We all wish we could get back some of his real whoppers.  I mean selling the Affordable Care Act on a promise so dependent on a corporate decision to beneficiaries of being able to keep their own health plan and doctor was ultimately not a good move as most insurance companies ended up throwing him under the bus.  For someone like Yours Truly who has been left holding the bag by an insurance company I thought had my back, the abuse limiting provisions in that law were enough.  Would we like to have seen the closure of the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay?  Of course, but circumstances prohibited the required interventions to achieve that goal.  Would we like to have seen more citizens not requiring food stamps?  Absolutely.  In spite of these failures we also observed an addition of some 10.7 million new jobs, unemployment below 5% and a stock market that greater than doubled its numbers during his tenure.  May the record show that even though the nation was on the right track under President Obama’s leadership, these numbers were not good enough to win a majority of electoral votes to keep moving in that direction.

All successes and failures aside, President Barack Obama has been an inspirational figure.  I started my first blog during the summer of 2008 in the midst of his Presidential campaign.  I kept it up for just over a year and found sometimes such an endeavor can take over one’s life.  The grass roots organization of Obama for America inspired many to become involved in the political process.  Regardless of how it all may have played out, there was one thing that made it all worth while.  For the past eight years we have all gone to bed at night and slept soundly knowing there was an adult in the White House who was going to take the proverbial 2:30 AM phone call on the red line.  For that, President Obama rates our collective eternal gratitude.  Thank you, President Obama.  You gave America far better than we deserved.