Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Accountability Watch

Obama has now held more prime-time press conferences than Bush did in his entire second term. In his first term, which included 9/11, the anthrax attacks, and two wars, Bush held a total of three prime-time press conferences. That's an average of one every two years during his presidency.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's great Obama makes himself available. Too bad the corporate press people ask such irrelevant, ill-considered questions. I supported Obama in November, but I would like to hear him asked why we allow AIG to pay its counterparties in full and if he will make Geithner available to answer questions about the decision last fall to begin the bailout of AIG.

3/24/2009 11:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those questions are too difficult for the DC press.

3/25/2009 11:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And yet just how much accountability has resulted from those press conferences? It's very depressing, isn't it. To misquote Mark Twain...

"If you believed in Bush, you were uninformed. If you believe in Obama, you are misinformed."

3/25/2009 2:09 PM  
Blogger SEP said...

its been so long that people have forgotten what leadership looks like. no, press conferences don't fix the mess and neither does the bully pulpit right all wrongs; but there are a lot of benefits to these conversations that Obama has with the people that are difficult to measure but very real nonetheless. believe it or not people do listen to presidents; esp. really popular ones like Barack. and that goes a long way to calming panic, if nothing else.

3/25/2009 2:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't blame Obama because the press asks stupid questions. They don't seem to know what to do with him. But watching Obama and his ability to answer questions with complete sentences - and without smirking. Well it is reassuring.

The current mess took 8 years to create, maybe longer. So the public seems to be willing to give him some time. Making the public smarter than the pundits and press.

3/25/2009 4:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well of course this is only my opinion, but I think the current mess took well over 16 years to create; the past 8 were only the most egregious ones.

"Calming panic" and "giving him some time" are all well and good, but there's a fine line between "calming panic" and "lulling us to sleep" while the country is being looted. Not that Obama has some kind of evil Master Plan or something -- but he sure seems wedded to the idea that we can escape the mess with minimum fuss if we just print up astronomical sums of ersatz money and hand it over to the same hucksters who created the mess.

It won't work. What it does is transform the "productive" economy into a mere footnote of the finance sector, at a time when America desperately needs to revitalize our real productivity and pursue radical new innovation in many spheres. What it will do is kill all hope for our grandchildren and shackle the next several generations to a sinking ship. The "Old Economy" is simply not coming back.

We don't need panic, but we need some focused populist rage in order to force the government to make hard choices rather than deferring them in the hope of currying a few more drops of ambrosia from the folks who are "trickling down" on the rest of the nation. Obama may indeed be "calming panic", but unfortunately that is also the opposite of fomenting change.

3/25/2009 5:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


What a sad commentary that BUSH is somehow a standard of measure for Presidential performance. Thats like using Gary Coleman to measure an actors performance level!

Is OBAMA really that great?

Or are we back to the lesser of the evils? Because truly neither OBAMA or BUSH are much of a choice ...

We've had 100 years of the "two party aristocracy" and look at the results ... TRULY STUNNING! A complete study in voting apathy!! Exactly what the FIAT MASTERS counted on ...

3/25/2009 10:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

KAIMU nailed it.

I love how a handsome, reassuring voice makes everything allll better...

3/26/2009 12:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm with Letterman, it was like the White House was closed for 8 years, and it just reopened.

It brought hope to the spirit, that he took questions from other media outlets that normally don't get a chance. I also liked Obama's response, he likes to know what he is talking about. My guess, Bush never knew what he was talking about, and/or didn't want to convey what he was really doing to the People. It's hard to get up in front of people and answer questions when you say one thing and do another. You don't have to be accountable, if you hide. But, that's why they tried to control/buy the media, and do interviews with Fox. Bush didn't care to learn, the only thing that mattered was politics. He thought his father got penalized for saving the Nation, so he destroyed the Nation to save the Party, and in his mind that was okay. Paul O’Neill talks about visiting Bush, talking tax cuts and economics. Bush just stared, and didn't say a word. Isn't it ironic one of the guys, that tried to do the right thing, got fired by Bush; no, that'a Boy Brownie. It is really unfortunate for our Nation. With Bush and Cheney (BC), we got the worse people at the worse time. Do you think we'll ever find out who were involved in the BC Energy Task force and their agenda?

Frontline had an interesting program this week, "Ten Trillion and Counting". Quite frankly, it is amazing what Bush and Cheney did to our Nation and got people to go along with it. When they say BC politicised everything they weren't kidding.

Suze Orman couldn't be madder at Bush. I wish more people in public view would speak truth. It'll be the only thing that saves us.

3/26/2009 1:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It brings such hope, to have in one package, a man that is educated AND caring. I don't think the rich get it, and that includes John Kerry. They really do need to walk in another person's shoe to understand what life is like in the US for a lot of good people. You can work hard, get an education, but the systems in place are all designed to take you down, not lift you up. I can't express in words what it means to have a leader not only talk about, but has personally experienced, real issues affecting real people and not just the same old tax cuts mantra. Thank you is not enough.

Obama Discusses Daughter's Hospitalization In Online Town Hall

"My mother contracted ovarian cancer when she was 53 and she died six months later," said Obama. "She was, at the time, working as an independent contractor and so she had insurance, but when she was diagnosed and the medical bills started mounting up, this insurance company started saying, well maybe this is a preexisting condition so we don't have to reimburse you. ... We were lucky so eventually we got these costs approved."

3/26/2009 6:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Completely off topic but i would love to hear about the realists thoughts if the "Dear AIG, I quit" letter.

3/26/2009 10:48 PM  
Anonymous Thomas Daulton said...

Actually Matt Taibbi seems to have nailed the "Dear AIG, I Quit" letter pretty well.

3/28/2009 12:56 AM  
Blogger Terro said...

The only thing I've learned from Obama's press conferences is that he can be mind numbingly boring and that he picks his interrogators: a Jack Kennedy he is not.

3/28/2009 6:38 PM  

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