Thursday, November 15, 2012

President Obama's first press conference

I remember when Lil George Bush was president, I never lasted more than five minutes of his pressers before I felt like throwing a brick through the screen to shut him up. Hell, it was an effort to just read the transcripts without stroking out from disgust and outrage. It's so different with President Obama. Whether I agree with him or not, he's a compelling speaker. I don't tire of listening to him. I enjoy it enough that I wish it wouldn't end most of the time. (We won't mention that first debate ever again).

I caught his presser yesterday, first since he's been re-elected, But I'm not going to say too much about it because you can watch it for yourself:

Or read the transcript.

Obama was great. He was confident, commanding, and looked determined to get stuff done. He wasn't as confrontational as some on the left want, but I think he struck the right tone. He wasn't mean about it, but he schooled the White House press corps. He made clear he expects them to show respect for his authority and he's not taking any more bullshit. And maybe it's just me, but swear I saw a flicker of respect cross their faces as they left the room.

His takedown of Ed Henry was impeccable. His vigorous, almost verging on angry, defense of Susan Rice and the work she's done was as brilliant as it was encouraging. And most importantly he called the GOP's bluff on the Bush era tax rates. He made clear he recognizes he holds the winning hand.

This is the Obama I expected in a second term. Sure, blah, blah, overreach and defense and whatever other conventional wisdom about the last four years, but this time it feels different to me. Call me Pollyanna, but I believe Obama honestly doesn't care about the politics anymore. Sure he's no FDR, but I believe he really does care about leaving our country, and the planet, in a better place than he found it.

He may or may not succeed. It's still better than what we usually get in the Oval Office. So there's that...

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