As the old adage goes, "There is no substitute for experience." No substitute, as Barack Obama is finding out.
To elaborate on my point, the previous five U.S. Presidents all came to Washington with executive experience. Four were governors of states, and one – G H.W. Bush -- headed the vast C.I.A. This executive experience greatly aided these men in their understanding of financial budgets, personnel issues, personal relationships, how to achieve political goals, and most importantly learn from the fall out that would happen if they didn’t think three steps ahead of everyone else. These positions were a hands-on training ground for the Presidency.
In addition, the average age of the previous 5 Presidents when they took office was 58 years old. Barack Obama took the office when he 48 years old. So along with all the previous Presidents having executive experience at the time they took office, they also each averaged an extra decade of real world experience as an adult before assuming the Oval Office. Think of how much 10 years of experience means to an adult life.
So why do I bring all this up? Through his first 30 days - not the first 100 days of his new administration which everyone benchmarks - Obama’s inexperience and mistakes have been overwhelming.
First, before day one of the Presidency, he let the most extreme ideologue in the House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, author and completely hi-jack the stimulus bill that would bare his name to the point where most Americans did not support the bill at the end. Why would any executive not personally attend to such a critical task of writing a vital stimulus bill that would mark his Presidency? Because he did not have the experience to come up with one by himself. He did not author legislation in the Illinois state house nor U.S. Senate because he was too busy running for President from day one. Can you imagine if Obama came up with a bill for a relatively moderate $100 Billion package that truly created jobs and stabilized our banking systems? He would have been unstoppable. Instead he watched Nancy Pelosi drench it up with billions of dollars of pork and handouts to her friends on the backs of taxpayers. She then unleashed it on Capitol Hill, Obama not being able to stop her nor get the genie back into the bottle.
Then, when meeting with Republicans in the White House to try to get support for his, I mean Pelosi's bill, Obama acknowledged that the Democrats went too far on the bill. In essence what he did amounted to throwing his most adamant supporters under the bus to look good to the opposition party. Reagan used to have a 'commandment', "Thou shall not criticize a fellow Republican," to prevent this exact occurrence from happening. Reagan had eight decades of experience before he took the helm of this country, and probably learned this lesson many decades back.
We will continue. His proposed selection for Secretary of Commerce, Republican Senator Judd Gregg, embarrassed Obama by stepping down after Obama publicly named him to the slot as a show of Obama's bipartisan support. This blindsided creaming arose from Obama not making sure Gregg was on board with his own policies before naming him. Because of these unvetted conflicting philosophies, Gregg turned down the position. This was a great embarrassment for Obama and led to a Wile E. Coyote backfiring moment on his theme that he was bipartisan as Gregg's actions revealed he could not work with Obama. I ask, how can you ever offer someone a cabinet position without making sure they are completely aligned with your thinking so they can carry out your goals for the country. This happened because Obama has never had to interview and hire any executives in his life other than campaign managers. Woefully inexperienced. Gregg rounded off a long list of cabinet appointments that were complete disasters: Bill Richardson, Nancy Killefer, Tom Daschel, Timothy Geitner, etc...
Right now, he is on his third try for a Commerce Secretary appointment. It is similar to the drummers in the comedy film Spinal Tap who have to keep being replaced in the band because they keep dying in humorous ways.
Finally, last week Obama warned bank executives not take business weekends in Las Vegas. It sounded like a good, populist statement to rally the troops until the Mayor of Las Vegas demanded an apology from Obama for hurting his tourist industry by making Vegas sound like it is always a fiscally irresponsible trip. Take Obama's statement in the light that Vegas, and Nevada, has been one of hardest hit regions by the recession and is severely struggling in tourism right now. The casinos are hemorrhaging employees, many of whom voted for Obama. Obama could have said, "No business weekends at plush resorts," which is very unspecific and would have had no backlash. Again, complete inexperience at best, incompetence at worst.
So with everything I am seeing, and reading, I am one of the very few people who will come out and plainly say on this date that the Obama Presidency will not end well. It is more than a gut feel, or partisan bias, it is looking at the razor-thin resume and lack of experience of the man who now lives on Pennsylvania Avenue and whom will be asked to solve our country's very complicated problems. This inexperience, coupled with an $800,000,000,000 pork-ridden stimulus bill anchored around his neck, will assure 2012 is not a good year for Obama.