Commentary Magazine


Contentions

Spit It Out, Already

Barack Obama has been relying on the imprecise rhetoric of the professional campaigner for an astoundingly long time. And his inaugural speech showed no evidence that he’s willing to abandon this habit. He has, of course, been allowed to lean on poetic generalities for two years by an adoring press corps. But Americans of every political persuasion are bursting to know what he will actually do on any number of fronts. As importantly, world leaders have just about scratched their heads raw trying to glean the specifics of Obama’s intentions on everything from free trade to Iranian nukes. America’s gays are as baffled about the fate of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” as Poland’s President is about a missile shield in Eastern Europe.

President Obama has already told us what will take time and what may or may not be immediately prudent, depending on the recommendations of his advisors. He has told us that several things are top priorities, although it’s impossible not to imagine that the financial crisis will take up most of his attention. But that doesn’t do us much good. As President, Barack Obama has our respect. But if that respect is not soon paid back in kind with details about how he intends to serve our interests, he’ll lose our support.

From this day forward, Americans (all Americans; don’t expect the press corps to do this for you out of their own burning curiosity) need to demand answers.  We can start with something the President said in today’s speech. Who will be the first to get President Obama to explain, at long last, what “we will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people” means?



Join the discussion…

Are you a subscriber? Log in to comment »

Not a subscriber? Join the discussion today, subscribe to Commentary »





Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor to our site, you are allowed 8 free articles this month.
This is your first of 8 free articles.

If you are already a digital subscriber, log in here »

Print subscriber? For free access to the website and iPad, register here »

To subscribe, click here to see our subscription offers »

Please note this is an advertisement skip this ad
Clearly, you have a passion for ideas.
Subscribe today for unlimited digital access to the publication that shapes the minds of the people who shape our world.
Get for just
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor, you are allowed 8 free articles.
This is your first article.
You have read of 8 free articles this month.
YOU HAVE READ 8 OF 8
FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
for full access to
CommentaryMagazine.com
INCLUDES FULL ACCESS TO:
Digital subscriber?
Print subscriber? Get free access »
Call to subscribe: 1-800-829-6270
You can also subscribe
on your computer at
CommentaryMagazine.com.
LOG IN WITH YOUR
COMMENTARY MAGAZINE ID
Don't have a CommentaryMagazine.com log in?
CREATE A COMMENTARY
LOG IN ID
Enter you email address and password below. A confirmation email will be sent to the email address that you provide.