I think Obama has blown it a few times, maybe more than a few, waffled or whatever, failed to follow through. Sometimes waffling was default wisdom. Rather than lobbing missiles into Syria, with god knows what dread consequences, since violence does actually engender violence, esp. in that part of the world, rife with religious schism as it is, he held off.
Is the result ideal? No, far from. Assad is the big winner for now; the agreements make him look legit. But what result in re Syria is ideal or legit? Syria is being immolated. Chemical weapons are not the most of it.
I don't object to having a president who can say he's wrong. I more fear presidents who are always right: Reagan, say, or GW Bush.
These are guys who are drawn to war rather than to trying to avoid it. (I don't mean to say all wars are avoidable).
Similarly, I don't trust any of my friends, or ex-friends, comrades or ex-comrades, who have never been wrong, who have always, as per their opinion of their opinions, been just fine.
Never being wrong is as wrong as you can get, a definition.
I remember a Mailer v. Buckley interchange on Firing Line. Forget the particulars but do remember Mailer saying: unlike you, I'm sometimes wrong, I know what it is to be wrong, it's unavoidable, whereas you, by definition, William, you can never be wrong.
Buckley had no retort, except to resort to his high aristocratic laugh — his I'm from Yale, you're not, I'm always right you're not — guffaw.
I don't know what it means that a President can say I've made some mistakes. This is something new. I do know, with regard to Obama, he's not talking about guilt, not mostly. He's talking correction and getting on with it.
Did Bush say, yeah Iraq had no WMDs? I had faulty intelligence and/or I lied, I was hungry for that war? I couldn't wait for it?
No, the likes of Bush couldn't own up.
Did LBJ ever say the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution was a crock? I knew it was a crock though I used it to escalate the hell out of the situation?
No, LBJ, couldn't say that, except, as he may have, implicitly, by refusing to run for a second term.
I went for my yearly medical check up today. I have Medicare. There are benefits that accrue to my Medicare program due to the Affordable Care Act, such as no deductible for the check-up.
Has the launch of Affordable Care Act been knotty, kludgy and all too imperfect? For sure.
But I don't want it shot down by right-wing saboteurs or even its own botched launch.
Fix it Obama, improve it, and let's move on.