I was just thinking.

Autumn 2008 turned out to be a blue autumn for Americans as
Democrat Barack Obama won his seat as President of the United States of America
at the expense of a rather red-faced Republican John McCain.  That election produced the highest voter turnout in 40 years with then Junior United States Senator from Illinois
securing the highest number of votes for a presidential candidate in American
history.  But how the mighty have fallen; in a recent article carried by the New York Times, writer Allison Kopicki underlined the grave becoming of what was, not too long ago, America’s most popular President.

In a recent poll by ABC News and the Washington Post Survey,
it was found that 53 percent of Americans now disapprove of President Obama’s
handling of his job as a president, as opposed to 43 percent who still gave him
their vote of confidence.  This same piece asserts that the findings were seen to be in agreement with the poll results produced by NBC News which put forward that 51 percent of Americans now disapprove of Mr. Obama’s job as president, against a comparatively lower 44 percent who seem to approve.  The apparent cause of the rut seems to stem from Mr. Obama’s inability to turn around the failing U.S economy.

Now while I am no political analyst or economic watcher, I must
admit I do find myself asking the question of could Mr. John McCain have done a
better job as president?  I know the elections have long passed and suggesting if the rival campaigner could have done better than the incumbent is of irrelevance to the current state of things.  Yet nonetheless hear me out for a second.

First and foremost, I postulate that I do not find Mr. Obama an incompetent president; in fact I think he is a very capable man placed in a restrictive position in a very trying time.  However it is in my personal belief that he oversold himself at the 2008 elections.  Consequently the voting American public, too eager for a savior, voted him in because not only was he a sound candidate for the job, but he was the most fashionable too.
This fashionable appeal should be the least considered aspect when deliberating
your political allegiances but sadly I find that most torn voters fell too easily for the appeal instead of digging deeper and reevaluating each candidate’s case.

Mr. Obama is a powerful communicator and his use of the new
media, showy poise and elegance at speeches and rallies made him a media darling.  John McCain on the other hand had little appeal in comparison and the public endorsement of people such as Joe theplumber did little to boost his media attractiveness.  While both candidates campaigned strongly for
change in the financial department and at stopping the war in Iraq, Mr. Obama
did better in assuring the masses he’ll do more in the “fashionable” fields
such as global warming, the war against terror and stem cell research, just to
name a few.  The indicators for Mr. Obama’s popularity were evident with the then president to be lodged in a two horse race with Lady Gaga over who could be the first to secure 10 million “Likes” on Facebook.

There was, at one point in time, talks of media biasness towards the Democrats with a report suggesting that of the coverage offered to each running candidate, 29 percent of stories on Mr. Obama were deemed negative while a whopping 57 percent of stories carried on Mr. McCain were found to be negative.  A startling imbalance that
would have made an already favorable candidate appear more favorable; because
truth be told, who wouldn’t want to be part of history when America elects
her  first African American to office?

Fast forward 2011 and the fanfare of the 2008 elections have long blown over.  The immense popularity of the President has soured ever since, as posted by BBC News on their opinion tracker of the U.S president in office, and this suggests two things; first, that in reality, it’s not easy to push policies, and it doesn’t help when you have
promised so many; secondly, Mr. Obama’s celebrity-esque status which won him
many votes at the elections is no floatation device to keep ratings up.  In fact, the only two instance where notable improvement in the ratings were remarked was when Guantanamo Bay prison camp was sanctioned to close and the recent slaying of al-Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden.

Thus had there been more impartial and objective reasoning
and coverage behind the 2008 presidential elections, the outcome might have
been totally different; America might have been under the stewardship of a
Republican.  However hypothetical scenarios aside, would Mr. John McCain have done a better job at saving the economy and arrest the US$14 trillion debt given that he has chaired the State Commerce Committee before?—the answer is we will never know, but the possibility will forever remain that he could have.  But things are as they are now so everyone will have fingers crossed that the once celebrated presidential nominee
will have some fine answers to remedy the impending global crisis.

Resources:

New York Times article in reference: http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/06/polls-show-declining-support-for-obama-on-economy/?scp=4&sq=obama’s%20ratings&st=cse

BBC News opinion tracker: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/10254097

Election figures: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_election,_2008

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7 thoughts on “I was just thinking.

  1. Nice write but your challenging of hypotheticals make for little argument because at the end of any scenario the answer will always be a “we’ll never know”. Baring which John McCain would probably not have been able to do a better job given his terrible ratings as a “hated” republician anyway. A more viable contender for your alternate premise should be Hilary Clinton.

    • Now I’m no American and neither was I and avid follower of the PE that summer but as far as I can tell, the Hilary versus Barrack was a contest was only within their ranks of the Democrats camp to see who would eventually emerge to tango with the Republican rep at the PE summit. That particular tussle was congenially coined the battle of the sexists and the racists. The fact that Obama won suggests that the American public was ready for an African-American president but not a female one, if you can say for certain that the same sentiment would not ensue at the PE summit should the contest be between McCain and Clinton then yes. Perhaps I should have considered Hilary over John. As it stands though, I picked John over Hilary for my hypothetical because of his economic background.

  2. Yes that’s true but you ignored my point about the immense hate the majority of Americans carried for the Republican camp. It’s hardly warranted because George Bush doesn’t represent the Republican Party anymore but because of their association, it soured popular opinion of them. My underlining point was that anyone could have done better, not saying Mr. John McCain couldn’t but a more realistic proponent would be Hilary, not McCain.

    • I see where you’re coming from there and thanks for pointing that out! 😀 in essence however, as you previously said, we’re arguing hypotheticals, so regardless whether i choose to pine for McCain instead of Hilary or vice versa, so long as well substantiate our points with good reason i cannot see why both “theories” cannot coexist. Like I’ve said before, i do not come from America so I’m not exactly sure what the general opinion is there. But if you put baseless biasness aside, McCain, having chaired the State Commerce Committee, COULD have done a better job. Surely you cannot discount the possibility of the least favored son winning over the hearts of the many if his policies prove right?

      • Yes i agree with you but then again, when you develop a hypothetical your alternate universe must make sense too. The “baseless bias” is in actual fact, not very baseless if you’ve read my previous comment. Under your proposed scenario now the Republicans and Democrats have to be on equal footing in terms of approval ratings during the 2008 PE, but in actual fact they weren’t! So realistically speaking my point on Hilary is more valid.

  3. really enjoy your comments on the political climate.
    i myself feel that obama is all fluff. he carries himself quite confidently on camera but somehow fails to deliver or put his plans into action.

  4. Ok if you’d just sit back and think of it. Had Hilary won the PE would she have done a better job than Obama? Given that their policies wouldnt have deffered much on the presumption that members of the same political group share similar policy models? If she’s to find herself in the same plight, wouldnt you or us perhaps, be drawing the “ifs and if nots” on McCain being elected instead, ESPECIALLY since he was the chairman of Stae Commerce Committee?

    I see your point but do you see mine?

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