President Obama tells the truth, calmly and coherently: the quintessential professor brings to bear upon the subject at hand a great wisdom grounded in study and deep reflection (see the New York Times).
That some might suggest "distance" and "too analytical" misses the point: now is NOT the time for rhetoric or histrionics, but a cool and focused review of the needs and solutions.
Tough to be President - if he's too cool and calm, he's accused of being distant. If he's humorous, he's labeled a stand-up comic or punch-drunk.
And the Repubs and the Dems in Congress right now are all on the same bent: they're not likely to see the big picture, nor are they likely to make the changes needed to fix our economy, especially the sacred cash-cow of health care. Biz as usual is the name of the game, but if there's a game that needs to be ended NOW, this is it. Biz as usual got us to this point, and what a mess it is.
It's not that all of this was inherently flawed from the beginning. Not at all. What was, was! And it worked, but the point is this: nothing remains the same; what worked 50 years ago, just because it worked, is no guarantee that it'll continue to work; in fact, anything that worked as well as it did ought to warn us of its time-conditioned nature.
As the world changes - globalization, technology, terrorism, expanded healthcare (because it's available) - all of this and more signals the need for huge change requiring both adjustment and sometimes a complete overhaul.
Anyway, it was reassuring for this hearer to listen to Obama - the man knows his stuff, he has a command of the language, he's thoughtful, and, indeed, speaks only when he knows what he's talking about.
I hope and pray our nation has the wherewithal to ask the primal questions and do the hard work of crafting a nation for the 21st Century. I hope and pray that our politicians will buckle down and cut their rhetoric, curb their self-serving instincts and begin to work together to heal the nation and help America be the leader it has been and can yet be. I hope and pray that Americans will see clearly just how perilous are the times, and rather than panic and look for quick solutions, will support the President and encourage their politicians to lead this nation to a new day.
Can we do it?
Of course we can.