Metropolitik: Barack Obama cant wait, how about the rest of us?

President Obama is now leaning on a Bush tactic to expand the reach of the
executive branch. Obama says he’s doing it for different reasons, but some still worry it sets a dangerous precedent.

Most people of either party can acknowledge this rare bipartisan truth: Our government is broken. Whether you’re a conservative who wishes our elected representatives could rally their electoral mandate to reduce spending, or a liberal who sees Republicans’ obstruction in Congress as fulfilling that party’s desire to tank the economy and prove President Obama a failure, the story is the same. Our leaders cannot seem to work together — or, for that matter, separately — to get anything at all meaningful done.

In the arc of history, this is a fairly recent development. But it’s one in line with the growing partisanship of politics, and it threatens to nullify the ability of lawmakers to effectively make, well, laws.

Obama, who on the campaign trail criticized George W. Bush for his expansion of the presidential office, has since come around to the idea of a strong executive. After two frustrating years of being stymied at every turn by his political rivals, Obama, according to several high-level administration staffers, decided the toxic D.C. environment could not sustain his open hand. Hope be damned, he launched his “We Can’t Wait” policy, designed to force through economic plans like mortgage reform and bureaucratic blockages via recess appointments.

Unsurprisingly, Republicans were displeased. (Though it must be said they made no hay over Bush’s unilateral expansion of the federal government’s torture policy or surveillance state. Nor, for that matter, have Democrats opposed the new Obama doctrine. Such is politics.)

“If we are to get out of our present paralysis, we need not only strong leadership, but changes in institutional rules,” argues Stanford professor Frank Fukuyama. The right may criticize Obama for his lack of leadership — and the left for his willingness to compromise on progressive ideals — but paralysis yields neither social progress nor debt reduction. Left or right, we all know something’s got to give. The question now is: How much longer can we wait?

Follow Brayden Simms on Twitter @metropolitik

Metro does not endorse the opinions of the author, or any opinions expressed on its pages.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Two young children killed in deadly Queens fire

Two 4-year-old children died after a blaze at their Far Rockaway home on Saturday night. The Queens fire injured three others, including a third sibling.

National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Television

'Orphan Black' recap: Episode 1, ‘Nature Under Constraint…

Welcome to your first Season 2 “Orphan Black” recap! Hopefully Tatiana Maslany can help Tatiana Maslany get through this, with the help of Tatiana Maslany,…

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

NBA

Deron Williams leads Nets over Raptors in Game…

The Nets traveled to a raucous Air Canada Centre but came out with an important Game 1 victory over the Raptors.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony agonizing over Knicks future as season…

There’s still the cloud hanging over the franchise’s head as to the pending free-agent status of All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony.

NFL

Jets host players with eye toward NFL Draft

The Jets hosted a number of NFL Draft hopefuls for workouts on Thursday, with an eye toward some under-the-radar players.

NFL

Chris Johnson: I wanted to go to 'a…

Now that Chris Johnson is a Jet, the team has to figure out if one of the most explosive players in the NFL over the last half decade has anything…

Parenting

Is camp right for introverts?

We ask an expert for tips on sending your introverted child to camp

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.