When you've lost Bob Herbert, you've lost ... Bob Herbert:
It’s getting harder and harder for most Americans, looking honestly at the state of the nation, to see the glass as half full. And that’s why the public opinion polls contain nothing but bad news for Barack Obama and the Democrats.
The oil gushing into the Gulf of Mexico, the war in Afghanistan and, above all, the continuing epidemic of joblessness have pushed the nation into a funk. All the crowing in the world about the administration’s legislative accomplishments — last year’s stimulus package, this year’s health care reform, etc. — is not enough to lift the gloom.
Mr. Obama and the Democrats have wasted the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity handed to them in the 2008 election. They did not focus on jobs, jobs, jobs as their primary mission, and they did not call on Americans to join in a bold national effort (which would have required a great deal of shared sacrifice) to solve a wide range of very serious problems, from our over-reliance on fossil fuels to the sorry state of public education to the need to rebuild the nation’s rotting infrastructure.
Whoa, where has this man been? Hiding in the New York Times building?
It's amazing when a liberal wakes up from his deep slumber to find that his liberal president has been doing a shoddy job. Just last night, on Jon Stewart's The Daily Show, senior adviser to the president David Axelrod said:
We didn't know the extent of the economic problems. The recession occupied us for the first several months in ways that nobody could have anticipated.
So for the "first several months" the Obama administration focused on economic problems. And then what? They gave up? The problem is, the jobs problem still exists.
It's conceivable that the Obama administration thought that by having political success in other areas, they would be able to distract most Americans from the real domestic problems facing this nation. But that's wishful thinking -- proven especially ridiculous by the fact that they couldn't even fool Bob Herbert.