March 15, 2010
Obama the Entrepreneurship ExpertBy Monty Pelerin
President-of-the-World Obama is at it again. Apparently, he feels that the problems in this country are too small for him, or else they have all been solved. His wisdom and greatness are too important to be squandered on only one nation. They must be made available to save the entire world.
In his latest initiative, Obama takes "I'm from the government, and I'm here to help you" across national borders. The White House recently "announced a 'summit on entrepreneurship' to build economic ties with the Islamic world, part of President Barack Obama's outreach to Muslims." It has invited participants from more than forty countries over five continents for the April 26-27 conference in Washington.
On one level, this initiative is laughable, undoubtedly worthy fodder for several "Saturday Night Live" and Jon Stewart skits. On another, it reflects a serious situation -- the continuing delusional nature of Obama and his administration.
The lighter aspects
The "summit" represents more TV face-time for the president, a Pavlovian response by the White House to all problems. The public has soured on what is seen as Obama's endless campaigning. They want constructive action rather than continued platitudes and campaign slogans."Talk is cheap" is an axiom the White House does not seem to get.
Approval polls are in free-fall. Obama, at this stage, is well ahead in his race to displace President Jimmy Carter as the worst president of the past several generations. He shows all of Carter's ineptitude without Carter's sincerity. Desperation regarding the unpopular health care bill is making Obama look like the next Joe Isuzu, the fictitious liar in Isuzu commercials.
Does the White House not understand how farcical its actions have become? Are these people clueless or incompetent? Both hypotheses fit the facts. Making a definitive choice between them (although both could be valid) is not possible at this point.
Now, we have Obama about to pretend that he is Peter Drucker, world's greatest management guru. Here is a man with zero business experience, surrounded by advisers with similarly deficient experience. Yet Obama and his advisers believe that he is competent to lecture the world on entrepreneurship.
Would it be impolite to ask what the president has done to further entrepreneurship in his own country? Have any of his prescriptions and proposals helped entrepreneurs? If so, which ones? If foreign leaders care at all about their economies, they will separate themselves from this conference. Investment and hiring in this country stopped when Obama's solutions were rolled out.
The delusional aspects
We have a president who believes that he is always the smartest man in the room, no matter what room. Actually, he is always the least experienced and probably least qualified in any room. The fact of the matter is that he has no experience in anything.
What is known of his background includes stints as a "community organizer" and an adjunct professor. What skills are required to be a community organizer? What experience is gleaned? No experience that is useful or transferable to an executive role.
Obama's short stint as a lecturer of constitutional law was unremarkable in any academic sense. No evidence of writing or publishing can be found. The most notable aspect was his interpretation of the Constitution. He views the Constitution as a "living document," open to changes that produce "social justice." In effect, other than as a quaint artifact of history, for Obama, the Constitution does not exist.
Despite this vacuous background, Obama believes that he knows more about medicine than doctors, more about business than businessmen, and more about creating jobs than entrepreneurs. This sad litany could be continued ad nauseam. There is no evidence within the past year that Obama does not believe that he has more to contribute than anyone else.
A rational man with such limited background would defer to those wiser than he. Instead, Obama presents himself to be an expert on all things. Does he not see how ridiculous this makes him look in the eyes of the public? What must audiences of doctors, businessmen, or entrepreneurs think about this man-child with zero experience? One can only imagine the disgust and anger they must feel.
"Don't worry: I stayed in a Holiday Inn Express last night" may work for TV, but not as a governing strategy. Yet Obama must believe that he received more than a good night's sleep. In his mind, he appears to believe that he is something special, something larger than his office. A messianic image was part of his campaign. It appears that he bought his own image. "The One" is an image clearly in conflict with reality. The polite word for such behavior is "delusional."
I am not a psychologist or psychiatrist, and I do not pretend to have such skills. But any observant person will see the president's behavior as bizarre, if not outright dangerous. James Lewis detailed the president's extreme narcissism, as have others. In Lewis's words, "The question is what real damage Obama may do to the country. This man has been entrusted with the greatest power in the world."
The issue can be understood on a human as opposed to a clinical level. What would you do if your best friend believed that he was more knowledgeable than astrophysicists, oncologists, economists, businessmen, or scientists? What if he believed this so strongly that he felt that he was entitled to "teach" them? As a friend, you would presumably get him professional help. The president is behaving like your friend.
To be sure, other presidents have rebuked industries or professions. Eisenhower came down hard on the military-industrial complex; Kennedy did so with the steel industry. Others have chosen whipping boys for both good reasons and political ones. None, however, presumed that they were smarter than everyone else. Other than Obama, no one believed that they had unique knowledge, that it was applicable everywhere, and that it could improve everything.
The president's behavior is clearly delusional and likely messianic. While he sees himself as some modern-day, handsomer version of Yoda, more of the citizens of the nation he serves are beginning to see him as a sick puppy holding the highest office in the land. He appears to be marching to a tune that is audible only to him. Where are his friends, and why do they not intervene? Are they afraid to confront him with reality?
For the sake of the nation, if not for the sake of the man, someone must confront this problem. Delusional behavior is dangerous under any circumstances. It is potentially devastating when it afflicts the head of the world's most powerful country.
Does Obama not have a friend who will intervene? Are they all such political toadies and ideologues that they will sacrifice him and the country to achieve the president's goals?