Obama the Understudy

Obama wants to be president. Everyone knows that by now.

But not everyone -- apparently not even Obama himself -- knows that to be president takes a little more than just wanting to be one or pretending to be one. And that it takes even far more to be president than acting like one, and hoping that if you play the part well enough you will eventually become one. But that seems to be the "name it and claim it" trajectory which Obama is counting on these days.

Some may argue that one of our best Republican leaders himself  was an actor in his past life; but the truth is that he did not borrow much from his varied acting experience when it came to playing his role in real life, because he understood that it is after you become president that you should occasionally concern yourself with acting like one, and not before.

In his mind Obama hopes that people will apply the duck logic to his scheme. If it looks like a duck, and it walks like a duck, well, then, it must be a duck.

This is the reason why Obama has decided in the last few months before the election to start looking and walking like a president.

Make a few trips to carefully selected countries, speak to a few foreign leaders (a luxury that John Kerry unwisely did not indulge in before making the actual claim); visit a few beleaguered nations and frown as you speak in public to their heads of state; fill in a few photo-ops to make sure the world knows and shares in your concern. Pretty soon you may start not only looking like a president but like you actually should be the president.  

It would appears the plan worked briefly, only to see the margin quickly subside following Obama's quasi-presidential tour of the nations.

But one has to wonder how many of these leaders are probably taking Obama's unsolicited visits with a grain of salt. The shrewder foreign leaders know this one-term senator who presumes to be readying to take on the role of president has barely dipped his toes in the ocean of American civics, and look forward to exploiting his naïveté.

But for all we know -- and perhaps to his credit -- Obama may be merely trying to cram the most intensive foreign policy crash course in history. That way he will be able to answer allegations concerning his lack of sufficient expertise in world affairs to be taken seriously once he assumes the role of leader of the most powerful country in the world. These types of questions do sometimes come up on debates.

And how many world leaders will be fooled by this "Renaissance Man" façade from the young senator? Worse yet, how many of these leaders have actually peeked behind the  façade and recognized the tremendous opportunities which are afforded for advancing their own agendas by having a weak, inexperienced leader in the imperial US?

But then again, it could very well be that Obama is making a sincere effort to understand the risks of the job before he decides to take it, should it be offered to him. It is a form of shadowing that is commonly used in corporate America; perform some of the duties of a person who was hired to do a job you want, for a season, and then you can decide whether or not you would be up to the task. In Obama's case it looks more like wishful thinking on his part, as he seems to be more interested on the externals, and not in what it actually takes to perform.

But Obama is not naïve, especially when it comes to seizing opportunities to advance his own career -- which incidentally would make him an ideal candidate in corporate America rather than for the role of public servant. The problem is, if he gets the job for which up until now he has merely been playing the part, it will take more than just acting to sustain a credible aura of leadership, strength and know how.

For now Obama is simply playing on the stage of a very exclusive theater, packed with a rather charitable audience that consists mostly of fawning supporters and a starry eyed media that thrives on using mere appearances to create the illusion of reality.

But Obama has only familiarized himself with a script where there seems to be a vast chasm between what he hopes in his mind and what actually transpires in the stage of world affairs; and it is likely -- to the utter embarrassment of those die hard supporters of his larger than life vision, who have conveniently turned a blind eye to his dreadful inadequacies for assuming such a momentous role -- that he will be in for a very rude awakening when the curtains actually open.

It should be more our hope, for the sake of this country's future, that he never has to actually improvise, because he has been confronted with that reality.