Jonah Goldberg
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So, after four years on the job, Obama has learned that he was right all along! How humble.

Except that's not the story of Obama's presidency. Contrary to popular myth, Obama has not rallied public opinion to his side on a single major domestic issue.

The idea that health care reform was an "outsider-driven" affair is especially otherworldly. Unpopular from the get-go, it passed with ugly horse trades and legislative bribes that helped spur an outsider movement to defeat it, i.e., the "tea parties."

His claim that he was too busy "getting the policy right" to tell the people a story is doubly creepy in its lack of self-awareness. All the reporting about Obama's first term suggests that he outsourced the heavy lifting on the stimulus, "Obamacare" and Wall Street reform to the Democratic leadership while he indulged his logorrheic platitudinousness. According to Bob Woodward's new book, even Nancy Pelosi hit mute on the speakerphone (which she's denied) during one of Obama's perorations, and she and Harry Reid went on with their meeting.

In his first year, Obama barely stopped talking to the American people, who unfortunately didn't always have a mute button handy. According to CBS's Mark Knoller, Obama gave 411 speeches or statements (52 addresses solely on health care reform), 42 news conferences, 158 interviews, 23 town hall meetings and 28 fundraisers.

And what did Obama learn from all of this? Nothing, nothing at all.
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Jonah Goldberg

Jonah Goldberg is editor-at-large of National Review Online,and the author of the forthcoming book The Tyranny of Clichés. You can reach him via Twitter @JonahNRO.
 
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