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When Administrations Implode

alobo Wrote: Apr 19, 2012 12:04 PM
This judgment is way over the top and unfortunately such extreme statements help discredit conservatives just as much as the nonsense written in NYTimes editorials discredits progressives. Obama is incompetent, that much is clear. But I think Hillary Clinton and Robert Gates have done their jobs very capably. Defence and foreign policy are arguably among the most important positions. The problem is that Obama is completely inexperienced and to make matters worse, he is quite ideological and supremely confident. Those three make for a deadly and very heady cocktail. The healthcare law was hardly handled in an inept fashion - and that precisely was the problem! It was passed shrewdly and perniciously despite widespread opposition.

Administration meltdowns are hardly novel. In almost every presidency there comes a moment when sheer chaos takes hold, whether self-induced or as a result of an outside crisis.

Vietnam had effectively destroyed Lyndon Johnson by 1967. Watergate unraveled the Richard Nixon administration, as the disgraced president resigned in the face of certain impeachment. Gerald Ford could not whip inflation and was not re-elected. One-termer Jimmy Carter was undone by the Iranian hostage crisis and skyrocketing oil prices.

For a time, it seemed that Ronald Reagan's second term might not survive the Iran-Contra scandal. George H.W. Bush could not be re-elected after...