You are wrong as wrong can be. Obama is ideologically motivated. He most certainly is guided by an inner compass. He is just has been very very good at hiding it. He is letting it somewhat out now since he doesn't have to run anymore.. although (IMO) he isn't serving his own party very well by doing it.
The question right now is whether an in-your-face welfare-state driven message will hurt the dems or help them. The last election doesn't suggest it will be bad.. but a lot of folks sat out.. so there is still a big unknown.