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Plan B for Obama family vacation

Posted by on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:11 AM
  • 30 Replies

It's merely idle speculation, but this is one of those moments when Barack Obama misses Rahm Emanuel, who once held the role as the first, uh, chop buster in the White House.

Imagine sitting around the Oval Office discussing presidential travel plans and someone says: "Hey, I've got a great idea. Let's have the president travel to the Midwest for several days talking to people about jobs, their struggles with unemployment and basically how fouled-up everything is and then POTUS can leave for his vacation on a 28-acre compound in tony Martha's Vineyard."

"Why Haversham, that's a simply bully idea. Let's do it."

Emanuel, the president's former chief of staff and the master of the well-turned phrase, likely would have responded: "Are you &%$#*& people ^%$#$@!*&%$# crazy?!?!?" Or words to that effect.

No one begrudges any president time away from the stresses and demands of the job. But the juxtaposition and timing of spending a few days in the heartland of America on a listening tour of the jobless, followed up by a fancy-pants vacation in one of the most exclusively affluent enclaves in the nation is, to put it bluntly, a really boneheaded idea.

Not to be insensitive here, but what is Obama likely to hear on his stops in Cannon Falls, Minn., or Decorah, Iowa, or Peosta, Iowa, or Atkinson, Ill., that he hasn't heard before? People are scared. They fear the loss of their jobs. They lose sleep every night worrying about being foreclosed. They see the homeless on the street and see themselves. They look into the future and don't see very much — for them.

And they see a president dropping in for a photo-op conveying an image of caring, before heading off for 10 days on the shores of Martha's Vineyard, where the struggling folks of Cannon Falls and Decorah and Peosta and Atkinson couldn't afford a cup of coffee.

This is probably why I would make for a lousy presidential adviser, or not last very long. But if I were in charge of Obama's itinerary for the next few days, here's what I would have suggested for the president's summer vacation, or as I would call it: "The Give 'Em Hell Barack Tour."

Forget the warm and fuzzy hand-holding of the jobless. They know their lives are in shambles, and the president knows it, too. They don't need a shoulder to cry on. They don't need a flowery speech. They need a job.

If the president really wanted to help people, I would have Obama crisscross the country knocking on the doors of the nation's biggest corporations and publicly demanding pledges to hire X number of people within the next 30 days.

Would this be a crass, Michael Moore-ish publicity stunt designed to burnish Obama's populist political credentials? You betcha.

If Obama wants to give some speeches, fine, but not in the middle of cornfields. I would have the president delivering his remarks, with the jobless ranks in tow, at the front doors of the likes of Boeing, Archer Daniels Midland, DuPont, Exxon Mobil and General Motors.

I'm certainly not averse to the president and his family enjoying some quality down time. During the tour of the nation, the Obama family could visit a wide variety of tourist destinations: Knott's Berry Farm, Pedro's South of the Border, Cedar Point's famous roller coasters (how appropriate) with perhaps a stop in at the Righteous Brothers Show (minus one Righteous Brother) in Branson, Mo.

We'll be having way-big fun now!

The president loves to play golf. But instead of posh country clubs, I would have the president teeing it up on public courses, such as Tampa's historic Babe Zaharias Golf Course, playing 18 holes with retirees, blue-collar workers and just plain folks. It would be a master class on the middle class.

I suppose there might be a pinch of resistance to my vacation suggestion, especially from the family quarters of the White House. Tough beans.

Obama wanted this job, and now he has it. But there is more to being president than rubbing elbows with international leaders, engaging in rhetorical flourishes and yes, even killing the world's foremost terrorist, satisfying as that was.

Being president sometimes calls for getting one's hands dirty, getting in the trenches with the little people who elected you and defending their interests.

All politicians love to extol their fighting credentials, how they are willing to fight for this, fight for that.

This summer, it would be nice to see Obama actually throw a real punch, get some blood on his fist. Now that would really impress the Martha's Vineyard crowd.

http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/columns/plan-b-for-obama-family-vacation/1186156

by on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:11 AM
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Replies (1-10):
candlegal
by Judy on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:11 AM

Let me answer this before the ILOVEObama crowd does.

George Bush took more vacations than he ever did.

BleedinHeartMom
by on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:13 AM

This summer, it would be nice to see Obama actually throw a real punch, get some blood on his fist. Now that would really impress the Martha's Vineyard crowd.

He's just getting warmed up...

stormcris
by Christy on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:14 AM

On his million dollar bus made in Canada? 

LINK

candlegal
by Judy on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:15 AM

Didn't he say something last week about staying in Washington until some jobs have been made, I will have to look that up.

Twisted.Jester
by on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:15 AM

 I do not support Obama, I think that is pretty clear.  But, I don't begrudge him his vacation.

I don't skip my vacation because someone somewhere else is unemployed.  I earned my vacation busting my ass 60-70 hours a week and I am taking it.

I think he is doing a miserable job, but he is still doing a job.  So whatever.

"The Democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not."  --Thomas Jefferson


eastcoastgrl
by New Member on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:17 AM
Nicely said!!!!
stacymomof2
by Ruby Member on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:20 AM

Give it a rest.  It's a vacation, he's rich, he goes to Martha's Vineyard.  Whoopie.  I hate the attitude that Obama should be the President that shows he cares by living like an average joe.  No other president was required to do so, or criticized for not doing so.

candlegal
by Judy on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:20 AM

hehe

Quoting stacymomof2:

Give it a rest.  It's a vacation, he's rich, he goes to Martha's Vineyard.  Whoopie.  I hate the attitude that Obama should be the President that shows he cares by living like an average joe.  No other president was required to do so, or criticized for not doing so.


Twisted.Jester
by on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:24 AM

 Well that is simply not true.  Every president is criticized for taking a vacation every time they take one.

What is hypocritical about this case is that Obama, and Obama supporters, are all in favor of taxing the rich simply because they ARE rich and "can afford it."  A mandatory penalty for having the gall to have more money than other people.

So, to say him being rich makes it "okay" for him to take a vacation is really hypocrisy of the highest order.  What makes it ok for Obama to spend his money as he sees fit and not every other rich person?

And, when the President goes on vacation he doesn't spend HIS money anyway, he spends OURS.

As I said, I don't even care about the freakin vacation, but your reasoning is severely flawed.

Quoting stacymomof2:

Give it a rest.  It's a vacation, he's rich, he goes to Martha's Vineyard.  Whoopie.  I hate the attitude that Obama should be the President that shows he cares by living like an average joe.  No other president was required to do so, or criticized for not doing so.

 

"The Democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not."  --Thomas Jefferson


sweet-a-kins
by Emerald Member on Aug. 17, 2011 at 10:38 AM
The how dare he crowd

How dare he act like every other President

How dare he enjoy the perks along with the stresses

How dare he get to go to Martha's Vinyard....

The nerve of that guy...acting like he was elected to that position or something ...


Quoting stacymomof2:

Give it a rest.  It's a vacation, he's rich, he goes to Martha's Vineyard.  Whoopie.  I hate the attitude that Obama should be the President that shows he cares by living like an average joe.  No other president was required to do so, or criticized for not doing so.


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