An Absence of Leadership (Updated)

I watch the video below and I suppose I should be grateful that even Axelrod can’t bring himself to bring forth the lie that Americans under President Obama’s term in office are somehow better off than they were four years ago. Even he isn’t willing to say “yes” when asked a blunt question– although the dance he does to avoid answering is a little funny. But I’m not grateful because it still comes packaged by a guy who insists that this President has somehow created jobs.

It’s hard to make a claim of significant job creation when unemployment is worse than it was when you took office and job participation rates are lower than when you took office. And all evidence says that the jobs that were created weren’t particularly good ones– and if you happen to be leaving college right now, you shouldn’t even count on getting one of the bad jobs.

But the roster of folks receiving government assistance has grown. The roster of folks who have simply stopped trying has grown.

Axelrod can’t say it– he wouldn’t get to keep his job if he did say it–but President Obama has failed. His economic policies had doubled our debt, his energy policies have left us all poorer, and he can’t even manage to encourage his own party to offer up so much as symbolic support for his budget. And his own party has simply refused to commit to any budget throughout his term in office. No, not even when they had majorities in the House, the Senate, and a President who would sign whatever they put in front of him. Obama’s failed presidency is marked by a lack of leadership and achievement.

We have suffered not just because of our President’s progressive vision– as poorly articulated and argued as it has been– but because of an absence of leadership that has left us confused, demoralized, and weary.

Former President Carter doesn’t look better by comparison, but their presidencies look remarkably similar. Men, feted by the left for their intelligence and character, who had no idea how to lead a nation through difficult times, who failed to stabilize the economy, and who left the country worse for their care.

With Carter, though, we had Ronald Reagan waiting with the vision, charisma, and powerful leadership to help us rebuild. I truly hope that Romney and Ryan can live up to that towering standard.

Updated: A little related video.