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    Milbank is getting creative.

    Milbank is getting creative.

    Kathleen

    I have to say, I’m really not surprised by Dana Milbank’s latest Op-Ed in WaPo ‘Obama, lost in thought.’

    There’s too much going on in the poor guy’s head…. “What distinguishes Obama particularly is the depth and carefulness of his thinking, which renders him somewhat unfit for politics,” said Jonathan Haidt, a professor of social psychology at the University of Virginia. “He is a brilliant social and political analyst, which makes it harder for him to play hardball or to bluff.”

    Obama’s strengths and weaknesses come from his high degree of “integrative complexity” — his ability to keep multiple variables and trade-offs in mind simultaneously. The integratively simple thinker — say, George W. Bush — has one universal organizing principle that dominates all others, while the integratively complex thinker — Obama — balances many competing goals.

    Philip Tetlock, a professor of psychology with the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, found that politicians on the center-left (where Obama dwells) tend to have the highest degree of integrative complexity, followed by politicians on the center-right. Politicians on the far left and far right are the most simple.

    Oh, I get it, inconsistency and backing-out of campaign promises are symptoms of genius, not rough political polish and a lack of principle! I’m sure there’s no correlation between George Bush’s experience manifesting in straightforward goals and Barack Obama’s “experience” waxing philosophical in a classroom for a few dozen years manifesting in insipid policies that fail upon application.

    America likes great communicators who keep promises, not displaced political science professors. Why? Because they work.

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    Comments


    I didn't read the column. And don't plan to. But the quote excerpted from Jonathan Haidt sounds so sycophantic that I did a search of his political donations. Would anybody be shocked to learn he's donated exclusively to Democrats the past few years, including to Obama?

    That's fine. But now I may have to scan the article to see if either professor Haidt or Dana Millbank felt it was important to disclose the professor's political activity to WaPo readers. (I did the same search for the other professor, and it appears he has made no recent political donations.)

    http://www.opensecrets.org/indivs/search.php?name=haidt&state;=&zip;=&employ;=&cand;=&all;=Y&sort;=N&capcode;=q47ph&submit;=Submit


     
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    The Ghost | April 27, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    C student Obama is anything but a genius … his thoughtful introspection is actually catatonic indecision … he is stuck in analysis paralysis …


     
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    sort of runic rhyme | April 27, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    The Ghost, I used to see Obama as a vacillating, tortured Hamlet. Who can deny, however, that in these few years his policies and decisions have been consistently against America's interests and a renunciation of our exceptionalism?

    No, the O has hewed to a specific agenda, along with Harry Pelosi. His choices were deliberate and destructive.

    At first blush thot the Milbank excerpt was either about setting the stage for easing Obama out to a university position to get a less damaged or more qualified candidate this next election or a parody of ivy-covered ivory-towered self-regard.

    Too many of us who used to think it was about hard-bitten cyncism and winning now believe our press are majority so immature, soft-headed and sophomorically ideological as to act as co-dependents of any craven, corrupt leader who would harm this country in the name of Progress and Gaia (Humility, Tolerance, Humanitarianism, Fairness, Green, etc.)

    This has all been said before…in a children's story…The Emperor has not clothes!


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