Opinion

Obama Gets It Right -- The World Sinks or Swims Together

This week the world's klieg lights shone on President Obama--and so far, so good. I'm glad, not just because as an American, it makes me proud when our leaders do my country justice, but also because I'm a liberal who up to now has had some doubts about the man. In his first 100 days, he hasn't always governed like the liberal he claimed to be during the campaign.

But on the G-20 stage, President Obama has been a star. Sure, there's been the usual right-wing background noise: Obama was too cheap with his present to Queen Elizabeth while Michelle was dressed too dowdily. But overall, the President and first lady have done well by everyone else.

(One thing the right has been quiet about of late is the Dow Jones' rally--the index briefly broke 8000 on Thursday.)

The country is finally presenting a face that embodies the genuine, not blustering, American spirit. After eight years of a Connecticut patrician playacting the Texas cowboy, our new commander in chief was born of a biracial marriage to an to an immigrant from Kenya. While the rest of the world (including Europe) remains ethnic and tribal, America demonstrates that it is still the home of the championship mutt: a melting pot of only the best ingredients. Besides, it is a private relief to hear the English language not only spoken correctly by a president, but with eloquence and grace.

President Obama has taken the lead in speaking for the world in his declaration that there will be no repeat of short-sighted actions of the 1930s which did so much to deepen the Great Depression. He was also wise to mention that as recently as the 1980s, the world had been slow to act when several Latin American economies cratered.

And Obama recognized that this isn't just a crisis of the developed world--he called for united action to invest in Africa by increasing the lending capacity of international banks such as the IMF.

At the same time, President Obama didn't lecture. He took the initiative and recognized what every US bank and banker has known for a long time: that the United States "had some accounting to do" for its role in bringing on last autumn's Great Meltdown.

And that Meltdown has demonstrated that when it comes to economics, cowboy sovereignty is a myth. At the G-20, Obama, by word and deed, has recognized a truth that is long overdue for some Americans: that the world sinks or swims together. The days of going it alone are long gone.

Ellen Ratner joined Fox News Channel as a contributor in October 1997. Currently, Ratner serves as chief political correspondent and news analyst for "Talk Radio News Service" where she analyzes events, reports breaking news, and provides lively interviews with newsmakers in government and entertainment. She is founder of "Goats for the Old Goat." Over the last three years, donations have been made to acquire goats for liberated slaves who were returning to South Sudan. More than 7,000 goats have been donated to the people of South Sudan to provide sustainable sustenance for their families and a means to begin their lives again.