Sun, 26 Apr 2009 01:53:33 +0000 – By Kim StolzMTV Correspondent/Writer
In the age of Twitter, Facebook, and the ever-growing blogosphere, Americans are more A.D.D. than ever. What this means for a president, of course, is that the public expects immediate fulfillment of campaign promises and, further, is quicker than ever to criticize a "symbolic" action if it doesn't immediately lead to results. With President Barack Obama's campaign tenets of "hope" and "change," he was destined for major criticism from both the left and the right in his first one hundred days.
Republicans hailed the overseas G-20 summit as a PR stunt that got, quite literally, nothing done. True, Obama was unable to garner the support he hoped for from NATO with regard to his mission in Afghanistan, but Democrats and Obama supporters argue that the trip was a success in that he succeeded in giving the United States the positive reputation abroad that was lacking for the past eight years.
Before we write off Obama as weak or ineffective, let's give the guy more than one hundred days. Obama has some 1,460 days to go in his presidency, at least, to fulfill the campaign promises that won him the election. I would argue that the international PR Obama is doing in the short-term will lead to a greater likelihood that we will find support from our foreign allies in the long term.
Further, his stimulus bill, deemed the "porkulus" bill by his adversaries, while quite taxing (pun-intended) does, in fact, focus our attention as a nation inward, relying less on foreign imports, which the Obama administration feels is what we need to do to accomplish a more stable economy. Relying too much on borrowing abroad is, what, at least in part, led us into this recession.
President Obama has certainly made his fair share of communication mistakes and gaffes, some of which he's apologized for. The recent debacle over the "torture memos," is, to me, his first big mistake since taking office, and is probably not going away anytime soon. Still, it's only been one hundred days. Let's see what the "rock star" president is able to actually accomplish during the next two hundred or three hundred days. If he's still shaking hands and going on PR-related trips abroad, then we can start to worry. Until then, Obama's popularity is still hovering around 60% and this game is still his to lose.