Bill O'Reilly: Leadership in America

By Bill O'Reilly

We are a country adrift. We are a people who are not being properly led and we know it. Job approval ratings for Congress the lowest in history right now and President Obama under fire from all sides -- things are very bad in Washington.

Last night I told you about my upcoming book "Killing Patton" where I examined some of the world's most famous leaders -- Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, Hitler, Stalin, Eisenhower and, of course, General George Patton himself. Each of these men made history and it's fascinating to know what they were really like as I do after writing the book.

President Obama wanted to be a great leader and campaigned hard to become the most powerful man in the world. But I now believe that Mr. Obama vastly underestimated just how difficult the job really is. The blunt truth is Mr. Obama's leadership skills are simply not providing prosperity for the nation.

That might be because President Obama is a passive leader a man who avoids confrontations; doesn't make judgments about behavior even when that behavior is destructive to the nation.

Kathleen Sebelius still on the job after screwing up the Obamacare rollout in a major way. She will be gone soon but she is still there. General Eric Shinseki has not been fired over the VA scandal. He will be as I predicted when the V.A. story first broke. But as of tonight, he is still there and he shouldn't be because on the general's watch, the Veterans Administration has been a disaster for many American vets who need help. The V.A. inspector general has scorched the agency saying there is chaos all over the place and that vets are not receiving the medical care they need.

Congress, the President and Shinseki himself have known about this for years but have done nothing. That's a failure of leadership. Last night the head of the House Veterans Affairs Committee laid into a hapless VA worker.


REP. JEFF MILLER (R-FL), HOUSE VA COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: Ma'am, ma'am, ma'am -- veterans died. Get us the answers, please.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I understand that, Mr. Chairman and I will look into that request.

MILLER: That's what you said three months ago. This has been going on since January -- since January. In case you don't know it, we put on our Web site every week what we ask for and nothing changes from week-to- week.


O'REILLY: Correct, nothing changes. And again, that's a failure of leadership. On the broader front President Obama told the graduating class of West Point this week that America is still the most powerful nation in the world but in his opinion it's a new world where confrontation often must be shared. Some believe the President is correct, others dissent.


CHENEY: I think the main focus is on our President. He's very, very weak president maybe the weakest, certainly in my lifetime. And I know from my own experience in a recent trip to the Middle East, spending several days talking with folks I have dealt with all the way back to Desert Storm, they all are absolutely convinced that the American capacity to lead and to influence events in that part of the world has been dramatically reduced by this President. We've got a problem of weakness -- it's centered right in the White House.


O'REILLY: Now, Dick Cheney and Barack Obama are polar opposites in almost every way so it's not surprising the former vice president has disdain for the current Commander-in-Chief.

But the perception, the perception that Barack Obama is not a strong leader is true in many circles. And the President has brought that perception on himself. Often he seems befuddled by major problems, not informed, disengaged. When Mr. Obama does finally commit to strong action like when he threatened the Syrian tyrant Assad he often backs down.

The result -- some of the people working under him do not fear accountability. Look this Phoenix V.A. situation is so bad the FBI should be involved. Fourteen V.A. medical people are making more than $300,000 each every year. And they may have cooked the books to protect those huge salaries. As Sean Hannity said on the radio today that's fraud, that's a crime.

But these people knew their direct boss Shinseki and the President weren't paying attention so they thought they could get away with telling lies about how long veterans have to wait for medical care.

"Talking Points" admits that kind of deception is going on all over the federal government. No one was held available for the Benghazi mess except the whistleblower. No one was held accountable for the IRS scandal except Lois Lerner who was forced to resign after taking the Fifth. No one was held account for Fast and Furious where thousands of American guns went into Mexico and were lost.

And the President dithers. He dithers about replacing incompetent leaders like Shinseki and Sebelius. Again that's weak leadership.

Finally if you are a strong leader in present day America you can expect to be called the following: a bully if you're a man, a tyrant, a martinet, unreasonable and many other negative names. If you are a woman leader you will be called the "b" word. You will be labeled the Borrego. You will be suspect in the eyes of many. Wishy-washy is what this country seems to want. And wishy-washy is what we have.

And that's "The Memo."