Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Why Obama, "The Community Organizer", Can't Negotiate Anything

In the debt ceiling mess, Obama clearly revived his past-life as the consummate community organizer; and, that was hardly a positive thing.

A community organizer's primary aim is to try and "force" change; always using the "or else" clause. Typically, the "or else" is some kind of bullying tactic like picketing or boycotting or a sit-in. And, whenever picketing, negative words are always on those signs as a means of shaming or badgering the targeted business or government entity into concession.

In the effort to get what he wanted in the debt crisis negotiations, Obama's "or else" was his constant use of the bully pulpit by having incessant and repetitious news conferences where he completely went negative on the Tea Party and the Republicans. In essence, it was a form of picketing with negative words and not the signs. He also played the bullying technique of "call your congressman or senator". After that tactic failed, he tried the social networking route by asking those who follow him on "Twitter" to tweet the Republicans into submission.

I think it was this President's constant negativity that dragged these negotiations out to the very end. Negativity is always the basis of any community organizing effort, but, in trying to arbitrate a deal, going negative does more harm than good because it causes one party to recoil from the negotiations. That's why, ultimately, Boehner decided to bypass the President completely and work directly with Harry Reid. As a result, the prize that Obama wanted, increased taxes on the rich and corporate jet owners, was completely left out of the final, agreed upon deal.

In many ways, he's done the same thing in trying to negotiate a settlement between Israel and Palestine. His treatment of Netanyahu in the process, has been nothing but negative. In fact, the last time he came to visit, Obama, just a day before the meeting, went negative on Israel by calling for Israel to return to its 1967 borders. Never once was Netanyahu advised that this "stance" would be called for by this President.

Lastly, when the Stimulus Package and Obamacare were being crafted, the Republicans were completely cut out of the process. There was no attempt to negotiate a bipartisan agreement. That's because this President really doesn't know how to or want to negotiate anything. Instead, like the community organizer that he is, he prefers to bully and bad mouth to get his own way.

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