President Obama – Where Did the Charisma Go?

Dear Commons Community,

Charles Blow’s column in the NY Times today is entitled, Obama in the Valley, and asks what has happened to the Barack Obama who electrified crowds during the election campaign in 2008.   He sees Obama as becoming more of a robot responding to questions mechanically and without any emotion.  He starts his piece by taking a few shots at the Republican candidates who repeat the same responses and who never deviate from their scripts:

“It can be found in the “Artificial Intelligence” of Michele Bachmann and her pull-the-string-in-the-middle-of-my-back compulsion to repeat the same red-meat responses no matter the question. It’s the Buzz Lightyear-come-to-life bravado of Rick Perry, complete with delusions of grandeur and accomplishment. And it’s pretty much everything about the mechanical “I, Republican” Mitt Romney.”

But he saves most of his comments for President Obama to take us to the “mountaintop” and not to the valley.

“The country needs the president to rise to this crisis in word, spirit and deed. We need him to reach out of his nature and into the nation’s need. We are on the precipice. .. The unspeakable truth is that we may well be on the leading edge of a prolonged period of national stagnation, if not decline. …A robotic Sustainer-in-Chief with an eerie inhumanity will not satisfy.”




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