Many liberals are irritated when conservatives (like me) point out that Obama hasn't done much to recommend him for the presidency. In fact, if you discuss his lack of experience, they moan, scoff, and argue that Uh-uh! Obama sure has done a lot! He was a community activist!
That's why I really liked this article, which lays out the problems with Obama quite well.
What has Obama accomplished to date? In truth, not very much -- except to master the art of self-promotion.
Obama has written two best-selling autobiographies: Dreams From My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance (1995) and The Audacity of Hope (2006). Yet he has never served in an important leadership position in government, business, or the military. His ability to perform as a chief executive officer is completely untested.
Obama has prestigious degrees from Columbia University and Harvard Law School, but no significant professional achievements to his name. No businesses or organizations he has founded or managed. No law firm partnerships. No important cases he has tried. Not a single work of legal scholarship he has authored, despite having been Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Law Review and a part-time law professor at the University of Chicago for twelve years. (This is unheard of in the elite ranks of the legal profession, and calls into question the bona fides of Obama's professorship.)
Obama's principal occupation before entering politics was as a "community organizer" in Chicago. By his own admission, these efforts achieved only "some success," and none worthy of highlighting on his campaign website. Obama then served eight unexceptional years in the Illinois Senate, and was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2004, where he is not even considered one of the Democratic Party's legislative leaders.
And this man believes he is "the one we have been waiting for"?
Some people say it isn't so important what Obama has done as what he says he'll do. But it's obvious that these people dismiss past behavior as a predictor of future behavior. If a person hasn't done much with the many talents and gifts he's been given, we have to wonder why we owe him the presidency? Is it because he's black? Raised in a non-traditional household? Has the presidency come to mean nothing more than that?
I read a lot of liberals saying they don't want a president they can drink a beer with; they want a president who is so gobsmackingly smart that they stand in awe of him. But that's not the way Americans view the presidency. It isn't a monarchy, bestowed by God and revered by man. We are a nation of kings, and we expect our president to be of us, not above us.
Heartland values, not Hollywood values, still define what most voters want in a president. Most voters want a president whom they perceive as loyal, courageous, hardworking, and fair. Someone who commands the respect of others through the strength of his character and the wisdom of his actions. Someone who is prepared to fight to protect his home and country from invaders. In other words, someone who appeals to voters, on a psychological or emotional level, as the kind of person they would want for a father, husband, boss, or comrade-in-arms.
Europeans scoffed at us for being upset about Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky, but that's because they don't view their officials in the personal sense that we do (or they have a lot lower expectations of their friends, colleagues, and neighbors than most Americans do). Given Obama personal story, we expect that he would have done more with his 47 years than he has.