Remember the term “Bush Derangement Syndrome” which perfectly captured the hateful invective directed at the former president? Many conservatives roundly condemned “BDS,” as they should have. Like him or not, the president tried hard to serve and protect America; he did not deserve to be cheap-shotted all day long by crazy left-wing loons.
But now the proverbial shoe is on the other foot, and there is “ODS” (Obama Derangement Syndrome) in play. The dictionary defines “derangement” as a form of insanity. And, after listening to some partisans evaluate Barack Obama’s first one hundred days in office, I have to say there is some madness in the air.
On my TV program the other night, I graded President Obama on his performance thus far. I gave him a “B” for domestic policy, largely because the stock market has stabilized and the recession-panic mood is receding a bit. I then awarded Mr. Obama a “C” in the foreign policy category, because he has little to show for his public criticism of America. The Obama people will tell you that the President “planted a seed” while speaking overseas, but his spouting off about America’s ills seemed weak to me.
Finally, I gave the President a “C+” for leadership. While his job approval poll ratings remain high, his waffling about the interrogation deal did not demonstrate a strong and forward-looking point-of-view, to say the least.
Well, after that on-the-air report card, I received quite a few dissenting letters. One guy in Arizona said he was glad I wasn’t actually teaching, because I’d be the new Ward Churchill. Another man in Denver said I had lost my mind because Obama deserved “F’s” across the board. Still another guy opined that the President had accomplished nothing and that I should be ashamed.
So, let me ask you, is ODS the same as BDS? I think it is.
Fairness is a hallmark of America. Our legal system, with its appeals process and litany of rights for the accused, is a great example of that. Greatness of any kind cannot be achieved without being fair. Tyrants may rule for a time, but they are never great.
Holding sincere opinions is also an honorable trait. There are fair-minded Americans who simply do not believe President Obama’s liberal view of the world is good for the country. Fine, no problem with that. But everything the man does is not awful, and to assign him sinister motives is blatantly unfair—the same kind of inequity we saw heaped upon President Bush.
President Obama may turn out to be a disaster or he may rise to greatness. At this point, nobody knows what will happen. That is the great thing about democracy and about capitalism. When done right, those things give people a fair chance to succeed and there’s nothing deranged about it.