In an interview with CBS’ Charlie Rose that aired on Friday, President Barack Obama admitted that criticisms of his perceived lack of vision for the country were “legitimate,” calling his failure to communicate his master plan to the American people a “mistake.”
“The mistake of my first term – couple of years – was thinking that this job was just about getting the policy right,” the President said during the rare TV interview.
“And that’s important. But the nature of this office is also to tell a story to the American people that gives them a sense of unity and purpose and optimism, especially during tough times,” he added.
The President insinuated that he’d done a good job “juggling and managing” the country, he just hadn’t done a good job of communicating his vision with the American people. “And I think that was a legitimate criticism,” he said.
CBS only aired part of the interview Friday, with more excerpts set to release on Sunday and Monday morning. Although it could be elsewhere in the interview, Obama ironically still did not clearly articulate his plan in the portion aired by CBS.
In the the portion that did air, the President acts as though he’s had a grand revelation that he needs to set a positive example for the country. However, it doesn’t appear to have crossed the President’s mind that he is the chief reason the country is more divided than ever. President Obama has traded in his positive 2008 campaign of “Hope” and “Change” for the negative politics of “Fear” and “Division.”
It’s encouraging that the President recognizes that criticisms of his leadership style (or lack thereof) are legitimate. But it’s tough to be ‘optimistic’ about the future when the unemployment rate is still at 8.2 percent, and the President doesn’t seem to have a plan to turn the country around that doesn’t include stealing from the rich (and future generations) to give to the poor.
President Obama needs to recognize that Americans don’t need him to tell them a “story” that makes them feel good inside. They need a leader who has a plan to get our economy back on track.