Gene Healy has written about what he calls “The Cult of the Presidency,” and I’ve written about his concept as well. It is a pervasive mentality that views the president as a kind of national father, responsible for everything that goes well or ill. The fallacies of the mentality are that it fails, first, to distinguish problems that are amenable to political solution from those that are not, and second, that it fails to recognize even within the political realm that the presidency is but one co-equal branch of government.
Basically every issue, good or bad, is blamed or credited to Obama. It goes from the big things, as we’ve seen here- Obama PWNED GADDAFI, to the bleating I saw on twitter this morning about Obama attacking the NY Attorney General (when the article mentions only Holder and another cabinet member), and it pretty much never stops. OBAMA IS RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL GOOD AND ALL BAD. The public option failed because OBAMA DIDN’T WANT IT (not, because, as you know, there were never the votes in the Senate ever). GITMO isn’t closed because Obama didn’t use the bully pulpit (oh yeah, Congress totally cockblocked him but whatevs). And so it goes from every issue, big or small, to the point that you see clinically insane stuff like this:
That’s right. Obama took a break from his rare days of vacationing bliss, forgot about the economy, the election, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the turmoil in Libya, and sat upright in his beach chair and yelled “SHIT! I forgot to lock the White House. And someone arrest those god damned protestors.”
For fuck’s sake.