(This conversation needs to be happening in the Oval Office right-frickin-now.)
I spent the past several days watching the parent-in-the-store-with-whiny-kid approach Obama’s been taking toward health care reform and pretty much anything else. The kid is screaming and threatening and punching and the parent is doing the “now, now” thing.
As a parent of a “dramatic” child, we’ve got a pretty simple philosophy when it comes to this kind of stuff: first time, it’s “Midget, you need to stop this right now.” Second time, it’s “You will stop this now (complete with parent eyes and pursed lips).” Third time, the punishment is coming down the pike. We rarely get there because she knows it’s there and that it ain’t pretty. (Relax, I don’t beat my kid. There is a fine line between corporal punishment and strict reinforcement.)
I want my president to do that. I want him to do the “we’re going to try to get you to buy in.” That happened, the kid was still screaming. Unfortunately, we haven’t gotten to stages two or three yet and the kid is now attracting attention from the guy at the deli counter, the kid stocking fruit and the “non-parent parents” who feel that they should give you “the look” to let you know you’re failing.
Mr. President, I picked you because you gave me hope. This is a rare thing for a born cynic and a jaded former journo. Usually I pick between the lesser of two evils. However in your case, I wanted you to do stuff. I wanted you to move stuff. I wanted you to fix stuff.
Sure, you moved in to a house after the worst possible tenant. The back door was missing, there were urine spots on the walls and a pizza was some how stuck to the ceiling in the bedroom. I get that. There’s been a lot of elbow grease you needed to apply to make the place livable. However, sir, we’re now beyond being grateful for running water and a heater that works. It’s not enough to talk the game. We’ve got to live the game. Having the tools to do what you want only has merit if you actually use those tools.
There are a lot of people like me, and I don’t even need universal health care. I don’t need this program, but I want it anyways because it’s good, it’s right and because it’ll show me that you can actually do something.
You took over from the “war” president and promised to be his opposite. However, to borrow a phrase, the opposite of war isn’t peace.
It’s creation. Create something.
And don’t let the whining in the cart continue. Spankings are acceptable.