This was the question I asked yesterday, and I'm such a crab, I'm not happy with the answers. I asked the question, not rhetorically, but because I really don't know the answer. I felt that for the most part the responses were more reflexive than reflective. That is, if you liked President Obama before I asked the question, you said, "Yes, we have failed him"; if you didn't like him, you said, "Hell, no."
In asking my question, I noted that I have several times compared Obama unfavorably to FDR, who really took the bull by the horns in the Great Depression & did everything his advisors could think of -- much of it innovative -- to try to turn the economy around. I also mentioned the Hooverville which veterans erected in Washington, D.C., The Washington Hooverville went up & came down in 1932, a presidential election year. The Republican & Democratic nominees were then-President Herbert Hoover & New York Gov. Franklin Roosevelt, respectively. Here are a couple of things they said in their campaign speeches that year:
Candidate 1: The government should assume the function of economic regulation only as a last resort.... [We must have] immediate and drastic reductions of all public expenditures..., abolishing useless commissions and offices, consolidating departments and bureaus, and eliminating extravagances..., and [we must have] a sound currency to be maintained at all hazards.... Our industrial plant is built; the problem just now is whether under existing conditions it is not overbuilt. Our last frontier has long since been reached. [Citations from more than one speech.]
Candidate 2: The last three years have been a time of unparalleled economic calamity. They have been years of greater suffering and hardship than any which have come to the American people since the aftermath of the Civil War.... In the soil poisoned by speculation grew those ugly weeds of waste, exploitation, and abuse of financial power. The function of the Federal Government in these times is to use its reserve powers and its strength for the protection of citizens and local governments by the support to our institutions against forces beyond their control. The leadership of the Federal Government is not to be confined to economic and international questions. There are problems of the home and the education of children and of citizenship. [My opponent would] deny the promise of American life...; he offers the counsel of despair. [Citations from more than one speech.]
So which one of those guys would you have voted for? And are some of you still sure that a strong & persistent Occupy movement can't nudge Obama -- and the Congress -- toward doing the bidding of the many instead of the few?