Geraghty: Obama Responsible for Everything Bad

Jim Geraghty, a columnist for the National Review Online, seems to think that President Obama is responsible for every single scandal or problem that has happened anywhere in the country for the last few years while he’s been in office, from the NFL’s handling of domestic violence to car company recalls. Why? Because he “set the tone” that allowed them to happen.

Does our president just reflect a broad cultural trend in the behavior of leaders, or does he set the tone from the top?

Consider some recent examples of leaders of large organizations with important responsibilities, once they find themselves in the public eye:

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell told CBS This Morning he never saw the second tape of Rice striking his wife before Monday. He said, “when we make a decision we want to have all the information that’s available. When we met with Ray Rice and his representatives it was ambiguous about what actually happened.” Friday afternoon, he announced the league would be making a new effort in dealing with unacceptable player conduct . . . by forming a special committee.

Then there’s General Motors CEO Mary Barra, whose company has recalled 2.6 million cars with defective ignition switches. The faulty parts have been linked to at least 13 deaths and 54 accidents since 2009 and have led to numerous lawsuits. She said, “I don’t really think there was a cover up. I think what we had, and it was covered in the report, there were silos of information, so people had bits and pieces and didn’t come forward with the information or didn’t act with a sense of urgency, and it simply was unacceptable.”

Did anyone at NBC News ever answer for the decision to hire Chelsea Clinton for $600,000 a year for three years?

Freedom Industries, that company that spilled ten thousand gallons of chemicals into the Elk River, forcing 300,000 residents to stop drinking, cooking, washing or bathing in their tap water, will face a ton of lawsuits. Their management and leadership has been hard to identify, much less hold accountable; apparently no one with the company feels the need to stand before the public and face the consequences of their actions and inaction.

That last one is particularly ridiculous. Somehow Obama is responsible for the behavior of the company that has spent huge sums of money to fight against the EPA’s regulation of their activities that might help prevent such spills. And this whole notion that the president “sets the tone” and therefore is responsible for every bad thing that happens is so ridiculous that no intelligent person could take it seriously. Indeed, Geraghty doesn’t even attempt to make a coherent argument for it.

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  • Loqi

    Comparing the number and severity of the bad things that happened during the Clinton and Obama years with what happened during the Bush years, I’m not sure a conservative should pursue this line of reasoning…

  • John Pieret

    Once again Obama has been caught practicing the presidency while black.

  • Trebuchet

    Those GM switches, having killed people since 2009, were obviously designed during the Bush era. Guess he set the tone by lying about Iraq and pretty much everything else.

  • Larry

    Is this any surprise? The only thing the nutjobs haven’t accused Obama of causing is that a little girl skinned her knee on the swing set in the park down the road. This is the ultimate culmination of the attempts to smear the president, sort of a one-blame-fits-all. Like all previous attempts, its nothing more than a pack of monkeys flinging their poo as a means of expressing their incoherent rage and deserves even less attention.

  • cry4turtles

    Plus, I know Obama is making my foot hurt right now!

  • Kevin Kehres

    All of it is TRUE! Obama’s responsible for every bit of it.

    And why? It’s all to distract us from BENGHAZI!!11eleventy!!

    Just got a news flash that Eric Holder is resigning. Also to distract us from BENGHAZI!!

  • garnetstar

    I’ve always taken exception to the too-common notion that the American president is reponsible not just for every bad thing that happens, but for *everything* that happens. People seem to forget that there are legislative, judicial, and state branches of government, and that the president doesn’t personally micromanage every department every single day, but actually does delegate.

    An even sillier idea is that the president is both responsible for causing and responsible for fixing, every single thing that happens anywhere in the world. Yet another occasion when one is forced to observe that many Americans live in a world of delusion.

    BTW, talk about delusions: no company has ever dodged responsibility for their actions under any other president? Haliburton, BP, etc. ad infinitum? Sigh.

  • kantalope

    “Did anyone at NBC News ever answer for the decision to hire Chelsea Clinton for $600,000 a year for three years?”

    Probably the same answer as at Fox for hiring Sarah Palin.

  • Francisco Bacopa

    My cat just barfed up a hairball. Obama totally set the tone for that.

  • caseloweraz

    Other than the size of her salary ($600,000 for a three-year contract), what possible reason is there to call NBC’s hiring of Chelsea Clinton a mistake? Is it her “interview” with the Geico gecko? Or could it be that she kept running into people while riding a bicycle during her college years at Stanford?

    She was hired to contribute to Brian Williams’s “Rock Center” newsmagazine, which was cancelled. Also, the Freep reports that NBC kept her off the air while her mother was on a recent book tour, to avoid conflict of interest issues. Therefore her apparent lack of activity is explainable.

    I just don’t find much basis for the criticism.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    To be fair, at least he’s crediting Obama with leading.

  • eric

    These guys are really doing a disservice to the GOP. This amount of Obama-bashing is going to make it really, really hard for them in 2016 to make Hilary and the other Democratic candidates out to be a worse choice.

    It’s like the philosophical conundrum about an omnipotent god, in political form: can the GOP create such a monstrous caricature that even the GOP can’t come up with a worse one?

  • D. C. Sessions

    Comparing the number and severity of the bad things that happened during the Clinton and Obama years with what happened during the Bush years, I’m not sure a conservative should pursue this line of reasoning…

    Why not? It works, after all.

  • cottonnero

    Eric: I’d argue the reverse, honestly. It gives the spittle-spewers practice demonizing the Democratic candidate, and I don’t think “people who notice hypocrisy” is their target demographic anyway.

  • thebookofdave

    And this whole notion that the president “sets the tone” and therefore is responsible for every bad thing that happens is so ridiculous that no intelligent person could take it seriously. Indeed, Geraghty doesn’t even attempt to make a coherent argument for it.

    Who do you think set the tone for incoherent arguments and ridiculous journalism? Checkmate, Ed!

  • dugglebogey

    I’m sure he would disagree that George W “set the tone” for terrorists attacking us on September 11, 2001. Therefore he is totally and completely responsible for it.