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Enjoy The Break, Mr. President

People are criticizing President Obama for going to Martha’s Vineyard for a vacation in August. We here at Via Meadia think our old family stomping ground of Pawley’s Island would have been the better choice, but we hope the President and his family have a great time.

Down time isn’t just goofing off time.  It’s when a lot of the best creative thinking happens.  I have posted some of my best essays between snorkel and scuba expeditions in the Caribbean.  The president has a lot of thinking and processing to do and like every other human being he needs the company of his loved ones and to spend time with his favorite activities.  Play golf, wind surf, play Parcheesi with the kids; whatever works for you, Mr. President. You’ll come back to a tough town, a tough economy and a tough world.  Do whatever it takes so you can give us your best.

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  • vanderleun

    Oh, now you just stop that. You can’t kid a kidder.

  • vanderleun

    And while you’re at it, quit with the straight lines already. “Do whatever it takes so you can give us your best.”

    As Ralph Kramden would have said, “Har-de-har-har!”

  • Toni

    Dr. Mead, you are clearly fond of our President. But what evidence is there that Obama wants to and will think creatively?

    Here’s an example. Pres. Obama’s approval rating is low, and on the economy, it’s abysmal, around 34%. For years, he has talked about creating jobs, jobs, jobs — especially green jobs. But unemployment is still 9%, and he hasn’t done anything about it, creative or otherwise.

    Remember, he and his advisors promised that the first stimulus would keep unemployment at or below 8%. It didn’t. Now, with GOP control of the House, another stimulus is not an option.

    If Pres. Obama were truly creative, he’d have figured out something to do other than what he’s already tried. He hasn’t. Why not, except that he doesn’t want to, he can’t, or both?

    I submit that on domestic matters, the President is in full thrall to the ideology behind the Blue Social Model and incapable or unwilling to think outside its box. I submit that, his books and electioneering aside, his rigidity trumps his considerable brains and stifles creativity.

    For a similar perspective, see

  • Soul

    Small world. My aunt lives on Pawley island. She will here this weekend visiting us.

  • Connie Abbitt

    I submit that the President has been giving us his best and we have the pain to prove it. I certainly don’t wish him any more success. The country couldn’t take it.

    • Walter Russell Mead

      @Connie Abbitt: Then you are probably even happier than I am that the President is having a vacation. You just wish it could be longer!

  • Buster Bunns

    Professor Mead I beg to differ. Our distracted and feckless President, in the middle of a protracted crisis, rather than seriously lead is only thinking about his vacation. President Polk never took a vacation. In fact he worked himself to death, dying of exhaustion a couple of months after leaving office. Then again he had a different take on public service and put his duty to The People first. This President feels he is entitled to a vacation, The People be [darned].

    As Mae West once said, ” His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork.”

    • Walter Russell Mead

      @Mr Bunns: by your logic you should be glad that he is resting; every day he doesn’t work is a day he doesn’t wreck the republic.

  • Another Interested Observer

    Yes, yes, I quite agree, Mr. President. Take your time. Luxuriate in the magical air that is Martha’s Vineyard. When you’re good and rested you’ll be ready to come back to Washington and hit the golf course with renewed vigor! Don’t worry, Mr. President, we’re behind you all the way!

  • Corlyss

    I’m beginning to wonder how much worse off we could possibly be without a government at all. You know what they say: “No man’d life, liberty, or property is safe when the legislature is in session.”

    Send ’em all to boot camp somewhere in the Yukon wilderness. Leave ’em there. For good.

  • A

    Love the “arrogantly shabby” theme.

  • nadine

    Personally. I’m thrilled the President is on vacation. Please, make it a long one, Mr. President. Stay ’til Christmas.

    Have you noticed that Obama’s job approval ratings always go up when he doesn’t show up on the news for a while? The country is thrilled, too.

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