That Was Then, This is Reality (Obama Is The Bestest-Ever Edition, Featuring Slate's Jacob Weisberg)


Remember the Alamo, Goliad, and this headline?:

Obama's Brilliant First Year

By January, he will have accomplished more than any first-year president since Franklin Roosevelt.

By Jacob Weisberg

Posted Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009, at 8:13 AM ET

Here's a snippet of adulatory prose from the bold visionary who wrote in August 2009 2008 that "racism is the only reason Obama might lose":

The case for Obama's successful freshman year rests above all on the health care legislation now awaiting action in the Senate….

Obama's claim to a fertile first year doesn't rest on health care alone. There's mounting evidence that the $787 billion economic stimulus he signed in February—combined with the bank bailout package—prevented an economic depression. Should the stimulus have been larger? Should it have been more weighted to short-term spending, as opposed to long-term tax cuts? Would a second round be a good idea? Pundits and policymakers will argue these questions for years to come. …

When it comes to foreign policy, Obama's accomplishment has been less tangible but hardly less significant: He has put America on a new footing with the rest of the world…. No, the results do not yet merit his Nobel Peace Prize. But not since Reagan has a new president so swiftly and determinedly remodeled America's global role.

Obama has wisely deferred some smaller, politically hazardous battles over issues such as closing Guantanamo, ending "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and fighting the expansion of Israel's West Bank settlements. Instead, he has saved his fire for his most urgent priorities—preventing a depression, remaking America's global image, and winning universal health insurance.

Reuters' Jim Pethokoukis, with the benefit of hindsight and a bullshit detector that isn't on the fritz, compresses a more insightful analysis into a mere Twitter tweet:

One year in: No HC reform, cap-and-trade dead, card check dead, lost Kennedy seat, and House Dems looking to keep Bush tax cuts

More Pethokoukis here.