By a reader at The Atlantic (here):

It’s pretty clear to me that Obama is the chessmaster. Stop looking at this politically – let’s look at policy. Obama has been a master of accomplishing things, even with the Tea Party Terrorists hell bent on shutting down the government and ruining the full faith and credit of the United States.

…. Obama will end two wars, ended DADT, created the CFPA, got $20b from BP in the face of strong opposition, saved Detroit, signed New START, and enacted universal healthcare – the defining goal of the liberal movement.

…. he spearheaded the most successful education initiative since WWII with Race-to-the-Top, ended too big to fail with Dodd-Frank, boosted exports with free-trade agreements, advocated and done more for infrastructure than anybody since Ike, increased technological funding…

… He sacrificed the public option to pass universal health care as a whole. Think of him as Bobby Fischer – he sacrificed the queen to win the greatest game.

… He tried like the Dickens on Guantanomo, but by that time the Tea Party made it seem crazy to build a mosque in NY (cause God forbid the 1st Amendment be observed), and the liberal movement didn’t exactly come out to support him on that. And then finally, the Bush tax cuts – another major piece sacrificed. And in return, he got New START, strengthened the FDA, gave health insurance to 9/11 responders, signed an important Civil Rights legislation for black farmers, and ended DADT.

… And for those who say “then why should Obama have caved?” Did he really cave? He cut the long term deficit (which he’s wanted to do since sitting in the Senate), and has now put Republicans in a position where they need to come to the table or see their core values demolished. It’s either tax cuts or the end of the world’s greatest military. Does anybody really think Republicans won’t deal?….

Which is why there is a ton that moderates can be proud of him for. By putting this nation’s economy on a stronger footing for the long term than it has been since LBJ, he’s taken full control of the center – and is there anything more important in a chess game? He’s made tough decisions on popular programs, faced backlash, but all in all, invested in our long term future.

…. His policies will last, and that’s because they’ve been moderate. But that moderation also means they’ve engendered backlash on both sides. That moderation also means they’re going to be tough to get rid of. And the only thing left for him on the moderate side of the house are immigration reform, and finishing the job on education and infrastructure. Big tasks, no doubt (but tasks I also doubt anybody but Obama can accomplish)….

But overall, he’s already the most accomplished president since FDR – and in only 3 years. And like FDR, his policies will be tough to get rid of. Barack Obama may lose the presidency, but as the Tea Party moves to the right, he has taken the center for the Democrats, and makes his policies that much harder to erase.

Stop thinking about 2012. In 2020, it’ll be obvious – Barack Obama gave Bobby Fischer a run for his money as the greatest of chessmasters.

Full post here

25 Responses to “‘chessmaster’”

  1. 1 Anonymous
    August 5, 2011 at 7:39 am

    Chipsticks, this is a link from Larry’s show featuring a Republican former Sentator Simpson Bowles who tells it like it is.. starting at the 2:42 mark..


  2. 2 COS
    August 5, 2011 at 7:44 am

    Good morning Chips. I love this picture.

  3. 3 Keith in C-bus, Ohio
    August 5, 2011 at 7:45 am

    I read this article as a link yesterday at BWD’s site. Great analysis of the President’s accomplishments. Unfortunately Mr. James Fallows believes the Teapbulican’s assualt on our economy will be PBO’s doom and he is not going to be re-elected. So in essence we should all prepare for a Romeny, Bachmann, or Perry in the Whitehouse? My guess is Romney? What do you all say? 😯 KEEP HOPE ALIVE!! Obama/Biden 2012!!

    • 4 Keith in C-bus, Ohio
      August 5, 2011 at 7:48 am

      I’ll add if the American people don’t wake up and recognize who is really responsible for a impending doulbe dip recession then Fallow’s predictions will come true. 😦 I will still KEEP HOPE ALIVE!!!

    • 5 Anonymous
      August 5, 2011 at 7:52 am

      You repeat the prediction of a defeat of President Obama and ” guess” that it will be he who shall remain nameless and then in the same sentence write keep hope alive. Which one is it Keith?

      • 6 Keith in C-bus, Ohio
        August 5, 2011 at 8:01 am

        Well Anonymous there was some slight sarcasm there. I still have HOPE and BELIEVE the President will be re-elected. It’s just this is the first time I have read a columnist actually predict PBO will not be re-elected. Kind of shocking and a jolt to the system. If we get defeat the MSM with the internet and ground troops we will be VICTORIOUS!!

    • August 5, 2011 at 7:56 am

      I am going to prepare to work hard to elect President Obama. Until the last vote is cast, I bet on PBO, despite a rotten economy. Only time will tell.

  4. August 5, 2011 at 7:52 am

    Good morning, Chips and TOD family. Hope today is a little brighter for all of us.

    It is great to know that some people appreciate this president for what he has done. But this is something his supporters already know. What is breathtaking to me is that he did it all with such monumental opposition — not always from just the other side– but from some in his party, too. Every time the subject comes up about PBO’s accomplishments, it blows my mind.
    Well done, PBO, well done.

    August 5, 2011 at 8:05 am


  6. 13 Fred
    August 5, 2011 at 8:10 am

    morning TOD family

    Doris a special hi to you 🙂

    MSNBC Contributor Pat Buchanan’s New Book Includes Chapter Entitled ‘The End of White America’

    the end is bloody near 😯
    Video: Fox News Anchors Admit Going Easy On Sarah Palin

    Perry’s Legislative Agenda Bears Strong Resemblance To ALEC’s Corporate-Backed Model Bills

    Jerusalem Post Apologizes For ‘Inappropriate’ Response To Norway Massacre 🙄

    • 14 GGail
      August 5, 2011 at 9:14 pm

      Did Chipsticks post some time back a warning about ALEC? Corporate heads of Coke-Cola (hdqtr in the state of Georgia) and Kraft Foods sit on the board of ALEC. Georgia is also one of the states that’s passing the stricter voter registration laws. We need a list of who sits on ALEC’s board of directors.

  7. 15 Fred
    August 5, 2011 at 8:17 am

    Vitter Takes A Hostage For Big Oil

    Conservative Republican Rep. Lankford Admits The Economy Is ‘Doomed’ Without Government Spending 😯 🙄 😡

  8. 17 Keith in C-bus, Ohio
    August 5, 2011 at 8:29 am

    Well are the American people going to continue to allow this assault on our very LIVELYHOODS? I do not believe that there is a majority of Americans that would condone this ECONOMIC SABOTAGE just to get rid of a Black man in the Whitehouse. Its time to RISE up folks and DEMONSTRATE!! KEEP HOPE ALIVE!! Obama/Biden 2012!!

  9. 18 Mariele K.
    August 5, 2011 at 8:59 am

    My husband alwaystells me that it is all about perspective. James Fallow presents in his comments a different view of the President’s actions. As a chessplayer myself, PBO is truly a master.

    Sometimes in life, you have to lose a few battles before you have the bigger wins. PBO has accomplished much in the face of adversity and criticism.

    I am proud that he is the President. Maybe if more people (besides us, of course) paid attention, they might learn something.

  10. 19 utaustinliberal
    August 5, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Great article. I wish more liberals would stop castgating President Obama and realize that his legislative accomplishments are the best for the long term. He is always 10-20 steps ahead and short-sighted impatient people will never see this and are constantly cutting their noses off to spite their faces. But they will never prevail in his case because he’s got millions of us behind him.

  11. 20 JCT
    August 5, 2011 at 11:24 am

    A silly question from a South African and an avid PBO fan – in the unlikely event of PBO losing the election, can he run again in 2016? Does the USA constitution allow this?

    • 21 laurie law
      August 5, 2011 at 11:38 am

      Yes Grover Cleavland served 2 non consecutive terms.

    • 22 utaustinliberal
      August 5, 2011 at 11:43 am

      Hey JCT from South Africa welcome!!!! Just want to extend my thanks to your countrymen for treating our First Lady and her family with love, warmth, respect and kindess. 😀 After FDR had three terms (12years) in office, the Constitution was amended so that the unlimited term limits law became null and void. So a President can only for office twice (in a back to back fashion) and cannot run again after he loses the election for a second term. The only President who ran for office again after he lost his second term re-election bid was Grover Cleveland I believe. So the answer to your question is that no, President Obama cannot run for re-election in 2016. Hope this helped 🙂

  12. 23 JCT
    August 5, 2011 at 12:11 pm

    Thanks for answering my post. And UT it was a pleasure to host the First Lady and the girls in SA. It definitely looked like they enjoyed the trip. In my humble opinion, it would be a great shame, not only for the USA, but the world at large if PBO is not elected to a 2nd term to complete the work that he has started.

    You and the rest of the TOD family must make his re-election in 2012 a reality…

  13. August 5, 2011 at 12:12 pm

    Great article- when folks pay attention to all that this man and his administration have accomplished in this short time period its nothing short of astounding.. I disagree wholeheartedly with the idea that POTUS won’t be reelected or that the tea party will win some how. Thats where we also come in- and I’m sorry but I absolutely believe the tea party has nothing on the supporters of this president either in numbers or in ‘enthusiasm’. He will be reeclected and I will work along with millions of others to make it happen.

  14. 25 sjterrid
    August 5, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I agree whole heartily.

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