It's not really my job to save Barack Obama from the fate which hubris and ideological rigidity have reserved for him, but if he was interested in listening, the route back from the lowest approval ratings of any first-year president would be easy to point out.
All President Obama would have to do to immediately jump into respectable numbers in the polls and show that he is not part of the partisan disease symptomized by the draconian rule of Nancy Pelosi in the House, is to make a simple public statement. I'll even draft it for him to pass on to Jon Favreau or one of his other celebrity speechwriters for some polish.
(tonight or tomorrow morning, carried live on all networks)
My fellow Americans. I had been planning to fly to Copenhagen to attend the climate conference. Today I am here to tell you that I am not going to make that trip.
After watching video of the speeches made this week by dictators, tyrants, and greedy opportunists, I realize that this conference is not about the very real threat of global climate change. It has become a political power grab, a platform for propaganda and an all-out attack on America and the system of capitalism which has made it the most successful nation in the world.
I made up my mind after hearing genocidal dictator Robert Mugabe declare that the United States and capitalism were responsible for all the world's ills and hearing America-hating Marxist Hugo Chavez declare that he was glad to see the ghost of capitalism stalking the halls of the conference.
Their speeches were just the tip on the pyramid of evidence that this conference has been hijacked by extremists whose interest is the economic destruction of the United States by enacting punitive measures which our historically generous nation cannot afford to foot the bill for at this time of economic hardship.
My first concern is the American people. I want to use our resources to build jobs and restore prosperity and we cannot afford to send billions to nations which consider us their greatest enemy at a time when the American people need that money more.
American prosperity was built on capitalism, and although we have allowed it to run out of control, I want to dedicate my presidency to restoring the balance between self interest and civic duty so that businesses can grow and be profitable and share that prosperity with workers and investors and charitable institutions. This can be accomplished through wise stewardship of the economy and the imposition of reasonable regulation and meaningful accountability — the proper role of government in a free society.
Just as I am dedicated to stewarding our economy I believe that we should also be stewards for our environment, and that can best be accomplished by focusing on our own role in polluting the planet. Rather than accepting the rules imposed by nations who do not have our welfare at heart, we should address these issues ourselves and lead the world by example.
We know what needs to be fixed. We want clean air, clean water, greater energy independence and sustainability. These things are of indisputable benefit to the nation and the people. We should set the highest standards — even higher than what might come out of a climate treaty — and dedicate our efforts to reaching them as quickly as possible without destroying our economy in the process. This is a great and sacred duty we have as a people and to which I dedicate myself as your president.
We will make America a shining example of a nation which can have freedom, prosperity, social justice and a healthy environment. We must reevaluate our priorities and redirect our efforts. We will lead the way for other nations to follow and do it as we always have, on our own with others looking on in envy. We are America, we are exceptional and though we face great challenges we will find even greater solutions.
Thank you and good night."
Now, you know I don't necessarily agree with every priority or viewpoint expressed in this speech, but if I heard this speech or something like it tonight or tomorrow I would be standing up and applauding. It does the things which many Americans believe President Obama has failed to do thus far in his presidency; stand up for America and its values, show some basic support for working and entrepreneurial America, express independence from his party and their international allies, and show that he wants to be president for all of the people, not just the special interests which put him in office.
If he made a speech like this his own party would have a hard time arguing with it and he would win over a great many independents and even more open-minded Republicans. Just showing that he rejects the ideology of Mugabe and Chavez and the elite European bureaucrats by rejecting Copenhagen would be a very good start, but he would, of course, have to follow through with real action on the ideas it expresses. He would need to take the lead on real job creation in the private sector and on an aggressive, comprehensive and responsible environmental policy.
The president's approval ratings are so low because people feel that he is failing America in its time of need and that he is ready to sell us out to ideologies and interest groups who do not have our best interests at heart. We don't think he's on our side anymore and we fear that he may have decided to become an enemy of the people like the Democrats in Congress. This might be a way for him to declare his allegiance with the people and avoid following the rest of his party to political oblivion. With a speech like this followed by real action he could put an end to those doubts and become the president which we need in this time of crisis.