Thursday, 14 June 2012

Obama a disappointment but there's little alternative.

Left Foot foward reports that  

If Britons elected the US president, it’d be a landslide for Obama

They  day that 

“There is still considerable support for his re-election in many countries, especially in Europe.
“Roughly nine-in-ten in France (92%) and Germany (89%) would like to see him re-elected, as would large majorities in Britain (73%), Spain (71%), Italy (69%) and the Czech Republic (67%).”
Although the percentage of Britons holding a broadly favourable view of the United States has declined by nine points over the course of Obama’s first term, a solid 60% majority retains such a view..
I have no doubt that these figures are correct . But lets face it.From this side of the Pond the alternative is  pretty poorand the Republican candidates who spent six months fighting it out for the right to lead that Partys challenge for the Presidency looked pretty dodgy, especially when they ended up with Mick Romney. Whose wealth made a considerable  part in his campaign leading to  his nomination and yet he is  candidate many Republicans feel is far too Liberal (in their sense of the word).

But to my mind Obama has been a disappointment  he has not taken a moral lead we were hoping for and like Clinton before him although it will be a relief if he beats his Republican  opponent next November. I don't think there will be of the euphoria and hope for the future that we experienced when both began their first term.

To be fair Obama has to face a number of problems

Firstly the US president hasn't control of his or her Party in the same way European party leaders have and must constantly court and cajole his own people in congress who are a broad spectrum of left to right . Some Democrats are more  right wing than a number of republicans.

Secondly because of the separation of powers The President doesn't have a free hand and as Clinton before him, found himself blocked by Congress some of who regard a welfare State, as comparabilities with Stalinist Russia.

But like all  first term US Presidents face the dilemma that has soon as they are elected they must virtually start fighting the next election and then if they win a second term have probably effectively have only 3 years to make their mark  before the media and public become absorbed with whose going to be the next President..

Royalist and other forelock- tuggers, may point this as a good reason for having a Head of State whose above party politics and who should represent their country rather than be constantly seeking their approval through their  policies.

But of course just across a smaller pond. In the Republic of Ireland they have a Head of state who does just that. The running of the country is left to the Dail and the President is free to represent their Country.

A role the current and previous two presidents have done magnificently..

So this is something for those seeking an Independent Wales should consider. 

  1. Should we keep the current Head of State, Elizabeth I.As the SNP seem to be arguing an Independent Scotland should
  2. Have a Presidential system like the USA and France in vested with a number of powers but balanced with that of the Legislature
  3. Have a President which is powerful with only a legislature which only acts in an advisory capacity.
  4. Have a Presidential system similar to Ireland where the office has virtually no powers but represent the Nation to the world.
  5. Have no head of State other than the a Prime Minister.

I would tend to favour the fourth  option 

1 comment:

Cibwr said...

I agree with you with the fourth option, a president like Ireland, or Iceland would be ideal. Minimal power, though some in reserve to break deadlocks, acting as a representative of the nation. Interestingly Iceland's president exercised his power of veto - and became very popular as a result, even though it was a power vary very used.