Sunday, March 29, 2009

Being Contrary is a Good Thing

To those of us that were happy with the election of Obama as our President should also be grateful for his choice of Vice-President. Biden has been vilified for his wordiness, tendency to make gaffs and concern with him going "off script". Yet a New York Times article today alleges (and backs up) the idea that Joe Biden plays an important role in the Obama administration: Contrarian. Read for yourself here.

I truly think this is another good sign of an outstanding leader. A good leader doesn't surround himself with "yes" men who only do his bidding and answer questions with responses he wants to hear. A good leader has to have one (at least one) individual who has the license to say what he thinks and articulate another position. Not just to be contrary, but to have the comfort to know they can speak their mind without retribution and thereby lead the discussion to cover all the facets of possibilities. To live by group think and thereby choose to remain trapped in a bubble is one of the principle failures of the Bush administration. They were incapable of listening. They felt omnipotent. History will show them to be as capable of error as any administration in history. I truly think group think is what lead them to be the worst administration in history.

No administration is perfect and Obama's already has had their share of missteps. Yet it contrasts so well with the previous administration in its willingness to hold and consider other opinions versus making a decision and sticking to it regardless of when data and reality show it to be foolhardy.

In the past eight years those in public and private who questioned the Bush administration decisions were considered unpatriotic by the GOP message machine. And now that same machine is inelegantly wishing for the Obama administration to fail regardless if it takes the same country they live in to a deep point in history economically, politically, or by foreign policy. I defend Rush's right to say he hopes Obama will fail, but I relish the opportunity in the future when I will haunt him with those words. Maybe it will be Bobby Jindahl ridiculing volcano research only to have a volcano erupt in Palin's backyard or other foolishness, saying you want your president to fail and professing to be patriotic and loving your country is damning. It says you only want success for your country when your team is in charge.

1 comment:

Robbie said...

Well said!