Cameron and Obama, two very disappointing men

Ignoring the facts, ignoring the public

Tears of joy Mr President? Tears of joy Mr President?
We start with Barack Obama. Kicking the can down the road and the fiscal cliff. It all sounds so dramatic don't you think? Perhaps we have to forgive those who ramp these things up. For dithering and living beyond your means sounds so boring, not the sort of thing you would expect from the USA and their President. Funny how it goes but when Spain began its descent into financial chaos it was Barack Obama who in 2010 rang up Prime Minister Zapatero to offer words of advice and encouragement. Rumour has it Obama handed out a bit of a ticking off too.

Time moves on and Don José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero lost the 2011 Spanish elections but Obama secured a second term as the President of the USA. We don't know if Zapatero or any other leader rang him to reciprocate with words of advice but I think we can imagine the reaction had they done so. For Obama is so typical of his nation at its worst, they like dishing it out but not getting it back. As time moves on Obama is looking ever more Hollywood than White House. Ronald Reagan was a better and more convincing actor too!

The arrogance of Obama was at first a shock but now seems commonplace. Taking people for granted is what he does. Also they say that history will be a harsh judge of Zapatero. He certainly did the radical bit: bringing to the normally conservative Spanish society changes on child adoption and gay marriage, his cabinet was half women too. However, Zapatero did not have Obama's advantages, he was not the liberal elite's favourite person. Perhaps Zapatero was too easygoing as well.

So what of Obama? Well he tried the radical approach with his reforms to the healthcare system - generally judged to be a good deal less than a success. Then there's the economy; Zapatero left Spain in a mess from which it may take more than a generation to recover and the US looks to be even worse off. Yet the liberal elite's favourite person chunters on spewing out banalities and half truths. His leadership style is not yet at the level of Robert Mugabe but the US economy looks more shaky that at any time in it's history; how has that happened?

People now talk of how the successor to Barack Obama may be appointed, the joke being that Michelle Obama is ready to 'step up to the plate'. You bet she is! The way the First Lady has sharp-elbowed her way to the front is a chip of the old block himself and frightening to behold and all done without the bother of being elected in her own right. Willing no doubt to carry on 'serving America'.
Michelle Obama fishing for votes? Michelle Obama fishing for votes?
And then we had the pleasure of America throwing its weight around with the suggestion that 'Britain will be weaker without EU'. Read further and it's clear that this means the US thinks it would be worse off without the UK stuck in the EU. Mention is made of the security aspects; now, if the US wants to find another sucker to follow it into the 'world policeman' role then I'm sure the UK would cope! For far too long the US has known that it can rely on the UK to be daft enough to join in any mad adventure it dreams up. I would think that the majority of the UK would just love to be too weak to get involved in any more of this madness. Also it is not just the White House that felt we should know its opinion, even the US Ambassador in London decided to 'speak up' . And much as to be expected he was 'on message' , just like his boss. Pathetic!

Well as this had to end sometime and a moment of anger no doubt similar to the one the Spanish people felt when Obama rang Zapatero has occurred. The Tory back benches erupted and quite rightly too.

The sheer arrogance of all this will make many people in the UK question not so much the worth of the US-UK 'special' relationship but the burden of it. Why do we have to put up with this, what's the point? For we had also been told how in the 1982 Falklands war the US had been keen to 'help'. However, conflict resolution in this case was not some lofty diplomatic ideal but would have been telling the Argentine government our battle plans. Mind you the role of the French government throughout the conflict is questionable too.

But then the rage of many people and perhaps some of the Tory back benches would have turned to laughter at the headline from the link above -

America has 'no clue' about Europe, say Tories - The Americans don't understand Europe. They have a default position that sometimes the United States of Europe is going to be the same as the United States of America. They haven't got a clue.

Stop talking about it and DO something! Stop talking about it and DO something!
The joke here is that Cameron does not have a clue either! Ignoring the point that the default position is now to muddle the EU and 'Europe,' it's been clear for a very long time that Cameron and his inner circle are out of their depth. Steve Hilton, originally part of the inner circle but now out of it and living in the USA gave us some lurid detail on how bad it is -

PM 'finds out what's going on from radio' :Bureaucrats run the show, says former No10 guru

Blaming the civil service for Cameron's failure might seem off the mark but he could be right. The Spectator has run two articles with a similar theme. In one the hostility between the government and the civil service is covered. In the other there's more detail including how Michael Gove at the education department has got over these problems. The solution is really very simple, Gove has -

succeeded partly by creating a superstructure of staff that in effect operates above the civil service. He has been given permission to bring in additional advisers, and has used his own political coterie to push his education reforms through. This shows quite how difficult it is to create a responsive civil service.

This leads us to question who gave him permission and why is this not universal across Whitehall?

At the end of this week Cameron will give his speech on the EU and the part the UK is to play in the future regarding membership. He may even talk about Europe! It's taken for grated that this speech is doomed to satisfy few people, either side of the in-out debate, and especially those who understand the technicalities. If Gove can get a decent team to help him why can't Cameron do the same?

We may only conclude that Cameron can't be bothered. It's not as if the help is hard to find either, take Article 50 for example. What to do about our EU status is complicated but Richard North who works alone from Bradford seems to have been the first person to get to grips with the detail. He has blogged at great length about this key clause of the Lisbon Treaty, furthermore, North's blogroll has a list of other people who can help. So if you wish to learn more that's the place to go. What a pity Cameron is too stupid to do the same thing.