By Chet Yarbrough
A Promised Land
By: Barack Obama
Narrated by Barack Obama
Barack Obama (44th President of the United States.)
One does not have to be a fan of former President Obama to appreciate his authorship and presentation in “A Promised Land”. Putting aside animosity about political parties, Obama rings America’s liberty bell. Americans have lost their trust in democracy.
“A Promised Land” is a clarion call to every politician to quit bickering. Being a President, Congressional leader, or Supreme Court justice should not be about self aggrandizement but about representing the American public. Mitch McConnell, Nancy Pelosi, President Trump, and President-Elect Biden have one more chance to return trust in government to Americans.
Obama is a great orator and writer who offers insightful thumbnail opinions about the character of elected officials in American government. He may not be objective but he is extraordinarily persuasive. He argues Mitch McConnell is more concerned with power than any other motivation for being a representative of the United States. In today’s headlines, that opinion seems prescient.
Mitch McConnell (Senate Majority Leader from Kentucky)
McConnell chooses to obstruct the Covid relief legislation until after the decision in Georgia. He wants a Republican controlled Senate to approve Covid relief legislation. He cares not a whit for Americans who are suffering. It is about power, power that corrupts his judgement.
The Georgia race for the Senate is a calculated maneuver by McConnell to exercise power that might slip out of the Senate’s hands.
Nancy Pelosi (Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.)
The case might be made that Nancy Pelosi plays the same game for power. That might be true except it seems Pelosi has been consistent in her belief that another Covid19 relief package is necessary for the good of all Americans. In contrast, the leader of the Senate at one point argued that no additional assistance is required because the economy is getting better.
What makes “A Promised Land” interesting is its candor about the office of the President of the United States and the limitations of a President’s or any human being’s judgment. Unlike the tenure of Trump, Obama consistently demonstrates empathy for the people of America. In one sense, some may interpret that as a weakness. Others will see it as the greatest strength of democratic government.
When a President makes life and death decisions for the American people, one presumes he/she is driven by something called the “greater good”. Of course, “greater good” is interpreted differently by every culture, every individual, and every political leader.
“A Promised Land” is a summary of Obama’s vision of the “greater good”. History will be the final arbiter of Obama’s contribution to America as President of the United States.