modern Japanese politics. Probably one defining feature is the
people's lack of interest combined with their fleeting support for
each incoming prime minister. With each new leader comes a sudden
surge of high expectations for reform and dramatic positive
changes…only to have that fervent support turn into disappointment and
open criticism of the leadership only few months later when little
changes are seen.
Of course, no country can be as extreme as Japan where prime minister
changes every few months for the last five, six years. But the point
about people having unrealistically high expectations for their
leaders is ever-present in all democratic countries, and the current
trend in the United States may be a good example as well.
While not anti-Obama in anyway myself, I am deeply concerned by the
deep emotional involvement his supporters have displayed in the course
of the presidential campaign. Listening to his every important speech
with the same devotion and undoubting acceptance as the audiences of
cult leaders and televangelists, the supporters of Mr. Obama has
increasingly portrayed their candidate as a Messiah who is the One to
save the country from certain destruction.
While there are many merits in the Obama platform, it can only be said
that the high expectations of such magnitude can only bring
disappointments to the same supporters when he fails to fulfill all of
his Promises as he begins work in the Oval Office. And, unfortunately
for him, those disappointments are beginning to show just as the oil
spill and the lingering wars in the Middle East are catching people's
Columns and opinion articles in various newspapers, even ones
initially supportive of Obama, are beginning to switch sides, some
with unbelievable speed and ferocity against Obama. A good measure is
campus newspapers of American universities, which are generally
left-wing, whether the school is private or public.
Even when I was still at Yale, a certain sarcastic letter against
Obama written by Mr. Michael Zink and Ms. Elizabeth Moore began a
flurry of anti-Obama writings. As time went on, more and more columns
appeared; each with less sarcasm and more genuine complaints compared
to the previous ones.
The honesty both displayed in these columns could be considered strong
signs of fearless courage in a campus where vast majority of
inhabitants are relentless Obama supporters who will do everything to
fend off assaults against their beloved leader. But at the same time,
the decision of the YDN to publish them shows that the campus'
attitude really is swinging to the other side. (We say that the pages
of Yale's only daily newspaper is a bastion of free expressions...but
really, the YDN only publishes things that are going to get a lot of
support or a lot of opposition)
In fact, some views put forth by Mr. Zink and Ms. Moore as well as
subsequent anti-Obama writings may be considered as extremist, but
their efforts to cool down the unfounded Obama mania on the Yale
campus and in many segments of the American populace have been highly
When people say "most Americans are stupid," they are quite correct.
Most Americans blindly follow the opinions put forth by their favorite
newspapers or magazines, refusing to see the issues from any other
point of view. And now that both the left-wing and the right-wing
(who hated Obama to begin with and now are definitely on the "I told
you so" track in terms of talking to their readers) are showing
skepticisms toward Obama's ability to lead the country, maybe his
tenure in the Oval Office would not last beyond 2012.