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Obama's looking at the bigger picture

Business Times - 14 Aug 2009


Obama's looking at the bigger picture

By not shaking up the political foundations, he's less likely to create conditions that could threaten his presidency

By LEON HADAR
WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT

OUR friendly Martian trying to make sense of the life and times of Barack Obama by monitoring what the members of America's chattering class say about him six months into his presidency would probably be quite confused.

Who exactly is this guy who just a few months ago had been heralded as a 'transformative' post-partisan, post-racial president? Is he changing the way business is done in Washington, standing up to entrenched economic and political interests and their well-paid lobbyists? Is he shifting the direction of US foreign and defence policies?

The answer to these and related questions depend very much on where one stands on the political map. Pundits on the political right are portraying the White House occupant as a left-leaning liberal …