Sunday, November 30, 2008

Lower Your Obama Expectations, Europe

THE Obama is not the man that Europe thinks he is. In fact, he's not the man that many of his supporters thought he was. Ask liberal Democrats who voted for him in the US and many will tell you how disappointed they are Obama for choosing so many leftover politicians for his high posts: Hillary Clinton pegged for Secretary of State, holding onto Bush's Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, and so on. Europe will be disappointed for reasons other than his appointments, however. Once Europeans realized that Obama is an American first, not some borderless citizen of the world, the gloss will be a bit dimmer in their eyes. Obama is not the Messiah, of course, and although he'd like to, he has not, will not and cannot bring peace to the planet or miraculously cure diseases, and people will not suddenly stop hating each other when he becomes the president on January 20. I'm not criticizing him for being human; I've written that we should give Obama a chance before we rush to judge him on a job that is, officially, not even his yet. has a very interesting article about Professor Stephen Monsma of the Henry Institute in Michigan. Prof. Monsma, writes Swissinfo, "warns Europeans against having unrealistic expectations: Obama might be more liberal than Bush but he would continue to put Americans first when he takes office." This is music to my conservative ears. He will "continue to put America first?" God bless him if that is so. William Ayers must be having fits over this, but it pleases me to no end. Prof. Monsma believes that many Europeans think Obama would brush America aside for some internationalist agenda. Wrong, says Prof. Monsma. "He will be a very tough negotiator," he told Swissinfo. No doubt, we know he can be and he was impressive in the campaign. But will Obama use his powers for Truth, Justice and the American Way? "There is so much enthusiasm for Obama in Europe," Prof. Monsma told Swissinfo, "even among the French. I'm sure that America's Nato allies are soon going to feel some pressure from the Obama government to send more troops to Afghanistan and we will see how excited the French are about that." RELATED: Obama and Europe: How long a love-fest? DJ Nozem: Obama and Europe More `dirty tricks' tipped From George Bush to Barack Obama