Having very publicly passed a very big policy that you promised would revive the economy, the country blames you when the economy does not, in fact, revive. Your policies are discredited and your opponents are emboldened. You lose seats in the next election and your leverage over lawmakers. So you can’t, with any prospect of success, go back to the well and ask for a bigger stimulus or more money to buy up bad mortgages. And then, when the economy gets worse, you’re simultaneously in charge and out of options. You came to Washington promising change and now you’re begging for patience. It’s a crummy situation, and there’s no combination of policy proposals or speeches that can get you out of it. But this is the vise that has tightened around Barack Obama’s presidency.
–Ezra Klein, New York Review of Books, on the President’s predicament.
…sometimes at the Shore, or standing streamside at the Red Man Club as the sun dies and leaves the water black and bottomless, I have looked into his sweet, pale, impertinent boy’s face and known that he squints at a future he’s unsure of, from a vantage point he already knows he doesn’t like, but towards which he soldiers on because he thinks he should and because even though in his heart of hearts he knows we’re not alike, he wishes we were and for that likeness to give him assurance.
–Richard Ford, Independence Day, on a father’s foreboding for his son.