HOPE, CHANGE, ETC.
OK, I get the point of John Cole's sarcasm:
Both are up for a vote today, and both will be filibustered...
... it goes without saying that any failure to have these two items passed is not the fault of the troglodyte bigots who blocked the bills or the dysfunctional Senate rules that always seem to call for a supermajority when the President is a Democrat, but Obama for failing to use the bully pulpit.
Obviously, the No-sayers are the evil ones here. But tell me what the point is if you promise serious change and you have no techniques at your disposal -- arm-twisting, bully-pulpit bullying, palm-greasing, nothing -- that actually works to deliver change. Explain to me why you overpromised when you couldn't deliver a hundredth of what you told us you could push through. After a while it starts to look like the Underpants Gnome theory of transformational government:
Phase 1: Get elected in a country where recalcitrant barking-lunatic reactionaries still wield tremendous power and the political-insider culture still accords those stubborn old bastards tremendous respect.
Phase 2: ???
Phase 3: CHANGE!
If you didn't have a plan, you should have promised to fight -- no more. You shouldn't have told us you'd be able to prevail.