What has President Barack Obama Done for You Lately?

"Robert P. Watson, Ph.D. Coordinator of American Studies
Lynn University"
Email: rwatson@lynn.edu

I am always being asked to grade Obama's presidency. In place of offering him a grade, I put together a list of his accomplishments thus far. I think you would agree that it is very impressive. His first six months have been even more active than FDRs or LBJs the two standards for such assessments. Yet, there is little media attention given to much of what he has done. Of late, the media is focusing almost exclusively on Obama's critics, without holding them responsible for the uncivil, unconstructive tone of their disagreements or without holding the previous administration responsible for getting us in such a deep hole. The misinformation and venom that now passes for political reporting and civic debate is beyond description.

As such, there is a need to set the record straight. What most impresses me is the fact that Obama has accomplished so much not from a heavy-handed or top-down approach but from a style that has institutionalized efforts to reach across the aisle, encourage vigorous debate, and utilize town halls and panels of experts in the policy-making process. Beyond the accomplishments, the process is good for democracy and our democratic processes have been battered and bruised in recent years.

Let me know if I missed anything in the list (surely I did).


1. Ordered all federal agencies to undertake a study and make recommendations for ways to cut spending
2. Ordered a review of all federal operations to identify and cut wasteful spending and practices
3. Instituted enforcement for equal pay for women
4. Beginning the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq
5. Families of fallen soldiers have expenses covered to be on hand when the body arrives at Dover AFB
6. Ended media blackout on war casualties; reporting full information
7. Ended media blackout on covering the return of fallen soldiers to Dover AFB; the media is now permitted to do so pending adherence to respectful rules and approval of fallen soldier's family
8. The White House and federal government are respecting the Freedom of Information Act
9. Instructed all federal agencies to promote openness and transparency as much as possible
10. Limits on lobbyist's access to the White House
11. Limits on White House aides working for lobbyists after their tenure in the administration
12. Ended the previous stop-loss policy that kept soldiers in Iraq/Afghanistan longer than their enlistment date
13. Phasing out the expensive F-22 war plane and other outdated weapons systems, which weren't even used or needed in Iraq/Afghanistan
14. Removed restrictions on embryonic stem-cell research
15. Federal support for stem-cell and new biomedical research
16. New federal funding for science and research labs
17. States are permitted to enact federal fuel efficiency standards above federal standards
18.. Increased infrastructure spending (roads, bridges, power plants) after years of neglect
19. Funds for high-speed, broadband Internet access to K-12 schools
20. New funds for school construction
21. The prison at Guantanamo Bay is being phased out
22. US Auto industry rescue plan
23. Housing rescue plan
24. $789 billion economic stimulus plan
25. The public can meet with federal housing insurers to refinance (the new plan can be completed in one day) a mortgage if they are having trouble paying
26. US financial and banking rescue plan
27. The secret detention facilities in Eastern Europe and elsewhere are being closed
28. Ended the previous policy; the US now has a no torture policy and is in compliance with the Geneva Convention standards
29. Better body armor is now being provided to our troops
30. The missile defense program is being cut by $1.4 billion in 2010
31. Restarted the nuclear nonproliferation talks and building back up the nuclear inspection infrastructure/protocols
32. Reengaged in the treaties/agreements to protect the Antarctic
33. Reengaged in the agreements/talks on global warming and greenhouse gas emissions
34. Visited more countries and met with more world leaders than any president in his first six months in office
35. Successful release of US captain held by Somali pirates; authorized the SEALS to do their job
36. US Navy increasing patrols off Somali coast
37. Attractive tax write-offs for those who buy hybrid automobiles
38. Cash for clunkers program offers vouchers to trade in fuel inefficient, polluting old cars for new cars; stimulated auto sales
39. Announced plans to purchase fuel efficient American-made fleet for the federal government
40. Expanded the SCHIP program to cover health care for 4 million more children
41. Signed national service legislation; expanded national youth service program
42. Instituted a new policy on Cuba, allowing Cuban families to return home to visit loved ones
43. Ended the previous policy of not regulating and labeling carbon dioxide emissions
44. Expanding vaccination programs
45. Immediate and efficient response to the floods in North Dakota and other natural disasters
46. Closed offshore tax safe havens
47. Negotiated deal with Swiss banks to permit US government to gain access to records of tax evaders and criminals
48. Ended the previous policy of offering tax benefits to corporations who outsource American jobs; the new policy is to promote in-sourcing to bring jobs back
49. Ended the previous practice of protecting credit card companies; in place of it are new consumer protections from credit card industry's predatory practices
50. Energy producing plants must begin preparing to produce 15% of their energy from renewable sources
51. Lower drug costs for seniors
52. Ended the previous practice of forbidding Medicare from negotiating with drug manufacturers for cheaper drugs; the federal government is now realizing hundreds of millions in savings
53. Increasing pay and benefits for military personnel
54. Improved housing for military personnel
55. Initiating a new policy to promote federal hiring of military spouses
56. Improved conditions at Walter Reed Military Hospital and other military hospitals
57. Increasing student loans
58. Increasing opportunities in AmeriCorps program
59. Sent envoys to Middle East and other parts of the world that had been neglected for years; reengaging in multilateral and bilateral talks and diplomacy
60. Established a new cyber security office
61. Beginning the process of reforming and restructuring the military 20 years after the Cold War to a more modern fighting force; this includes new procurement policies, increasing size of military, new technology and cyber units and operations, etc.
62. Ended previous policy of awarding no-bid defense contracts
63. Ordered a review of hurricane and natural disaster preparedness
64. Established a National Performance Officer charged with saving the federal government money and making federal operations more efficient
65. Students struggling to make college loan payments can have their loans refinanced
66. Improving benefits for veterans
67. Many more press conferences and town halls and much more media access than previous administration
68. Instituted a new focus on mortgage fraud
69. The FDA is now regulating tobacco
70. Ended previous policy of cutting the FDA and circumventing FDA rules
71. Ended previous practice of having White House aides rewrite scientific and environmental rules, regulations, and reports
72. Authorized discussions with North Korea and private mission by Pres. Bill Clinton to secure the release of two Americans held in prisons
73. Authorized discussions with Myanmar and mission by Sen. Jim Web to secure the release of an American held captive
74. Making more loans available to small businesses
75. Established independent commission to make recommendations on slowing the costs of Medicare
76. Appointment of first Latina to the Supreme Court
77. Authorized construction/opening of additional health centers to care for veterans
78. Limited salaries of senior White House aides; cut to $100,000
79. Renewed loan guarantees for Israel
80. Changed the failing/status quo military command in Afghanistan
81. Deployed additional troops to Afghanistan
82. New Afghan War policy that limits aerial bombing and prioritizes aid, development of infrastructure, diplomacy, and good government practices by Afghans
83. Announced the long-term development of a national energy grid with renewable sources and cleaner, efficient energy production
84. Returned money authorized for refurbishment of White House offices and private living quarters
85. Paid for redecoration of White House living quarters out of his own pocket
86. Held first Seder in White House
87. Attempting to reform the nation's healthcare system which is the most expensive in the world yet leaves almost 50 million without health insurance and millions more under insured
88. Has put the ball in play for comprehensive immigration reform
89. Has announced his intention to push for energy reform
90. Has announced his intention to push for education reform

Oh, and he built a swing set for the girls outside the Oval Office

Your rating: None Average: 3.9 (8 votes)

You should remove every military one because you clearly don't have a clue about anything military and either misrepresented them or gave such a vague general statement that it could apply to EVERY president in the last 20 years possibly even the last 80 years without checking the facts on it.

I lieu of them I would add these.
1. Got a Republican Govenor elected in Virginia
2. Got a Republican Governor elected in New Jersey
3. Got a Republican Senator elected in Massachusettes.


Attempting is an accomplishment now?

If it is then chalk me up for attempting to solve world poverty while I was sitting on the throne this morning.

Last week I attempted to push the world off it's axis. I'm still waiting to see if next year is longer because of it.

Last month I attempted to move the Arc de Triumph with my mind power.

This list was worse than the Chuck Norris list because Chuck Norris's tears cure cancer but Chuck Norris NEVER CRIES!


Last week I attempted to push the world off it's axis. I'm still waiting to see if next year is longer because of it.

Darn you! You cut that out right now!

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

But they do.

What has Barak Sotero done for you?


Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a

He's managed to make the next three years feel like thirty-three.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

Never thought this would happen.

What has Obama done?

He didn’t read ‘My Pet Goat’ in front of a bunch of kids while the nation was under attack.

He didn’t play the banjo and eat birthday cake with John McCain while one of our cities was being destroyed.

He didn’t start a war on false pretenses.

He didn’t out an undercover CIA agent specializing in weapons of mass destruction for political gain.

He didn’t stuff a tube sock down his crotch and land a plane on a fighter jet and declare mission accomplished.

Actually, I’ve been pretty disappointed in Obama mostly because he has tried to reach out too many times to the other side and has kept waaaaay too many of Bush’s policies in place.

Libs just cant address Barry Sorento without talking about GWB.

Bush isnt president anymore. Barry Sorento has been now for over a year.

Of "he didn'ts"! Prunhrts question as I read it, is what has he DONE for us--I already know about the "he didn't" part.

How about Obama has turned around job loss that had exploded under Bush.

Since Obama came into office job growth has converted from a 6 percent loss to a 6 percent gain, with much of that turnaround being attributable to the Stimulus.   Of course if the stimulus has been properly sized say 1.5-2 trillion dollars with less tax cuts, we'd be seeing the ecomoney humming by now.  Exactly what conservitives don't want to see.

How about Obama has turned around job loss that had exploded under Bush.

Since Obama came into office job growth has converted from a 6 percent loss to a 6 percent gain, with much of that turnaround being attributable to the Stimulus.   Of course if the stimulus has been properly sized say 1.5-2 trillion dollars with less tax cuts, we'd be seeing the ecomoney humming by now.  Exactly what conservitives don't want to see.

The one posted by paid Democratic shill, SensorG http://static1.firedoglake.com/37/files/2010/02/021610_roadtorecovery.jpg which was taken from www.firedoglake.com/ 

A blog website owned by Jane Hamsher, an eliteist HollyWood liberal http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jane_Hamsher

Or this graph put out by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics?


Is it really so easy to fool a Liberal?

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a

You dumb ass. Please stop talking if you don't know any thing about what you're talking about. I know that only leaves you to beanie babies and Hannah Montana, but hey the rest of the world will be smarter for it.

The top graph is JOB LOSS and the graph you posted is UNEMPLOYMENT. Until the JOB LOSS graph starts to be positive, then UNEMPLOYMENT won't get better.

The JOB LOSS graph does clearly demonstrate that the stimulus has at least turned around the massive shedding of jobs and is trending in a very positive direction considering where we were 12-18 months ago.

What happen about 12 months ago? That's right the stimulus package.

He has invigorated the Conservative majority in this country to an extent that even Ronald Reagan didn't. I've never seen Conservatives packing the halls at Tea Parties, town halls, period, let alone to the extent they are now. Talk about missing the ball, with respect to his notions that Americans just can't wait for more government, more taxes, more state control of our lives and our finances and freedoms, this president stands pretty much alone now. His only other competition in a historical sense here, might be Roosevelt, although Roosevelt had what, about thirteen or so years as president?

there is no 'conservative majority in this country'.

What, you seriously believe 'the country' changed it's political stripes in just over a year because of Obama's current poll numbers?

And just who is the 'conservative majority' of this nation going to turn to in 2012 to vote Obama out? Palin? Huckabee? Jindal (he was all the rage a year ago--what happened to him??)? Jebbie?

Heck McCaskey, most conservitives think that ACORN stole election for Obama.

But we do think Bush stole an election once. And I might add, he did a splendid job in stealing an election, right under the democrats' noses. Not too bad for an idiot, eh?

Things getting posted twice for some reason.

Sorry, but the Country remains right of center, and will remain so. As soon as someone gets the nomination, I'll tell you who Conservatives will turn to-I promise. Just look to Massachusetts-and the Conservative won, again.

And the first thing he was said "Tea Party?, What Tea Party?" The tea baggers are a useful tool to get Republicans elected who will nothing different then the last time they held power.

'As soon as someone gets the nomination, I'll tell you who Conservatives will turn to-I promise'...

Well, that's really taking a stroll way out on the limb.

You can even project who viable conservative candidate will be? Who your favorite candidate might be?

You're all brass...

You asked the goddam question-and I gave an answer!

completely chicken shit though it may be.

Keep living the dream.


Oh and Dont forget Obama won the Nobel peace prize!!!..

“Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end.”

...what is your interpretation of this video, Zeitgeist? Are they ignorant because they can't name things that the poller feels important - what about other issues that are important to them, or many other people, see no questions about those. It's a funny video that would pass on the Colbert report, Daily Show, or Leno, but to take it any further is a joke.

Questions like what? What sorts of questions "important to them" should have been asked? Would one question be "how's Hope and Change working"? I can answer that one-it isn't. Give us some examples, please.

....with the intention of asking questions that might "prove" Obama supporters foolish. Asked during the election, mind you. So a smarmy response of "how's hope and change working" is inappropriate. One could have lined up a separate set of questions that would make McCain supporters look foolish as well.

Perhaps some of the voters could answer questions on environmental issues that were important to them that Obama represented, or had views on the war, or had views on education that they thought resonated with Obama. Maybe they weren't as aware of the ridiculous "strong link" between Obama and Ayers (which could be correlated with them not caring, so why encode info in your brain that doesn't matter to you). Perhaps some didn't even know much about Obama, but didn't believe in McCain even more, and in a two party system, sometimes you vote more for not the other one than for your own candidate.

My point is that the poll and interviews are a SHAM, and beyond an amusing bit, they illustrate nothing of substance. To actually state otherwise is a joke.

And it's funny - one of the greatest fiscal crises of a generation, compounded by two foreign wars, and people want to throw up their hands and say "see, it's not working." after barely over a year. Jeez, even in good times, the first year of a presidency is usually spent cleaning up after the last president's business. And that's in good times. What a laugher. A lot has been done in the past year, whether one likes that work or not is another story, and even more should have been done. And for every chant about liberal ineffectiveness, one should shake a republican for being obstructionist. It's embarrassing. Republicans had a chance to step in and lead, and instead chose to play their own politics. Shame on BOTH parties.

All Toledo Blade articles printed this month. Feb. 2010

Bankruptcy filings rise 4% in Toledo Area for January - Toledo Blade



Article published February 06, 2010

1 in 13 local mortgages 90 days or more late



 Article published February 11, 2010

Michigan foreclosures up, Ohio’s drop in January

Foreclosure activity climbed in Michigan but dropped in Ohio last month from a year ago, a national report shows.

Michigan ranked as the seventh-worst state, with one default and auction notice or foreclosure filing for every 258 homes in January, according to RealtyTrac Inc., a California real-estate data firm. The 17,574 filings were up 54 percent from a year ago, but down 13 percent from December.

Ohio’s filings, one per every 457 homes, ranked the state 14th highest. Its 11,105 filings were down nearly 1 percent from a year earlier and 5.5 percent from December.


Article published February 18, 2010

Jobless claims rise unexpectedly

WASHINGTON — The number of newly laid-off workers filing applications for unemployment benefits unexpectedly surged last week after having fallen sharply in the previous week. The gain dampened hopes about how quickly the labor market may improve this year.

The Labor Department said Thursday that first-time claims for unemployment benefits rose by 31,000 to a seasonally adjusted 473,000.


Article published February 17, 2010

Federal Reserve predicts unemployment will stay high over next 2 years


WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve expects unemployment will stay high over the next two years because recession-scarred Americans are likely to stay cautious, making for only a moderate-paced economic recovery.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a

And that's what that party will have to show the voters this Fall, as they beg them for their votes.

What do the Republicans offer but "NO!"?

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