Every time I read Ron Fournier I feel my IQ slipping, my reading comprehension fading, and my respect for non-peevish journalism soaring.
What a clown, what a petty, persnickety, sanctimonious clown. About Obama he's got a bug up his anal-retentive temperament the size of a Buick, which, merely as political prejudice, is perfectly understandable, since for instance my bug about W. was the size of a T-35 tank. But at least I always offered, I think, intelligible reasons for loathing George W. Bush. Fournier on President Obama? It's all something of a fog.
His latest seething is that Obama cares nothing about Vladimir Putin's "motivations"--of which Putin himself has made no secret whatsoever; he seeks a return to superpower greatness and Mother Russian glory--and furthermore Obama's "handling of leaders in Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, Syria, [and] China ... exposes a lack of empathy and sophistication." Fournier's implication: If only Obama understood the foreign soul as Fournier so obviously does, Iraqis would stop blowing up one another, Karzai would welcome a permanent occupation, Assad would take a long vacation on the Black Sea's beaches, China would just by God behave itself throughout the Pacific and of course Vladimir would drop to his knees and beg Western forgiveness.
Hey, my reading of Fournier is as valid as Fournier's writing, since at no time does he tell us exactly what wonders Obamian "empathy" would globally unfold. (To wit, "In the case of Putin, knowing and caring about the Russian's point of view might not have prevented the Ukraine crisis, but it would have kept Obama a step ahead of it." So that Obama could do ... what? Fournier is silent on this.)
Jammed awkwardly into his musings on foreign policy, Fournier returns--he just can't help himself--to his old bugbear of Obama's lack of schmoozing (or something) Republicans. "[C]aring little about the motivation of his rivals seems to be a trait of Obama's leadership that has hurt him in Congress, where the opposition party is stubbornly opposed to his agenda. Rather than understanding why the GOP is moving rightward, helping its leadership tame party extremists (as he must do with the Left), and finding issues that help both sides claim victories, Obama surrendered to polarization and gridlock."
Leaves you a trifle speechless, doesn't it? If only Obama hadn't "surrendered" to the GOP's absolutely inextinguishable polarization and gridlock, if only he had understood why Republicans had gone fucking bananas, then somehow, somehow bipartisan harmony could have reigned.
I really must stop reading the Fourniers of this world. Their every column subtracts not only from the sum of opinionated decency, but from my already quite limited patience.