‘The Hardest Job in the World’

John Dickerson, politiek journalist voor The Atlantic, gaat in op de job van de Amerikaanse president. Een interessante historische schets over een uit haar voegen gebarsten takenpakket dat aan herziening toe is:

We are a president-obsessed nation, so much so that we undermine the very idea of our constitutional democracy. No one man—or woman—can possibly represent the varied, competing interests of 327 million citizens. And it may be that no man—or woman—can perform the ever-expanding duties of office while managing an executive branch of 2 million employees (not including the armed forces) charged with everything from regulating air pollution to x-raying passengers before they board an airplane.

Wat ook herkenbaar is andere politieke entiteiten die jarenlang bestaan:

At times, an opportunity to get a quick win has to be put off for a later, bigger victory. Focusing on short-term success might please the pundits, but it keeps an administration from doing the hard, obscure, boring work needed to address looming national problems that will be too big to tackle once they become emergencies—the shrinking middle class, the changing climate, the rising health-care costs straining the federal budget. Even the most above-it-all president is continuously tempted to privilege the small over the big and the now over the future.

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