“Can you hear me now?”

Yeah, I think that might be what Mr. My President said to General McChrystal when he gave him the heave-ho.

I’m so over General McChrystal.  Maybe he’s a good commander in war-time.  But there are other good war-time commanders.  Like General Petraeus, for example.  Maybe McChrystal knows how to lead soldiers.  What he clearly doesn’t know is how to accept that, even if his Commander-in-Chief is someone he might not like having to take orders from, he still has to take orders from him and still has to treat him as his superior (aye, there’s the rub, eh Stanley?).  This nonsense with Rolling Stone isn’t McChrystal’s first exercise in “poor judgement” in terms of talking about the President.  He’s made a bit of a habit of criticizing Obama, and I’d been wondering what it would take to finally see the back of him.

Well, now I know.  I was afraid Obama would be conciliatory, would accept some lame mea culpa from McChrystal and move on.  I was pleased to come home from work tonight and see that things had gone the other way.  I guess even Mr. Calm-and-Collected has a tipping point.  Good.

And I like that Obama talked about McChrystal as if his career had just ended.  Who knows if that will be true, but I kind of dug it, like the President was rubbing McChrystal’s nose in it a little, like: “Hey, Stanley.  See me over here?  You may not like me or the way I do business, but I can fire your ass and make sure some important doors close in your face.  How d’you like them apples?”

Of course Mr. My President is much cooler, kinder and more tactful than I am, so I’m sure that wasn’t what he was doing at all.

I don’t know what any of this will mean in terms of the war in Afghanistan.  Foolishly, I had thought we’d already be seeing the end of our involvement there.  Clearly not.  I don’t know anything about waging a war, but General Petraeus does seem to know how to do his job and is liked and respected by all sorts of people who can’t agree on much of anything else, so that’s promising.  And maybe in the long run, we’ll all look back and wish McChrystal had been allowed to keep running the ship.

But not me.

He needed to go.  I am done trying to pretend to have patience with these people who think they don’t need to show any respect to Mr. My President.  You don’t like the man.  Get. over. it.  Get the fuck over it.  The man is the leader of our country and you need to give him the respect his office demands.  End of story.  You spent eight years genuflecting before a dangerous moron.  You can’t bite your tongue during an interview?  Get. over. it.

And Stanley?  Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

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8 thoughts on ““Can you hear me now?”

  1. Agreed! What is going on? Can you imagine how Colin Powell was reacting to this as he watched the news?
    I am glad he’s gone and that Obama turned this around to Piraius. Now let’s finish up and get out!
    Is there a day that goes by that Obama doesn’t have a new fire to put out?
    Remember when Bush could take afternoon naps?
    Bonnie

    1. Hi, Bonnie! I’ve been thinking about you as I do this workshop. So wonderful to be surrounded by writers all day every day. I could get used to this!

      You’re so right about the putting out fires thing. So crazy-making!

  2. molly

    It is so odd when military people cannot accept chains of command. And I am also always surprised by people who do whatever they want to, right in the face of rules to the contrary. I live in the land of freedom to disobey all rules, with the first example set by our Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi, who has flaunted every rule, legal and moral, from paying taxes to dating underage women. I do think that human society has to have some rules besides whatever you can get away with.
    And I am all in favor of Obama asserting himself as the Commander in Chief and as President.

    1. I’m with you: I’m not interested in crazy, oppressive regulation or in some kind of chaotic, hedonistic anarchy … Basic rules, however (and not even difficult ones), I’m all for them. It would be nice to think we could function without them, but we prove again and again just how much we can’t.

  3. Agreed. Commander-in-chief is commander-in-chief. If you don’t agree, then you are prepared with good darn resources and information to argue your point, not bitch about it.

    1. I was a little unsure about this post because it makes me sound like a flag-waving (in a bad way), patriotic (in a bad way), my-country-right-or-wrong kind of person, and I’m so not that person, but there are just basic rules (as Molly was saying) that we should be adhering to. When I was at the inauguration and people were booing Bush, I didn’t join in because I thought it was rude and disrespectful. I certainly wasn’t happy to have had the man as my president for 8 years, but he was the President, and to boo in that setting was just wrong.

  4. This was the Obama I campaigned, gave money and voted for: decisive, yet measured and graceful. He can’t catch a break…we voted for him, and then went to sleep, it seems, expecting him to make things happen magically. The hate media and the GOP is out to destroy this presidency – it seems as though everyone else is sort of sitting back instead of rising up in defense of all that we worked so hard to make happen. So frustrating!

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