From Dogmatism to Pragmatism: Our Nation’s Long Night’s Journey Into Day

On November 14, 2016, at the Press conference on President-Elect Donald Trump, less than a week after he found out that Hillary Clinton was not the one who would continue his policies, President Obama blistered Trump for being more of a pragmatist than an ideologue.

My feeling is that, with this statement, the president aimed at a certain direction, but it backfired. I think that his original intention was to hint at the Republicans in Congress that “their elected guy” is not so reliable ideologically, and therefore the GOP might have some problems in the future.

Having said that, I think that this statement shows us that President Obama, unintentionally of course, does admit, indirectly, the following things:

(1) That he himself is an ideologue. Although the whole nation knew it from the very first beginning, by indirectly admitting this, Obama, also indirectly, admits that:

(2) He has been a nation dividing president. Ideologues cannot represent a diverse nation like the U.S. completely (and, in fact, nobody can). And by admitting this, he tells us that he has let his ideology talk against (at least) half of the nation. And this has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt with his Obamacare (voted just by Democrats) and his multiple executive orders (which defied even his own Democratic members in the U.S. Congress).

(3) Also, Obama indirectly admits that his opponent, President-Elect Donald Trump, by being “pragmatic” has, consequently, a much wider margin of covering a much larger part of the other half of the nation. And this, coming from a Trump’s political nemesis like Obama, turns itself into one of the greatest (albeit unintended) compliments of all.

Maybe after Barack Obama will be soon relieved from his presidential burden, he can spend more time reading (aside from golfing). He could start with The Art of the Deal, for instance.

In the end, leaving all aside, this could mark our nation’s long night’s journey into day.


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