The Brackets of Leadership

by Fred Thompson

As Mark Steyn noted, President Obama is getting out in front on the NCAA Men’s National Basketball Tournament.

Don’t get me wrong, I like putting together an NCAA basketball tournament bracket just as much as the next guy. And let’s acknowledge that NCAA hoops brackets and things like fantasy football pools can be productivity drains in many offices across the country. But the difference between President Obama and the rest of us is that we aren’t calling a meeting of the White House communications staff to rehearse our bracket unveils for a national TV audience while ducking national-security issues, budget negotiations, Social Security reform meetings … you get the idea. And certainly most of us are not picking our brackets with the help of the DNC and an eye toward swing-state votes in our bracket-buster picks.

This criticism of Obama for ignoring the heavy lifting that comes with the job of “Leader of the Free World” is well deserved, but it got me thinking. Maybe we’re approaching this issue of lackadaisical leadership the wrong way. To get Obama to focus on the tough stuff, perhaps we need to use the same approach for him that parents use to get their four-year-olds to take their medicine: a little sugar. Hence, the “Brackets of Leadership.”

Now, while I could easily slot issues like Japan, the budget, entitlement reform, and tax cuts in upper seeds, I think the president would find it much more rewarding — and perhaps more engaging — if he knew that this was more of a community-organized endeavor.

So down below, let’s use the comments section to build our “Bracket of Leadership” for our ever-distracted president. We’ll take your suggestions and unveil the brackets tomorrow. Don’t feel limited to national-security issues, mind you, though we all know there are plenty. And there is no rule that says that “Tax Cuts” can’t be seeded next to “Zero Out the Education Department” (though I’d hate to pick one over the other).

By Thursday, President Obama will already have spent 20 minutes unveiling his NCAA brackets on national television, so maybe he can take a few minutes before packing his bags to head off South America way to look over the needs of our nation. Then again, maybe inaction on his part is a better outcome for all of us.

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