The Corner

Our Perpetually Surprised President

While President Obama gives (yet another) speech today on NSA surveillance, the New York Times reports White House aides say “Mr. Obama was surprised to learn after the leaks by Edward J.Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor, just how far the surveillance had gone.”

Our president’s time in office has been one of wonder and astonishment. He was surprised by the depth of the recession when he came into office. He then became surprised at the duration of the bad economy. He was surprised to win the Nobel Prize for Peace. He was surprised there were no shovel-ready jobs. He was surprised the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms was running guns to Mexican drug cartels. He was surprised S&P downgraded the United States’ credit rating for the first time in history. He was surprised the IRS was targeting conservatives. He was surprised the Arab Spring imploded. He was surprised his CIA director was under investigation by the Justice Department. He was surprised reporters were under surveillance by the Justice Department. He was surprised  Catholic bishops were upset about Obamacare’s contraception mandate. He’s regularly surprised by bad unemployment numbers. He was surprised the sequester actually went into effect. He was surprised Israel’s defense minister excoriated the Iran nuke deal. He was surprised by the opposition to his plan to strike Syria. He was surprised the Obamacare website was a debacle. He was surprised how complicated it is to buy health insurance.

We’ve yet to hear if he was surprised Benghazi wasn’t caused by a YouTube video.

Is there any surprise about the condition we’re in?

Peter Kirsanow — Peter N. Kirsanow is an attorney and a member of the United States Commission on Civil Rights.

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