On Monday afternoon, President Barack Obama was on the social media web site Twitter for about an hour to have a town hall-type conversation with Americans regarding the "fiscal cliff." The opening tweet by Obama – as signed with his signature "-bo" when he is really the one typing on the account: "hey guys – this is barack. ready to answer your questions on fiscal cliff & #my2k. Let's get started. –bo" Shortly into the exchange, I sent a question which asked why he (the president) wasn't being more compromising with the Republicans this time around as the fiscal cliff nears.
I received no response.
The overwhelming comments and questions to President Obama were more critical – much more critical - than mine. In fact, compared to most tweets, I was extremely kind in the wording of my commented question.
All in all, it was quickly apparent that most of the people – by far, most of the people - who had taken time to join in the president's social media process were conservatives. Perhaps the liberals simply do not worry about such things as the "fiscal cliff" as they simply trust that Obama will just take care of things for them with his "power" as he has for the past four years.
I could be cruel and say most Obama supporters were at the bank cashing in their first-of-the-month unemployment or other government paychecks since they arrived on Monday instead of on the first of the month – naturally, because the first was on Saturday. But, I won't. Or, I could be cruel and say that most Obama supporters were watching "Judge Judy," "Ellen," and "Maury" instead of getting on a computer and engaging in the president's exchange regarding the "fiscal cliff". But, I won't do that either. I'll just say that the liberals are apparently not nearly as interested in the topic as the conservatives are because they really believe that Barack Obama will take care of things for them again.
Here is a smattering of the responses President Obama got from conservatives regarding his attempt to have dialogue regarding the "fiscal cliff" (spelling errors and some non-essential hashtags have been removed to make it more concise and easier to read):
How many jobs will be created by hiking taxes on roughly 900K small businesses?
We have been hearing for 30+ years that the gov would cut spending but it never happens, come back and ask when budget is balanced.
I wish the President would stop campaigning and work out a deal.
Mr. President, You won the election. Why twitter? Please begin leading with Wash. "experts". Level with voters. Rich tax buys little.
Obama you maxed out all your credit cards. NO TO RAISING THE DEBT CEILING. NO TO NEW TAXES. WE DON'T TRUST YOU.
Can you point to any part of the Constitution that says you get to decide who is rich or poor? You have read it, right?
Since you have been in office you have increased your cabinet. WILL you CUT CABINET positions in a show that you are serious about cuts?
How can there be talk of "deficit reduction" & increased taxes for all when there's no budget for 4 yrs?
No one really expects @whitehouse to take a question that "doesn't" support their marketing push, do they?
Will be buried somewhere #CantTouchThis until you help to stop Guilt Spending us into oblivion and beyond. Thank you.
Will you encourage #Congress to keep its promise to the American people & reduce spending?
Bush cuts assumed peace, economic growth, smaller gvt. After cuts, got 2 wars, DHS/TSA, Tax-free dividends killed funds 4 innovation.
#my2k means you are stealing MORE of my freaking money! STOP SPENDING MONEY WE DON'T FREAKING HAVE.
I will spend mine on the increase in Health Care costs due to Obama Care – already $2,600/yr.
If $2k is mine, can you clarify who the rest belongs to?
Just turned on #my2K column in tweetdeck, doesn't look like lotta people are happy.
140-characters not the best way to discuss complicated economic issues.
Finally, a humorist attached a pic from twitpic of President Barack Obama typing during his Twitter-fest and commented:
You didn't type that!
I think that last one was my favorite – as levity was sorely needed after the hour of Twitter trouncing and "fiscal cliff" discontent among the masses.
Additionally, Gawker reported that Obama took time to respond to a question or comment about "da Bulls!" I missed that one. But, really? President Obama didn't have time to answer my question about the "fiscal cliff," but he responded to someone who wanted to online chat about the Bulls?
Beyond the total Twitter travesty, President Obama went golfing and to the Kennedy Center Honors activities this past weekend. Meanwhile, back at the Capitol, the GOP composed a serious counter-offer to the president and sent it to him on Monday.
It's anybody's guess as to when the president will take time to read and respond to the GOP's offer. It will probably be sometime before his 17-day vacation to Hawaii begins on December 17 – or at least we can hope so.
About Scott Paulson
Scott Paulson writes political commentary for Examiner.com and teaches English at a community college in the Chicago area. The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of CBS Local.
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