Still trying to figure out what President Barack Obama’s foreign policy doctrine is? Search no more. The White House has got you covered.
“For those pining for an Obama Doctrine victory for the president, here it is: ‘Don’t Do Stupid Shit,’” Politico’s Mike Allen wrote in his daily tip sheet, the Politico Playbook, Saturday. “Playbook rarely prints a four-letter word — our nephews are loyal readers. But we are, in this case, because that is the precise phrase President Obama and his aides are using in their off-the-record chats with journalists.”
Allen went on to point out all the places the phrase has popped up in recent days and weeks.
“If the aim was to get this phrase in circulation to define the Obama doctrine, mission accomplished!” he wrote. “It appeared in the L.A. Times at the end of Obama’s Asia trip this spring, was reprised in the lead story of Thursday’s New York Times, and is used TWICE in today’s NYT — once in the news columns, and once in a column by Tom Friedman, who was part of an off-the-record roundtable with Obama on Tuesday.”
“WHAT’S CLEAR is that the White House is pushing this line hard, and effectively,” he concluded. “What’s not clear is how a high school cliché will help successfully define a foreign policy that many on the right and left find soft and uninspired.”
For the smartest president in the history of humanity, this is hardly a sophisticated, much less ambitious, doctrine. As for whether President Obama has lived up to his own doctrine, well, that’s another question altogether.