The longer the Obama administration goes on the more I get the feeling Obama has his eyes on something greater than winning small battles against House Republicans. Some in media have excused Obama's lack of relationship-building with Congress as just not his style, but Obama has built relationships all his life. It's easy to notice that Obama thinks very little of Congress, mostly as obstacles that are presently a necessary evil in our system of governance. Obama, like Clinton and Gore and Carter, has his eyes on global relationships and issues of global governance, development and law-making.
I might be wrong. I guess we'll see how the negotiations over budgets and such go in the next few months, but it seems beneath Obama at this point to get excited about the prospects. The media-created "charm offensive" has been a joke. Obama and his team were taking so much heat from public opinion regarding dysfunction in government, they had to do something. One WH official even admitted it's a joke and only for show. My hunch is that Obama is focused on 2014, like many pundits have suggested, as a short term goal, then on setting up America to advance further in international relationships (pundits haven't suggested the last part). Global governance is a bigger concern to Obama than US governance. In fact, the worse our situation becomes, and the worse the situations of the world at large become, the less likely Americans are to become cocky and independent again. I'm not saying this is a conspiracy and that major governments have all decided to collapse together so that a new order can be created. No, I think Obama and the leaders of other countries and international power players all see the last remains of capitalism crumbling, thus they foresee a day soon when a new order will become necessary. Worldwide interventions in the various economies have been so great and numerous, the world thinks of what's collapsing as capitalism, but it is nothing of the sort, except maybe in a technical, partial defintion of capitalism. What we've experienced in the US and what's been experienced around the world has definitely had nothing to do with free markets, but then statist global leaders, including Obama and his predecessors, don't think free markets are even possible. They see free markets as an illusion carried forward by simplistic proponents of an American ideal that's never been realistic or possible. They especially think free market principles are silly notions in the context of global needs for cooperation, development in third world countries, laws to prevent human rights abuses, or the establishment in general of social justice.
Global development efforts are nothing new -- it's just that US media and political pundits don't talk much about it. Al Gore, George Soros, Kofi Annan and Maurice Strong know about globalism, but not many people know much about them or their activities, except Gore as a national joke because he was once VP. It's more interesting for media to do their reality TV deal wondering if Boehner and Obama are going to play golf and talk about a Grand Bargain or whether Boehner's redneck base will prevent him from acting, and whether Harry Reid will block the House and say something stupid, and so forth. Yes, Obama has been aloof in all this, because it's just a lot of small political wrangling in his eyes. The issues of the UN, IMF, the World Bank, WTO, etc, are where the action is for ambitious world players like Obama. Clinton has surely kept Obama in the loop regarding his interactions regarding global advancements toward development and international law. Global governance, global development and international law are more important than economic concerns in the US, which to Obama seem small and self-serving for US business people thinking only about profit and personal gain.
If Obama has any concern with "business" it's on a larger, global scale in the vein of corporate governance talked about a few decades ago and is now in full bloom with the big international corporations which are enmeshed with governments of major nations. The large multi-national corporations are fully protected from competition. They were globally grown to fit into the global scheme to control production needs and to fund global governance, development and law-making. This is where I believe Obama and his circle of associates are headed. Like Clinton, Obama is young, and global concerns are where the action is at for those out to change the world.
Americans, although we're simple and foolish, had better gain control of our government, unless we want to obey the would-be global masters who've been working diligently for control for a long, long time.