★ Link: Obama's Naked Moment

I Tweeted it just moments ago and discussed it in broad terms in a post earlier today, but I feel obligated to formally link this excellent piece by Forbes columnist Peter Robinson, entitled "Obama's 'Naked' Moment." Robinson argues that by letting House Democrats draft the so-called economic stimulus package, Obama made a startling political miscalculation, not unlike President Bush's nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court. The key differences, Robinson notes, are that Bush's slip - arguably the first indisputably significant such slip in his presidency - came eight months into his second term, and no one ever had any unusually high expectations for him. Obama, on the other hand, has built his reputation on his own personal brilliance, and made his mistake weeks into his first term.Coupled with his transition troubles, the general incompetence of his staff (who despite being tech gurus have had trouble using the White House e-mail systems), and Republicans' sudden appetite for fiscal conservatism, Obama finds his presidency in a state of minor crisis... and he's not even through his first month. Many commentators declared 2008 the Democratic equivalent of 1980. At this rate, we may well find that it was far closer to another 1976.