Where to begin?
Then-candidate Obama had me with his speech on race relations in America that he gave here in Philadelphia in March 2008.
He lost me last week when he said he learned about the swirling IRS scandal by reading it in the papers, including some of the papers his Department of Justice had targeted for snooping, breaking some of the rules of the game.
We shift back to George W. Bush, who was granted unusual authority to spy by the courts, and whose Administration violated even those very loose boundaries.
Then, the left went crazy immediately. With Obama, it took longer. But when MSNBC, the New Yor Times, SNL, Andrea Mitchell, Chris Matthews, the Daily Beast and a host of others are deriding the president, I think two things: They are principled for doing it, and it took them too long to do it.
When one-time allies tie the president to Bush and Nixon, I sense a game-changer, especially since the president is targeting more than just Fox News, the usual whipping boy.
Do I belive the president himself ordered these unprecedented attacks on freedom? I do not. I hope not. Was he willfully blind? Maybe. Did his subordinates seek to shield him from bad news? Undoubtedly.
We need answers, and the answers supplied by the White House (I pity mouthpiece Jay Carney) change every day. The head-smacking disbelief multiples.
There is another angle to all this. It could be, and this is the line of defense mouthed by Obama bitter-enders, that the government is so vast and varied no one can keep tabs on it all. Don't blme the Chosen One.
That defense undercuts the president's own desire for bigger (if better) government. But if -- if -- the government is too damn big, isn't what the Tea Party has been shouting for three years? Most of the liberal press ridiculed that belief. I have a feeling the AP may now have a different view.
None of this supports the crazy idea of impeaching the president. But if he is to have any chance of a productive second term, he's got to stamp out these fires -- IRS, Benghazi, AP, and the less-mentioned sexual harassment in the military, a disgrace that has gotten too little attention due to the three other messes.
Prof. Obama has to get out from behind the lectern, take names and kick ass to chill the idea that his Administration is an unguided missile.
Show some leadership, President Obama. Fast.