This is an excellent, must-read, article from the Business Insider Australia. Check it out!
via Why An Oil Crash Is Exactly What Obama Needs | Business Insider.
Whilst the article oversimplifies, it makes a powerful point. The Obama administration has been dealt a windfall or a hand-full of wild-cards. This has happened despite Obama’s disastrous foreign policies.
Much as I have little respect for Obama and his achievements, the article highlights that despite domestic political gridlock in the US, Obama potentially wields enormous political leverage internationally because of low oil prices. Given the oil crash, Obama can still leave an important legacy but he will need to be more robust and decisive in 2015. Obama could do worse than follow George Bush‘ approach to allies.
It is perhaps time for Obama to come to terms with ‘big-business’. Obama needs US multi-nationals to take a hard look at their investments in Turkey. [See earlier blog about the ‘political risk’ in multi-national investment decisions in Turkey].
Any thoughts on how Obama will play his wild-cards?
I tend to think that low oil prices are a double edged sword.
As for Obama being decisive and robust, I think it is most unlikely because he is naturally cautious and interferes with his military commanders(Sun Tzu used to call this deranging the military and went to great lengths to explain that matters of concern to a civilian leadership were entirely different to military matters).
The Pentagons plans for dealing with ISIS have been rejected, so ISIS and their fellow travelers throughout the world, will (with Saudi and Qatari backing) destabilize the Middle East and drive the price of oil back up again.
That plays into Vladimir Putin’s hands although it may seem to our Antipodean friends that Obama has been dealt a good hand of cards.
How does Obama collect on this? And, how does he punish those who do not wish to pay? He hasn’t actually done anything to provide these low oil prices. People with even half a clue realize this. In fact, one could argue that Obama has tried to keep oil prices high but has failed. Low oil prices are in fact one of his worst nightmares. As oil prices sink SUV purchases and energy use increase. I think Seib had a slow day and decided to use the typical Washington way of thinking, that is, that all that is good begins with a politician. That attitude is not just misguided. It’s wrong. I wouldn’t put it past Obama, however, to play the hypocrite and try to take credit for this. He’s a politician and by nature harvests where he has not sown.
Thanks, an interesting viewpoint. For me, Obama is a weak president and that’s bad for the World
Obama. He inflicts alternating bouts of ambivalence and duplicity on the world. Credibility is the essential characteristic of an influential leader. Obama has lost whatever credibility he once had.