Barack Obama is still the most popular politician in the world. I think what people have fallen out of is "hope" which they clung to during his campaign. Now the hope for change that most people want is more jobs.
The American public seems to have a very short memory and tends to blame whomever is in power at the time for all our problems. When it comes to the economy this is particularly unfair. The economic policies (deregulation!) that got us here were started in the Reagan administration and didn't reach their final apex until Bush's terms. Anyone who expected complete economic turn around in two years was fooling themselves. Most economists say we were able to avoid another Great Depression but no politician is going to get praise for avoiding disaster. I think the big difference between now and 2008 is that young voters felt uninspired and crazy voters (I'm looking at you Tea Party) were really inspired.
Unfortunately we live in a world where the media must inflame everything. Every story and every nuance must be exaggerated beyond all recognition. The nastier it is the better. As Bill Clinton reportedly said "If I fart in the Rose Garden today it will be on the news tonight in Beijing." This kind of relentless assault makes it impossible for anyone to continue looking good for long. It also makes it almost impossible for politicians to work together. Even if they could bridge their *real* differences and compromise to accomplish something the media would find someone somewhere who didn't like their solution and trot them out to criticize it. I don't know how to fix this situation but we are going to have to deal with it or I'm afraid that any real progress by our government will become impossible.
Jon Stewart brought up this exact point at his rally. Everything the media does needs to be sensationalized to the highest degree. If I was to respectfully disagree with what you wrote here the media would describe it as "Kevin slams Mark!" or "Huckabee and Kevin locked in verbal deathmatch!". The only solution I have found to this is to get my national news from international sources like the BBC.
Can't help feeling that Americans have lived too long with the notions of instant gratification and quick fixes.
Nor is Obama some Hollywood-style messianic superhero with special powers to heal the world.
Recovery will be a long process requiring commitment, hard work and realism - all of which I believe are qualities that Obama possesses. Idiots like the Tea Party may feel entitled to be heard, but that doesn't mean that anybody has to listen.
Africa did fall in love with Obama.
When he was elected, we celebrated. We thought: could this be an American leader that can see the world outside America's borders?
Obama had all the potential to be a real revolutionary. But like any American leader now, he is tied down by corporate systemic chains. That's, I think, how we who are not American, see his fate.
In the end I don't believe any American leader of today can escape the intricate mechanics of the American political system. They are all doomed before they begin. There can be no real leaders there without their own private armies; no change without fullblooded revolution. And so they remain puppets.
Obama will probably not be he first black man to lead a great nation, as much as Africa dreamed of this.
(AT LEAST, South Africa fell in love with the man's potential... can't speak for a continent...)
Far as I can see, every American president is just a stooge. They can't help but represent the front of what's the real truth behind their position. So if every new president has his share of followers and detractors, it's really the truth of what's behind him that people really fall in love with or fall out with.