It seems that both the U.S. president Obama and our president here Noynoy Aquino are both suffering from lower than expected approval ratings. Obama’s has been increased a little by the execution of Bin Laden but both presidents still have not recovered the shine that their names had in the elections.
Their defenders blame it on the media and the unrealistic expectations of the people towards them. After all they reason. You cannot expect one presidency to change the course of the country within a year or two of his inauguration. The previous administrations just did too much damage. Of course, they also say the media deserves its fair share of the blame since they only report the negative and not the positive.
You know what? It’s their own damn fault. Look at the campaign Obama ran. “Change you can believe in”. “ A new beginning”. “ A leader who can deliver change”. The whole tone of his campaign was to set him up as this pseudo messianic figure who would deliver the country from the hands of Bush onto the promised land. Noynoy’s being patterned after his campaign did the same thing except changing Bush to Gloria Arroyo. How can you not fail to live up to expectations when you set them that high?
They should have read the wimpy kid series. Specifically the second one that was just made a movie. Rodrick gives pretty good advice. “Learn to lower expectations”. That way when you do your job well people are more appreciative of you. Both presidents seem to be actually doing better than their predecessors. It’s just that they set the bar so high for themselves that it doesn’t matter anymore. It’s like Bush promising that the war in Iraq would be over quickly with few casualties. If he said straight up in the onset that it would be a long drawn out affair with many casualties but that it was absolutely needed then the result would have been more acceptable for the people.
I am not saying that it was not a good electoral strategy. It undoubtedly was. They did beat both their opponents by comfortable margins. But in doing so they set up their presidencies to be disappointments for everyone who voted for them. In fact if you think about it. Both presidents did something that is commonplace among all politicians. Lie to the public. Make promises during election time that you know full well you cannot do. Pretty strange for two people running under the banner of change.