In the last days of the Bush White House, you had a sense of things unraveling. The tight ship sprang leaks, efficiency seemed to evaporate, staff jumped ship in large numbers, and the Bush presidency coasted into history.
You get the same sense of unraveling with Obama, but it is only a year and a half into a contentious and remarkably unsuccessful administration.
Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel is apparently preparing to leave after the midterm elections. His approach reeked of political thuggishness, but he remained the most pragmatic of a leftist lot. Emmanuel reportedly clashed repeatedly with idealists such as David Axelrod, demanding that initiatives be pared down to meet the reality that America did not want to buy what the Democrats were selling. Then Emmanuel got the blame when Obama ideas torpedoed his popularity and made him look more like a Columbia professor than an engaged president.
Rumors point towards a possible run for mayor of Chicago or governor of Illinois, but the stench will stick with him for some time. Obama has turned out worse than Carter even by the standards of the Left. Clinging to the idea that he appointed a Nobel Prize winner to the Department of Energy is pretty typical of Obama in desperation mode.
It will be interesting to see who all leaves the White House after November, especially if, as expected, the Democrats take a major hit. He joins White House Budget Chief Peter Orzag, expected to leave his office this fall.