Of course presidents matter, but do they matter to the extent we give them credit for?
Did bush crash the economy or obama fix it? Did Obama really kill Bin Laden? The answer to these questions are a resounding NO.
Let’s look at the economy first: there is no single person in the entire world that has the power to ruin the economy to the extent it was 2008. Not even the president of the united states. Sure, they have some power over it, but nowhere near enough to outright bring it down like we saw happen. Likewise, Obama did not fix the economy! He merely helped a natural healing process take place. Just like the natural cycle of the seasons, our economy goes through cycles of hot and cold times. And no matter how hard we try to stop the seasons cycling, winter will come. But this also means that no matter how long we are in an economic winter, summer too will shine once more. Now of course presidents have some power over the matter, but it is very little. Presidents pushing the economy into a recession is like the affect that one car’s pollution has on warming the earth. Does it affect the climate? Yes, but to say it was just that one person’s fault the world is now ten degrees warmer is misguided. The inner workings of our economy are vastly complex, and it is completely unfair to both bush and obama to credit them both with what eventually would have happened regardless of who was in office.