“This is more work than in my previous life. I thought it would be easier.” That’s the current President speaking to a Reuters reporter on the responsibilities of the office he holds. Hard to believe that anyone could actually aspire to be President, campaign for over a year, and make that statement.

As a divorce lawyer I’m used to people making unbelievable statements. I’ve had both clients and opposing parties, let alone lawyers and judges, say the most outrageously, objectively false and stupid statements – but I never expected to have a President who could say something so facially absurd as this.

What part of “leader of the free world” or “head of state” or “most powerful man on the planet” would ever lead anyone to think that the job would be easy? Now I admit there are certainly some significant benefits that come with the position – a home, Air Force One, the Marines – and a large support staff to get things done. However, the job also comes with 24/7 responsibility, endless critiques from all corners and there’s that little body of Congress that must be massaged, cajoled and threatened into deals.

As the President said this weekend, the rules of the Senate are “archaic”  and force deal making and sometimes they have to make deals they don’t like – Really? Imagine that?  The government was set up the way it was specifically to force deals and to preclude the concentration of power in one branch. Perhaps if the President had someone read to him The Federalist Papers he might have a greater understanding of why and how things work the way they do.

I am truly at a loss to understand this President. His every action seems to be proof that this election was either a giant lark that he never expected to actually win and was wholly unprepared for, or a giant scam to just engage in massive publicity and institutional graft.

George W. Bush was by no means a presidential President, but he at least knew going in what the job entailed, and for good or evil, he had the well trained help of Cheney, Rumsfeld and a host of other experienced White House staffers. He had been up close to the job with his family’s connections and his father’s experience as Vice President and then President. There was little doubt that W at least knew what he was asking for.

The more I see the current President in action, the more I am just flummoxed. He says one thing and then his various Secretaries come out and correct the record. He has spent the last 14 months or more claiming that he stands for one thing, and then once in office does an about face in moments.

He claims to be for human rights, but invites the Philippine dictator to the White House – a man who famously crows over the number of murders he has personally executed. (Pun intended!) He claims to be against involvement in Syria, except when he’s not. As an advocate for women, he says he’s the best, but is shutting down programs to help women and girls.

The President was going to ‘never leave the White House’ because he’s a homebody, but has spent 20 percent of his time travelling to his various golf courses. I just am agog at how out of touch this man is with the country. He was elected by people that he is now abandoning with his tax plans, has no employment development plan in place and it appears will not be able to pass healthcare repeal and replace.

We fought the Revolutionary War with the belief that government was to serve the people, and the head of that government should represent and be in touch with the people’s needs. Washington led men through desperate times at Valley Forge, Lincoln through a Civil War (a war that the current President seems to think could have been avoided with better negotiators!) we’ve had leaders like Teddy Roosevelt who was the first environmentalist and visionaries like Kennedy, Johnson and Clinton.

The fact that the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is a great spokesperson for himself is cold comfort. I know nothing of what he stands for with any consistency. In the play Hamilton, the lead asks of Aaron Burr, “if you stand for nothing Burr, what’ll you fall for?”

What indeed?




David Pisarra is a Los Angeles Divorce and Child Custody Lawyer specializing in Father’s and Men’s Rights with the Santa Monica firm of Pisarra & Grist.  He welcomes your questions and comments.  He can be reached at dpisarra@pisarra.com or 310/664-9969.You can follow him on Twitter @davidpisarra