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It’s Obama Time!

There are two kinds of presidents; foxes and hedgehogs. President Obama appears to be a fox. So says Allan Lichtman, a political history professor at American University.

“Foxes know a little about everything. They have their fingers in every pie. … Hedgehogs only know a few things and know it well and leave the details to others. Clinton was a classic fox. Bush was a classic hedgehog.”

And Obama? He appears to be a fox, too, Lichtman said.

What called forth this anaylsis–this interesting comparing of hedgehogs and foxes? The answer lies with President Obama’s often being late to important meetings.

WASHINGTON — There’s a new time zone in the nation’s capital: Obama Time.

Barely two weeks into his presidency, Barack Obama has made a clean break from George W. Bush in several high-profile moves, including reversing a number of the 43rd president’s policies.

He’s also reversed an unwritten but much-noticed Bush policy: Be on time, all the time.

Obama has been routinely late to events and news conferences, including the ones at which he reversed Bush’s orders. This has led to an already familiar refrain from the Obama camp: “He’s running late.”

The president was nearly 30 minutes late Wednesday for the ceremony at which he signed a bill to expand children’s health care. He was 10 minutes late Thursday to a memo signing at the Energy Department.

Even before the inauguration, Obama wasn’t a punctual sort; he arrived late to a Jan. 8 news conference on the economy that was aired live by broadcast and cable networks.

“To me, being tardy, it’s got to be one of two things,” said presidential historian Doug Wead, who advised both Bush and his father, George H.W. Bush. “Bad organization that can be corrected, or it’s arrogance. It sounds to me like this is arrogance.”

Mark Lindsay, a Democratic consultant and former senior White House adviser to Bill Clinton, disagreed, explaining that Clinton was late sometimes because he was making accommodations for logistics or average citizens.

“I would make the opposite observation,” Lindsay said. “I would say that taking time to accommodate your schedule to regular citizens is not an act of arrogance. It’s an act of humility.”

Allan Lichtman, a political history professor at American University, had a different explanation for Clinton’s tardiness.

“President Clinton was always late because he wasn’t very disciplined in general,” he said. “This was a man who marched to the beat of his own drummer, who liked to talk, liked intellectual discussions, had his finger in every pie.”

Source: Stephen Clark Fox News

What do you think? Does it matter whether or not we are late for appointments? Is consistently being late a type of arrogance? Have you had problems with tardiness? Did you overcome it? How?

By Shirley Buxton

Still full of life and ready to be on the move, Shirley at 84 years old feels blessed to have lots of energy and to be full of optimism. She was married to Jerry for 63 years, and grieves yet at his death in August of 2019. They have 4 children, 13 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren...all beautiful and highly intelligent--of course. :)

38 replies on “It’s Obama Time!”

What is the goal of a black theology of liberation? Is it a society in which blacks are given special treatment and rights? No. All Black theologians are asking for is for freedom and justice. No more, and no less. In asking for this, the Black theologians, turn to scripture as the sanction for their demand. The Psalmist writes for instance, “If God is going to see righteousness established in the land, he himself must be particularly active as ‘the helper of the fatherless’ (Psalm 10:14) to ‘deliver the needy when he crieth; and the poor that hath no helper’ (Psalm 72:12).

Karl Barth–who was not black–recognized the legitimacy of this demand. “For this reason, Barth wrote, “in the relations and events in the life of his people, God always takes his stand unconditionally and passionately on this side alone: against the lofty and on behalf of the lowly; against those who already enjoy right and privilege and on behalf of those who are denied it and deprived of it.”


Wow. Incredible remarks from the book. I’ve never read it. I was thinking more in terms of Helen’s comment labeling all black people as “late” because of their culture… and it’s only just speculation why he’s late.

*stepping over the spilled coke and walking out*


OH I wanted to add that just because Jeremiah White embraces Black Liberation Theology it doesn;t then also mean that they embrace the hate and radicalism of James Cone.

For example, feminist theology ranges from one extreme where all things male are deamed to be not of God and that the boble should be dis-maled (soe of that is probably correct) to the other softer end where the object is to simply make us men aware that women have since the beginning of the church been contributing in leadership and thrological discussoin and are totally equal and able – exactly the same as us men. I think Black Liberation theology is very likely to have both extrems as well.

Let us not forget that it was white theology that produced the climate for black slavery, segregation and apartheid in the first place…so we once had a very extreme racist theology among is as well!


Hi shirley, no te fires are down the bottom of Australia in Victoria, and thank you for your concern. This is a terrible time and I have had a connection to the fires. I am an associate of a Christian Motorcycle Club, God Squad (we minister primarily in the outlaw bike scene). One of our past members has lost both his daughters in the fire. This whole thing is indeed a national tragedy and it is effecting all of uis in some way – in fact I feel quite teary just writing this. I am grateful for your asking Shirley, thank you.

Now, back into the fray!

I’m not sure why US citizens don;t want free universal health care – it really does work well, and although we dfo have incidents of tragedy and also backlogs of people on surgery waiting lists, our childrens health care is 2nd to none and our basic health care is absolutely brilliant. You are of course allowed to disagree – there are many oter great tings about the US system that I wold love to have over here – a president for one! I’m a bit over Australia still being seen as an outpoost of the British Empire and the Queen as our Sovereign!

Now I don’t know enough about Black Liberation Theology, but I do know quite a bit about Liberation theology in general, one of te papers I wrote during my theology courses was on the Silencing of Leanardo Boff, a South American Liberation theologion.

What James Cone is talking about is not liberation theology – black white or any other colour, that is simply racism and terrorrism.

I am a fan fo liberatoin theology as a means for the liberation fo opressed minorities and as such certianbly the black people of the world have had cause to want liberation.

God however I don’t think would be after anyones destruction, certainly as we as a race have become increasingly aware of our oppressive stances and have for teh most part repented and are working toward a world where we all live as equals and as partners.

The election of Barak Obama is a major major symbol of that truth.

Peace and Grace to you all (except Brother Webb and Dean…oh ok – you two as well)



Wow… I missed the party it seems. Not so surprising, Helen popped in to defend her man. I’m amazed that BPT (or CPT as it was referred when I went to call) is the defense for the POTUS. You’ve got to be kidding me. At that stage in the game, you aren’t arriving late to your mid-week Bible Study, your Family Reunion or even dinner – you have the world waiting on you. There is prestige, pomp, etiquette and expectations that supercede our culture, and aren’t selfishly pointing back to our own culture, back rather what the expectation is for the nation’s CEO… ahem, I mean President.

“A” for providing a defense, as we didn’t expect anything less.

“F” for the logic applied to the defense. After all, it’s also a defense that is primarily speculation, and borders on racism! Now how’s that for stirring the pot!

Oh, James, the party was a blast…overturned chairs, diet coke spilled on the floor…took me a long time to clean it all up.

“Borders on racism” you say. Have you read much of James Cone the founder of Black Liberation Theology? It is racism in the extreme. Here is one of his paragraphs.

Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him. The task of black theology is to kill Gods who do not belong to the black community … Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal. Unless God is participating in this holy activity, we must reject his love.

Shocking! How many years did Obama revere Jeremiah Wright and attend his church?–a church that fully embraces Black Liberation Theology. It continues to astonish me.


No-one has yet answered my question as to why Obama being 30 minutes late to the official announcement of increased child health cover is worse than Bush vetoing childerns health legislation all together. I’d be interested to here some response to that

Greg, my dear Aussie friend, I will now answer. First, though, are the terrible fires anywhere near your home?

To the question, now. No one said President Obama’s being late to his child health meeting was any worse–or any better–than President Bush vetoing a particular health care issue. The two actions don’t compare well, for President Bush was not late; rather he vetoed the bill.

I don’t know why President Obama is consistently late. I believe President Bush has clearly stated his veto on that bill was a reflection of his concern that such a move would hasten the US toward socialized medicine.

I’m glad to hear that you have such excellent health care in Australia, and I certainly know we need improvements here in the US. Many of us though, are of the mind that government run health care would not, in the long run, be the improvement we need.


RE: “Hi Bekki. Have you been around people of Latin heritage much? If you have and have observed many of them being consistently late, are you of the mind that their culture is reflecting inconsideration and arrogance?”

Hi Sis. Buxton!

I have been around people of Latin heritage quite a bit, as well as African American people. I love both groups of people, and have very close friends that are both Hispanic and African American. I am definitely not a scholar in any form on cultures and cultural differences, but I do respect the differences that we all have.

With that being said, I do not believe that culture is an excuse for being late to set appointments. If someone were late for a job interview, I don’t think the prospective employer would be apt to hire them based on the explanation that it is in their culture to be late.

I do not think that as a whole their culture is inconsiderate and arrogant. We have these types of people in all walks of life, all cultures, and all colors.

I do still think though, that in our society, consistently being late is a sign of being inconsiderate and arrogant. If I know that I need to be somewhere at 10 because someone is meeting me at that time, I will be there at 10 out of respect for them. In my mind, being on time is a matter of respecting those that you are meeting with. (Or, in regards to being on time for church a matter of respect for God.)

I DO understand that many times children, road construction, forgetting something, lines at the store etc., can make us late, but to establish this as a precedent is not respectful of others’ time.

(I am slightly nervous to post this, as I do not want to ‘join the fray,’ so to speak.)

Great post. Well written and logical. Don’t be nervous. 🙂


It has been so long since I have been on here! How have you been?
Keep me updated
I am going to be posting a blog soon.
So check that out.

Daniel, you sweet rascal. So good to hear from you; I hurried over to your blog and wrote you a little note. Don’t disappear!

Jerry and I are doing very well, living for the most part in Lake Havasu City, AZ.

bless you….


They started it

Isn’t that the greatest line! Someone else started this problem, so my involvement in it can in no way assign fault to me.

You know who was a master at that little trick? Adam, of course. “But God! That woman (the one you gave me, remember God) She gave me this succulent little morsel and practically forced me to eat it….It can’t be me. Must be Eve’s fault!…don’t you think so, God?” 🙂


If you don’t stop misbehavin’, I suppose I must resort to spanking and sending to bed every one of you! Now Greg had his tender feelings hurt and is crying, Helen went home, Dean is threatening to follow suit and Robert is gloating. What will I do with this bunch?


I lvoe it when a thread degenerates…Helen – Who is Greg? I am appalled and bemoxified – It is I, in fact I am he, the one to whom you refer and to whom you show such disdain. I of course offer you nothing but respect and expect no more than that in return!

Dean, your petulence (I’m spelling it incorrectly because I can) and childishness may wekll be a bi-product of your advanced years, I’m in no real positoin to judge that – however when you consistelntly refer to POTUS by his middle name; Hussein, and thereby attempting to relate Obama in our minds to the once despised and despotic Sadam Hussein, late of Iraq. Therein lies your petulence [sic].

Shirley All health care in the US is terrible – when you wna t real health care, come live in Austrlia where veryone qualifies for Medicare and anyone can access bulk billing (no fee taken from the patient – the fee is paid for by the government which is ‘bulk-billed’ for all fees) medical centres.

My reference to childrens health care was to George bushes record on it – one of his vetos was on child health care:

WASHINGTON – President Bush, in a sharp confrontation with Congress, on Wednesday vetoed a bipartisan bill that would have dramatically expanded children’s health insurance.

It was only the fourth veto of Bush’s presidency, and one that some Republicans feared could carry steep risks for their party in next year’s elections. The Senate approved the bill with enough votes to override the veto, but the margin in the House fell short of the required number.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., decried Bush’s action as a “heartless veto.”
WASHINGTON – President Bush, in a sharp confrontation with Congress, on Wednesday vetoed a bipartisan bill that would have dramatically expanded children’s health insurance.

It was only the fourth veto of Bush’s presidency, and one that some Republicans feared could carry steep risks for their party in next year’s elections. The Senate approved the bill with enough votes to override the veto, but the margin in the House fell short of the required number.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., decried Bush’s action as a “heartless veto.”
“Never has it been clearer how detached President Bush is from the priorities of the American people,” Reid said in a statement. “By vetoing a bipartisan bill to renew the successful Children’s Health Insurance Program, President Bush is denying health care to millions of low-income kids in America. ”

The White House sought little attention, with Bush casting his veto behind closed doors without any fanfare or news coverage. He was discussing it later Wednesday during a budget speech in Lancaster, Pa.

So I was pointing out that in fact despite President Obama being 30 minutes late – he still trumps George Bush…don’t you think?

Helen – I will be crying myslef to sleep at your lack of recognition of me.


Yes Brother Webb, and some took their marbles and went home. Fact remains disrespect is disrespect. Those who demand it the most, often give it the least. I am now also taking my marbles and going home, so there!!!


We used to be on time until we had small children. Now, it seems like no matter how hard we try, or how much earlier we start preparing to leave, we are late arriving just about anywhere. I hate to think that people would perceive this as arrogance. Yikes.

On the topic of race and punctuality that has come up in the comments, there are definitely occasions where the stereotypes are correct.
Here in Gallup, where the population is largely Navajo, being late is quite common. Humorously underscoring the point, as well as the fact that they accept this stereotype, I saw a teenage boy a few months ago wearing a t-shirt that read, “I run on Navajo time. That means I’m never, ever late.”

And out here, that doesn’t change when it comes to work. Having worked alongside a number of Navajos, I discovered that they arrive when they arrive. Newer business owners might make the mistake of firing them for tardiness, but the next employee is exactly the same way, and so is the next. Eventually, they learn that they’re going to waste all their time training new employees and might as well just learn to adjust to having employees who will show up whenever it is that they get there.

What amuses me much more than people who get uptight about church starting on time are those who get mad if it doesn’t end “on time.” I think it’s a distinctly white-American trait to expect church to end in time to beat the line at Furr’s, Country Buffet, or the Golden Corral. Having visited churches in countries like Mexico and the Bahamas, I have noticed that church might last two hours one week and five hours the next. To them, it’s just the Lord’s Day and they’re not trying to cram in football, eating out, home repairs, or anything else besides church.

Hi, Rob. For sure those babies do not understand a thing about schedules or punctuality, and when they’re little they practically run the household. How many times have we started out the front door, when baby chooses such an occasion to upchuck his latest meal, expertly dousing not only his clothes, but the mama’s or the daddy’s also. Not arrogance in this case, I judge.

Your point about church ending on time is an interesting one, and like you, I have observed that in some other areas, their culture seems to have grasped the idea of “unhurried worship.” When I visited in South America it was so, and even here in the States, the Hispanic churches have much longer services than do those churches that are primarily Anglo.

An observation: Money and possessions may have been a curse to America.


Back to the question. Does it matter if we are late? Positively YES. If we truly value those involved, we will make sure that we do not inconvience them by our actions. I consider it very selfish to have an appointment with someone and they only consider their time and not everyone else involved. It is called accountability. Character involves how we think and treat others. So many times there are those left out or behind because of their belief that they are so important everyone should put their schedules on hold and wait. I believe the President should set an example for all. Those under leadership will follow the example shown to them. Most people that are late are not leaders but followers.



I’m not going to comment further on this thread. I’m obviously in the company of men who are overly impressed with who they are. One man feels I should show respect to another man who thinks my life would be changed forever if I heard him sing. Whatever.


Helen, Just had to comment about BPT. This is so true in our church. We are blessed to have a large percentage of black people in our church. I have hostessed with my friend who is black. We always laugh because church starts at 10:00 and we do not have a full church until about 10:20. She is so puntual that this is something she just has to laugh about. She told me it is a cultural thing. Same holds true for weddings. My daughter owned a bridal shop and same for weddings. Every one without exception was one half to an hour late. Funny things about different cultures.


Dean, who is Greg? And why should I care what he thinks? Isn’t God still on the throne? Doesn’t the same God who love and judges me love and judge Greg? Why should he call me anything? What business is this of his? This is Shirley’s blog not Greg’s. Or am I being petulant to you, too?

I offered a simple explanation concerning something I have studied. Would you rather remain ignorant?

We’re all ministers of the gospel. That’s the good news. We can all come boldly to the throne of grace. We don’t have to wait for Brother Anybody. Not even women. Dude.


Education is not experience.
You can get a degree in business and when you try to get a job they want to know how much experience you have.

What in the world is B.P.T?

By the way…If you would ever hear me sing…your life would never be the same.
Brother Webb


Brother Webb, Education is experience the same as anything else we do. Why disparage it? Or maybe you’re not. I’m not sure I follow.

Anyone can be saved anywhere. God salvation is available to anyone on earth. Calvary saw to that. I love the song, “God Will Make a Way.” I love the way black people sing. But I love the choir that blends the voices of all races even more. We are all God’s children regardless of race. But what does any of this have to do with BPT? I’m not following you.


Hi Yall…. Sister Buxton in 30 years of managing meat markets in 4 states, I have never fired anyone!! Rules and Regs that are in place are respected or consequences are forth coming. You simply choose to work or not to work. Being on time is a condition of employment. To answer your question….. I have lost many good employees when they chose to be late. Others depend on them to arrive , so they can leave for the day,etc.

Helen, you again are not showing respect to a minister of the gospel. You better not let Greg hear you. He may call you Petulant, I looked the word up, and spelled it correctly. My childishness is no doubt brought about by my advanced age and early onset of senility.


I was saved in a black church. I ate with them, I worshipped with them and I have preached for them. I didn’t get mine from a universary. I got mine by experience (About twenty of thiety years. So I know them personally. In fact, I sing like them. I had one black person to tell me that if they was in another room and I was at the piano playing and singing they would have thought I was a blacl man singing. One of the songs I sing that I borrowed from them is,”I know the Lord will make a way…wes He will.
Brother Webb


Well, Aisha, being LATE may be the opposite of the attributes you have listed. But being on BPT isn’t being late. It’s interpreting time differently (not wrong, differently).

Brother Bob, I studied African American history and religion at Wake Forest University, the history of black folks taught by black folks. 🙂 I go to a historically Black Church (Progressive National Baptist), same denomination as Martin Luther King Jr. I took a course in “Bridging the Gap in Race Relations” at the Urban League, where D. Smith, the Black local Urban League CEO explained BPT as I have above. Is that enough or do I need to explain further? Dude.


This is all so amusing, yet really interesting to consider.

I think I married a fox, LOL.

Whether it be the way of a culture, or personality type, there isn’t a valid excuse for always being late. I mean, when you can be COUNTED ON for being LATE…. that is terrible.

However, there are people that are really gifted in certain ways that leads them to not being locked into the contraints of time so much as others. I worked at a BioTech company for a while, and was surrounded by scientists, genious type people, who’d wear the same sweater for a week. You know it was the same one because it carried the same stain in the same spot each day! There mind is busy within the realm of their “gift” it seemed. There lab hours could be in the middle of the night, or 24 hrs. at a time.

However! You will find that they may not have many friends. And they only have a job because of their giftedness! These are the only ones that can get away from time!

If you are ON TIME: 1)you are good at making realistic estimations 2)you plan ahead, even for disaster 3)you think of others 4)you have the ability to say no when necessary 5)you are a hard-worker

If being LATE were the opposite of the list above, I would really make sure to be ON TIME ALL THE TIME!

BTW, the fox I married has taught this hedgehog how to live “out of the clock”… because there are times when this is necessary. He doesn’t lose his keys anymore… we now keep them in ONE place. LOL.


RE: “I’ve often wondered how this works out on their job, though. Do time clocks somehow observe the color or nationality of the hand that feeds in the time card?”

Of course not. They must punch the clock on standard (business) time. In the same way, if the boss doesn’t speak English, Hispanics must learn it. English is NOT our official language, but it IS the language of the business world in this country. Likewise the timeclock stamp is the same for all.

Just as the timeclock doesn’t apply to salaried workers, who have a bit more flexibility, the difference that matters here is that Obama is essential to the meetings. Just as you don’t start church without the pastor, you don’t start a meeting without the person who called the meeting. You don’t start a meeting without the POTUS, who doesn’t punch a timeclock and is on call 24/7.

Church attendance is voluntary and the service can start indicative of the values of the culture. People can speak any language, when they are family or friends.


BPT is Black People’s Time.

White people (and I’m using these racial categories loosely, not to start a debate on melanin) usually take times literally. Church starts at 11:00. Everybody knows that, and at 11:00 to pastor and those on the platform walk in, Then here comes the choir, and we’re off.

Church starts in a Black Church when everybody gets ready. Sure the sign says 11:00, but that means about 11:00, not 11:00 on the dot. It means about 11:00 or approximately 11:00.

It’s like when you go to good friends house for dinner, and everyone feels so comfortable they come early. Only it’s rude to come late, because you might have spoiled the dinner. It’s understood.

BPT means that a given event will occur within a reasonable time span from the stated time. No one can start without Obama. So a meeting schedule for 9:30 starts ate approximately 9:30 or when he walks in the door.

In the past, Black people have had to adhere to white people’s literal interpretation of meeting times. Now the Black man’s in charge of the meeting., and we get an introduction to BPT.

BPT is different, not wrong. LOL

I have widely observed that “Hispanic churches” frequently start their services as much as half hour or an hour late, and even in our own church, there is a pattern among Hispanics to arrive at church late. (some of them, not all, of course.) I’ve often wondered how this works out on their job, though. Do time clocks somehow observe the color or nationality of the hand that feeds in the time card?


Sister Buxton:
Sister Combs may not have been rebellious because of her lateness. She may not have been a good stuard of her time. But. Som People of certain cultures are always late especially some that I have delt with tor the past 60 years. But when you admonish church members about being on time and they purposlty are late..I thinmk that is rebellion.
Brothe Webb


Oh no Obama (that’s his proper name Dean – you show immense childishness and petulence by calling him by his middle name) was 30 minutes late – better than being the 8 years late that Bush was for increasing health care to children!

Good morning, Greg. How has health care for children been lacking in the US?


Ever heard of BPT? I think the question’s been answered about how black Obama really is. LOL

I have never heard of BPT. What does that mean? I have heard (and observed widely) Latin time!


Sister Buxton:
This sounds like a lot of church folks. I think it’s an act of rebellion.
Brothr Webb

There certainly are people who agree with you that consistently being late is an act of rebellion. Interesting thing: Last night I attended the beautiful funeral of Mabel Combs, who is one of the sweetest, godliest people I have ever known. More than one person at the service last night spoke fondly of “Mabel Time”. She had quite a problem with punctuality…yet it never appeared to be a rebellious act. Thought provoking, huh?


I think it matters very much if we are on time for appointments. Being late is being inconsiderate of the other person’s time.

Occasionally everyone is late, and there are valid excuses. But to consistently be late is inconsiderate and arrogant.

Hi Bekki. Have you been around people of Latin heritage much? If you have and have observed many of them being consistently late, are you of the mind that their culture is reflecting inconsideration and arrogance?


Just one more thing I dislike about Hussein. If he worked for me…. three strikes he be gone!

A hypothetical, Dean: What if your employee were sterling in every other facet of his work qualities? Would you still fire him?


GREAT discussion post here, Sis. Buxton! Opinions on the editorial are presented on both sides.

I think we need to be flexible – but we shouldn’t be known for our exceptions, we should be known for our standard. Being on time shows great respect to the people you are meeting with – and there’s nothing more impressive than having the busiest man in the country on time just for you! That’s the ultimate compliment and respect that can be paid. The President has advisors for these sort of things, as does any person who runs a company. Either the advisors are on a learning and adjusting curve, or Obama prefers to do his own thing.

Interesting comparison when discussing leadership.

James, I thoroughly enjoy discussions, and especially like to hear varying thoughts on issues. The honest person will want to hear both sides of any question. Thanks for joining here.


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