Mark Thoma gives a clear articulation of the view:
"I don't know if the centrist, bipartisan seeking, compromising Obama we have seen to date can actually embrace an encompassing vision. He seems afraid to be a Democrat.."
It's hard for me to understand this sentence coming from a person (i.e. Mark) who I like and respect. From my perspective, Obama is pretty far left and uncompromising.
So let me invoke Robin Hanson and try to list things Obama has done that qualify as evidence for Mark's view.
I would say on economic policy the closest thing to centrist & compromising that he's done is appoint Summers and Geithner.
Can you count not pushing for single payer as bipartisan seeking or compromising?
Then there's Guantanamo, renditions, wiretaps, and the like. I view the continuation of these policies as wrong, but are they being continued as a compromise? Or out of bipartisanship?
Oh and then there are the wars. Do they count?
Oh my, there's also no action on immigration reform and the monstrosity that is DADT.
Holy Crap! Maybe Mark has a point.
I see Obama as the worst possible policy mix. Wrong on economic issues, wrong on foreign policy and wrong on social issues too. A Dem should at least get the social issues right!
That Robin H. sure is a smart fellow.