It was a relief to see Barack Obama take responsibility for the "systemic failure" to protect the American people. It is surprising, however, to see that be the story lead in so much of the media coverage. After all, running the government is the president's responsibility as a simple matter of fact. And he accepted responsibility only after two weeks of politically costly bungling. The president accepted responsibility only because the American people had already assigned it to him.
The president's problem is that the lack of urgency about terrorist threats described in the administration's report on the Christmas attack sounds an awful lot like the attitudes that prevailed before 9/11. Lee Hamilton and Tom Kean, members of the 9/11 commission, have both said so. It is reasonable for Americans to ask why, after all the expense and experience of the past eight years, our government isn't able to do better.