One thing Mr. Obama has learned about being president is that nobody ever cuts you an inch of slack.
When he went to Denmark to argue Chicago's case for the Olympics, he was criticized for using up all that aviation fuel and coming home empty-handed. Had he not gone, he would have been accused of not doing all he could to help out a great American city.
Another example: Now the gay rights movement is upset at him for not going up to Maine and making the pitch against repeal of that state's gay marriage law. They feel that it's just one more in a long string of Obama disappointments related to their cause.
They might want to remember that Obama always said he was against gay marriage. He prefers civil unions with all the rights pertaining thereto, to use the dry legalistic phrase. Gays have plenty to be disgruntled about--it looks like "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is still in place despite his assurances to the contrary--but Obama's silence on gay marriage should come as no surprise.
With so many other irons in the fire, Obama has had to perform some painful triage in order to get his top priorities accomplished. It's hard, understandably, for interest groups to accept that their top priorities may not be his. Maybe this is one of the reasons presidents serve four-year terms, to force a restless public to be patient.
If Obama still hasn't delivered by 2012, then those with a grievance have a remedy. I wish them the best of luck with the Republican To Be Named Later. So does Barack Obama, which is probably why he made the political calculation he did. It's cruel, but that's politics.