CONTRARY to what a lot of people say, voters are not stupid. They know that Barack Obama did not make the hole in the floor of the Gulf of Mexico. They know that not even a president can magic away a spill this size. That is why all the recent talk about Deepwater Horizon putting an indelible stain on Mr Obama’s first term, perhaps even deciding the fate of his presidency, is overblown. He will decide the fate of his presidency. You could in fact argue that he has decided it already, by placing three huge and deliberate bets during his first year and a half in office. What he is mainly doing now is waiting to see whether they come good or not.

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