Saturday, May 16, 2009

Is Obama Who We Thought He Was?

I was never all that enthralled with Obama. He is a tremendous politician, certainly, charismatic, nice and kind which is different for a politician. But, he is just that a politician. How many backtracks have we had this week alone? He decided that we little peons couldn't handle the torture abuse photos though he pledged transparency and accountability. Some were released in Australia anyway. They are disgusting and yes, more anti-american sentiment could occur, but if we would actually account for the torture we committed then just maybe we might begin to end that justifiable emotion. No, our President wants to move on...he wants to "look forward." But, it ain't his constitution, it is ours. We own it not him and by allowing torturers to break the public sentiment we are slowly destroying that document.

Yesterday, we heard the Military Tribunals are back on. Liberal groups blasted the move and is most certainly a campaign promise broken. I thought we were a country of values that need to ensure our values in every aspect of our lives. Just not in the criminal justice system I guess. Torture, ok, due process not ok.

This morning I read Obama appoints a top polluting lawyer to enforce environmental laws. Did we not have this for the last eight years. Here it is from Think Progress:

President Barack Obama has nominated a lawyer for the nation’s largest toxic polluters to run the enforcement of the nation’s environmental laws. On Tuesday, Obama “announced his intent to nominate” Ignacia S. Moreno to be Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division in the Department of Justice. Moreno, general counsel for that department during the Clinton administration, is now the corporate environmental counsel for General Electric, “America’s #1 Superfund Polluter“:

No lobbyists? Oh, I guess he isn't a lobbyist just another scum bag who believes capitalism reigns supreme over our lands.

Do we really believe we will get a safe, affordable health care system from him? Is it any wonder we are propping up the same oligarchial banks that destroyed our economy with almost no accountability and no consequences...or is that the torture debate? I have a hard time deliniating the two now.
It took me a month to sour on President Clinton, the last Democrat in the Whitehouse. One more move by Obama like this and I am out...I may be out already...

8 comments:

Sophia said...

I am in no way in love with the Obama administration and we know how cyclical politics can be historically. But I don't expect miracles so I don't expect politicians to change. He is like every other President who serves too many masters and often makes promises that are improbable. But I can say that overall he seems to be a great improvement and overall I hold him in a higher regard then most political "leaders". If we depended on our politicians for change we'd be totally screwed.

Dedric said...

The guy is in a no win situation. Do one thing Republicans spill hate at him, say another thing and Catholics hate you, decide not to allow terrorist suspects into the US and hold their trials in a place you suppose close and liberals say you are betraying your promise to them.

I am not going to be quick to throw him under a bus as I never made him into the great hero that some many build him up to be. He made it clear before he was elected he ideas are very fluid. I believe he may honestly believed that its best to keep these men outside the country for now and just give them fairer trials. He must have seen some things that made he rethink his original plans.

Anonymous said...

... thats what I get for trying to post something before heading to work:-) sorry for the grammar mistakes.

Kid Radical said...

I guess that is the point though...I understand changing one's mind, no doubt, but backtracking on fundamental policy proposals is another. The abuse photos should be released and we should have an inquiry into the torture that was committed, something he adamantly supported on the campaign trail to get progressives like me to support him...

Ditto for Military tribunals...this is politics and it is exactly what he said he is against. Do we not remember? He billed himself as a "different politician"

And don't get me wrong, I agree with you both that these guys are just politicians, but the movement he created (and we have to credit him with that) is following him, not progressive policies...

backtracking on the Employee Free Choice Act, a constituency that most certainly got him elected will be pissed and there are a host of others...and it isn't just me, ask John Conyers:
http://michiganmessenger.com/19296/conyers-on-obama-why-is-he-becoming-so-conservative-now-that-hes-got-the-job

Dedric said...

I thought about the photos and it makes sense to me when you consider that many people in this world will use whatever we give them to inspire more hatred. The previous photos were used to recruit young men into terrorism. I have decided that if he releases those pictures it may hurt his chances of successfully making appeals to the Muslim world. I think he should try to explain his decision instead of the way he has gone about it so far.

I think the idea that he built a progressive movement is only partially true. He built a movement that prided itself on balance and less bias politics. Being an independant political person open to all ideas and be willing to go with the solution not necessarily considered what you politically identify with. Essentially in the middle which means at any give moment he could go either way. He just appears to people to be liberal but he openly advocated that the US send forces into Pakistan and more troops into Afghanistan.

I am not saying he did not play into the liberal image a bit he clearly did, but if people just read between the lines you would have seen the not so liberal stances. His membership in a Black Nationalist church was a tell-tell sign to me that he was not the liberal he was being made out to be. I think this is a lesson to all concern not to build unreasonable expectations of your politicians.

Kid Radical said...

D. No offense, but you are rationalizing, big time! Why do people not want to criticize. Being Skeptical is part of this country. And please do not take critical as not supporting. I support him fully.

The photo non-release makes no sense, it is a promise betrayed. Plain and simple. What do you think would go farther in the muslim world, not releasing thse photos or taking a strong stance against torture, if that means prosecution then so be it. The photos are actions that have already been taken by our government. Yes, it might rise anti-american sentiment, but everyone knows this went on...Prosecute torture those scumbags who made those photos occur. That will restore justice here.

Agreed on Pakistan.

I knew Barack was a pragmatist, yes. He said so, definitely. But, he also said he believed in Unions and the Free Choice Act. Buzz. Gone. He played to the pro-choice crowd and said he would codify Roe. Buzz. Gone. He said he would investigate torture. Buzz. Gone. There are so far many others...

He played to the base big time. You cannot make promises and then go back on them and then say you are a new type of politician. It just makes you wishy and washy.

Now, all in all I like him. I think he is playing tough with Netanyahu. That can only be good for the peace process. Many other domestic policy concerns are ok. Though, I think his economic team are a bunch of hacks recycled from the Clinton team propping up this economy that only supports the Oligarchs. I think that is a tragedy. The fact that he did not fight for the foreclosure bill in the Senate is prime evidence of his cozy relationship with the banks.

And quite frankly his membership in a black nationalist church was a wonderful thing...and I see that as progressive, I would gage it that way...regardless it made me think he was different, courageous...

I guess here is the thing for me. To be a different kind of President you are given a set of circumstances and your responses are telling on what you would do...you and Sophia might be right he is just another politician...I had bigger hopes for him.

Our times call for it.

Anonymous said...

Black Nationalist churches are not progressive. They are like any other nationialist organization they are conservative in nature.

Kid Radical said...

I guess that is true in a way, but I see progressive in them as what Rev. Wright talked about in his ministry (now, I am completely non-religious), but he included AIDS ministries, and programs for the poor, etc. I see that as progressive, but I see that point...

one more thing, however if we want to make headway with the muslim world we should get the hell out of Iraq and Afghanistan. Remember the wars we are fighting? We need to leave, the goals we have there are just as ridiculous as they were under Bush.