Not only has obama embroiled us in more foreign conflicts than his predecessor, expanded, NOT decreased the military budget, dispatched more drones in three years, than shrub did in eight (with commensurate more collateral damage, presumably), but his apologists here, offer us that he is better than the alternative and urge us to vote for the lesser of two evils AGAIN.
That tried and true strategy of the past several decades has been shown to be an utter failure.
Despite his constant war-making, going as far as to ignore the warnings of his own Attorney General Eric Holder, OLC Chief Caroline Krass, and DoD General Counsel Jeh Johnson in the case of Libya (http://www.salon.com/2011/06/18/libya_10/); we are reassured that he is a "good and decent man."
The signature achievement of this administration, the health care plan, was largely crafted around Romney's disastrous Massachusetts plan , which was primarily designed by the right wing Heritage Foundation. This abomination of a bill was so popular that it was passed at a midnight session of the House by a SEVEN vote margin, and was viewed favorably by 50.3% of the american people; however the earstwhile doctor from OS, president of "radicals for obama" assures us it was a good first step because he has many friends and family who benefitted from it.
The fact that this nearly 2,000 page bill leaves 44 million americans without coverage, I guess this would be referred to as more obama collateral damage.
The obama economic team has been a complete disaster, with numerous members attempting to take the lead for the title of chief finger pointer, responsible for the abysmal "recovery." obama in a case of his classic penchant for making bad decisions, when he shows any initg\iative to make them, at all, brought in republican and former GE Chairman Jeffrey Immelt to save the day, but Immelt last month reportedly said he was "appalled" by obamanomics.
So I ask, by what measure can anyone adjudge this presidency not to be an abject failure?
When I left the following commentary from Alternet on Mr. Klingman's blog post, the reaction was deafening silence:
"Furthermore, Steve Rosenfeld of Alternet, correctly highlights obama's failed record in preserving constitutional protections. A few of his comments, abridged:
"When Barack Obama took office, he was the civil liberties communities’ great hope. Obama, a former constitutional law professor, pledged to shutter the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and run a transparent and open government. But he has become a civil libertarian’s nightmare: a supposedly liberal president who instead has expanded and fortified many of the Bush administration’s worst policies, lending bipartisan support for a more intrusive and authoritarian federal government."
"President Obama now has power that Bush never had. Foremost is he can (and has) order the killing of U.S. citizens abroad who are deemed terrorists. Like Bush, he has asked the Justice Department to draft secret memos authorizing his actions without going before a federal court or disclosing them. Obama has continued indefinite detentions at Gitmo, but also brought the policy ashore by signing the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, which authorizes the military to arrest and indefinitely detain anyone suspected of assisting terrorists, even citizens. That policy, codifying how the Bush treated Jose Padilla, a citizen who was arrested in a bomb plot after landing at a Chicago airport in 2002 and was transferred from civil to military custody, upends the 1878’s Posse Comitatus Act’s ban on domestic military deployment."
"How bad is it? Anthony Romero, the ACLU executive director, exclaimed in June 2010 that Obama “disgusted” him. Meanwhile, the most hawkish Bush administration officials have defended and praised Obama.
Last summer, liberal lawyer-journalist Glenn Greenwald tallied a list of Bush warrior endorsements. Jack Goldsmith, the former DOJ officials who approved the torture and domestic spying efforts, wrote in The New Republic in May 2009 that Obama actually was waging a more effective war on terror than Bush.
“The new administration has copied most of the Bush program, has expended some of it, and has narrowed only a bit,” Goldsmith wrote. “Almost all of the Obama changes have been at the level of packaging, argumentation, symbol and rhetoric.” Bush’s final CIA director, General Michael Hayden—whose confirmation Obama opposed as a senator—told CNN there was a “powerful continuity between the 43rd and 44th presidents.” And in early 2011 Vice-President Dick Cheney told NBC News, “He’s learned that what we did was far more appropriate than he ever gave us credit for while he was a candidate.”
So with a hat tip to the ever knowledgable and wise Peter Winkler, I bring you the always prescient and considered opininon of Ted Rall:
Posted by Ted Rall on Wednesday, April 18, 2012 at 11:02 am
"Is Obama Kowtowing to the Right? Or Is He One of Them?
The President’s progressive critics blame him for continuing and expanding upon his Republican predecessor’s policies. His supporters point to the obstructionist, Republican-controlled Congress. What can Obama do? He’s being stymied at every turn.
If Obama had wanted to pursue a progressive agenda—banning foreclosures, jailing bankers, closing Guantánamo, stopping the wars, pushing for the public option he promised in his healthcare plan—he could have. He had ample political capital, yet chose not to spend it."
SNIP"Team Obama’s attempt to shore up his liberal base also falls short on the facts. Progressives were shocked by the U.S. Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling, along party lines, that legalized strip-searches and body cavity rapes by police and private security firms who detain people suspected of any crime, even minor traffic infractions.
“What virtually none of this…commentary mentioned,” reported Glenn Greenwald in Salon, “was that that the Obama DOJ [Department of Justice] formally urged Court to reach the conclusion it reached…this is yet another case, in a long line, where the Obama administration was able to have its preferred policies judicially endorsed by getting right-wing judges to embrace them.”No wonder Obama stayed mum."
SNIP"Which brings us to the biggest, yet least discussed, flaw in the attempt to pin Obama’s inaction on the heads of Congressional Republicans: the bully pulpit.
Whether Donald Trump likes it or not, Barack Obama is still president. If he calls a press conference to call attention to an issue, odds are that reporters will show up. But he’s not walking tall or even talking big.
Responding to fall 2011 polls that indicated softening support among the younger and more liberal voters who form the Democratic base, Obama’s reelection strategists began rolling out speeches inflected with Occupy-inspired rhetoric about class warfare and trying to make sure all Americans “get a fair shot.” But that’s all it is: talk. And small talk at that.
Instead of introducing major legislation, the White House plans to spend 2012 issuing presidential orders about symbolic, minor issues.Repeating Clinton-era triangulation and micro-mini issues doesn’t look like a smart reelection strategy. The Associated Press reported: “Obama’s election year retreat from legislative fights means this term will end without significant progress on two of his 2008 campaign promises: comprehensive immigration reform and closing the military prison for terrorist suspects at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. Piecemeal presidential directives are unlikely to make a sizeable dent in the nation’s 8.6 percent unemployment rate or lead to significant improvements in the economy, the top concern for many voters and the issue on which Republican candidates are most likely to criticize Obama. In focusing on small-bore executive actions rather than ambitious legislation, the president risks appearing to be putting election-year strategy ahead of economic action at a time when millions of Americans are still out of work.”
SNIP"For progressives and leftists, however, the main point is that Obama NEVER tries to move the mainstream of ideological discourse to the left.
Obama has been mostly silent on the biggest issue of our time, income inequality and the rapid growth of the American underclass. He hasn’t said much about the environment or climate change, the most serious problem we face—and one for which the U.S. bears a disproportionate share of the blame. Even on issues where he was blocked by Congress, such as when Republicans prohibited the use of public funds to transport Gitmo detainees to the U.S. for trials, he zipped his lips."
"Liberals don’t blame Obama for not winning. They blame him for not trying. When he does crazy things like authorizing the assassinations of U.S. citizens without trial, progressives have to ask themselves: Is this guy kowtowing to the Right? Or is he one of them?"