Category Archives: Hope and Change

But I thought Obama was going to put an end to Bush’s indefinite detainment of enemy combatants

Apparently not.

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Bad apple

Obama finally got around to nominating his ATF director and he looks like a rotten guy. All you really need to know is that he was head of the Chicago field office, but there are more sordid details at Sebastian’s. Not that I would expect anything different from Obama, who seems to leap at the change to appoint anyone from the black hole that is Chicago to an important government post. It’s like Bush and personal loyalty.

Ahh, the hopenchange is strong today

From the New York Times:

An Obama administration task force that includes officials from the Justice and Commerce Departments, the F.B.I. and other agencies recently began working on draft legislation to strengthen and expand a 1994 law requiring carriers to make sure their systems can be wiretapped.

But I thought Republicans were Big Brother fascists and Democrats loved peace and freedom!

Obama proposes law to enable feds to snoop on any internet traffic

Ahh, the hope and change are so thick you could cut them with a knife! Taking a page from a lobbyist I met at GRPC, I’m gonna call this law the Privacy Elimination and Fascism Creation act of 2011.

Obama isn’t Bush lite, heck, he’s not even Bush low sodium, he’s Bush II! What a joke. Call your congresscritter and tell them you’ll tar and feather them if they vote for this abomination.

The natives are getting restless

Democrats are really turning on Obama. Moderate Democrats just joined Republicans to kill one the latest of these “endless bailout” style federal cash giveaways. Keith Olbermann is complaining about Obama’s disappointing oil spill speech. Heck, Jon Stewart says that he’s as bad as Bush!

I guess it turns out that high expectations based on pretty speeches are easily shattered.

Who knew?

lolcat wantz 2 no where da hope n chanj went

Obama is even heavier-handed than Bush was regarding white house leaks:

In 17 months in office, President Obama has already outdone every previous president in pursuing leak prosecutions. His administration has taken actions that might have provoked sharp political criticism for his predecessor, George W. Bush, who was often in public fights with the press.

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

Yearning for a superhero

I read a Huffington Post editorial about Obama and the oil spill today imploring him to do something, anything, to be more a part of the cleanup process. It’s full of choice nuggets:

There’s not necessarily anything Obama can do that BP isn’t doing already. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t other compelling steps he could announce

[…]

Obama should still try to seize the moment to rally public support

[…]

Granted, none of the experts interviewed by the Huffington Post were able to come up with satisfactory solutions to the basic problem that don’t involve time machines.

If none of the experts could come up with better solutions, why are they demanding Obama throw himself into the breech? Does he have special knowledge they lack? No, and the writer even admits as such. What they’re really calling on him to do is make noise. Appear relevant. Capture the moment to deliver speeches. Lecture the parties involved. Announce new laws. Have an opinion. Appear to be helping. Anything!

But none of this is actually leadership. Real, actual leadership is when you take control and ownership of a crisis and publicly steer it back to calmer waters — the one thing Obama can’t do since his administration has no competence in plugging oil wells! Merely making noise about the situation and inserting himself into the recovery process wouldn’t make him seem like a leader, it would smack of being an attention whore.

I’m reminded by an editorial written by Peggy Noonan five years ago that feels if anything even more relevant today then it was at the time:

I refer to the sheer scope, speed and urgency of the issues that go to a president’s desk, to the impossibility of bureaucracy, to the array of impeding and antagonistic forces (the 50-50 nation, the mass media, the senators owned by the groups), to the need to have a fully informed understanding of and stand on the most exotic issues, from Avian flu to the domestic realities of Zimbabwe.

[…]

The range, depth, and complexity of these problems, the crucial nature of each of them, the speed with which they bombard the Oval Office, and the psychic and practical impossibility of meeting and answering even the most urgent of them, is overwhelming. And that doesn’t even get us to Korea. And Russia. And China, and the Mideast. You say we don’t understand Africa? We don’t even understand Canada!

[…]

It’s beyond, “The president is overwhelmed.” The presidency is overwhelmed. The whole government is. And people sense when an institution is overwhelmed. Citizens know. If we had a major terrorist event tomorrow half the country–more than half–would not trust the federal government to do what it has to do, would not trust it to tell the truth, would not trust it, period.

ObamaComics1.jpegTruth.

Why do we demand so much from our president? He’s just a man. We become so bedazzled by stars, celebrities, and larger-than-life action heroes that I think we have a tendency to include the presidency with the aforementioned. As much as we would like it to happen, he’s not going to swoop in and save the day.