It is OK to criticize the Obama administration
And that is especially true when it involves the real big issues of our times... As long as that criticism is, ya know, based in the reality of the policies and not some insane rantings and ravings of fringe and conspiracy theory lunacies. Via Glenn Greenwald, Jon Stewart hit on some really big issues, last night and immediately after the somnambulic presidential address, and pulled no punches from the not so sleepy world of reality:
When ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero last week addressed the progressive conference America's Future Now, he began by saying: "I'm going to start provocatively . . . I'm disgusted with this president." Last night, after Obama's Oval Office speech, Jon Stewart began his show with an 8-minute monologue on Obama's executive power and civil liberties record which, in essence, provided just some of the reasons why Romero's strong condemnation is so justified. None of this will be remotely new to any readers here, but it's still nice to see its being distilled so clearly by a voice which even the most hardened Obama loyalists have decided is a credible and trustworthy one (at least when he's mocking Sarah Palin and exposing Fox News; we'll see what reaction this provokes from them, if any).
There is no denying the truth in the accusations, nor IMHO the real importance of this issue that has been obscured with huge celebrations by Obama's most ardent supporters for tiny and relatively meaningless wins on comparatively less important issues, that Stewart makes in the video below the fold.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Respect My Authoritah|
The biggest problems - torture and renditions, spying on Americans, prosecuting legitimate whistle blowers, corporate welfare, a nation still in Constitutional crisis that the politicians refuse to notice, endless war scenarios still being scripted by the warmongers, crushing the workers worldwide to keep the failed and corrupt rolling in the money of the purely illusory "free markets", etc. - are still getting even further entrenched under Obama's administration.
And yet many people are celebrating tiny wins like there has been meaningful change? At the end of four years and with some of the choices this administration has already made and policies and ideas that they have fought for and fought to exclude, it may be very difficult to argue that much has changed.
There are many that will say that "Obama is just one man, he can only do so much!"
President Obama is the leader of the Democratic party...
Much like FDR, Obama has come to power with many disasters and all of the same right wing extremist attacks leveled at him for talking about much needed change. And much like FDR as well, Obama has unleashed some pretty harsh words on his opponents ridiculous attacks.
But FDR continued to pressure the right wing and the middle of his party to accede to the real needs of the nation, whereas Obama has clearly pressured the left to accede to the the same kind of failed thinking of the right wing that got us where we are now.
And Obama has purposefully chosen to continue many destructive and illegal policies and continues to lead the Democratic party in a failed direction for this nation. And he may be the wrong man to be leading the party if he continues to put power, lobbyists and corporations above the American people's very real needs, rights and the Constitution.
Many of his supporters will try to call this some fringe left or populist criticism in order to try and obscure the real issues.
I am sure Glenn Greenwald and Jon Stewart will gladly hold their own against anything that gets leveled at them for pointing out these simple truths.
And the simplest truths can be made to seem pretty darn complicated if you work really hard at ignoring and confusing the truly big issues of our time while comparatively tiny little problems are being pushed to be celebrated as being incrementally solved in a dog and pony show extraordinaire...
And it is Ok to point out that fact, too.
At least I know I'll sleep well at night - and probably through more relatively meaningless presidential addresses if things continue the way they are now - knowing I was working to try to fix the real problems.