Friday, June 18, 2010

Some perspective, please

Yes, President Obama isn't perfect. Yes, he should just close Gitmo already. Yes, it would be great if he'd act on his campaign promise of more transparency in government. But c'mon, people, he's not another George W. Bush. A quick comparison of their administrations will show this. Criticize the guy, sure, but let's not pretend it's still 2005, hear?

7 comments:

Steve Bates said...

Assassination of American citizens without trial, by executive order... DADT still in place... Gitmo still open, with a possibility of moving the whole thing within continental U.S. boundaries... millions of people uninsured AFTER the health care "reform" bill became law... largely ineffective response to the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history... need I go on? and do we have a problem here?

I give Obama credit for one difference from GWB, and it's a big one: Obama is more dependable on women's rights. As an old Planned Parenthood contractor, I appreciate that. But I'm waiting to see a few of those campaign promises, if not implemented, at least acted upon... hell, at least not outright reversed.

Constitutional lawyer, MFA...

Kath黃rinA俊宇 said...
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The Truffle said...

Where did you read about the assassination of citizens? I've been following Glenn Greenwald and don't remember him writing about this.

The Truffle said...

PS: Check out PoitiFact, which keeps track of Obama's promises.

Steve Bates said...

Since Greenwald seems to be a source we both trust, please read his post "Presidential assassinations of U.S. citizens." By no means is this episode in January the only instance; I'll leave the finding of the rest to you and Teh Google. Obama obviously feels, as did Bush before him, that the President, acting alone, can make the determination of who is guilty of terrorism and who should die for it, without any sort of due process or trial. I disagree with him in the strongest terms: our system of justice, whether it succeeds or fails in convicting a terrorist, is of far greater significance than the conviction of any particular individual. In the case of an American citizen, there is no constitutional excuse whatsoever for omitting any aspect of due process... none.

Steve Bates said...

Re: PolitiFact... I just read through a large number of the tracked promises Obama has made (I didn't make it through all the "In the Works" promises; there are simply too many for one individual in one evening) and came to the conclusion that PolitiFact is missing a very salient point: not one promise I read, zip-zero-zilch, had anything to do with restoration of a presidential commitment to civil liberties, civil rights, the propriety of trials, the separation of powers, etc. etc. Such promises are simply not there.

I have to assume that's because Obama wants to keep the powers Bush assumed through sheer executive overreach, the perverse forms of "trial" (e.g., military commissions) devised in the Bush era that practically guarantee conviction of everyone accused of terrorism, and (as noted above) the "right" of the President to order an American citizen abroad assassinated without any form of trial or other due process. I'm sorry, this is just plain wrong, and Obama's pursuit of it is egregious. It outweighs every good thing Obama has done. And this by an alleged constitutional scholar... what an utter embarrassment it is, or ought to be, for him to proceed in this way.

Jolly Roger said...

No, he certainly isn't a Chimpy, but he doesn't seem to have the respect for due process that I had hoped for.

Honestly.... we either restore the rule of law in this country, or this country will be done. And it'll be sooner, rather than later.