Saturday, May 16, 2009

Obama and civil liberties

Dale points us to Glenn Greenwald on Obama's increasingly Bushian stance on human rights (as well as his unwillingness and/or inability to fulfill the basic function of partisan politics and punish the Republican party):
Monday - Obama administration's letter to Britain threatening to cut off intelligence-sharing if British courts reveal the details of how we tortured British resident Binyam Mohamed;

Tuesday - Promoted to military commander in Afghanistan Gen. Stanley McChyrstal, who was deeply involved in some of the worst abuses of the Bush era;

Wednesday - Announced he was reversing himself and would try to conceal photographic evidence showing widespread detainee abuse -- despite the rulings from two separate courts (four federal judges unanimously) that the law compels their disclosure;

Friday - Unveiled his plan to preserve a modified system of military commissions for trying Guantanamo detainees, rather than using our extant-judicial processes for doing so.
Is there still any doubt that Obama is the worst sort of pseudo-progressive opportunist, promising the people the moon but delivering the same old bourgeois oppression now that he's elbowed his way into the ruling class?


  1. I suppose, that sometimes the reality can be, far more horrible than one can imagine, when making such promises.

  2. That's no excuse. We need to face up to reality, however horrible.

  3. It's double-reverse political jiu-jitsu! Yeah, that's the ticket!

  4. *shrug* I’ve always thought any research into Pres. Obama’s past would reveal he is a political animal. There is little doubt. Or surprise.

    I often see political candidates going into the process with the best intentions. To clean-up, streamline, progress. Reform. But once elected, they become bogged down within the system. Start to worry about re-election. Worry about popularity polls. Within a few years, they become exactly like the predecessor they so vehemently disparaged.

    When it comes to Judges, we call it “black-robe disease.” They get the same black robe and acquire the same afflication.

  5. I often see political candidates going into the process with the best intentions. -

    I would disagree with this interpretation. They might have good intentions when they first go into the electoral process, but by the time they get to Obama's level, having been in the process for many years, they must know that promises of reform are cynical frauds.

    Or perhaps not: the capacity of human beings for self-deception and doublethink is truly enormous.


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