Jump to navigation
More Center-Right Signals from Obama Camp
In the latest display of an emergent center-right government coming at the nation, President-elect Barack Obama is seriously considering
naming his campaign adviser Greg Craig as White House chief counsel. That name might not ring a bell, but Craig, in his previous capacity as an adviser to the Obama campaign, earlier this year did a song-and-dance routine about how the Illinois Senator had supported the revision in 2007 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act because it would otherwise "expire."
In fact, that was an out-and-out lie
: FISA was not about to "expire." Obama voted for the abomination that became known as the Protect America Act (in some circles
called the Police
America Act) either because he was full-on comfortable with its intrusive
, privacy rights stripping
provisions, or he was a political coward who didn't want to stand up to the Terrorists-Are-Coming howl
from the Right-wing authoritarians masquerading as they always do as genuine conservatives. Either way, Greg Craig, the man with the inside track to be Obama's White House lawyer, has already demonstrated that time-honored, quite remarkable ability to look the public straight in the eye while blowing smoke up our butts.
In 2007, when the revision of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was being debated, Obama initially claimed
that he was opposed to it because it granted large telecommunications companies immunity from civil suits arising from their participation in the Bush Administration's conspiracy to spy on Americans; he also claimed that it did not provide adequate oversight of those who would engage in domestic spying. Ultimately, however, he voted for the bill despite the retention of the grant of immunity and despite outside observers' contention that it would not only violate citizens' rights but also risk
putting intelligence data into the hands of the very terrorists the law enforcement snoops want to catch.
'Center-right' might end up being a charitable description of the incoming Administration: the Obama campaign's message of hope and change might have sold the merchandise, but now the President-elect has a country to run. What better way to do so than the same way, with the same mentality, that has for the past eight years run it into the ground?
Obama's Leftist acolytes are still insisting we should sit back and take a wait-and-see attitude as he fills his inner circle with neo-con
Zionist Project for the New American Century hacks like Dennis Ross
, whom he is considering for Under-Secretary of State for Middle Eastern Affairs; Chicago mob fave Zionists like Rahm Emanuel
, who will be his White House chief of staff; and Valerie Jarrett, alleged slumlord
and former deputy chief of staff to Chicago Democratic Machine Mayor Richard Daley, who will serve as his Senior Adviser
to the President and Assistant to the President for Intergovernmental Affairs and Public Liaison.
Sitting back to wait and see is sound advice, whether it be for the ultimate direction an incoming President is already indicating or for an on-coming freight train of thugs, mob favorites, neo-cons, and other Right-wingers bearing down the track toward a deer-in-the-headlights citizenry waiting once again for the rein of a President who sells one thing to a gullible electorate and then delivers something considerably different and far more toxic.
For my own part, I shall stay off the tracks and start writing about the up-coming clash of the new Administration's authoritarians with a shell-shocked citizenry that will once again and soon be roadkill on the highway to America's bleak future.
I must say that the Rahm Emanuel thing, within 24 hours of being elected no less, was very disturbing to me - like a torrent of cold water in the face. While I am willing to at least let Obama get into office before writing him off, I don't think any of us should just sit back. We have to keep making ourselves a loud force to be reckoned with - a pain in the ass force that won't go away or shut up. What worries me is how many people just seem to feel that the "lobbying" efforts are done, and they can return to their daily zombie-land life.
There's no doubt that Obama has inherited a disintegrating country on a number of fronts. But working on these huge issues shouldn't preclude restoring civil liberties and undoing Bush's "signing statements", which likely aren't even legal anyway. In my mind, that IS one of the huge issues - that, and restoring election integrity. The people he picks will have to be a key part of whatever he does, and so far, I'm very underwhelmed - or downright disgusted. I have written his office multiple times since the election with my views and suggestions.
I do hope for at least a better outcome than with insane McCain and fundy nutball Palin (who apparently is still planning her future in politics!) The rest of the world seems relieved, also.
DW, what do you think will happen with all those Halliburton-KBR detention centers that are just sitting there?
Obama had better agree with you, Anna. He'll have a hard time getting anyone on board with his agenda if they still distrust the administrative branch as much as they do the legislative, much less how craven Bush and Co. have debased the office. He also is in line to suffer from ticks, transferred by the Blue Dog/DLC coalitions who gained more seats this election.
Oh, the dance moves we are about to witness.
I was rather expecting to get shot for this article, so it gladdens my heart (glad as it always is, anyway) to see these perspectives written in comments.
I must get a post up clarifying that I cannot just sit back. George W. Bush has convinced me once and for all that my job as a political writer is never to be the loyal opposition, even though Barack Obama is an entirely different kind of politician.
Perhaps what worries me most is how much damage the Bush Administration did without much of a clue. We now have a President-elect who is far smarter; more to the point of my deep concern, however, is that we will now have a President who is far smarter who is the inheritor of a position as unitary executive. The people I see arriving for their gigs at his side are, in too many troubling cases, the kinds of people who are not healthy to have around if he were genuinely interested in taking apart the imperial presidency he has inherited.
I rejoice that George W. Bush will soon be gone. I worry, though, about an Executive Branch under the control of a man far smarter than the one who used it to such disastrous ends.
Perhaps it will work out for the best. Bill Clinton was an extraordinarily bright man, but one of his greatest failings early in office was allowing himself to be steam-rolled by the Blue Dog Democrats led by such notable shills as Sam Nunn. Clinton was unable to push his own agenda, and those Blue Dogs, working with the Republicans, ensured that punishment of people from the Reagan/Bush era would not happen. In fact, the whistleblowers who wanted to hand heads to the Democrats in 1993 got sold out, and some of them were ruined reprehensibly.
Perhaps this time, with a far more imperial presidency at his disposal and some vicious players in the game, Obama can do what Clinton could not.
I'm not betting on it: his dream team has too many bit players from the nightmare horde that was our last eight years.
We shall see, though.
The Dark Wraith will not, of course, wait for the freight train to get to the railroad crossing before yelling for everyone to get off the tracks.
Yes, that's exactly what we need, a smart NeoCon President of the Chicago School.
I am sure no trouble could ever come of that, particularly with the personality cult he continues to assemble around him.
I'm not sitting back either my dear Dark Wraith
RE: Jim Leach (I hope PoLT stops by)
So, the "Obamicans" are representing Barry at the Financial summit this weekend.
"The architects of financial disaster under the 1999 Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Services Modernization Act (FSMA) have been entrusted with the task of mitigating the crisis, which they themselves created. They are the cause of financial collapse.
Barack Obama has embraced the Washington-Wall Street consensus. In a bitter twist, former Congressman Jim Leach, a Republican who sponsored the 1999 FSMA in the House of Representatives is now advising Obama on formulating a timely solution to the crisis. "
smart man indeed
Joizeygoil, I met former Tri-Lateral Commission member Jim Leach during the Lone Tree Fall Festival of '04 when he was running for re-election. I told him I could sure use his vote since I was running for the Soil & Water Commission, but I guess it didn't do any good since I lost my race and he won his. (I still wonder if perhaps I had grovelled at his feet and begged to perform unspeakable indignities he would have seen to it that I rode to victory on his coattails.)
Anyhow, you wanna how bad the economy's getting?
Check out one of Michael Panzer's latest over at Financial Armageddon entitled "Dead Broke." It seems that people can't even afford to bury their dead friends and relatives any more in the accustomed manners. Quoting a Detroit Free Press article:
When Verlene McLemore's 36-year-old son Dean died at home last November after a long struggle with diabetes, she knew she wanted a very personal service for him.
But she also wanted something she could afford, and a $7,000 funeral -- the national average -- was out of the question.
So McLemore, with the help of a local funeral director, kept her son's body in her Detroit home in the bedroom where he died, laying it out on a borrowed massage table covered in lavender satin, packing it in dry ice, and inviting friends and family to come and say good-bye.
For two days she kept a simple candle burning and soft music playing. She went to the store for more dry ice. Then he was buried in a pressboard casket in a family plot. Cost for the services: $1,300.
So PoLT's message for the week is,
"Don't go buying your own ticket on the shithouse express. Your family can't afford to bury you"
I'd write more but right now I gotta go see that my spades and shovels are sharpened up in case anybody I know craps out.
i too have been listening for the sound of obama repudiating the "unitary executive" theory.
i, for one, touch deeply on my paleoconservative roots when i am alarmed at the notion that the president, wearing his special magic commander-in-chief cap, can commit american troops to combat without the prior approval of congress in the form of a formal declaration of war.
anyone who does even a cursory read through of the constitution, or does even minor cliffnotes delving fo the federalist papers could see that the founders intended the path to a shooting war to be slow, clumsy, and fraught with roadblocks.
the idea that, on a whim, a president to start a war that has lasted for seven years would have appalled madison, adams, and monroe.
and please, spare me the "well, mistakes were made" speeches. mistakes are always made. what we needed to avoid in iraq and afghanistan was the assholes that knew exactly what we were getting into and went there anyway to make themselves and their stockholders rich.
pulling back the power that bush has siezed would be an admirable first step. pulling the teeth of the executive branch by discontinuing signing statements which essentially nullify the signed laws, going to congress for a formal declaration of war before committing troops to battle, reinstituting and reaffirming due process, even for assholes would be a nice start.
i ain't seeing it. it saddens me.
Good evening, Mr Wraith.
I find it hilarious that people would expect something different.
i ain't seeing it. it saddens me.
The thing about a Ring of Power: mortals can't safely use one.
In the end, the Power ends up owning the one who would use it.
If Barry and the DINOcrats haven't figured this out, it will be Petraeus Caesar in 2012.
Holy Schnikes kelley! That's one I didn't see coming. Kind of a bizarro-Eisenhower thing, huh? Unless you mean a coup-type situation, since this isn't 1952, and I don't think being a general will be enough to run on. Although...I am talking about Republican voters here. Hm.
I look forward to any chance at all for Obama to explain his FISA vote satisfactorily to me. It colors every other constitutional-flavored tasks set before him, such as signing statements as well as privacy rights violations, executive privilege, and politicizing of the DOJ.
Speaking of which, why is it that I detest Michael Mukasey much more than I ever did Gonzales? Oh wait, I 'member now. It's because we all knew how Albert was gonna roll; He'd already been there/done that in Texas with his buddy, George. Instead, we had a mealy-mouthed watery-eyed schmuck who had spineless Dems escorting his sorry ass right into the job, where he wasted not one nanosecond in proclaiming Bush's every word to be law, and every explanation of said law done by Fielding and Addington is to be considered scripture.
I consider him so scummy that I'd throw my shoes away rather than scraping him off them.
Just don't get that stuff on your hands, trog69. It's likely infectious.
Regan democrats and Obama republicans have the worst sort of mad cow disorder. When their droppings enter the food chain, it's worse than melamine in your coffee creamer. The more you drink, the less you can think.
Reagan Democrats!? Are you saying that it was a good thing when the Religious Right was shown the way into the White House, due to Reagan many wingnut advisors? Or that the massive arms buildup and Star Wars BS was somehow not to be touched by the left? I was a partying drunken cokehead in the '80's, but I could see the damage Reagan and his cabinet were doing to our country.
Of course, by the time Clinton was elected I was a union worker, so he didn't get invites to our fambly reunions either.
I can't find the article, but Matt Blunt, governor of Missouri and his "pugnacious gatekeeper", Ed Martin, are embroiled in controversy concerning e-mails incriminating Mr. Martin in partisan shenanigans while in the Govs office.
Hey, where have I heard about someone hiring a pugnacious, highly partisan, gatekeeper recently?
Become a Registered Commenter