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Sunday, May 17, 2009

You Cant Flip-Flop from Nothing

Republicans salute Obama's military tack
Moves anger liberal Democrats
By (Contact) Sunday, May 17, 2009

Even as congressional Democrats feuded last week with the CIA in what at times seemed to be a throwback to the 1970s, President Obama was headed in the other direction in what may have been his most active week yet as commander in chief.
He pushed through the House a spending bill to finance the war in Afghanistan and reversed himself, deciding to fight the release of photos purportedly showing humiliating treatment of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan.

see the rest here

My Comments:

As the Washington Times has reported, the press is finally starting to see through the Obama-fog.

Like many, I hoped President Obama would reverse the direction of President Bush’s administration on several issues. His large individual donor base and short time in Washington were signs of hope.

However, in just over 100 days, President Obama has broken many campaign promises…sort of. By reading the above article, you’ll see that the press is starting to see that. But you’ll also see that Obama’s staff has the perfect answer to Obama’s activity: “well, he didn’t really promise that.”

You cant flip-flop when you never really took a stand to start with.

Those of us who are discerning, saw this during the campaign. To us, Obama resembled a typical weak politician, often satirized in movies like “Swing Vote.” We saw that he lied on at least two major occasions during the campaign (i.e. his promises to fulfill his Senate term and to accept public funds for his campaign). He abandoned his life-long pastor and friend of over 20 years, who had married him and his wife. He voted “not present” a record number of times in Illinois. Unlike John Kerry, he lacked the time in the Senate to have a flip-flop record yet – which I believe he surely would have developed. And of course, he supported the Bush bailout.

A close look at Obama’s campaign will show that his supporter’s hopes that Obama would be the anti-Bush were largely a figment of their own imaginations – not his explicit, literal words. His campaign was so devoid of substance, that Obama could do practically anything, and still break only a few actual campaign promises. But certainly, people felt he was going to be a 180. He has let us all down.

What Promises?

Obama promised broad bipartisanship, saying “there are no red states or blue states, just the United States.” He has barely muster 3 or 4 Republican votes among well over 2 trillion dollars worth of spending.

He promised, "(I) will not sign any non-emergency bill without giving the American public an opportunity to review and comment on the White House website for five days." One would say this was a promise explicitly broken since the stimulus bill was passed literally 3 or 4 hours after the final draft was complete – and it was complete at around 2am. But then again, what is an emergency?

In addressing one of America’s biggest problems historically, which reached high proportions under Bush, Obama promised, “No political appointees in an Obama-Biden administration will be permitted to work on regulation or contracts directly and substantially related to their prior employer for two years. And no political appointee will be able to lobby the executive branch after leaving government service during the remainder of the administration.” On this one, Obama even signed an exectutive order to this effect.

Promise Kept?

No. Obama included a waiver which has been used to destroy the entire order. Recipients of the waiver include: William Lynn, Jocelyn Frye, Cecilia Munoz and Simon Johnson.

Some appointees have mind-boggling conflicts of interest, such as: Tim Geithner’s Chief of Staff Mark Patterson former lobbyist for Goldman Sachs who has helped run billions of dollars to Goldman. (Of course, this pales in light of Geithner’s own conflicts of interest with the bailout). Other major figures who were lobbyists include: Attorney General Eric Holder and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

Campaigning vs. Governing

It was easy for him to hide behind vague language, lofty oratory, and emotional appeals when he was an Illinois and U.S. Senator. However, it is much more difficult to do as President. When you are President, people start looking at two things: what you said you would do, and what you actually do. The press babied Obama through the campaign. Being able to avoid serious scrutiny, Obama could appease the far left and enough of the center to get by.

As President, Obama can no longer vote “not present,” as he did hundreds of times in Illinois.

Now Obama has made Bush’s bailout plan look like child’s play, made even more extensive arguments for government secrecy than Bush, refused to release photos of detainees, and actually escalated the “War on Terror.”

Still, his redeeming quality was that he was not George W. Bush. The country has clearly turned against many of Pres. Bush’s policies. However, Bush was just the puppet. The people pulling the strings remain the same with Obama. Therefore, we get a President who looks a lot like the candidate: empty, vague, shallow but a hell of a speaker.

The left is seething, the neo-conservatives are appeased. Obama thinks his personality will get him through it politically. However, his pathetic counterpart – Nancy Pelosi – is helping to expose the ugly underbelly of the far left.

Maybe the country will learn better next time: ask specific questions, demand specific answers. When a politician says nothing, he can later break few promises.

One thing I will give Bush credit for is that he said, "you may not agree with me, but you know where I stand." This is what we should expect from all of our presidents.

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