Saturday, January 30, 2010

What Have I Got Against Obama?

Some of you coming into this blog cold may be confused- I was an Obama supporter, vanished for a year and a half, and came back an Obama basher. What gives?

Well, I wasn't totally silent in that year and a half- I just gave up doing a separate political blog and dumped everything on LiveJournal. And here below are links to the many and various reasons I have for thinking Barack Obama has turned his back on those who voted for him and does not deserve a second term as president. (For a while I even advocated his impeachment- because impeachment is the only constitutional punishment for a lawbreaking president- but I retracted that when some racist teabaggers opened up an impeachment website.)

Here's my reasons:

First, let's begin with one of my last pre-hiatus LYAN posts, where I called out then-candidate Senator Obama for voting for telcom immunity for illegal Presidential-ordered wiretaps. Despite that, I voted for Obama, on the grounds that he would restore a constitutional presidency and constitutional government after eight years of Bush/Cheney's "unitary executive."

So, what did we actually get? Well, Obama telegraphed his intent before he was even inaugurated when he said that Dubya was a nice guy who just made some bad policy decisions with the best of intentions. (Yes, because apparently torture is only "a bad choice.") He went on to nominate an attorney general who promised, as part of his nomination hearings, not to prosecute anyone for ordering torture or committing other war crimes. Obama's officials made it crystal clear that there would be no prosecutions so long as they could prevent it, going so far as to continue the Bush administration's cover-up policies and to squash attempted prosecutions in Spain and Great Britain through diplomatic threats. They even defend the use of torture in our courts and defend those who claimed that it isn't torture if it doesn't kill or maim you.

And finally, even when Obama issued his famous executive order banning the use of torture, he left a loophole that allows the CIA to continue torturing- with special permission from the President. This marks Obama, bluntly, as pro-torture. At the very least, he and his advisors refuse to rule out the use of torture in the future.

Torture, and protecting those who did it, was not the only way Obama betrayed his promises of change. Obama's Justice Department vigorously defended illegal warrantless wiretapping, White House secrecy, and the indefinite/permanent imprisonment of prisoners in Guantanamo and Bagram. This initially was with Bush-appointed lawyers, but Obama appointees were just as vigorous in defending warrantless wiretapping. He's even resisted court orders to release Guantanamo prisoners found completely innocent. He declared his intent to continue the use of presidential signing statements in order to ignore the laws passed by Congress. He protected the corrupt AIG executives whose trading of credit default swaps nearly destroyed the world economy. He sided with the big corporations on copyright extension and enforcement- that is, suing downloaders.

On a less obstruction-of-justice level, Obama pursued bipartisanship at the cost of his own agenda. He sabotaged his own stimulus package by allowing Congress to craft it... with his only contribution being a demand that tax cuts be included, over the objections of his own economists and advisors. He personally intervened to quash a Supreme Court hearing to overturn Don't Ask Don't Tell, while his Justice Department chose a rabid homophobe to write a defense of the Defense of Marriage Act that basically implies homosexuals have no civil rights worth respecting.

And in personal peeves, he cut hydrogen technology research funds in favor of horribly polluting and inefficient biofuels, he supported the weakest and worst of the five committee bills on health care reform, killed what could have been a workable 60-vote public-option Senate bill, backed Joe Lieberman's filibuster threat...

... and as you read yesterday he's about to effectively kill manned exploration of deep space.

All of THAT is why I'm angry at Barack Obama... and regret having voted for him.

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