#875654 Mar 18, 2013
Obama is Worse than Bush
in Favoring the Super-Elite, Bailing out the Banks and Protecting Financial Criminals
Even Democratic Party Loyalists Starting to Wake Up to the Fact that Obama Is As Bad As Bush … Or Worse
Obama Is Worse than Bush In Favoring the Super-Elite, Bailing Out the Big Banks, Protecting Financial Criminals, Targeting Whistleblowers, Keeping Government Secrets, Trampling Our Liberties and Starting Military Conflicts In New Countries
Glenn Greenwald notes that even Democratic party loyalists are getting fed up with Obama’s Bush-like actions:
Even the most loyal establishment Democrats are now harshly denouncing the president for his war on transparency ….
This secrecy has become so oppressive and extreme that even the most faithful Democratic operatives are now angrily exploding with public denunciations.
(Greenwald gives numerous examples.)
The Hill reported last month:
A majority of voters believe President Obama has been no better than his immediate predecessor, President George W. Bush, when it comes to balancing national security with the protection of civil liberties, according to a new poll for The Hill.
Thirty-seven percent of voters argue that Obama has been worse than Bush while 15 percent say he has been “about the same.”[In other words, a total of 52% think Obama is just as bad as Bush. That was before the drone controversy - discussed below - went viral.]
The results cannot be fully explained as party line responses. More than one in five self-identified Democrats, 21 percent, assert that the Obama administration has not improved upon Bush’s record. So do 23 percent of liberals.
Indeed, more and more Democrats are waking up the fact that Obama is doing a lot of the same stuff Bush did.
Bush was a horrible president. His warmongering, disrespect for civil liberties, redistribution of wealth from the poor and middle class to the super-elite, and obsession for secrecy were all abysmal.
#875655 Mar 18, 2013
how does Obama stack up by objective measurements?
Let’s compare …
Favoring the Super-Elite the Expense of Everyone Else
Income inequality has increased more under Obama than under Bush.
Under Obama, the richest Americans have captured more than 100% of all income gains (and see this).
Liberal Nobel prize economist Joseph Stiglitz said in 2009 that Obama’s toxic asset plan “amounts to robbery of the American people”.
Bailing Out the Big Banks
While everyone knows about the $700 billion “Tarp” bailout which started under Bush, a top banking analyst puts the current bailouts under Obama at more than $780 billion each year.(Background here.)
Protecting Financial Criminals
Obama has prosecuted fewer financial crimes than President Reagan, Clinton or either of the Bush presidents.
Obama’s chief law enforcement officer – the Attorney General of the United States – has publicly stated that he won’t go after big banks.
Obama has prosecuted more whistleblowers than all other presidents combined.
Obama – even more than Bush – is protecting criminal activity by prosecuting and harassing whistleblowers.
Indeed, the Obama administration is are literally treating whistleblowers as terrorists.
#875656 Mar 18, 2013
Today Obama pissed away another day by nominating another token for a meaningless job.
One day closer to the end of the tunnel with no further damage done.
#875657 Mar 18, 2013
OBAMA Using Government Secrecy
In March 2010, AP documented that – under Obama – 17 major agencies were 50 percent more likely to deny freedom of information requests than under Bush.
An ACLU staff attorney puts it:
In some ways, the Obama administration is actually even more aggressive on secrecy than the Bush administration.
A new AP investigation published last week shows that the Obama administration has recently become more secretive than ever.
Trampling Liberties and the Constitution
Liberals rightfully hate Bush for trampling liberties. Bush even called the Constitution a “God Damn Piece of Paper”.
But Obama has gone much further than Bush ever did by:
(1) Declaring the right to assassinate Americans living on U.S. soil (no … this was never disclaimed) without any due process of law
(2) Declaring that he can indefinitely detain Americans on U.S. soil without any due process of law
(3) Spying on Americans more widely than Bush (the former head of the National Security Agency’s global digital data gathering program – William Binney – says that he pervasiveness of spying under Obama has only “gotten worse”)
(4) Bush destroyed much of the separation of powers which made our country great. Under Obama, it’s gotten worse. For example, the agency which decides who should be killed by drone is the same agency which spies on all Americans
(5) Otherwise shredding the Bill of Rights
#875658 Mar 18, 2013
OBAMA Starting Military Conflicts In New Countries
Liberals rightfully lambast Bush for getting us into the disastrous Iraq war.
But Obama has in fact launched wars in Libya, Syria, Yemen, Pakistan … and up to 35 African nations (and see this).
Obama – citing a Nixon administration official’s justification for invading Cambodia – has claimed his power extends into every country in the world … well beyond those where we are engaged in hostilities.
Obama has dramatically escalated the use of drone assassinations, which are creating many more terrorists than they are killing. The former chief military prosecutor at Guantanamo says that Obama’s drone surge is as damaging to our country as Bush’s torture program. I think he’s actually underestimating damage from the program, as drones have become the number 1 recruiting tool for Al Qaeda (especially since children are now being targeted for drone assassination … Oh, and torture is still happening on Obama’s watch; background).
And the Obama administration has probably supported even more terrorists – in Libya, Syria and elsewhere – than Bush. See this, this, this, this and this.
#875659 Mar 18, 2013
#875660 Mar 18, 2013
You got that right...what a better motivator for
self-reliance then little bit of hunger.
Its not being mean or selfish or greedy or racist its just
the right thing to do.
#875661 Mar 18, 2013
NSA Whistle-Blower: Obama “Worse than Bush”
The national security state needs a boogeyman to keep the money flowing
Thomas Drake, the whistle-blower whom the Obama administration tried and failed to prosecute for leaking information about waste, fraud and abuse at the National Security Agency, now works at an Apple store in Maryland. In an interview with Salon, Drake laughed about the time heconfronted Attorney General Eric Holder at his store while Holder perused the gadgetry on display with his security detail around him. When Drake started asking Holder questions about his case, America’s chief law enforcement officer turned and fled the store.
But the humor drained away quickly from Drake’s thin and tired face as he recounted his ordeal since 2010 when federal prosecutors charged him with violating the Espionage Act for retaining classified information they believed he would pass on to then Baltimore Sun reporter Siobhan Gorman. While Drake never disclosed classified information, he did pass on unclassified information to Gorman revealing that the NSA had wasted billions of taxpayers’ dollars on Trailblazer, a contractor-heavy intelligence software program that failed to find terrorist threats in the tsunami of digital data the agency was sucking up globally — and sometimes unconstitutionally. While Trailblazer burned through cash, in the process enriching many NSA employees turned contractors, Drake found that another software program named ThinThread had already met the core requirements of a federal acquisition regulation that governed the proposed system at a sliver of the cost, all while protecting American civil liberties at the code level. The NSA leadership, however, had already bet their careers on Trailblazer. So Drake blew the whistle, first to Congress, then to the Department of Defense Inspector General’s Office, and finally, and fatefully, to Gorman.
Last June, the government’s case collapsed. On the eve of trial, all 10 counts were dropped. In a Kafkaesque turn of events, Drake actually helped the government find a misdemeanor to charge him with — exceeding authorized use of an NSA computer — so federal prosecutors could save face. Once facing 35 years behind bars, Drake pled guilty to the misdemeanor charge and was sentenced to one year of probation and 240 hours of community service, what he sardonically calls “his penance.”
#875662 Mar 18, 2013
Gosnell attorney: Prosecution “elitist, racist”
A Philadelphia prosecutor Monday morning opened the trial of West Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell.
Attorney Joanne Pescatore called it a case not about abortion but about murder.
Gosnell faces a possible death penalty if the jury finds him guilty.
Joseph A. Slobodzian, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Posted: Monday, March 18, 2013, 11:43 AM
Calling it a case not about abortion but about murder, a Philadelphia prosecutor this morning opened the trial of West Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell.
Assistant District Attorney Joanne Pescatore told the Common Pleas Court jury that evidence would show that Gosnell, 72, was a "wolf in sheep's clothing" who "used and abused desperate women."
Pescatore told the jury that abortion is legal in Pennsylvania up until the 24th week of pregnancy. Gosnell, however, specialized in what the prosecutor called "high-volume high-profit" illegal late-term abortions that "almost guarantee a live birth."
"If a baby is born alive, it's alive and no one has the right to take some solution to kill it," Pescatore said.
Defense attorney Jack McMahon gave the jury a starkly different view of the case, telling the jury that prosecutors are trying to impose "Mayo Clinic" standards on a West Philadelphia clinic that serves the urban poor.
"They're trying to hold him up to the standards of the Mayo Clinic the standards of a West Philadelphia clinic," McMahon said. "If you want Mayo Clinic standards than you go to the Mayo Clinic."
#875663 Mar 18, 2013
The Dreams Of A Father becomes the Nightmare of a Nation
#875664 Mar 18, 2013
Obama Continuing the Bush/Cheney Assassination Program In June, CIA Director Leon Panetta allegedly informed members of the House Intelligence Committee of the existence of a secret Bush era program implemented in the days after 9-11 that, until last month, had been hidden from lawmakers. The concealment of the plan, Panetta alleged, happened at the orders of then-Vice President Dick Cheney.
Now, The New York Times is reporting that this secret program that had “been hidden from lawmakers” by Cheney was a plan “to dispatch small teams overseas to kill senior Qaeda terrorists.” The Wall Street Journal, which originally reported on the plan, reported that the paramilitary teams were to implement a “2001 presidential legal pronouncement, known as a finding, which authorized the CIA to pursue such efforts.”
The plan, the Times says, never was carried out because “Officials at the spy agency over the years ran into myriad logistical, legal and diplomatic obstacles.” Instead, the Bush administration “sought an alternative to killing terror suspects with missiles fired from drone aircraft or seizing them overseas and imprisoning them in secret C.I.A. jails.”
The House Intelligence Committee is now reportedly preparing an investigation into this program and the Senate may follow suit.“We were kept in the dark. That’s something that should never, ever happen again,” said Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein. Withholding this information from Congress “is a big problem, because the law is very clear.”
There are several important issues raised by this unfolding story. First, while the Times claims the program was never implemented, the program sounds very similar to what Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Sy Hersh described in March as an “executive assassination ring” run by Dick Cheney that operated throughout the Bush years:
“Congress has no oversight of it. It’s an executive assassination ring essentially, and it’s been going on and on and on. Just today in the Times there was a story that its leaders, a three star admiral named [William H.] McRaven, ordered a stop to it because there were so many collateral deaths.
“Under President Bush’s authority, they’ve been going into countries, not talking to the ambassador or the CIA station chief, and finding people on a list and executing them and leaving. That’s been going on, in the name of all of us.
Hersh’s description sounds remarkably similar to that offered by the Times and the Wall Street Journal. While the House and Senate should certainly investigate this program—and lying to Congress, misleading it or concealing from it such programs is likely illegal—it is also important to guarantee that it has actually stopped. But another pressing issue for the Congress is investigating the Obama administration’s adoption of this secret program’s central components. As the Times noted, the major reason—beyond logistical hurdles—that the program was not implemented (if that is even true) was that the Bush administration began increasing its use of weaponized drones to conduct Israeli-style targeted assassinations (often, these drones kill many more civilians than so-called “targets”). These drone attacks, coupled with the use of extraordinary rendition and secret prisons, became the official program for “eliminating” specific individuals labeled “high value” targets by the administration.
The Obama administration has not only continued the Bush policy of using drones to carry out targeted assassinations, but has also continued the use of prisons where people are held indefinitely without charge or access to the International Committee of the Red Cross. Under Obama, Bagram air base in Afghanistan is expanding and, at present, hundreds of prisoners are held there without charges. In essence, the Obama administration is doing exactly what this secret CIA program sought to do, albeit out in the open.
#875665 Mar 18, 2013
Florida is reevaluating it's testing methods for NCLB assumes all students will be attending college. Hah!
When I was a young snapperwhipper the high schools in my region offered various course loads__college prep__business__home economics and industrial arts. Beyond high school there were different sorts of trade schools-union apprenticeship programs and such.
My friends who became tool and die makers made great money over the course of their lives. One friend became a captain on a Great Lakes freighter. Class reunions are interesting.
#875666 Mar 18, 2013
I forget the Generals name....but he was saying that
for years the armed forces have had women in very important
roles such as nurses and other such very skilled roles.
His concern was that if the Armed Forces start to
become more and more of a unpleasant experience for
women, they will then have a hard time in recruiting
women into the armed forces.
That and I guess I just a little bit of the old school way
of thinking......Men fight the wars to keep the Women
and children safe....I see no reason to change that.
I think we are traveling a dangerous road when our leaders
want to push Women more and more into combat roles.
There is plenty of opportunities for Women in the Armed Forses
with out them jumping into enemy fox holes and slugging it
out with enemy soldiers.
“It's always darkest 'fore dawn”
Since: Jul 08
#875667 Mar 18, 2013
Have you tried your bigoted BS on Israel? They've been drafting everybody for ever, and I don't think they're considered over-aged cub scouts last I heard. Besides, get with the century--I think I can score more kills with my little drone than that machismo jarhead with all the upper body strength that doesn't include his head.
#875668 Mar 18, 2013
If you did some basic research before you posted this, you
would know that there is one group of people excepted
from Israel draft.
#875669 Mar 18, 2013
At one time, high school graduates could take jobs in factories and plants where the work was tedious on assembly lines but the pay wasn't that bad.
Also, in some states, children followed in their parents' footsteps and worked in the mines and quarries where the pay, again, wasn't that bad.
Technology has in many ways become a bad thing.
A lot of high schoolers who can't find decent paying jobs because computers or robots do them now find themselves with no other choice but to go to school to put off the inevitable - working at McDonalds.
Sad but true.
#875670 Mar 18, 2013
Yes...very true, it is not easy for the young people.
Skill Skill SKILLS.....You have to have skill to compete.
The robot replaces the unskilled worker, but not the skilled worker.
#875671 Mar 18, 2013
It where you gotta sit to drive decarp.
#875672 Mar 18, 2013
For my pretend namesake's benefit (I refuse to respond to him directly):
Virtually all modern scholars of antiquity agree that Jesus existed and biblical scholars and classical historians regard theories of his non-existence as effectively refuted.
Look it up.
#875673 Mar 18, 2013
Um.... I'm afraid that's not quite right, dear. Even the Jews were of the opinion that among the hoard of Jesus' in Palestine at that time, none were prophets, none were the sons of Gods. The Jews only changed their tune when they found out there was a buck to be made in it. Need I point out dear that you just flopped out yet another "judgement" to squirm and jerk uncomfortably on the floor.
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