Tuesday, February 17, 2009


One of the stranger aspects of the U.S. psyche is the tendency for Americans to fawn over and defend the actions of their presidents more specifically liberals who defend the actions of their Democratic presidents and conservatives who defend the actions of their Republican presidents. Out of this strange phenomenon myths arise concerning the true nature of our leaders. Abraham Lincoln is considered by many to be our greatest leader who fought the good fight to free blacks. However Lincoln never intended black Americans to be on an equal footing with whites and was likely a racist himself. Consider the following quotes.

"If all earthly power were given me," said Lincoln in a speech delivered in Peoria, Illinois, on October 16, 1854, "I should not know what to do, as to the existing institution [of slavery]. My first impulse would be to free all the slaves, and send them to Liberia, to their own native land." After acknowledging that this plan's "sudden execution is impossible," he asked whether freed blacks should be made "politically and socially our equals?" "My own feelings will not admit of this," he said, "and [even] if mine would, we well know that those of the great mass of white people will not ... We can not, then, make them equals."

And this.

There is a natural disgust in the minds of nearly all white people to the idea of indiscriminate amalgamation of the white and black races ... A separation of the races is the only perfect preventive of amalgamation, but as an immediate separation is impossible, the next best thing is to keep them apart where they are not already together. If white and black people never get together in Kansas, they will never mix blood in Kansas ...

In fact Lincoln wanted to expel blacks from U.S. soil.

Let us be brought to believe it is morally right, and, at the same time, favorable to, or, at least, not against, our interest, to transfer the African to his native clime, and we shall find a way to do it, however great the task may be.

Obviously there is the myth and then there is the man.

I believe that it is equally obvious that many liberals will willingly defend Obama no matter what he does. Some say that it does no good to criticize Obama but I do not accept that as a valid view. Obama has surrounded himself with a collection of warmongers and has kept the same group of people in power that brought about what appears to be another great depression, the same people who donated ten million dollars to his election, and left them in charge of “fixing” the economy.

Mike Whitney writes…


Most of the economists say one thing while the bankers say the exact opposite. It's no surprise; they want to save their own skin. But bailing out the banks again is not in the public interest.

Most of the bad paper and non-performing loans appear to be concentrated in the very largest banks. By some estimates Citigroup, Bank of America, JP Morgan-Chase and Wells Fargo are holding two-thirds of all the toxic mortgage-backed paper. Therein lies the problem. These banking Goliaths have powerful constituencies and substantial political power. Keep in mind, the Obama campaign received over $10 million in contributions from Wall Street, the largest contributors by far. This suggests that Timothy Geithner is point-man for the banksters and his job is to fend off nationalization. Geithner admitted as much on Tuesday in an interview with Brian Williams when he said that he intended to "keep the system in private hands". If that's the case, then the taxpayer better get ready for a real shellacking, because it will take many trillions to keep these dinosaurs from extinction.

And this.

The problem goes well beyond the failed banks. The issue can't be resolved because important clients of the banking lobby have a stranglehold on the Dept of Treasury and are sabotaging the rescue operation. In fact, it's looking more and more like Obama's election was part of a quid pro quo to ensure that Geithner, Summers and the other "big bank" loyalists would continue to control the levers of political power during the stormy years ahead, otherwise they would do what is necessary and and shut them down now.

People have been wondering if Obama would conduct investigations into the illegal activities of the previous administration and as it turns out we find Obama defending the very crimes that some had hoped he would investigate.


Despite President Obama's vow to open government more than ever, the Justice Department is defending Bush administration decisions to keep secret many documents about domestic wiretapping, data collection on travelers and U.S. citizens, and interrogation of suspected terrorists.

In half a dozen lawsuits, Justice lawyers have opposed formal motions or spurned out-of-court offers to delay court action until the new administration rewrites Freedom of Information Act guidelines and decides whether the new rules might allow the public to see more.

In only one case has the Justice Department agreed to suspend a FOIA lawsuit until the disputed documents can be re-evaluated under the yet-to-be-written guidelines. That case involves negotiations on an anti-counterfeiting treaty, not the more controversial, secret anti-terrorism tactics that spawned the other lawsuits as well as Obama's promises of greater openness.

"The signs in the last few days are not entirely encouraging," said Jameel Jaffer, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, which filed several lawsuits seeking the Bush administration's legal rationales for warrantless domestic wiretapping and for its treatment of terrorism detainees.

The documents sought in these lawsuits "are in many cases the documents that the public most needs to see," Jaffer said. "It makes no sense to say that these documents are somehow exempt from President Obama's directives."

Groups that advocate open government, civil liberties and privacy were overjoyed that Obama on his first day in office reversed the FOIA policy imposed by Bush's first attorney general, John Ashcroft. The Bush Justice Department said it would use any legitimate legal basis to defend withholding records from the public. Obama pledged "an unprecedented level of openness in government" and ordered new FOIA guidelines written with a "presumption in favor of disclosure."

But Justice's actions in courts since then have cast doubt on how far the new administration will go.

On and on it goes and with each passing day we find very little change on some of the most pressing and important issues of the day. It seems quite clear that Obama has inherited many of the grossly unjust and illegal powers that Bush claimed during his time in office and fully intends to keep them intact. Obama continues to lie about Iran with the same scare tactics used by the Bush administration with claims he and Panetta -- the new CIA chief -- make regarding Iran’s supposed pursuit of WMD. These are the same scare tactics used to lead the U.S. into war with Iraq and now we see them being used to possibly lead us to war with Iran. Obama continues to use drone attacks against people on the Pakistan border and though the news media has now seen fit to remain silent on just who is being killed I believe it goes without saying that many of the murdered are civilians. Indeed Obama had blood dripping from his hands in the first week of his term, the blood of innocent children. Yet still people insist we should remain silent, after all, Obama is a Democrat, as if being a Democrat is a panacea for all things evil.

Rather than remaining silent I think it is time Americans grew up and did away with the need to have another person take the place of momma and poppa on into our adulthood. Now is the time to speak out rather than walking about in a daze amazed like so many idiots by a two faced liar like Obama. It may well be that there is little we can do against the powers arrayed against us in the form of the wealthy banksters, and their lackeys who represent them in the government who control the judicial processes, the police, and the military. But I do not intend to go gentle into that good night.

Just one other point I would like to make and that is that yes there are powers that are influencing Obama, to deny that would be idiotic. Yet it is a falsehood to believe that Obama is not a willing participant and believer in everything those powers stand for. Obama is one of them and is so by choice. I think that is an important distinction to make which belies the view that Obama is a victim. We are the victims and the people in far-flung lands who are being murdered even as I write this are victims, not Obam


At February 17, 2009 5:47 PM, Blogger Jonathan Versen said...

Sometimes if a leader does the right thing for the wrong reason its good enough-- even though I readily agree that we shouldn't preoccupy ourselves with all that creepy deification that many people seem to need in order to support a politician's behavior.

For example, if I harp on George W. Bush and a weary listener asks me, "well, don't you think he did anything right?" then if I'm honest I have to answer that I was relieved he didn't bomb Iran on behalf of Israel the way Cheney wanted him to.

This doesn't suddenly erase all the deaths he was responsible for, all the destruction, all the bad choices. It just needs to be noted, matter-of-factly.

Likewise, it's helpful to see all our leaders in the fullest view possible, contradictions and all, and worry more about assessing their actions and policies rather than their immortal souls. Their souls aren't supposed to be in our purview anyway, if what they taught me in Catholic school so many years ago is true.

At February 17, 2009 7:54 PM, Blogger rob payne said...


Though I might add that if a leader does something right it is usually an accident.

At February 18, 2009 5:49 PM, Blogger Jonathan Versen said...

Also agreed. I'd add that generally, a leader does the right thing only when his other options have been rendered politically non-viable-- i.e., when he no longer has any other choice!

anyway, happy house hunting.


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