The Transparent Man
Though Obama has done exactly what he said he would do regarding how he would conduct the imperial agenda from presidential signing statements to transparency in government Obama has reversed his position time and again. First consider the following from Obama’s website.
My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government. We will work together to ensure the public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration. Openness will strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government.
The above sounds great yet consider Obama’s reversal on the issue of releasing photos of torture -- a result of a suit brought by the ACLU -- by the U.S. on the grounds that the photos would endanger U.S. troops the more likely reason being that the photos are proof of torture being more widespread than previously acknowledged.
President Obama’s administration – specifically the office of the Solicitor General, Elena Kagan – this afternoon formally requested that the U.S. Supreme Court block the release of photos showing detainee abuse. The brief calls the behavior depicted in the photographs “reprehensible,” yet argues the court of appeals ruling ordering the release of the photographs made an improper judgment regarding the exemption allowed to the Freedom of Information Act, when the release of certain information would put certain individuals in danger.
The reference to certain individuals of course is that Obama maintains that release of the photos would endanger the troops. Well, one can always find a good reason for doing the wrong thing and I guess strengthening democracy can always be put off till another day. Can’t you sense that commitment to transparency in government at an unprecedented level? I can’t either, oh well.
Then there are those signing statements – basically a presidential “fuck you” to Congress -- that Obama denounced during his campaign.
In the presidential campaign, Mr. Obama called Mr. Bush’s use of signing statements an “abuse,” and said he would issue them with greater restraint. The Obama administration says the signing statements the president has signed so far, challenging portions of five bills, have been based on mainstream interpretations of the Constitution and echo reservations routinely expressed by presidents of both parties.
Still, since taking office, Mr. Obama has relaxed his criteria for what kinds of signing statements are appropriate. And last month several leading Democrats — including Representatives Barney Frank of Massachusetts and David R. Obey of Wisconsin — sent a letter to Mr. Obama complaining about one of his signing statements.
“During the previous administration, all of us were critical of the president’s assertion that he could pick and choose which aspects of Congressional statutes he was required to enforce,” they wrote. “We were therefore chagrined to see you appear to express a similar attitude.”
So where is this transparency in the use of signing statements the purpose of which is to eliminate legislation done in the open thus allowing a president to grab more power with the flourish of a pen?
From W. Bush to Obama it has been one smooth and seamless continuity and though I am impressed with Obama’s heart-felt concern for the well being of the troopers if he was really that concerned he could always withdraw them from Iraq and Afghanistan removing them from “harm's way”.
The only thing transparent about Obama is that it had been obvious from the first exactly what Obama is and represents. All you had to do was read a few of his speeches to have seen what Obama is --the status quo. The only thing that might be surprising is he has been unwilling to take a stand on any controversial issue what-so-ever. You would think that with all the noise accompanying his rise to power he would at least have one issue he believed in. Apparently Obama doesn’t really believe in anything. Obama is the Transparent Man.