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Tuesday, August 10


Sorry for the cut and paste but the article below from Americablog sums up the frustration with Obama by those who have their eyes open.

Then take a look at the end of the Internet as we know it here, for those who can afford it. Again, a major decision based on a fleeting, campaign promise is in the hands of a timid president. Will he do the right thing and make the FCC reject the Google/Verizon Pact or will he "compromise", let the public get screwed and then triumphantly announce, "Yes, it'll cost you more, but at least I saved the internet for you who can afford it! And, it was the best we could do for you."

One last item. With all the bufarb coming down from the Republican's hypocrisy about nearly everything they do and have done, the American People, with the lack of help of the Main Stream Media, believe:
IOTBAHIYAAR-BNAD (New acronym - It's ok to be a hypocrite if you are a Republican - But not a Democrat!)

Gibbs: People who are upset with Obama don't live in real America, didn't help get Obama elected

From the Hill:
Gibbs said the professional left is not representative of the progressives who organized, campaigned, raised money and ultimately voted for Obama.

Progressives, Gibbs said, are the liberals outside of Washington “in America,” and they are grateful for what Obama has accomplished in a shattered economy with uniform Republican opposition and a short amount of time.
Let's put aside for a moment Gibb's adoption of a really nasty, and un-American, Sarah Palin talking point in order to smear the Democratic base (has it really come that?). (And heck, even Palin apologized for using that smear.) Let's look instead at the substance of the smear. Gibbs is now claiming, on behalf of the White House, that anyone who is upset with the way President Obama is handling his job clearly did not organize, campaign, or raise money for candidate Obama back in 2008.

Really? That's the latest White House response to Obama voters who are sincerely concerned about the direction this White House is taking on so many issues. To smear everyone and suggest that they didn't lift a finger to get the President elected? Seriously?

Joe and I are upset with Obama, and we, for example, raised nearly $43,000 for the man, According to the White House, our money now doesn't count. Great, would they like to give it back? I for one, would love the $1000 back that I personally donated to the Obama campaign. Joe gave even more. I suspect a lot of our readers wouldn't mind their contributions back too, since apparently they're not appreciated.

Then there's all that work we did for the campaign, all the dirty work they asked us to do - and we did it, gladly, and quietly - none of that counted either, apparently.

This interview with White House spokesman Robert Gibbs is really quite remarkable. Not in its substance - President Obama's staff smears the Democratic base, and our issues, on a regular basis. No, what's remarkable is that a senior White House official has finally gone on the record in order to smear the Democratic base. That's unprecedented. It also puts to the rest the White House's prior defense, whenever a senior unnamed official went after the base, of claiming it was a rogue employee who didn't represent the President. Gibbs clearly does.

More from Gibbs:
The press secretary dismissed the “professional left” in terms very similar to those used by their opponents on the ideological right, saying, “They will be satisfied when we have Canadian healthcare and we’ve eliminated the Pentagon. That’s not reality.”

Of those who complain that Obama caved to centrists on issues such as healthcare reform, Gibbs said: “They wouldn’t be satisfied if Dennis Kucinich was president.”
One hopes that Gibbs doesn't truly believe this, otherwise the White House really is in trouble. The left isn't upset with the President because we're just too darned demanding. We're upset with Barack Obama because he never seems to try. He talks a good talk, but when it comes time to actually follow through on his promises, he winces.

Take health care reform. The President was AWOL for a good year while health care reform floundered in the Congress. Rather than get his hands dirty, and spend some political capital actually pushing for what he promised - a public option, which Barack Obama himself had repeatedly said was the best way to increase competition and lower prices - the President, other than a few speeches here and there, disappeared for a year. Finally, when it looked like everything was doomed, Obama got involved, at the very end, and we got a bill that did some nice things, but not nearly as much as he'd promised, and not nearly as much as would have been possible had Obama engaged a year earlier.

And that's the crux of the criticism. Obama supporters are not upset with President Obama because the supporters' own expectations are unrealistically high. We're upset with Obama because we believed his promises, and we thought he'd actually fight for them. Better to have loved and lost, as they say. But if you're not even willing to try, then what's the point?

It's not a transformative presidency when you flinch in the face of every challenge.

Gibbs talks about how difficult it is for the White House to get anything done in the face of a uniform Republican opposition. Except, of course, the GOP wasn't uniform at all in February of 2009, when the White House caved on the stimulus and showed its true colors to the Republican party. If anything, this White House helped unify the Republicans by constantly, and unnecessarily, pandering to them at every turn.

Let's talk about the stimulus. The reason we're suffering from 10% unemployment, with no improvement on the horizon, is because someone at the White House thought it was politically too difficult to ask for the "real" amount that was needed to stimulate the economy and save the country from another Great Depression. So rather than go to the country, and tell the American people what medicine was needed, the President flinched in order to avoid a fight. And then he flinched again, and gave 35% of the already-too-small stimulus away to the GOP in the form of near-useless tax cuts.

And what did the President's approach of negotiating with himself get us? 10% unemployment, approval ratings in the 40s, and the imminent loss of the House. And it's not like this wasn't predicted. Both Stiglitz and Krugman told everyone they could that the stimulus was far too small. But this White House doesn't do liberals. So Stiglitz and Krugman were shoved aside, and a true economic recovery went out the door with them. How smart a move was that?

Let me reiterate. The country was on the verge of economic collapse. We were on the verge of another Great Depression. And rather than fight for the correct amount of medicine that was needed to save our nation, this President decided to opt for less than what was needed to save our nation. And he didn't opt for less at the end of the negotiation, after pushing really hard for the full amount. He opted for less at the beginning, because he didn't want to fight for it. Which is his usual pattern. Cave first, negotiate later, then act surprised when people are upset when the final agreement is so weak, and accuse them of being politically naive and unrealistic.

Who was the only person in the White House to even vaguely understand that we needed a bigger stimulus? Christine Romer. And what's her reward for being right? She's leaving.

Tell us again why we should be proud?

Then there's this:
He’s also added diversity to the Supreme Court by nominating two female justices, including the court’s first Hispanic. Yet some liberal groups have criticized his nominees for not being liberal enough.
Clarence Thomas added diversity to the Supreme Court too. The substance of the nominees' beliefs really don't matter? And yes, of course Kagan and Sotomayor are better than Clarence Thomas. But we didn't vote for Barack Obama to be simply "better than the worst Republicans." That's a rather sorry goal for any president, let alone one who promised he was different. One who promised real "change."

This comment, about the Supreme Court diversity, is illustrative of a larger problem this White House has. They tend to prefer symbolism over substance. Better to appoint a woman to the court than someone who would actually advance the President's worldview (if he has one). Or here's an idea - how about appoint a Latina, or any other woman, who would be a fierce advocate for progressive ideals? No, to this White House it's better to pass a bill that's called "health care reform" than to actually fight for the details of such a bill from the git-go. And better to pass legislation that everyone thinks repeals "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," when it does no such thing, than to actually fight for an actual repeal of the discriminatory law. That might upset one of the President's employees, the Secretary of Defense, and we can't have that when the overarching goal of the administration is to ensure that there is never any drama, regardless of what they have to give up in return.

It's always better to compromise than to fight. It's always better to win on paper than to win in practice.

That's why people are ticked at the President. Not because they're naive. But rather, because they actually believed he would at least try to do what he promised.

Finally, there's this:
Larry Berman, an expert on the presidency and a political science professor at the University of California-Davis, said he has been surprised that liberals aren’t more cognizant of the pragmatism Obama has had to employ to pass landmark reforms.

“The irony, of course, is that Gibbs’s frustration reflects the fact that the conservative opposition has been so effective at undermining the president’s popular approval,” Berman said.

“And from Gibbs’s perspective, and the White House perspective, they ought to be able to catch a break from people who, in their view, should be grateful and appreciative.”
Yes, it's hard work being President.

As I mentioned before, one could argue that the reason the conservative opposition has been so effective is because the President has refused, from day one, to challenge the conservative opposition. The President always felt it was better to strive for bipartisanship than fight for what he promised, fight for what the country needed. In a very real way, this President emboldened conservatives and their opposition. They knew that if they yelled in his face, he'd feel compelled to compromise to make them feel better. Just look at the Joe "You lie!" Wilson fiasco. What was the response? The Senate committee changed the bill language to address Joe Wilson's concerns about immigration. How many votes did that get us? And why not use Wilson's outburst to paint the GOP as obstructionist, and out of touch with the country? Are we really to believe that the White House had no hand in this at all?

The saddest part of this certainly planned outburst from Gibbs is that it must reflect the President's own thinking. He actually believes that he's doing a swell job. He actually believes that his all-nighter, last-minute approach to policy-making has led to stunning successes. And he's so proud of his own success, that he feels comfortable telling other Democrats that they're not real Americans, and that their contributions to his campaign were meaningless.

Heck of away to energize the party three months before a pivotal election.

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