Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Linus Van Pelt of Politics

No problem is so big or so complicated that it can’t be run away from! Linus Van Pelt

Taylor Marsh states the depressingly obvious today:

Pres. Obama’s decision to keep the military commissions, while expanding the parameters of rights and procedures, in no way surprises me. Remember, Senator Obama actually voted for military commissions in 2006, which he mentioned in his statement yesterday.

Many others were surprised:

Some liberals and human rights groups said they were stunned by the announcement on Friday, with several calling it a betrayal.

Frankly, I find it stunning people are seemingly shocked that Obama continues to act in keeping with who he is.

Decision On Military Commissions Shouldn't Surprise

No doubt, those who are "seemingly shocked" are the same ones who were lecturing me during the primary about how Obama really did represent a new kind of politics, and that he wasn't as divisive as other candidates. I kept saying that actions speak louder than words, but no one was listening.

The fact is, Obama has spent a political career running from decisions and controversies. He's not going to change course now. Success doesn't prompt self-examination. Only failure does that, and Obama's been fabulously successful as an office-seeker.

It would be nice if they finally would take that lesson to heart, but I'm not holding my breath.


Dana Hunter said...

Yes, you were indeed right. I wish you'd been wrong. No such luck.

Damn it.

Next thing we know, he'll be cranking up the engines of torture and saying it's necessary, but it's kinder, gentler torture...

Still. He's not quite as bad as McCain, and sometimes we're able to whupp his ass back into line. Keep whupping.

Cujo359 said...

Note that there is a difference between choosing between the alternatives provided, and blind support for one of them. There were downsides to all the Democratic candidates in this primary. Picking and choosing differently than I did isn't what I take issue with. It's the blind belief that because Obama makes nice speeches and spent a bit of time as an activist that he's bound to be on our side that I saw so much of during the campaign that I find so upsetting.

I haven't asked her, but I suspect Taylor feels that way, too. Making a choice from among less than perfect alternatives is something we often have to do in politics.

For my part, it's only been recently that I've discovered why we should have expected him to be a creature of the banks and financial institutions. In retrospect, it's pretty obvious that he was a favorite of theirs, as well as the news, television news in particular. He will continue to cater to those institutions, not us, unless we can convince him that he needs us more than he needs them.