I have been Barack Obama’s biggest fan and supporter. I worked for his election. I voted for him. I convinced other people to vote for him. I listened to his vision in his oratory, and found in him the promise of delivery from eight years of unethical, and even criminal, behavior by the Bush administration. Barack said clearly to us, that the war was wrong, that Guantanamo was wrong, that the intelligence community was bad, that our health care system was awful, that we were giving too much to major corporations and not enough to the average citizen, that we needed to repair the environment, that immigration must be fixed, and so on, and so on.
Brother Barack has now been in office for over 200 days, 2/3 of a year, about 15% of his first term. He has an incredibly wide margin of fellow Democrats in the House. He has an amazing 60 votes in the Senate. The people voted heavily to give him the largest mandate in years, based upon his intelligence, his promises, and his oratory skills. What do we have to show for our votes so far?
Barack has left our troops in Iraq and still has not defined an exit strategy. He has said that rather than bring troops home, he is going to commit more troops and money to a theater of war where he said we didn’t belong and from which he promised to extricate us. Along the way, he has continued to waste lives and money exactly as Bush and Cheney did, with no end in sight.
Guantanamo is still open and is still full of prisoners who are still being treated like animals.
He continues to export intelligence detainees to countries where they will be tortured. He has not rescinded, in any meaningful way, any of the more odious citizen rights abuses of the Bush administration, and has in fact spent much time defending those practices in court.
He has allowed health care to be tied up in committee and let health care policy be dictated by the health care, insurance, and pharmaceutical industries. He has spent the last two weeks preparing us for a watered down health care bill, likely to be little better than nothing.
He has presided over two wars that funnel most of their cost to the defense establishment, made up of private companies. He has spent billions more bailing out huge companies that have proven themselves ignorant of the most basic laws of business; banks, insurance companies, auto manufacturers, and every other type of corporate loser that would ask for money. Most of that money has gone into the pockets of the unethical and greedy people that ran those companies into the ground. Meanwhile, the rest of us have gotten nothing but deeper in public debt. Bush did his best to bankrupt the United States. Obama seems determined to finish the job.
Gasoline prices have risen steadily so far during the tenure of the Obama administration, once again making the rich richer, and obeying the dictates of an industry lobby. When given an opportunity to let the big three makers of the cars that spawned the oil glut, he instead gave them billions of dollars rather than investing those dollars in the renewable energy sources he championed during his campaign.
He has just announced that he can’t be bothered to deal with those pesky immigration problems for at least another year, thus continuing a system under which millions of people on both sides of the equation continue to suffer.
In short, Barack Obama promised us much. He promised that he would undo the ills of the previous eight years and make all of our lives better along the way.
So far he has talked a big game and done nothing. No, that is not true. He has for all intents and purposes continued the policies of the previous administration, only more so. We may as well have elected Jeb to office to continue the George’s efforts. Look around yourself. Try to find something big, meaningful, and positive with which to credit our “new” president.
It was my intent to elect the most honorable man (or woman) in the race. It was my intent to bring this country back on course, to take control of the United States away from the corporations, rich white men, and lobbyists who now own it. Instead, we have gotten most of a year of more of the same. More of the same is what I was working against when I helped elect Barack Obama to the office of President. I voted for the change he promised. What change? Where is it? There has been no change. If anything, the problems have accelerated. Change, my ass.
And speaking of asses, Mr. Obama needs to get off his and do something. It’s wonderful to think about fixing things. It’s grand to talk about fixing things. But all of that is no good if all you do is think and talk. You actually need to do something, to take action. If you campaign on the promise of change, and are then unwilling to change anything, and if you have any ethics, you need to admit that you have a problem with fulfilling promises and move over in favor of someone, anyone, who will not simply preside over business as usual. We need somebody with some nuts to fix this mess we call a country.
WTF, Barack. Either do something or get the hell out of the way. Now would be good.