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Carol Rosenberg reports: "It was three months into Barack Obama's presidency, and the administration - under pressure to do something about alleged abuses in Bush-era interrogation policies - turned to a Florida senator to deliver a sensitive message to Spain: Don't indict former President George W. Bush's legal brain trust for alleged torture in the treatment of war on terror detainees, warned Mel Martinez on one of his frequent trips to Madrid. Doing so would chill US-Spanish relations."

President Barack Obama, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, meets with his Cabinet at the White House, 12/08/10. (photo: AP)
President Barack Obama, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, meets with his Cabinet at the White House, 12/08/10. (photo: AP)

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+37 # Archie1954 2010-12-28 11:50
No wonder, as Mr. assange states in his recent interview, Europeans are aghast at the US. This article evidences that America , besides being grossly hypocritical, doesn't believe in or follow the rule of law.
+12 # DaveW. 2010-12-28 16:14
Hypocritically exposed
George W. "brown nosed"
Obama's perfidy grows
Folks we been "hosed"

It's awful hard to cope
With double-dealing hope
I paid and now its strange
I'm still waiting for my "change"
+21 # James Anton 2010-12-28 12:05
Obama has betrayed everything we thought he would do; See:
+22 # Jorge 2010-12-28 12:49
Is President BO a member of the Carlyle Group (Bin Laden/Bush/MIC/ Big Oil cabal)?
Actions speak louder than words.
+10 # mkyoudelman 2010-12-28 14:51
Ii heard that Obama is definitely in with the Trilaterls (the Carlyle (cabal) just as Clinton was and I am sure still is. Did not make me too happy.
+29 # DB 2010-12-28 13:13
Obama is just Bush with a different marquee. Bush II, the Movie. Gitmo is still open for biz. Rich are still getting their tax cuts to invest in China and India while sticking the middle class for the bill. Medical care coverage is too damned expensive, and will continue to be so thanks to no public option Obamacare. Now this president is just as corrupt as Bush. I'm really "shocked." Say hello to the new boss same as the old boss...
+34 # AngryMan 2010-12-28 13:27
Is this "change we can believe in"? Is this the kind of "transparency" of which Obama spoke? And Obama has the gall the call out his base for being upset with his performance? Mr. President, like "W", you are a disingenuous liar. You're done.

Republicans have been despicable for decades. Democrats have now fully joined the party of egregious elites. Since my future vote will only help select which face facilitates the disassembly of my country, does it really matter which face is in the oval office? My vote can only be construed as favoring one liar over another. I can no longer endorse any.

Once again a comedy show (South Park) provides the most sensible observation on reality: "When your only choice is between a turd and a douche-bag, that is no choice at all." That is the state of our union. We have the "freedom" to choose between a turd and a douche-bag. Indeed, that is no choice whatsoever.

The United States is not merely sick, it is terminal. By my count we have but one representative of the people: Bernie Sanders. (Thank you Bernie).
+12 # pamelarich 2010-12-28 17:02
I feel sad that I couldn't agree more...
+23 # bin10 2010-12-28 14:04
It is becoming more and more apparent: the alleged lives at stake for WikiLeaks leaks are the same as those saying there will be lives at stake. It is the information war. Those holding on dearly to their credibility are losing it. And deservedly so. The secrecy network is dissolving, and in the end real lives will be saved.

Our administration has been such a disappointment, partly because the expectations were so much higher. The bottom line: we are likely slightly better off than with a Republican in office. Progress is always so disappointingly incremental.
+7 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 03:45
Progress? Obama? Did you say something about incremental progress? Such as...?
+24 # donna P 2010-12-28 14:08
LOL, a turd or a douche bag! Leave it to south park to put it simply! I am with you, I choose neither and will only vote locally and for a third party of substance, not holding my breath. The US is terminal, i can read it, hear it and witness US citizens freely giving up rights because its better for the country, BULL! What in the hell is the military fighting for because it certainly is not democracy!
+22 # Dick Huopana 2010-12-28 14:17
As I previously commented on this site after Obama caved and agreed to extend the absolutey unaffordable Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, he should be pressured to resign and get out of Washington. Carol Rosenberg's article exposing Obama's unwillingness to hold members and surrogates of the Bush administration accountable for their misconduct and crimes just reinforces my viewpoint. America's image as a role model for democracy has been badly damaged by the Bush and Obama administrations .
+11 # Dick Huopana 2010-12-28 16:04
I also feel that 2011 will likely be the year that the White House and Congress will finally be forced to acknowledge and responsibly deal with the seriousness of the government's deficit and debt issues. The scale of the overall problem and its consequences are already so great that it will test the political courage of the president and members of Congress perhaps as never before. And, Obama has demonstrated that he is not a strong enough leader for such a challenge.
+14 # The_Baron 2010-12-28 14:52
Obama has shown himself to be a typical spineless democrat!
+8 # Foxtrottango 2010-12-28 17:29
I am now saying he is more dangerous to the Democratic Party than the Blue Dogs were.

I feel now he should have never been president. He gave the Republican what they wanted, "A typical spineless democrat" if you allow me to follow your line.
+13 # DaveW. 2010-12-28 17:30
Actually, Obama has shown himself to be a typical American president. What U.S. President has brought "criminal" charges against his predecessor? The answer: None
We could only "hope" he'd be different because that's what he promised. We can only "change", once again, but I wouldn't expect a different result. Politically speaking...we'r e rotten to the core.
+11 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 03:51
Gotta' quibble just a bit Dave. No President has brought criminal charges against his predecessor...t rue enough. But no President had so heinous a criminal conspiracy as the Bush Administration preceding him. It's a small comfort that I perhaps naively hold on to, that a good number of our better Presidents would not have allowed Bush to have gone unpunished if it were they in the White House. For some reason, I still am inclined to believe that some Presidents had spine, though in our life time, few if any.
+14 # Dick Huopana 2010-12-29 08:37
What all we Americans should be ashamed of is the failure of our news media (national and local) AND OURSELVES to unite in outrage and demand accountability of Bush et al when it became clear they had launched a war based on a propaganda campaign of lies. That clarity probably began when our invading troops weren't subjected to any WMD by Iraqi defensive forces (probably because Iraqi troops couldn't find any either). BTW, since the war still persists, it's still timely for Americans to awaken and patriotically unite in behalf of those unnecessarily killed and maimed fighting the Bush war of lies and demand accountability for those responsible. And such a massive demand should be vigorously sustained right up until election day in 2012.
+10 # brianf 2010-12-29 09:49
You are absolutely right. We have never had an administration that broke so many laws, violated so many international conventions, violated the Constitution in so many ways, and committed so many war crimes. And in the recent past, when crimes were discovered during a presidency, at least some attempt was made to deal with them while they were still in office (Watergate, Iran Contra).

Although I think Obama is a good president in many ways, he was completely wrong on this issue, and it's an extremely important issue.
+6 # DaveW. 2010-12-29 14:02
Daniel, Allow me to "nibble at your quibble" if I may be so bold. I've written before that I believe that EVERY U.S.President takes TWO oaths. The show oath put on for the fawning public with all the requisite bunting along with the playing of "pomp and circumstance." And then, later, behind heavy doors and layers of cloaked proceedings, another oath is taken. "Protect, Expand and Maintain empire." If a U.S. President was to literally file charges against his predecessor it would bring into question EVERY action that predecessor had taken during his "reign." Every decision, foreign and domestic could, and might be called into question. Ramifications would be huge. Foreign leaders would say, "if he lied about this, what about that." That's why Nixon walked before they could get him on the stand. Then the government could claim "suspicions" without virtue of actual conviction. We'll NEVER see a sitting U.S. President take down another. Empire simply won't permit it. I do agree with you about the heinous nature of Bush Administration. I believe he and Cheney and fellow Neo-cons orchestrated 9/11. How much more heinous could an "American" President get?
+3 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 19:32
Aw gee Dave. I sure don't want to agree but I'm inclined to think you're right. Still though, Dave, at what point is an abusive regime subject to the law? What you propose, and I think you are probably right, is that the office of the President is essentially lawless by design. This supports my prior arguments that for justice to be done, it will take an outside military force to bring justice. My argument is that we are not militarily invincible at all. Even if the combined forces of many nations could not prevail, "they" are as capable of sending in roving hunter/killer squads on suicide missions to target offenders that deserve prosecution that we won't prosecute because "they're too big to fail", right? I propose we haven't even begun to get a taste of the terrorism to come if the world consensus evolves to where we are unilaterally seen as a rogue nation out to destroy and enslave everyone else...and we are precious close to that. By not enforcing our own laws on people in a position to threaten and terrorize the earth, as Bush has, we invite terrible consequences that will make 9/11, which I think was rigged, look very small indeed.
+4 # DaveW. 2010-12-29 21:02
Hell Dan I don't want to be right! I want to see the bastards hanging from the yardarm, their debased carcasses swinging in the wind. The crows feasting on their insidious, bloodshot eyeballs. Their limp and lifeless fingers curled up and their "hawkish, cowardly balls" sucked up tighter "than a bulls ass come fly time." I think you're right about the level of terrorism Americans will witness on our own soil in the future. I have kids here and it scares the hell out of me. Roving hunter/killer squads? Maybe. But as we both are painfully aware of, laws have NEVER been applied equally. Anywhere. Isn't God supposed to do that? I'm waiting for a sign.
+2 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 23:44
Me too DaveW. My faith is really starting to Quake...if you catch my drift!
+3 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 03:48
Quoting The_Baron:
Obama has shown himself to be a typical spineless democrat!

Typical? To a degree perhaps, but I really do think he's outdone the usual concept of spineless by far.
+11 # minkdumink 2010-12-28 15:38
how anyone can still think there is a difference between the dems and the republicans is beyond me.
+4 # Steve S 2010-12-29 06:20
You must be kidding, equating Democrats and Republicans.

The Democrats make campaign promises to protect the regular people from the rich and powerful, and usually fail, sometimes due to Republican obstructionism, sometimes due to simply wimping out.

The Republicans, by contrast, promise to protect the rich and powerful from regular people, and usually fail because at least some of the Democrats are standing up for regular people. For example, President Obama -- so frequently maligned in RSN comments lately -- vetoed the "Interstate Recognition of Notarizations Act", rescuing the public from a sneaky law written by the banking industry.

Sure, it's lame that the Democrats promised us a hundred good things and delivered maybe a dozen. But isn't that a whole lot better than the Republicans, who promised several hundred bad things, and might have delivered a few dozen? Promising much good and delivering little is a whole lot better than promising much evil and delivering little.
+8 # Glen 2010-12-29 08:32
If you have noticed, Steve, your two lists balance out and negate the other, between repub and democrat. The only difference, as I have said repeatedly, is the style in which they govern. The basis for their office is maintaining the system built by elites, and ever growing corporate influence and the military. The system is being threatened by diminishing resources worldwide so therefore there will be increased aggressiveness at the expense of citizens.

Other posters have stated that case nicely in their comments, such as Jayne Milner. Many do know we are not living the "American Dream" or in a true democracy.
+1 # genierae 2010-12-29 09:56
Steve S: It was reported on MSNBC the other day that Obama has now delivered on 80+ percent of his campaign promises.

I agree the Dems are much preferable to Repubs, who are pure evil in their intention to destroy our social support networks. Half a loaf is indeed better than none. Anyone who thinks that both parties are the same, needs to pay close attention to the actions of Repubs for the next two years, and also check out who is trying to stop their dirty deeds.
+6 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 14:27
I disagree Steve S and here's why. The net effect turns out being the same. Any paltry good done by the Democrats is quickly worn away. Yes, they do slow the race to the bottom, but we are headed to the bottom none the less. So the Democrats do some paltry good here and there. So what. When Medicare is dead, Social Security is history and we're all subsisting on the crumbs from the tables of the wealthy, what stinking difference will it possibly make that Obama vetoed the Interstate Recognition of Notarizations Act? The banking industry will drive trucks through loop holes on that veto too and the Democrats will do nothing, as usual.
Amazingly, the Democrats would only have to succeed on three or four particular objectives to absolutely change everything. They could have built a dynasty on very little indeed...that would have carried a huge whallop but no, they did not and will not and for that, their half assed, highly compromised successes mean very little to most of us.
I will never vote for Obama even if it means the descent to the bottom speeds up. I thank massive suffering will be what it takes to mobilize the people.
+2 # othermother 2010-12-31 04:34
The suffering is already massive. Around whom, or what, do you suggest the electorate should mobilize? Unfocussed rage has given us the Teabaggers.
+1 # Daniel Fletcher 2011-01-01 00:15
Quoting othermother:
The suffering is already massive. Around whom, or what, do you suggest the electorate should mobilize? Unfocussed rage has given us the Teabaggers.

Are you serious? Respectfully asked I assure you. I am even willing to add a component to my graduate school thesis that will answer exactly this question. It is a complex one othermother. I have to tell you from my travels and living in third world setting, Americans as a rule don't have a clue what real suffering is. There is relative suffering and then there is absolute suffering. We do have both, but not even close to our own neighbors to the south. I have pondered for some time issues as you ask about and have a professional interest in community development, grassroots organizing and so forth. And I believe that a nascent revolution is lying just beneath the surface. Unfocussed rage?'d better believe it! But unfocussed? Nothing could be further from the truth.
+2 # othermother 2011-01-01 05:01
I will be interested to see the additional component to your thesis. I suspect there are multiple foci and that different communities will have to identify what they have in common. Otherwise politics will be reduced to the Wall Street picket sign that read 'Jump, you bastards'.
+3 # Daniel Fletcher 2011-01-01 16:21
When done I'll post it online somewhere and let you know if you'd like. As you know, such research takes an uncomfortable amount of time and I am early in my work but it will be published before the 2012 elections. At this juncture it is important to identify what different communities have in common and what fascinates me is the utter abundance of these commonalities. There is a universal neglect going on that already appears in scholarly journals. The pathologies of modern life are quite clear but what deserves clarification is the political roots of these pathologies and the broad effect this has on all classes of American life. There ARE remedies but the question remains: will there be a will to act? I think it's in the best interests of even the elites to reform themselves every bit as much as the dysfunctional masses also need to reform. We have a way of life that is destroying us all and the academic goal is to clarify, educate and to offer pragmatic remedial recommendations . No solutions at the ruination of any community will work as all this does is feed cycles of despair that are destructive to everyone.
+2 # othermother 2011-01-02 17:36
I look forward to seeing it when it appears.
+2 # Allison 2010-12-31 09:49
Thank you for expressing common sense.

I concur fully. When Democrats make promises they are becuase they believe they can fulfill them. But when blocked by greed motivated Republicans (funded by big business) whose tactics have been fine tuned by their experience in business (sucker punch marketing, etc), they are overwhelmed.

Republicans simply employ the same cut-throat business tactics in politics that they do in their "work" life. It's all about greed, power, control, subjugation.

[quote name="Steve S"]You must be kidding, equating Democrats and Republicans.

The Democrats make campaign promises to protect the regular people from the rich and powerful, and usually fail, sometimes due to Republican obstructionism, sometimes due to simply wimping out.
+21 # tomo 2010-12-28 16:57
This article on the effort to dissuade Spain's courts from investigating Bush/Cheney operatives Alberto Gonzalez, David Addington, Doug Feith, and John Yoo (now teaching students at Cal-Berkeley how to ignore the Constitution)-- tells us a great deal about Barack Obama. In February, 2009, Obama told us he preferred "looking forward" to looking backwards. Truth is, he WAS diligently looking backwards, doing all he could to cover the tracks of these lawyers who belonged to the government Obama had promised to reform. One knows why Obama is so concerned to destroy Bradley Manning and Julian Assange. They are blowing his cover. If some have doubted whether Manning should be regarded as a political prisoner, they need doubt no more.
+3 # AML 2010-12-28 18:17
Trouble is, it is not up to Obama. It is a fact, and not a "preference". Should have been the red flag...
+15 # Jim Seelig 2010-12-28 17:30
the corporate elite choose two mickey mouse

candidates every four years for "president"

for us to pick the one that is least horrid
+16 # Jayne Milner 2010-12-28 20:59
Yes The corporate elite insiders pre-select candidates. They have done this for years. A Howard Dean or Dennis Kucinich has no chance. So your only real hope is that one of their pre-selected candidates will come off the leash after winning. That's what happened back in 1960. Kennedy and Nixon - both pro-corporate cold warrior militarists. The elite insiders were good with either. Kennedy got in there - but after witnessing the scale of corruption bolted. He said he was going to tear the CIA into pieces and throw the pieces into the wind. He fired the Director of the CIA Allen Dulles, made moves to shut down the Vietnam War, etc. Next thing I knew Kennedy was in a casket and Dulles was sitting on the Warren Commission. So I guess they not only select which candidates you can vote for - they also have contingency plans in case a successful candidate quits following orders.
+6 # tomo 2010-12-28 21:58
Jayne: If you haven't read James Douglass's JFK and the Unspeakable, you must. He does a wonderful job--particular ly in his careful study of the official records on Oswald--of fleshing out what you say here.
-2 # genierae 2010-12-29 10:03
Jayne Milner, I think that you did a good job of illustrating the atmosphere that Barack Obama is currently living in. With his family. It is a dangerous business in this plutocracy, which has gotten much stronger since the Kennedy days, to be a liberal president. Plus, a black one. We do not know what is going on behind the scenes, and so we should not judge Obama until we get all the facts.
+4 # gabriel Lori 2010-12-28 21:54
king Obama of hawaii is the new king of the world!!He will do what it takes to keep the american empire from colapsing and will give the people just enough to keep going, their will be no great society programs or to make social security better or to reduce the age of retirement? Politicians will be as crooked as ever by accepting bribes from corporations to bury employees and to work to the detriment of the working class and the middle income people! Taxes on your home will go up and up!! These banking criminals are a necesary evil and to big to fail?? ha what a joke, all the wall street bonuses and money that went up in smoke! How many people lost their retirements thru bankruptcies and stock losess...Wall st.robbed main st>>>Deppresion 101..and folks stay tuned as their is more to come?? War, poverty, losess and bankruptcies... more lies?? King Obama will shift to the right like Clinton did!1 Funny how history repeats itself?? Get ready for more thrills and spills at the mouse trapp amusement park?? Or the game of life??? Good luck everyone!!
+2 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 03:56
Our future heroes may very well be what we would call anarchists today. Since organized resistance seems so futile, maybe a rising tide of anarchists will move us to rise up.
+7 # Glen 2010-12-29 07:56
Daniel, you may get your wish of rebellion if gas prices go up as much as predicted. Our discussions concerning what will push folks to rebel may be that very thing, and not the corruption.
-2 # bj parker 2010-12-29 09:28
The anti Obamah campaign roars on. Lies,lies,lies.
+5 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 14:33
Quoting bj parker:
The anti Obamah campaign roars on. Lies,lies,lies.

Oh really? What ever do you mean? Let's be honest here. Obama has delivered on 80% of his highly compromised, diluted fashions which can be easily enough circumvented in ways that nullify their benefit. The 20% he hasn't delivered on were possibly the most important. And what he assured he would never do...bring justice to the prior administration or by Executive Order, overturn some of the most egregious of Bush's policies, condemns him completely.
So what lies were you refering to, exactly? I'd actually like to know since I know of none off hand.
-5 # othermother 2010-12-30 17:06
You're always being honest, Daniel, but you're not the only honest person around. And cut the crap with percentages that masquerade as facts.

Delivering on promises in highly compromised form doesn't make Obama a villain, but a disappointment. Could it have anything to do with his lack of seniority in the Senate before he took on the presidency? The feeble compromises make the formerly democrat- controlled House and Senate villains for not passing the programs he put before them in good faith.

Moderate republicans have disappeared and been replaced by rethuglicans, so there's next to nothing to hope for from them except that they may disgrace themselves so badly as to lose in 2012.

We now have a grim time ahead. I see little to be gained from Obama-bashing.
+2 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-31 00:07
I wouldn't claim to be the only honest person around under any circumstance. The percentages aren't mine actually but what I picked up from another poster and I'd agree that they are cheesey at best. So indeed, let's stick to facts. I have no quarrel that the formerly democrat-contro lled House and Senate are villains for not passing the programs he put before them in good faith. But do you even take into consideration the content of the programs he put before them? Were they not compromised from the get go? But let's assume he was giving the best he thought he could have gotten passed and what he offered was a disappointment, not because they were lousy programs but that he knew the House and Congress were going to fail him. In this case, why did he not publicly call them out, seize the bully pulpit and, for God's sake, lead and not follow an inept House and Congress? As for villainy, his war record and his failure to use Executive Orders to get worthy things done, a function completely bypassing the House and Congress, he failed miserably to use. This speaks for itself. He could have and rallied the country around him. I'm not bashing Obama. I'm clarifying how he bashed himself.
+2 # othermother 2011-01-01 05:14
Thanks for clarifying your position. If his failure to act was an error of judgment, he might learn. If it's simply lack of spine, he's not likely to discover one now that conditions in the legislative branch are worse--unless he abandons hope of being a two-term president and decides to give this term his best shot.
+3 # Daniel Fletcher 2011-01-01 16:26
Quoting othermother:
Thanks for clarifying your position. If his failure to act was an error of judgment, he might learn. If it's simply lack of spine, he's not likely to discover one now that conditions in the legislative branch are worse--unless he abandons hope of being a two-term president and decides to give this term his best shot.

If he actually did this, his presidency could turn out being remarkable and admirable. If he puts principle above running again he may very well become a positive game changer. If he focuses on using the power of Executive Order well and dedicates himself to championing the people instead of the elites...if he reclaims the moral high ground regardless of career cost, he will energize a base that will be eager to continue the fight...a base that will empower a progressive successor.
+4 # gerry K 2010-12-29 01:42
what do you expect from a wall street corporate whore???? this drives me beyond red hot rage.... I've turned to ice..... I feel many doing the same. this can't go on much longer....
+4 # othermother 2010-12-29 03:16
It's good to have this article and to know where they all are now. It's no surprise that the US used a non-diplomat to try to influence the Spanish judiciary. It's of a piece with using mercenaries to continue wars the electorate has voted against. Obama as betrayer is less depressing than Obama the president who doesn't count because the corrupt machinery of unofficial government is too powerful to be budged by elections.
+7 # kalpal 2010-12-29 05:59
So long as this nation permits and encourages privately funded electoral campaigns the country will remain in thrall to the wealthy who buy legislators and legislation which insures their wishes become the people's commands.

Any attempt by the Democrats to investigate the Bush administration would have created a firestorm that would have rivaled the big bang. No conservatives would brook any action akin to what they did to Bill Clinton.

We may believe that this is a nation created by the people, of the people and for the people but there is scant evidence that anyone in the right wing believes and supports such silliness.

This nation exists for the benefit of our royalty, the wealthy, and not for the the average voter. Or as the SCOTUS puts it, no money = no voice.
-10 # LawrenceEfana 2010-12-29 09:50
Too much black-mail.! An open forum that debates issues of concern to all has become a place people use for attack. Given that most of those negative ones in the forum get hold of the mantle of power, "Heavens" alone knows what they would do! They blackmail, denigrate, attack, harass, etc. The little internet technical power some of them have, watch how they apply on people in the debate with opposing views to theirs, then you truly see what such people (individuals) would do if they were to get control of "political" power. No they are not ready for a better world - - that in which people dialogue their ways out of problems and conflicts]. It is no fun to see how they swing Obama's administration on scales of biases, misinterpretati on, misrepresentati on and shortsightednes s. An open forum to debate national and world problems of concern to all that lacks discipline and informed purpose is likely to lead to bad internet journalism and culture of commenting on published articles. Hackers and cyber criminals on top of all may kill internet and culture of freedom - defeating what was to be the purpose! Idiotic indeed, no one wins!
+9 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 14:45
Excuse me Lawrence, but I have to ask you what color the sky is in your universe since we apparently don't occupy the same one. No disrespect intended...hone stly, but I think you interpret the demands so many of us make for accountability from Obama and our representatives as nothing but negativity, denigration and hate. To your way of thinking it seems that to resoundingly dispute the status quo is an assault on you of some kind and you fear that if we had power we would pose a danger? I tell you, it is hard for me to imagine a more dangerous abuse of power than what is coming out of Washington and I see absolutely no point in saying so "nicely". That Obama is complicit with treason even is not mean spirited on my is a fact. Do I need to spell it out precisely to appease you? If so, I gladly will.
And what on earth does an "open forum to debate national and world problems of concern" look like to you if it were "disciplined"? Is discipline merely regurgitating the status quo? Isn't telling the ugly truths, the ones most like to ignore, also "disciplined"? As for a better world, where in DC do you see that coming from? Where? Oh, and the winners are the rich.
+4 # DaveW. 2010-12-29 16:28
LawerenceEfana, The mere act of "disagreeing" is an act of conflict to some. Many voices condemnatory of the Obama Administration' s decisions and moves involving the continued wars, toothless financial reform, prolonged detention without trial of "terrorist" detainees, a lack of transparency in legal matters, capitulation to Conservatives on tax cuts, advocation of deep water oil drilling, etc. are not based on biases, misinterpretati on's, misrepresentati on's, or shortsightednes s. They're based on campaign "promises" made by candidate Obama and then abdicated. Most of the people on these posts are not engaging in blackmail, denigration, attacks, and harassment. They are voicing concerns about trust and betrayal of that trust and where we will look, in the face of massive corporate influence, to locate individuals who not only make campaign promises but keep them in a meaningful way. The "informed purpose" is the free exchange of opinions and ideas inherent in our Constitution. If you check your history, the formulation of that document was a pretty "raucous" affair.
+7 # Jorge 2010-12-29 21:56
Well said DaveW and DanielF.. I will bet that most people with comments here were big supporters of Obama, and looked to him to bring change from the Bush fiasco. Now after 2 years of betrayal/decept ion it is time to speak up and make course corrections... election reform laws, end the wars, stop the elimination of the middle class, restore proper tax rates on the uber-rich to pay for needed infrastructure and social safety nets, protect the environment, reduce the powers of big corporations and the MIC, provide decent universal health care and education, create good jobs, etc. No sense wasting any more time on Obama.
+3 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-29 23:49
Thanks Jorge! Course corrections are desperately needed. It's hard to give up our delusions, but it's time now. The evidence that we've been had is piling higher and higher everday and it's going to fall over pretty darn soon. It's time for a complete reassessment of where we've been, where we're heading and where we want to go. Team Obama ain't getting us anywhere reasonable. I hope others wake up too. I hope it isn't too late already, which I fear it is.
+3 # DaveW. 2010-12-30 11:04
Jorge, Thanks for the feedback Jorge. If you or I were only President perhaps we could at least take "principled stands" on the items you mention. That's what has been the biggest disappointment for me. Obama seems to be a man made of rubber. There are some things a principled person simply won't "bend" on. What do we do if it's Obama vs. Romney, Huckabee or, gulp!, Palin? Like I wrote on another post. Death by slow poison or by straight razor.
+4 # tomo 2010-12-31 02:09
I'm with Daniel, David, and Jorge. I welcome this debate within the ranks of those who campaigned for Obama. I truly believe that what determines the side you are on is whether you have or have not scrutinized the Obama appointments. All the other data is somewhat ambiguous. (E.g., "He didn't do X." "Well, he's trying as hard as he can to do X." Etc.) The appointments are different. They follow a pattern. I doubt they are being made at gun-point. They are HIS appointments. They are routinely of people opposed to what he campaigned on. They tell you he did not mean what he said. If this is the case, it would be entirely futile to say "Let's give him a chance to see what he can accomplish in negotiating." To denounce him is not an instance of negative thinking, or griping. It's an instance of thinking alertly.
+2 # othermother 2010-12-30 16:31
[quote name="LawrenceE fana"]Too much black-mail.! An open forum that debates issues of concern to all has become a place people use for attack. Given that most of those negative ones in the forum get hold of the mantle of power, "Heavens" alone knows what they would do! They blackmail, denigrate, attack, harass, etc./close quote

Toughen up, Lawrence. There's a lot of brain-dead comment on the blogs. Just brush it aside and engage with the comments that show sense.
+3 # LawrenceEfana 2010-12-30 05:09
Daniel Fletcher, DaveW. and Jorge, I truly thank you all for the positive spirit and reasonable views put across as a reaction to my comment. In fact, I even increased your points: that is scored your views positively. It should convince you that there are things I see and cry over! That said, I emphasize the substances in your arguments: you all stand up against what has been 'wrong' across history of US administrations - governance/syst em). Now that the clock ticks with enormous challenges for inflated picture of American dream, I can appreciate the degree of nervousness and psychology of getting things right hence the urgency of CHANGE, Obama, now US President went campaigning for. He raised issues, ignited feelings and raised hope and got votes. But gentlemen take time and be true to your system with its conflicts. Criticize Obama but raise more big questions about your mentality, prostituting voting system, political opportunism, constitutional settings in need of review, conflicting political party culture fueled by greed and selfishness all time, etc. See us in Europe and dare ask real tough questions, your will become Obama's promoters than surface critics. He has time!
+4 # DaveW. 2010-12-30 10:58
Lawerence, You sound like a reasonable man and for that, thanks! Eternal optimism in an age of pessimism. Many of the things you mention are what cause that pessimism! As a long time student of American history it's my "educated" belief we're on the way down. Civilized man has had over "ten thousand years" to perfect his act. As populations increase and resources decrease I really don't see any reason to start believing in the "truth fairy." Thanks for your response.
+5 # Daniel Fletcher 2010-12-31 00:31
Lawrence, to add to what DaveW is saying, I admire your optimism and your evident good will. How bitter we must sound to you! My profession in it's totality has as it's focus victims of our social and political culture. I am daily immersed in the silenced victims of this society. This jades me a bit I'm afraid. Being nose deep in tragedy will do that. But I am far from burnt out. When leaders make promises that could alleviate suffering and then instead enhance that suffering and make ever greater numbers of victims I become outraged. In the wealthiest nation on earth, you'd be surprised how quickly our downtrodden are plummeting and how large the numbers are getting and how close to a tsunami of more victims we face and the people most blamed are the victims and not the ones who've pushed them over the edge. None of them matter much simply because the poor don't matter here. They will come to matter even less as the powerful continue to increase their wealth in huge numbers. I get called an Obama basher because I hold him responsible for failing to represent the interests of the poor and middle class soon to be poor. Dedicated to the poor as I am, I cannot but abhor this system.
+1 # www 2010-12-30 10:41
Do the Ambassador of the United States of the United States USA in syria is a drug trafficker is with the participation of this system with Hezbollah, in smuggling, murder and assassination. and hit a lot of interests of other communities in Syria.This means that the Division of the political administration in America is a weak point count by the dictatorial regimes to pass their schemes, which is why the led to penetrate al-Qaeda to the security of America during the events of 11 September, will keep the American stupidity valid?
+3 # othermother 2010-12-30 16:53
Sir, is English your first language? You are not being clear. You appear to say:
1/ US ambassador to Syria is a drug peddler.
2/ He does this in conjunction with Hezbollah, which also engages in murder and assassination and threatens the interests of various communities in Syria.
3/ The separation of powers in the American political system is a weakness used by dictators to advance their schemes. It allowed al Qaeda to breach US security in the events of 9/11. Maintaining the separation of powers keeps America stupid.

Point 1 I don't know about.

Point 2, regarding Hezbollah's misdeeds, seems probable in a situation where no one's hands are clean.

Point 3 confuses separation of powers with the weakening of the rule of law, rivalry between different agencies of government and the shifting of the functions of government to corporations accountable to no one. A solution most definitely does not include creating our own dictator in order to get a single agency to do everything.
+3 # Scorpio Dragon 2010-12-30 23:00
O-bomb-a is totally plugged into Bilderberg Group, CIA, etc, etc, etc.

To me a more disgusting disappointment than even dumbsh*it! At least we knew what we were in for with 2!!! STOLEN ELECTIONS!!! With O-bomb-a, HE CHANGED... and just look at all of his "Running with the Dogs" Wall Street holdovers who got key cabinet positions.

Famous and Dandy - Just like Amos and Andy. Love Michael Franti's prophetic piece with the Disposable Heroes of HipHoprasy. AS if Franti wrote it for Obama!!! Enjoy on You Tube:

Happy New Year! Maybe we should be praying for our souls and the Prez who is leading us to the Dark Side...S-A-D...
+3 # LawrenceEfana 2011-01-01 04:26
Daniel Fletcher and DaveW, this is 2011: the "New Year Day". Tolerate me for being messenger of peace, love and hope! In a world with hell in most comments seen the three chosen words resound. They are powerful. They may not bring relief yet lets rally around them as our starting point for the new year!

The American system reads you. Those in power read you - the new congress and senate members read you and surely the Obama team reads you. It pains my heart, however whether the people (masses) also read you? Democracy unlike dictatorship filled us with inspiration. We know it has faults that 'torment' patience and hope! During King's memorial service, Obama made a speech and I listened to him on the theme ‘unity and the great walls of Jerico tumbling down’ It is not better in Europe, yet her democracies are unafraid of words like "socialism" and "solidarity". "Bad" values imprison democracies - not to say dictatorships are better! I see Emmanuel TV: one team and efforts to show light and correct ills in Nigeria! Wake up with positive spirit and try your best the walls will come tumbling down there and elsewhere for a world in need of justice/progres s/sustainabilit y!
+4 # Daniel Fletcher 2011-01-01 16:42
Lawrence, I so admire your kind and generous spirit. Peace, love and hope...and I'd say that love is the father of peace and hope, are the higher realms of human existence. To be truly passionate about people is to be able to experience the essence of all that is sacred in the face of every person about one, and I feel blessed that I can. I have to look a little harder with some and I have to observe when I am blinding myself in my own despair. Your words ring true. I find myself stuck in the contradictions of despair and a passionate love and see how they seem to fuel each other. Would I despair less if I loved less? Probably so and therefore I despair with an ironic joy. To love is to be hurt, and courage is to love any way and with determination. Can we see our way through so much hurt to ultimately birth a new people devoted to peace, hope and love? I just don't know. All I know is the imperative of love, the duty to hope and to aspire to peace and to find the strength to bear the anguish of pain that love exposes us to. Blessings to you in the New Year. I'll try to find ways to vocalize more on the positive, to offer balance where I can, Darkness and light surrounds us.
+2 # LawrenceEfana 2011-01-02 09:26
Daniel, tears came from my eyes! There are good people out there, I now learn more of, with the message that "You are not alone" - a line with words from one of the late Michael Jackson's song! Your blessings are tripled and the courage to go on in the "least" of favorable conditions is multiplied. My reason for hope is: there are eyes that see, but with much love and patience! I am much with you in the spirit! Peace be with you and all others! We say "thanks and be strong" to each other! And we are strong because of faith - that which nourishes understanding for a balance will to be active. And, I bet that you have transcended, which is glorious! Happy new-year!
+2 # Daniel Fletcher 2011-01-03 00:49
Again, I praise your kind and generous spirit. I would be remiss if I did not confess to you how untranscended I am! But I am trying. I am evolving. Happy new year to you. Thanks and be strong good soul.

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