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Marion On June - 25 - 2011

So I understand Keith Olbermann, the multimillionaire media egotist and ex-sportscaster who deems himself eminently qualified to comment on political affairs, whose resurrected show Countdown is an echo chamber of one-sided thought with no room for debate and no tolerance for any divergence of opinion, ended his first program on the Current TV network with some singularly unsolicited instructions (not advice, but instructions, mind you) of what exactly the President should do regarding Afghanistan.

I don’t know what the President intends to do about Afghanistan, and I won’t know until well after he’s said it. By the time he speaks this evening, I’ll be settling down for a night’s sleep in the UK; but I do know that I’m not going to attempt to second-guess, much less, instruct him as to what he should do.

I was born during Eisenhower’s first Administration. I barely remember Kennedy, and came of age during Nixon and Watergate. In all that time, I can never remember any President previously getting so much unsolicited advice from all quarters, nor can I ever remember any President receiving such hateful and spiteful gratuitous criticism and petulant behaviour from people who are supposed to be from his side of the political equation.

Before every major statement or speech, up pop various and sundry professionally Leftish talking heads, first, to tell us all what the President SHOULD say in his address; then after the speech, itself, they inhabit our screens, the very embodiment of moral and righteous consternation, to tell us why and how the President is wrong, what he should have said and, just basically, what a very bad, weak and naughty boy he has been.  The boy bit is never openly stated, but it is just as much implied as if Joe Wilson, himself, had been issuing the criticism.

But then, Joe Wilson, is supposed to criticize. He’s the opposition.

From Olbermann and his crony, Michael Moore, on down, we’re presented with a series of armchair quarterbacks, who would always do a better job than this President, who know exactly what he should do and just how he should treat the most recalcitrant of Congresses, and who always end up by issuing a dire threat to the President that all-important votes will be witheld in the ensuing election, if he doesn’t abide by their advice and orders.

For the life of me, I don’t remember Bill Clinton ever receiving so much criticism masked as advice during his two terms; in fact, Olbermann, who doesn’t vote, was much too much involved with the sporting sphere during many of those years.

It strikes a special chord with me which sounds suspiciously like a dog whistle.

I’m sorry if that offends anyone, but when you’re born and bred in the South, you learn to recognise dog whistlin’, even if the tune being whistled isn’t “Dixie.”

Olbermann, in “Special Comment” mode can be seriously scary, with his big head filling the screen space and his laboured and foghorned voice excoriating whomever, usually, the President. I can imagine him a frightful bully, but a bully who leads from behind the video camera as that section of the plebeian masses who harken to his call and recognize him to be the “voice” they, for some unfathomable reason, reckon they cannot use.

I can easily imagine him the snarky, cumurdgeonly bachelor uncle who’d verbally paste a kid for traipsing mud from the playground across his antique oriental carpet. Just as easily, when he’s severely admonishing the President, I get a mental image of Marse Keith, elegantly dressed in jodpurs and with a riding crop in one hand and shaking the index finger of the other in the face of a suitably penitent President.

But what’s so infuriating to Keith (and to Miss Jane and Marse Cenk and Miss Joan and all the rest) is the fact that, damn it, this President SHOULD be awfully sorry that he hasn’t done anything they reckon he’s said he’d do but carries on doing what he thinks is best and isn’t sorry at all. In fact, on occasion, he’s been damned uppity towards them … and here’s a man, an African American, whom they put in the White House in the first place before that nice white woman who’d been First Lady – ne’mind Marse Keith had plenty to say about her, even reckoning she should be horse-whipped when she wouldn’t drop out of the primary race.

This is a minor character redux from Gone With the Wind. Seriously, it is, with Olbermann as the benevolently tyrannical Gerald O’Hara, berating his trusty foreman, Big Sam, for not following orders. In that society, Gerald O’Hara was the privileged master whose job was to tell his servant – say it, his slave – Big Sam what to do, how to do, and when to do it.

Then there was a Civil War, and Gerald O’Hara went mad and died. And Big Sam kept the business running.

Maybe it’s time Olbermann either put up an actual vote, which would give him a voice, go over to the Dark Side (because he’s aiding and abetting them as it is), or just go mad and let the President keep the business running – perhaps with a bit less gratuitous criticism and a little more faith.

30 Responses so far.

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  1. ADONAI says:

    choice, First of all, there is no justice at play here. The day we began rounding up people indiscriminately and tossing them in a cage without charges or due process, justice left the equation. Now what yo have are a series of farces. You’re arguing for law and due process for people who have been denied it every step of the way and you’re calling me naive and unconscionable. I’m not the one imprisoning people for no reason.

    I do no care if there are guilty men in there. It does not, DOES NOT justify the hundreds of innocents we have caged. And it never will. You wanna defend imperial practice, that’s fine. I will not. And as long as American citizens are spied on(which they are) and innocent men sit in a cage without a way to defend themselves(which they do), there is NOTHING Constitutional going on.

    And the FBI told you everything was peachy with the “new” Patriot Act? Well, I’m sold. It’s not like they’ve ever given anyone reason to doubt their word every decade since they were formed. I cannot support Obama’s foreign policy. Any of it. It’s not Constitutional. I will not go as far to call you naive or without conscience. I know you aren’t. I just disagree.

    And still, STILL there is no good excuse for extending the National Emergency Act. An act that makes all this “legal”. How much longer you thing they’re gonna keep that going? I just want one reason from Obama for extending it. Other than, “the terrorists are gonna get us”. And how do we know anything about what Obama is doing? After arguing transparency for his entire campaign, he has classified EVERYTHING dealing with these illegal programs. Declared his wiretapping program a national secret and hid everything. In fact, his lawyers have spent A LOT of time in courts since he became President trying to hide everything they are doing.

    You wanna say he’s a good President? Fine. I agree. You wanna say he’s trying to do the right thing? I agree as well. But that was never the issue. The issue is that the American government has operated outside the Constitution for a decade now and, instead of ending it, Obama extended it. And that’s just the truth. These things actually happened. For good or bad. They happened.

  2. Sabreen60 says:

    Check out the billboards on the buses in “certain” neighborhoods in DC. This is what some on the left are doing, right now. Some say Hamsher is one of those behind the scenes who initiated this action, with the blessings of Cornell West and Tavis Smilely. It’s hard for me to believe that they are not working at the behest of Republicans.

    I’m a Washingtonian who now resides in Silver Spring MD, so I know these DC neighborhoods pretty well. Northeast is predominately African American as is much of Northwest. They are targeting black folks with “Obama is a Republican” bullchit. I don’t often see RED, but I do with this.

    http://newprogs.org/primary-obama-ads-roll-through-dc

    • choicelady says:

      Sabreen -- this NPA reminds me a great deal of NWROC -- the National Workers/Women’s Rights Organizing Committee that likely was a RW front. They were provocateurs, created massive trouble for local groups wherever they went, and had more money than God. In 1992 they tried, unsuccessfully, to infiltrate the pro-choice side during the Operation Rescue “Spring of Life”. Turns out that at least one of the kids WAS an OR member -- boasted about it to LIFE magazine after the fact. NWROC leaders were highly pissed that the pro-choice people were well organized, had great senses of humor, and divided the NWROC ranks by befriending the kids who were being used by the older people. Within two days NWROC’s tactics disappeared -- they were outsmarted by people who would not let them disrupt the peaceful clinic defense actions. They stalked out -- leaving the young people behind I might add. So much for compassion and solidarity.

      NPA looks the same. Highly secretive, lots of private links, secret registration forms you have to fill out before volunteer sites are given -- very, very stinky, IMHO. Bet they have secret handshakes and decoder rings. Even their “Facebook Friends” are weird -- first names only. Every bit of this reeks of “PHONY” so that the Right can pretend to be the Left.

      The Platform is SO bland it’s appropriate that, like old generic corn flake boxes, it’s in simplistic language in black and white. There’s not a believable issue on the site -- it’s just empty slogans.

      Someone with smarts should be able to trace the domaine registration and the owner -- bet it leads to corporate Koch land or something equivalent.

  3. SueInCa says:

    Marion

    I hear where you are coming from and I agree to a certain point. Your points are exactly why I have stopped watching any of the “opinion news”. I don’t watch CNN or MSNBC and never watched Fake News anyway. I think, up to a point, we need healthy criticism of the president but people like Michael Moore, Keith Olberman, Chris Matthews, Lwrence O’Donnell et al. have never put themselves out on a limb and led anything. That is partially why they do not understand how a leader should act and what his responsibilities are to the entire nation, even if the right does not accept him as their president. The republicans have a major problem with it and it seems so does the Left. It took this president to bring out all the vitriol, sad to say but true.

    • SueInCa says:

      One more thing, I hope we can get past it once and for all, but I don’t hold out much hope.

      • Kalima says:

        Hello Sue, I echo what kes has said below and hope things are going well for you and your family. Take care, we miss you.

        • SueInCa says:

          Kalima

          Thanks for your kind words. I have been fine, spending time with my grandson since he got out of school and truthful not reading much or watching much news. I hate to be a hit and runner here and will try to be better. I miss this site as well.

      • kesmarn says:

        Sue — as always — so good to see you here. Hope all is well with you and yours.

        • SueInCa says:

          thanks Kes, you are always so sweet. I will try to get here more often, I have had my grandson for almost a month now,just took him home for a couple weeks then will take him for another 2-3 weeks for the summer. We all have to share on PC when he is here……

          • kesmarn says:

            Ahhh….believe me, I get the picture, Sue! It’s not easy to disconnect the kiddos from the computer, is it? Even when there’s fun stuff to do outside, they dash back in and check fb or play a game to recharge. I keep thinking I should have a second computer around here. So I can get on there myself every now and then when the family’s here.

            • SueInCa says:

              Spot on Kes. My daughter is staying with us while she looks for a job so add one more kid and the computer is running all day long.

  4. ADONAI says:

    I wouldn’t call Obama Constitutionally grounded. He’s extended Bush’s illegal wiretapping to levels maybe even Cheney didn’t think of. And I still haven’t heard a rational reason for holding a thousand people in a cage in Cuba. And we still toss people in prison for as long as we want without even charging them. He has taken no steps to dial back or even contradict Bush’s unwarranted use of signing statements. When the Patriot Act extension came across his desk, instead of saying “This is clearly illegal on so many levels”, he extended it.

    Bush gained way too much power under the National Emergency Act. This was that “extension of executive power” that so many people got super pissed about. Did yo know it’s still in affect? 10 years later. Of course Bush kept extending it. Why the Hell not? But I really don’t understand last year’s extension.

    So, yeah, he’s a good politician and better than the last guy(that’s really saying a lot), but let’s not get carried away. First and foremost, he’s a politician. He will do what they do til we tell him no.

    • choicelady says:

      Adonai -- this is precisely the misinformation that drives me bonkers. First -- Obama has NOT used signing statements at ALL to undermine legislation. You can Google that -- you will see he has a fraction of the statements, and they ALL CLARIFY the intent of the legislation. Your statement is just entirely WRONG.

      Second -- Gitmo CANNOT close unless and until there is somewhere to PUT those men, and Congress wimped out entirely -- ENTIRELY -- in voting where they could go and authorizing the closing. The chickenshits in the Dem party fell prey to the fearmongering, and Obama cannot, as a REAL president grounded in law, simply put them in federal prisons where the states housing those prisons will NOT accept them. It’s sheer cowardice by Congress, but it is NOT Obama’s doing, it is Congress’ doing. PERIOD.

      The courts ruled on the wiretaps, and they are NOT worse than Bush’s -- there is one overseas eavesdropping permission I dislike a lot, but it the spying on US citizens has ENDED. I for one very much thank this President since THREE TIMES NSA or someone infiltrated my organization’s emails. I know that for an absolute fact because of intrusive questions from the FBI and NSA that showed me they had read entirely internal correspondence. I was under FBI surveillance for a time as well. I have proof of that. These actions are NO LONGER happening. Good on Obama.

      You are picking up the entirely unfounded allegations that, if you did your homework, you would learn quickly ARE NOT TRUE. That is the work of the “professional left” who are spreading stories that are provably FALSE. Don’t fall for it yourself.

      • ADONAI says:

        choice, I have looked all this up. He extended the Patriot Act. He has done nothing to pull back on the extension of executive power, only extend it.

        GITMO can close cause, guess what? We have a place to put them! Right back where we illegally arrested them.

        The Justice Department, at Obama’s behest, argued in court for the continuation of ALL of Bush’s wiretapping programs. Obama may not use them(which i don’t believe) but he has done nothing to remove them. Again, this is all under the National Emergency Act which he extended September of last year.

        But I’m not even tearing him down. I get ALL of his decisions. But to say they are “grounded in the Constitution” is nonsense. He’s a politician. And he has a very difficult job.

        • choicelady says:

          You are entirely incorrect about closing Gitmo and just dumping people where they came from. That’s just naive.

          He has NOT extended the Patriot Act -- Congress did that. He has not abused any of the elements at all. My really serious problem with him is deportations -- 800,000 and of people with NO criminal records. That I REALLY do not understand, but not the Patriot Act and emergency powers. I know whereof I speak since I deal with the local US Attorney and FBI -- they no longer have authority to do what the Bush folks did. The DOJ has reined them in. They cannot surveille citizens in the US as Bush did -- and I KNOW they did, and I know they are no longer doing that.

          Signing statements -- nope. He’s not abusing them at all, and he’s used a fraction of what Bush signed. So that is not accurate.

          Substance matters every bit as much as form. HOW someone uses the laws changes everything. Obama is not abusing the Constitution as Bush did every five seconds. I now can write emails with the word “Muslim” in them and NOT get the NSA or FBI down my throat. If you’d ever been the subject of an investigation, you’d know the difference. I have been -- and it’s no longer an issue since Obama took charge. I am no longer an issue! No more Men in Black at my door or anywhere else. The emergency powers were resinstated with FISA warrants -- the warrants that were demanded of law enforcement following the killers of Dr. Slepian in 1998 and now Dr. Tiller in 2009. That matters. BIG difference.

          The substance matters. It’s the same with the phony “Obamacare is Romneycare” -- they are dead opposites. The form people choose to see is NOT the substance of what was done. Makes ALL the difference.

          • ADONAI says:

            choice, You believe most of the people in GITMO are guilty. I believe most are innocent. I have reams of ACLU papers backing up my hypothesis. So let them go. Unless you too believe a majority are innocent, in which case you’re excusing something VERY unconstitutional. Well, it’s that either way. We locked up people with no due process. And we are still doing it.

            And you keep saying you “know”. Do you work for the FBI? The DOJ? The White House? If not, how do you know?

            And I;m not talking about things like looking for the word “muslim”. I;m talking about spying on American citizens the government BELIEVES are “terrorists”.

            And my point still remains. He has done nothing to reign any of it in. Only expand and continue. But, again, the man’s the President. I get it. Just hope the next guy is just is “restrained” when he receives the same toolbox.

            • choicelady says:

              Adonai -- I work WITH, not FOR, the FBI and US Attorney here, and I’ve asked clear questions regarding what is and is not legally permissible under the current laws of the Patriot Act. The changes are radical and to the good. I have a 20-year relationship with many of them -- and was involved in assisting a major criminal investigation as Ashcroft took over and watched it almost go to hell because of him and the Bush regime’s abuses of power. It had nothing to do with terrorism.

              I also work with the ACLU -- there are still procedures to free people, but some are NOT “innocent”. Because they all have been denied due process, they NEED due process, and just letting them go is impossibly naive and unconscionable. Closing Gitmo is SECONDARY to assuring that when they are released they do NOT travel with an onus on them if they are purely innocent. The ones who are not innocent cannot be released. Justice is a multi-faceted thing, and until we have some place Congress OKs for them to be to GET due process, Gitmo cannot be closed. It’s NOT Obama’s call.

              What you do NOT care to understand is that under Bush simple declarations of support for Muslims engendered FBI probes. I know this for a certainty since I and my organization were the focus of it. You are impossibly dismissive of how great a difference there is between that under Bush and serious investigations of real terrorists -- including domestic ones that are equally as dangerous -- but which are done with legal warrants and legal means. Should you think there ARE no terrorists, allow me to say -- I’ve had five friends and acquaintances murdered by them, none of said murderers being Muslim. All the rules apply equally to those abetting Al Qae’da and Aryan Nation or Army of God. That was NOT true under Bush -- only Muslims -- any Muslim or their sympathizers -- were hounded. Domestic terrorists were ignored. I KNOW the differences, and I KNOW the laws that are being followed. The proof is in the honoring of the Constitution which this adminstration is doing.

  5. jjgravitas says:

    Olbermann Schmolbermann. I never listen to these cable-TV pundits and never have, really. What I do care about is there is such a large population of morons in this country who are capable of being swayed by the opinions coming from these arch-conservative know-it-alls. Thanks to their brilliant ideas we had the George W. Bush Administration who fought a war of choice using “the army you have, not the army you want.”
    Hell, President Obama is doing a great job, given what he had to work with when he came into office: two wars, trillions of dollars of federal debt and a Republican party that would rather see the USA dissolve into financial chaos than lift a finger to force the mega-rich to pay their fair share. Everyone knew it would take years to clean up the mess Bush made. But do the Republicans acknowledge it now? N-o-o-o-o-o! Instead, they would rather hound Mr. Obama over every little detail. And this auto-pen thing. What’s that about?

    At least Mr. Obama got Bin Laden. He can cross that job off the list once and forever.

  6. choicelady says:

    MArion -- I agree with both WTS and Adonai about the overall criticism of Bush, but I agree with YOU that I’ve never seen it so profoundly present from a president’s OWN SIDE. Or his ostensible own side. I have a couple of HUGE problems with Obama in relation to immigrant deportations and lack of protection for whistleblowers. I wish he would GET OUT of Afghanistan. But the snark from people such as Dan Choi and the slavering sycophants of his who dis the president for -- doing what they wanted? I’ve never EVER seen this before.

    I understand more than most the complexities of governance -- as a registered lobbyist I see the will-o-the-wisp campaign promises morph into wishful thinking in face of harsh reality. I find myself relieved if we can get a fraction of what we want and what’s needed when the opposition, however it may manifest itself, has the capacity to bomb your plans into extinction. I know there are traitors on the Left posing as progressives who undermine every step of the way when we then find out they take Big Corporate Money -- surprise! Beware your “friends” out there -- they can be worse than your enemies.

    But I am shocked when the president makes meaningful steps toward what we want and gets pilloried for that. What is wrong with so-called progressives who cannot simply say -- “Good first step. Let’s move onto the next.” Is this so freaking hard? Nope. We have to declare something less than perfect to be a total failure.

    In the wake of the WORST EVER, I cannot understand any of this. In the wake of pretty much 8 solid years of tolerating REAL backpeddling from Clinton, I cannot understand this. I have seen precious little engagement in political action, from the ground up or even day by day interactions on issues we care about. We can’t even learn from the religious right and neo-cons that we cannot sit it out. Why do we have less engagement now than they did over the past 30 years? So when pundits armchair quarterback, to me it’s not just meaningless, it’s actually dangerous. I hear way too much rhetoric that is disengaged from reality:”Obama shoulda” statements usually are void of real policy understanding and decidedly void of process understanding. We are supposed to be the “best and the brightest” yet folks on the Left have the WORST comprehension about how government works of anyone I meet -- other than the stupid nameless righty bloggers on electronic news paper sites. (They are TRULY ignorant.)

    In sum, I just don’t get it. Shouldn’t we all be BETTER than this? Don’t we owe this president MORE rather than LESS respect for what he’s doing?

    I simply do not understand what’s happening to progressives. Just don’t.

    • whatsthatsound says:

      C-lady, I hear you on all those complaints. I agree with nearly everything you write. My disagreement with Marion’s piece is her conclusion -- that racism lies at the heart of this. She has repeatedly written that progressives dislike the president because “he’s smarter than them and won’t do what they tell him to”. I think she is so far off the mark with this. I think that, in today’s world, to point to racism as the cause for the criticism of president Obama is to arrive at the gate of Rashomon.

      First of all, let’s consider that as far as recent presidencies go, what is actually happening to the president is hardly the most egregious case of harassment. Compared to Nixon over Watergate (deservedly) and Clinton over Monicagate (probably the most shameful display we have ever witnessed from a president’s opponents), the current president is practically being treated with kid’s gloves.

      Secondly, let’s consider that it was probably George Bush who was the first president to hold office in the age of the “internets”, when ANYONE with a blog could get their opinions to register as much as lifelong journalists, so long as they had whatever it takes to get peoples’ attention. Most people on the left really disliked Dubya, but while he was the “Mission Accomplished” hero, it was hard to lay into him. So, MAN, did the gloves come off when Iraq started going badly! And then there was Katrina. At the point where Mama Bush was talking about how much better off the folks in the Superdome were, the presidency of GWB was on life support. Almost NOBODY liked him anymore.

      Enter Barack Obama. He didn’t cause, he INHERITED the storms of criticism that had now become the norm. When Americans get their news from Comedy Central and Fox News, BOTH fictional but only one willing to admit it, the situation is pretty much hopeless from the get-go. ANY president would be being battered right now.

      There IS a huge amount of racism coming from elements of the right. Just where you’d expect it to come from; those who are less educated. Those who grew up in neighborhoods and within families where racism was passed along like mother’s milk.

      But Olbermann? Michael Moore? Cenk? Are you kidding me? Marion has yet to show one bit of actual evidence that the complainers on the left are figuring the president’s skin tone into their rationales. Until she does, I’ll assume they’re a lot like me in some respects. I criticize the president all the time, and it has nothing, nothing, nothing whatsoever to do with the fact that his skin is darker than mine. Or if his IQ is higher than mine, for that matter.

      • choicelady says:

        WTS -- I don’t know if race is behind the criticisms or not. With Michael Moore, I seriously doubt it. But the one problem I have with your analysis is that the criticisms of past presidents have almost entirely come from the Loyal (?) opposition NOT from his own party and supporters.

        In this morning’s Sacramento Bee there is a column from Dana Milbank on the Progressive Caucus/liberal members of Congress being fed up with Obama. Here are the reasons:
        -extending the Bush tax cuts for two years
        -keeping Guantanamo open
        -Declining to support a larger economic stimulus or a second one
        -giving up the public option on health care
        -“foot dragging” on climate change
        -resisting support for gay marriage
        -surging troops in Afghanistan then withdrawing them too slowly
        -offering up too many budget cuts in negotiations.

        My question is -- where is the responsibility from these whiny Congressional members about THEIR failure to move votes to support all but the Afghanistan issue (which is entirely Obama’s decision indeed.) Every single issue here could have been settled before 2010 IF Congress had acted. Reid could have used the nuclear option in the Senate. The House never had ANY of the votes from the Blue Dogs.

        I know beyond doubt that much of this is also OUR doing -- I know because my members DID it, that you could change Blue Dog votes with focused and targeted pressure on things such as the public option. We turned EVERY Blue Dog in CA that way. Other states had less pressure, less activism, thus less good outcomes. But where was the Whip? Where was the progressive caucus pressure? I know it did NOT extend itself to fighting for even this great first start.

        We on the liberal side have embraced too much of an “all or nothing/my way or I will sulk” kind of attitude IN Congress as well as around the country. We totally forget how our system works -- always has, always will.

        We fought tooth and nail to end the Imperial Presidency and when we got a Constitutionally-grounded president who DID and DOES wish to restore Democracy by going back to advise and consent, separation of powers, we pillory him for doing what we wanted.

        I won’t call out every liberal critic as a racist, no, but there are some very clear examples such as Bill Maher. But I will call out liberal critics who have not lifted a single protest against the wimping out of Congress OR of the American liberals per se. Sorry Adonai -- your justification for not being more involved is everyone’s -- we all have to work, we all have to put food on our table. But we have to find time to call our representatives, write FAX letters, send email. Over and over and over. It takes VERY little time out of a week to do that.

        Of all the people I know (as opposed to “know” here) who complain about things left undone by Obama, NOT ONE of those people has lifted a finger to be involved in any way in moving legislation or standing up for something they desire. They just whine. Oh, they will send a cranky letter to Obama, but AFTER something has not occurred around which they could not be moved to act.

        Democracy is active politics. When Congress itself fails to rally around issues, fails to generate the votes needed for their concerns, the blame game BY them against the president is not only incorrect but shameful.

        Where are the voices in support of anything? Where are the Dems on talk shows and in the media with POSITIVE stories about what has occurred in this administration -- and it has been amazing. Liberals are self anointed victims, and in that role those in Congress and we ourselves do our policies and our nation no favors. We can lose in 2012 if we do NOT grow up. MArion may or may not be right about the covert racism. She is NOT wrong about the overt immaturity. I’m with her there.

        • whatsthatsound says:

          c-lady, I’m with you. Your arguments concerning the sabotage from his own party have caused me to open my mind more about this. I can’t argue. Thanks.

          • choicelady says:

            One thing I love about you, WTS -- you think things over. I’ve thought things over thanks to you. This ability we have on the Planet to help one another see different views gives me the ONE real hope I have that all is not lost. Thank you for saying that.

            • whatsthatsound says:

              c-lady, a great big, bear-ish, cyber-hug is coming your way in five, four, three, two….

        • Abbyrose86 says:

          Bravo Choice Lady!!!

  7. whatsthatsound says:

    Marion, you have a very short memory. Deservedly, but nevertheless, George Bush Jr. got MUCH more criticism than Barack Obama. You are putting Mr. Obama at the center of what is unfolding and concluding that racism must be the cause. That is a projection that I have seen very little evidence from you to support, although you write articles like this all the time (this is in fact your second snark piece on Olbermann).

    The real epicenter is the current dynamics of how information is disseminated and processed in America. The new outlets, the ongoing thrust from news to “commentary” and news-as-comedy-entertainment; THIS is the real culprit. You just don’t like seeing it happen to a man you admire. But your explanation for it doesn’t hold water.

    Remember Colbert’s roast of Bush, right in his -friggin’ FACE? Remember “George Bush doesn’t care about white people?” Remember OLBERMANN, fercryinoutloud, bloviating night after night, taking off his glasses and bellowing, “YOU, Mr. Bush…..”?

    All the while he was getting slammed by certain quarters of Republican/conservative thought. Articles appeared musing whether he was the “worst president ever” while he was still in office. The last two years of his second term, he was reduced to a bad joke, and only got praise from diehard supporters.

    It’s a new world, Marion. Like ADONAI says above, if you can’t take the heat, get out of the Oval Office. This isn’t about the president; it’s about the current shape of political discourse, that was building before he set foot in the office, and by any reasonable estimate will only progress downward after he is gone.

    • Marion says:

      Dubya Bush NEVER was criticized by his own party. As late as last Thursday, Mitch McConnell admitted that there were huge numbers of Republicans in Congress who disliked what Bush was doing, but for 8 years they STFU and sat on their hands in the interests of party loyalty -- something that the Democrats do not have.

      No one likes being called out on racism, but it’s there on the Left, and African Americans are recognising it -- it’s the patronising assumptive sort which is softer than that of the Right, but it’s insulting all the same.

      Hell, I could even answer those stupid Progressive Caucus Asshats on every one of Dana Millbank’s charges:-

      -extending the Bush tax cuts for two years:

      The President was perfectly HONEST in his speech after the compromise. The Republicans made it abundantly clear that they wouldn’t budge on this. Had he let them expire, with a majority in the House, the GOP would simply have reinstated them retroactively in January, and on this one, the Senate would have agreed. Who wants to be seen to raise taxes? Besides, the Progressive Caucus Asshats all come from safe seats mostly comprised of affluent constituents who don’t know what it’s like to be poor. I don’t know what Raul Grijalva’s excuse would be for that, but the compromise Obama effected did a LOT for the unemployed, the poor and the working poor -- but Progressives abandoned that cadre 40 years ago. They weren’t cool enough.

      -keeping Guantanamo open

      BLAME THE FUCKING SENATE DEMOCRATS: Chuck Schumer, Kirsten Gillibrand, Arlen Specter (at the time) and James Webb. Throw in Dick Durbin as well. Durbin didn’t want the high security prison established for the inmates in Illinois, and the rest balked about having KSM’s civil trial in anyone of their precious states. When the Senate and the House passed a bill earlier this year requiring all Gitmo inmates to have military trials, Obama stated his reluctance to sign the bill and even added a statement as such to it.

      -Declining to support a larger economic stimulus or a second one

      Again, BLAME the Senate. But it’s so much easier to blame THIS President. Cut your fucking nose off despite your faces and vote with the Dark Side. Kucinich and De Fazio are the biggest tools the Republicans have in their box.

      -giving up the public option on health care

      The President never endorsed a public option, and besides, ONCE AGAIN, there were never enough votes in the Senate. NOT 60. Remember the Senate? Joe Lieberman, Ben Nelson, Blanche Lincoln, Mary Landrieu, Max Baucus? For the better part of the first year, Al Franken hadn’t been seated, and 59 minus 5 is 54 votes. Not enough votes for this. BLAME THE SENATE.

      -”foot dragging” on climate change

      AGAIN, BLAME THE SENATE. There was a bipartisan committee of John Kerry, Joe Lieberman and Lindsey Graham working on a bill, but Graham had a hissyfit and walked out. Besides, the President does not legislate, CONGRESS DOES? You know, I still pay taxes in the States, and if one of these lazy, whining asshats were saying this repeatedly to me, I’d find someone pronto to primary their asses. Why didn’t they start a bill about this? NO, because it’s so EASY for Big Daddy to do it. Give me a break.

      -resisting support for gay marriage

      Marriage is a civil union. There were other fish to fry before that came along the pecking order. DOMA is an act of Congress. It needs another act to repeal it. Think you’re gonna get that with this House? Think again. Obama knows there’s more than one way to skin a cat, which is why he’s instructed the DOJ NOT to defend DOMA in Courts. If the courts find it unconstitutional, it’s wiped out. AND marital law has ALWAYS been in the domain of the individual states as per the 10th Amendment. When DOMA’s thrown out and enough states pass this law, the others will follow suit. This is something that elementary lawmakers should know. If these cretins don’t understand that, what the hell are they doing in Congress?

      -surging troops in Afghanistan then withdrawing them too slowly

      He did exactly what he said he was going to do.

      -offering up too many budget cuts in negotiations.

      If they went back and read the budget cuts, which pertained to LAST YEAR, he’d find that, in reality, he only gave up some $300k’s worth of actual cuts.

      These people are just fucking STUPID. They don’t even deserve to have the title Congressman or Congresswoman.

      • whatsthatsound says:

        Okay, well said, and conceded. I still take issue with your charge of racism, and remain unconvinced, but both you and c-lady have opened my mind about the extent to which president Obama has to deal with attacks from the rear. It is unprecedented. I fear that we may see more and more of it in the administrations to come.

        • I think the internet, and the advent of 24/7 cable news has a lot to do with the perceived rise in criticism of Obama. We live in the “information age,” where opinions and criticisms that were not heard by the nation as a whole, are now being heard,loud and clear. The internet has made the world and our country smaller. There are far more opinions being heard now than there were a decade ago.
          Plus, the right has pretty much always marched in lockstep with right wing presidents. They have long shared a common view, without dissent from within their ranks. Democrats are different, because there is dissent among them. There are more diverse opinions and criticisms among dems, because for one reason, the dems are comprised of many different ethnic and religious groups. The right is not. They are pretty much of a singular type of people. Without much difference among themselves. Their brainwashing is more complete and broader in scope.

  8. ADONAI says:

    You should ALWAYS question authority. It is your DUTY to decide on your own what is the best way. Your RIGHT to speak your mind. I have no doubt in my mind Olbermann supports the President and will vote for him again. Just as I have no doubt he is a man with his own opinions. If you can’t take the heat, get out of the Oval Office. I have a ton of ideas myself on what the President SHOULD have said. I agree Olbermann’s an arrogant S.O.B. but an S.O.B. entitled to his opinion and with a right and duty to voice it.

    I can’t believe I just defended Keith Olbermann. I feel dirty.


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