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MurphTheSurf3 On September - 22 - 2014

Obama in front of Huge Flag

I spend a lot of time engaged in whack-a-troll at several websites. But one does get a little weary of all the Barack Obama naysayers..so every now and then I like to remind myself of why I continue to support him- not wholeheartedly, but by and large- which is about as much as I can say of  any leader who I admire.

* Nine presidents tried to get health insurance/heath access reform going (FDR, Truman, Ike, JFK, Nixon, Ford, Clinton, and Obama. Only one of them succeeded.

* Without Obama’s restraint, I am convinced that we would have had troops on the ground in both Libya and Syria.

* In spite of concerted efforts of his opposition to obstruct economic recovery, it has clearly begun.

* A solid work ethic enables him to handle multiple issues on many fronts: right now his administration is juggling Ebola (with the most robust response of any nation on earth), ISL (as the leader out in front of every other country in directly challenging the terrorist army and as the convener of a coalition- reluctant though it is- of states, doing the work of two branches of the government because of the absence of the Legislative Branch from Washington for much of the year, continues to push forward with measures to deal with the dangers inherent in CO2 emissions, and a host of other challenges.

* He does all of this while remaining a person of charm, and wit, and grace despite a level of nastiness from his political opposition that is unrivaled in the modern era in a time when cooperation between the parties has almost completely broken down and in which electronic media based propaganda shapes public opinion.

Politifact continues to do us a service in tracking Obama’s many promises at

Politifact is tracking 500+ promises made by Obama in setting out his agenda.

Of that number, per their research team…
45 Percent have very largely been kept
24 Percent have been partially kept as part of compromises
22 Percent have been broken/set aside by him
1 Percent are stalled in legislation
7 Percent are moving forward in legislation.


It’s an impressive record for one who has so much stacked up against him.

When I consider what I like in him
these characteristics stand out:

Mindful Decision Making

Written by MurphTheSurf3

Proud to be an Independent Progressive. I am a progressive- a one time Eisenhower Republican who is now a Democrat. I live in a very RED STATE and am a community activist with a very BLUE AGENDA. Historian, and "Gentleman Farmer."

130 Responses so far.

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  1. SearingTruth says:

    “Our last great hope is doing the same as our last great tyrant.”

    A Future of the Brave

  2. SearingTruth says:

    It’s not “You have nothing to fear unless you’re doing something wrong.”
    It’s “You have nothing to fear unless the government is doing something wrong.”

    A Future of the Brave

  3. M Cubed says:

    What will change in the Obama Administration when Eric Holder is gone? Will we see a new AG who is willing to go after Wall Street with some gusto? I will contend that the free pass the corporate miscreants were given by Holder will rank in the long run as one of the great failures of the Obama legacy.
    Additionally, I will have to say that the continuance of the covert culture of government spying on the American People, as well as our complete disregard for the principle of habeus corpus and individual rights in terms of the war on terror, will continue to be the rotting infestation of our noble Constitution. Has President Obama done all he could to eradicate this? Or is he trapped in that same trap LBJ was caught in when it came to defense of our rights in the face of the Republican onslaught and the great powers of the Military/industrial complex?

    • monicaangela says:

      During his years in private practice, Holder represented the Swiss private bank UBS. Because of this, he recused himself from participating in the Department of Justice investigation of UBS’s abetting of tax evasion by U.S. account-holders and the prosecution of Brad Birkenfeld. We continually allow the revolving door to bring in a spit out those that are connected with government and corporations. We need to stop this.

      As for the NDAA, I agree with you. I watched Hedges vs. Obama closely during the debate on what was in the bill and why the administration needed to sign it the way it was written:

  4. goleafsgo says:

    It is so good to read honest,positive posts about the President. Thanks Murph, for your reminder of just how lucky we, Americans and Canadians, are to have Obama as President in these very complicated, horrific and trying times.
    I am proud to remind trolls of his accomplishments, but it is very difficult to stomach the bigotry, the hate, and the lies that seem to fill the threads in online newspapers like HuffPo and the WaPo to name two. I really appreciate the conversation and how people like ChoiceLady, AdLib and others were able to use the facts and not name call or lie to make their points.

    Well done all!

  5. SearingTruth says:

    Gentle friends, many claim Obama is powerless to halt the violations of our Constitution because he couldn’t get legislation passed to stop it.

    In fact a few have even asserted that I was ignorant of the basic Executive, Judicial, and Legislative structure of our government.

    I don’t like to tell people what to think. Instead I try to give them observations to ponder, in hope that they will discover the truth themselves.

    But in this case it seems I must be more explicit. So please bear with me.

    Our Constitution gives us basic inalienable rights that cannot be changed without amending it. We cannot legally erase a Constitutional right by Congress, or Courts, or the President voting against them.

    And Amendment of the Constitution is an extremely difficult process, which is why it is rarely done.

    The Amendment must first be proposed either by both Houses of Congress approving it by a a two-thirds vote, or two-thirds of the State legislatures calling on Congress to hold a Constitutional Convention.

    Then, regardless of how the amendment is proposed, it must be ratified by the States. Again there are two ways to do this. Either three-fourths of the State legislatures must approve of the amendment, or three-fourths of the states must approve the amendment via ratifying conventions.

    So lets take for example the Fourth Amendment. Here it is:

    “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

    Very simple right? It certainly doesn’t allow for the universal surveillance of Americans without warrant.

    So when the Patriot Act was passed, claiming to nullify this basic right, it was not legal. The Constitution had not been amended to remove it.

    So the first duty of a President would be to inform the American people that this law was unconstitutional, ignore it, and assure that the justice department prosecuted everyone involved in trying to subvert the Constitution.

    So those trying to defend Bush and Obama’s unconstitutional conduct are floating on a sea of misunderstanding, or treason.

    No new legislation is needed.

    We just need someone to uphold the Constitution, as it stands.

    “The problem is that many Senators, and Representatives, and two Presidents, have committed treason against The United States of America.

    And they all plan to continue doing it.”

    A Future of the Brave


      Dear ST…I got all your replies but yet I am not able to follow them here.I am so happy you are not going anywhere.:)

      I’ve never touched liquor in my life as well I dislike the taste of beer. I have no idea what’s Newcastle Ale LOLOLOL..Beer, I guess.I can only tolerate and enjoy a very low alcohol degree white wine -- but it does get to me sometimes,especially if I am on one of those days, really pissed off about politics or if my husband decides to beat all the Casinos in the world.Which of course, he never does.He is now attending Gamblers Anonymous .Let’s hope for the best. I am overjoyed you are staying with us.

      PEACE be with ALL of us! XX Tatiana


      My dear S.T, you do not have to reply but are you seriously implying you would vote for Ron Paul or his son? Peace be with you.As you know, I am NOT an American and I think this is not my fight. But basically , I am against all things libertarian for the Koch brothers money have been funding them to further destroy and completely privatize your whole country.Have you watched Ted Cruz father’s video stating his son was anointed to be a king whereas he would them be entitled to collect all monies et al…..The guy is a total nut and IMHO, the fruit did not -- indeed -- fall far from the tree!PEACE.

      • SearingTruth says:

        Gentle friend EXFANOFARIANA, I am glad you are here.

        And of course I would not.

        I would never vote for a Republican, and as I said elsewhere in this thread, a Libertarian, who I described as a Republican on steroids.

        There are many passionate supporters of their beliefs on this forum. And sadly sometimes passion leads to anger, and name calling.

        But as you know I am used to opposition, and being called names.

        However, only on this forum have I ever been called a “troll” or “Obama hater”. It has been quite surprising.

        Unfortunately there are some on this forum that believe any who dare criticize Obama deserve to be misrepresented and crushed.

        I know that given their number it is difficult to determine what I said, and what they say I said, but I hope you will take the time to read my original posts, and the sometimes twisted responses.

        And please rest assured gentle friend, I have not changed.

        It is those who claimed that what Bush did was wrong, but when Obama does it it’s okay, who have altered their beliefs.

        “In the beginning the path of truth is often lonely. Perhaps another desperate traveler here, another there, but for the most part, a singular walk indeed. And yet truth has its way of piercing any veil of darkness, despite all plan and elaboration, and as always before the path is soon overfilled.

        In fact, it has been my experience that the greatest persuader is the ever encroaching power of truth.

        So do not despair fellow patriots. Instead, rise proudly, and simply tell the truth, and demand justice, until the truth and justice can no longer be denied.”

        A Future of the Brave

    • choicelady says:

      You are not surveilled without a warrant -- we stopped that pernicious practice in 2007. Your ‘data’ are no more linked to you than your phone number in the white pages. If it were to ‘light up’ with a link to a known overseas terrorist’s number, the NSA would have to -- HAVE TO -- get a warrant before even knowing you are.

      Give it up, ST -- you read the screechers but don’t do the work of finding the truth, searing or otherwise.

      • SearingTruth says:

        Gentle friend choicelady, sadly that is not true.

        When we were young, and looked in phone books, we could only find the specific person we were looking for. And we were lucky when we could find that.

        Now that everyone is under surveillance all the time, even if it were only phone numbers as you believe, the government knows all your friends, when you called them, how long you spoke to them, from where you called them, and from where they answered.

        And that in and of itself is an incredibly subversive and intimidating power.

        Especially if you were doing nothing wrong, and simply trying to restore justice to an unjust land.

        “The telescreen received and transmitted simultaneously. Any sound that Winston made, above the level of a very low whisper, would be picked up by it; moreover, so long as he remained within the field of vision which the metal plaque commanded, he could be seen as well as heard. There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment. How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork. It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to. You had to live -- did live, from habit that became instinct -- in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and except in darkness, every movement scrutinised.”
        George Orwell, 1984

        A Future of the Brave

    • kesmarn says:

      So whom do you plan to vote for in the next presidential election? Which candidate (in either party) would be acceptable?

      • SearingTruth says:

        Gentle friend kesmarn, anyone who openly, and credibly, declares they will restore our Constitution.

        And pledges allegiance to it.

        Otherwise no vote matters.

        “So much we have lost. So much we have surrendered.

        I wonder if we have lost and surrendered everything.”

        A Future of the Brave

        • kesmarn says:

          Rand Paul? Ted Cruz?

          Surely you must have some preferences at this point?

          • AdLib says:

            Kes, it’s amazing how little self-proclaimed experts on FDR and the Constitution actually know.

            For example, SS originally paid benefits only to the primary worker. So, as originally passed, if a husband receiving SS died, his wife and family got nothing more.

            If someone was disabled and could no longer work, they received nothing until they reached 65 years old.


            Of course, these huge gaps in the original SS law were later revised to provide for spouses and children and disabilities.

            But then that’s just the facts, that FDR didn’t pass perfect legislation that was uncompromised. Believing he rode on a unicorn is much more affirming to those who need it.

            • kesmarn says:

              “Them’s the facts,” Adlib! And as we know — even that highly imperfect version of SS was considered evil socialism and the first step on the slippery slope to hell by the GOP. (That same GOP that was “no different from the Democratic Party” to political flim-flam artists.)

              And to Harleigh, fear not. Little known fact: when FDR’s wheelchair was in the shop for tune-ups, he did indeed have a back-up unicorn in the White House basement that allowed him to trot around DC under a full moon, sprinkling fairy dust on various pieces of legislation in order to get them passed.

            • Harleigh says:

              They scratched the UNICORN!!?? Shit!

          • AdLib says:

            Kes, it’s kind of self-evident that this isn’t really a discussion about respect for The Constitution since only certain aspects of it that justify a particular agenda are cherry picked and others that dispute it are willfully ignored.

            It’s of course solely about pursuing that agenda, as you artfully describe and principle has nothing to do with it.

            • kesmarn says:

              Yes, AdLib, when FDR’s accomplishments are attributed solely to his magical personal powers, and the fact that he had an exceptionally supportive Congress is dismissed, we know that we’ve leapt into the Land of Fairy Dust and Flying Unicorns.

          • SearingTruth says:

            Gentle friend kesmarn, no.

            There is no one.

            Electing a Republican, or a Libertarian (a Republican on steroids), would shove the splinter deeper into our paws.

            I am a liberal, and still hope one will arise to deliver us from destruction.

            Although I understand that as every year passes, that is less and less likely.

            And by the way, I voted for Obama twice.

            The second time out of sheer terror, and desperate hope.

            “Let us hope that wisdom and truth triumph, no matter who may perceive it.”

            A Future of the Brave

            • SearingTruth says:

              Gentle friend kesmarn, If I had a dollar for everyone that accepted every crime that Obama has committed, when they condemned it during the Bush Administration, we would be at least equally rich.

              And that is one of the saddest truths we must face today.

              “Some proclaim we never had freedom.

              And shouldn’t miss it.”

              A Future of the Brave

            • kesmarn says:

              With all due respect, I wish I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard/read the statement that someone has “voted for Obama twice,” but is now sadly disillusioned. And that in the next election he/she will be looking to “vote for anyone who supports the Constitution.”

              There’s a Libertarian “playbook” making the rounds, describing techniques for manipulating liberals into voting for Libertarian candidates.

              Both statements are in it.

              But one quality that many liberals hold in common is that they’re not easily manipulated.

  6. RSGmusic says:

    The discussion in this article was / is very good.
    Somethings to consider,

    Bush 2 should be in jail.
    If Obama takes this up the country breaks it self apart. Also
    congress really has this duty.
    No president is above the law and all his ad-visors have the same obligations. This includes the rich and every citizen. Justice in america falls short in many aspects.

    Next git-mo and torture. Well the president tried to close it and was obstructed. You can say that not taking this away is a bad thing. Yes it is but Obama said he would never use it. Has he?? the word indefinite needs defining to really judge if it upheld.

    Surely Not everyone gets a trial for many reasons. it could be said we should really do this but do not because is it possible?

    Although ACA is not the best, it can be said 8 to 10 million signed up meaning 26 million to 30 million American’s are covered with an average family of 3.

    Not one president has kept every promise. So in Murphs article,
    Politifact is tracking 500+ promises made by Obama in setting out his agenda.

    Of that number, per their research team…
    45 Percent have very largely been kept
    24 Percent have been partially kept as part of compromises
    22 Percent have been broken/set aside by him
    1 Percent are stalled in legislation
    7 Percent are moving forward in legislation.

    How does this compare to other presidents?.

    Immigration reform not one bill has reached him to sign. this also goes for many other issues that really could have been solved except for the party of no.

    OH last on the war now. The president will be dogged and criticized for every thing he does right of wrong.

    So i say to the media, congress and all that posted.
    What is Your sure fire plan that will work?
    Will each of these above actually back what they say.

    For one to really judge how this president has preformed, one really needs to be in the presidents seat and all the pressure.

    Big reason that the country now has a lot of its problems.
    The supreme court is the most corrupt court in modern history on the conservative side. It is literally voting the republican party line and for the far right Christian religion. Religion has no place in civil law.
    The house is the most do nothing house in history corrupted by the conservatives and religion .

    The first amendment wording ( close )

    No religion can make civil law against another religion or non religion to the bias to their religion thus the separation of church and state.

    — Thomas Jefferson

    Thomas Jefferson’s word for the Bible?

    The Government of the United States is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion.

    Believing with you that religion is a matter
    which lies solely between man and his God,
    that he owes account to none other for his faith or
    his worship, that the legislative powers of
    government reach actions only, and not opinions,
    I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of
    the whole American people which declared that their
    legislature should ‘make no law respecting an
    establishment of religion, or prohibiting the
    free exercise thereof,’ thus building a
    wall of separation between church and State.

    For all those who say both party are bad.

    Where is the third party and its principals it stands for.

    Citizens united needs to be repealed.

    For the easiest ways to bring a government down is to BUY it or make it be ruled by religion.

    Prosper and long life to all here at planet Pov.

  7. monicaangela says:

    “Without contraries is no progression. Attraction and repulsion, reason and energy, love and hate, are necessary to human existence.”
    ~~~~~~~William Blake

    There are many things that could be said about the President, and this article that you have posted Murph. First let me thank you for posting it, it has given me an opportunity to reflect upon the many likes and dislikes I have for this administration. I chose the William Blake quote above to help express what I feel about the situation this particular president has found himself involved with since taking office. I believe we have seen progress under this president, and will continue to progress after he has left office.

    I agree with you that the President has done much with just his ability to get a health care bill through congress….then there is that attraction and repulsion aspect of it. I’m overjoyed that millions of citizens are able to get health insurance and thereby access to health care on the one hand, but on the other hand I am sorely disappointed that the bill allowed millions of Americans to be left out of the process because of states rights and the ability of states to refuse health insurance thereby health care to millions of citizens. These are mainly southern states and republican governors but the effect is still the same, the administration in power has in my opinion a duty to make sure citizens, all citizens are treated equal under law…this doesn’t appear to be equal. I along with many other citizens would have loved to see a public option or single payer so Love the fact that we do have a somewhat better health insurance program in the country, do love the fact that some restrictions have been placed on insurance companies, but dislike the fact that the bill dealt more with health insurance than it did health care.

    As for war, and his efforts in this arena I must say I am again in a love hate position when it comes to his administrations handling of this thing we call “war” sometimes and “conflict” at other times. I love the fact that he has followed the wishes of the ex leader and the people of Iraq and removed all but 1600 troops from their nation at their request. I hate the fact that we are still there occupying the Green Zone and protecting the interest of the wealthy of this nation and nations around the world…Should I have said oil interest? Anyway I’m sure you get my drift.

    I dislike the fact that we now have a new reason to commit our Air force and some specialized troops as well as CIA etc, to the new plan to rid the ME of ISIS, my reason being that the region is full of nations that stand to lose much more than we will if ISIS continues to take territory, but for some reason this president as well as all presidents before him in this era has decided it is the responsibility of the U.S. above all other nations to lead this effort, to even go it alone if need be. Yes, I know, we have somewhat of a “coalition” helping in this effort, but when will we realize that the nations, wealthy nations by the way that need to stand up and take control here are not doing their part, when will we allow those most effected to take a leadership role and stop always appearing to be the aggressor? This is one of the reasons I voted for President Obama, I thought he would be willing to change course from what we experienced with Clinton, H.W. Bush and W. Bush. Things in my opinion have not only continued along the same lines, but are getting progressively worse under the control of this administration, the Obama of 2008-2009, does not appear to be the same Obama we have today. I suppose it is the reality of the office and the fact that the President does not control the situation when it comes to foreign policy..maybe a wake up call for the President, who knows but that is a reason to like and dislike the efforts of the President for me, very conflicting views from his Senatorial days to what he is promoting today.

    On the environment, I believe the President could be doing much better and much worse. Yes, it is just that confusing to me. On the one hand he has done a lot to try to prevent pollution here and around the world, and on the other hand he has done a lot to allow the pollution for instance:

    The tools for global resilience announced by the President include improved and extended extreme weather risk outlooks to help avoid loss of life and property; data, tools and services to enable countries to better prepare for the impacts of climate change, including a new release of global elevation data; and an announcement of a new public-private partnership to ensure that the climate data, tools, and products made available by U.S. technical agencies are useful to developing countries. The President also announced a new Executive Order requiring Federal agencies to factor climate resilience into the design of their international development programs and investments.

    New international climate change partnerships in which the United States has played a key role in launching include the Global Alliance for Climate-Smart Agriculture, the Oil and Gas Methane Partnership, the Pilot Auction Facility for Methane and Climate Change Mitigation, and the Cities Climate Finance Leadership Alliance.

    These actions build on the President’s Climate Action Plan, which includes unprecedented efforts by the United States to reduce carbon pollution, promote clean sources of energy that create jobs, and protect American communities from the impacts of climate change.


    Then there is this:

    After energy giant BP (formerly British Petroleum) pleaded guilty to criminal negligence in the April 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster, which resulted in the death of 11 people and a colossal oil spill, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suspended the company’s right to acquire new drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico. The ban was widely viewed as a major setback for the company, which had long sought to dominate production in the Gulf’s deep waters. To regain access to the Gulf, BP sued the EPA and brought other pressures to bear on the Obama administration. Finally, on March 13th, after months of lobbying and negotiations, the agency announced that BP would be allowed to resume bidding for new leases, as long as it adhered to a list of supposedly tight restrictions


    So again I’m left to wonder. Also too, there is that pesky little thing called the Keystone Pipeline that the President just can’t seem to be able to make a decision on.

    To sum up, many likes, many dislikes but without contraries there is no progression. I am a supporter of the President, I realize he has had to undergo a lot more than most presidents because of his ethnicity, I also realize that he entered the presidency at a most difficult time and has through maneuvering helped to improve the economy but not for everyone. Just like his health care initiative, his ability to improve the economics of this nation has in the same manner made many wealthier while at the same time leaving many middle class families drifting into a status of poverty while the poor are getting even more poor. Is this how we progress? I suppose if you are in the top percent of this country you say yes. If you are not, you may be unsure, or even say no this is not the way the country should be bringing itself out of a recession, good policy just as a rising tide should lift all boats, if not then something is definitely wrong somewhere and the future will most certainly explain where.

    I wish the President God’s Speed in these last two years of his presidency, I pray that he will not over compromise his principles, I hope that he will before he leaves office pardon those that should be pardoned and that he leaves the office of the presidency in a condition much better than he found it so that the next president whoever he or she may be can have a better opportunity to deal with the issues we have here at home. Issues that concern the middle class and the poor, issues that concern us all, issues that deal with our infrastructure, problems with our transition from fossil fuel in order to help promote a healthier atmosphere for those that come after us, those interest, not the interest of the super wealthy who apparently have only one objective and that is to control the people, the resources, and the wealth of the world for their own benefit regardless of how it effects the lives of everyone else on the planet.

    • AdLib says:

      Monica, I have considered how beneficial a parliamentarian form of government could be at times here in the US but how disastrous it could have been during eras like the Bush Admin. In that form of government, Obama (and Bush) could have instituted laws without needing to compromise.

      However in our democracy, politics is compromise.

      To begin, the reason millions of the poorest in states can’t get onto Medicaid is because the Supreme Court ruled states have the right to deny it to them and Repub-controlled states have done so. That is despite Obama’s support for all the poorest people in all states being eligible. That isn’t his fault, in our system of government, the SCOTUS has the final say on legislation and though we all wish there was a way for Obama and Dems to go around them, there just isn’t (until a Dem President can replace at least one of the 5 Conservatives on the court).

      As for the terms of the ACA Act, those were negotiated by Congress and again, Obama could not unilaterally change them. However, as with Medicare and SS, the changes desired could be enacted by future Congresses and signed into law by future Presidents. Change is typically incremental, there is nothing preventing changes to the ACA.

      As for the US returning to war in Iraq/Syria, it isn’t desired even by Obama but it is a legitimate concern that if ISIS is allowed to continue to grow more powerful and murder more masses of people, that they may become a much greater threat to the civilized world including the US who they have sworn to attack. Can we afford to turn our back on them as we did with Al Qaeda and just hope the nations in the region will eventually fight and destroy them?

      That is quite a dangerous gamble.

      But the real reason Obama could feel a responsibility to act in this region is that it was the US, under Bush, who destabilized Iraq and brought ISIS into being. The US is Dr. Frankenstein and ISIS is the monster we created, can we just walk away and let them murder and dominate hundreds of thousands of innocent people because we’re tired of the war we started?

      All of these issues are complicated, many competing imperatives collide and one reason why I really like Obama is his ability to be flexible and reason out what could be the best way forward. It doesn’t mean he doesn’t make mistakes or do the wrong thing, he does, but I’d suggest that when you stack up the bad decisions of each President in our recent history, his are far smaller and far less severe. And his accomplishments are arguably the most beneficial to the majority of Americans than any other President in the last several decades (ACA, end of DADT and DOMA, The Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, The Consumer Protection Agency, killing Bin Laden, etc.).

      The best Presidents fight for the most they can get from Congress. They aren’t anxious to go to war but consider the long term implications of not acting while a dangerous entity gains power. They’re not perfect, they can’t control what bills Congress puts on their desk, there is only so much they can do.

      And with that understanding, I think he has done and is doing a remarkable job in extremely difficult circumstances.

      • EXFANOFARIANA says:

        AdLib, you must know I am a “parliamentarian” yet, re-reading your comment on what would have happened if Shrub had dissolved the Parliament requiring new elections…..HOLY SHIT!:)

      • monicaangela says:

        I realize everything you say about the ACA came to pass, but that is not the way the President campaigned in order to get the bill passed. Much of the problem and confusion about the ACA is due to promises the President made and did not keep. This leads many, myself included to believe he did not do all he could have done. Much of the negotiations for the bill were done in secret: Obama’s promise to negotiate health care reform in public sessions televised on C-SPAN. Promise Broken.

        — Barack Obama on Aug. 21, 2008, in a town hall meeting

        Obama promised televised negotiations for the health care law, but that didn’t happen. Instead, his administration reached agreements behind closed doors with the drug industry and hospitals. In Congress, some of the committee bill writing sessions were open, but the most substantial negotiations took place privately, before bills came to committee or the House or Senate floor. We rated this Promise Broken.

        When things like this happen, you lose the upper hand and often have to go along with many things you would not have to go along with when in negotiations with congress. Also too, when congress begins tearing a bill apart, you have less credibility and less opportunity to oppose what they are doing when you have done things in secret, things by the way that we still have no idea what was done and how these agreements were decided upon by the President, hospitals and the drug industry.

        As for the war with ISIS, do you really think this makes since? Really? This war is estimated to be costing 1.5 billion dollars a month, maybe more. Where are we getting this money…is it on the national credit card? I believe it is, that means future generations will be paying for this. We are putting ourselves in a position of decline, as every other empire has done we are spending millions of dollars a day on an action that we admittedly are saying will not eradicate the problem any way soon. We are at war with a terrible organization, this is true, but will our effort rid the ME of these groups? Should we continue this war without an act of congress? And again, even if we do, what will we do continue to run up debt until we are unable to ever take care of domestic problems because of it? These are my concerns. I don’t know what the answers to these questions are, I don’t blame the President for the creation of these groups, I just disagree with the manner in which he is trying to eradicate them. This is my opinion only. You could possibly be correct, maybe the President is doing the best job for the country, I don’t know the intelligence behind this, but again, I do believe we should not be continuing this war against extremist more than a decade after we began. There has got to be another way otherwise from my viewpoint we are going to be in perpetual war from this day forward, a war without end, just like the drug war, the war on poverty, and every other war we decide we are going to fight. How does this end?

        • AdLib says:

          Obama promised to pursue programs and he kept his promises. He did pursue them then he faced the reality of a Congress that said, “We will vote against any bill that contains all those things.”

          What should he have done, insist that the ACA must contain a Single Payer provision and all that he wanted and doom the bill so it would fail and there would be no reform?

          He did approach passing the ACA from a tough strategic position. I too wasn’t happy that he made a deal with pharma however, considering how they were the central power behind killing the last attempt to pass health insurance reform when Clinton was President, one can understand a strategy to disarm his main opponents to get urgent reforms passed…with a structure put in place that could evolve into accomplishing all he had promised and envisioned.

          Obama did succeed in getting Congress to pass health care reform, something that all previous Presidents had failed to do for around half a century.

          Would we be happier with a President who again failed to pass any health care reform but resisted all calls for compromise?

          We could be living in that reality now, over 30 million Americans still without healthcare, insurance still denied to millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions and healthcare costs rising by double digits annually.

          These are the real world choices, there never was a choice of having all of Obama’s policies from the campaign instituted exactly as he wanted. So judging him against that impossibility isn’t really fair. What President in history was able to have Congress pass all the things he wanted just the way they wanted? Why would we hold Obama alone against such an impossible yardstick?

          Politics is negotiation. No one gets everything they want and those who won’t compromise accomplish nothing. An all or nothing approach leads to nothing. That’s just the nature of the beast.

          I think it’s best to leave the Tea Partiers to seeing compromise as a sin, it’s doomed them to being more and more marginalized as extremists and the GOP to being handicapped in winning Presidential elections.

          • monicaangela says:

            My comment did not say I was unhappy with the fact that the President got a health care bill through congress. Don’t get me wrong, I am not unhappy with the President. I was stating my reasons for feeling the way I do about my understanding as to why he wasn’t on solid ground when negotiating with congress. We have to remember the fact that the President had a completely democratic controlled congress at that time.

            The newly amended bill eventually passed the House of Representatives at 11:19 PM EST on Saturday, November 7, 2009, by a vote of 220-215. The bill passed with support of the majority of Democrats, together with one Republican who voted only after the necessary 218 votes had already been cast. Thirty-nine Democrats voted against the bill. All members of the House voted, and none voted “present”.

            Are we happy with our politicians lying to us. Are we happy when a politician says he is going to keep the public informed and then doesn’t.

            I truly hope not. If we become accustomed to accepting lies from our leaders, we are doomed to get a leader that will not only lie but in the end will not even try to complete what he said he would accomplish are we beginning to accept this as the norm? Don’t we want our government to improve? It appears you have decided that this is the way politics work and the citizens of this nation cannot and should not do anything about it. If we don’t like the way our government works isn’t it our responsibility to try to change the way politicians who run the government operate?

            I’m happy the President fought in the end to get a Health Insurance mandate, but I would have loved to see him do it the way he promised he would. If he couldn’t, it would have been nice for him to give us an explanation as to why not. Are we the People of this nation or the Subjects of this nation, do we or don’t we have a right to know what the leaders of our government are doing? I say we do.

            I found it interesting the way the bill went to congress and was passed with most of them not even taking the time to read it.

            Am I happy we have the Affordable Care Act, you can believe for certain I am. I thank the President for his efforts, but I will forever believe he could have been more open with the public during the process. Again, my belief is that if underhanded negotiations need to be held in order for our government to work, we, the citizens of this nation should be about the business of demanding that change.


      Monica dear, the president did try endless times, to create more and more jobs and update the infrastructure of this country and he indeed is trying to raise the minimum wage much to his chagrin, only to bring a big gridlock by this worthless congress. And let’s not forget the blue dogs dumbocrats in the Senate.
      Murph has done an extraordinary job here, through and through on his limitations….And so did AdLib with great patience…. I gave up reading MotherJones for their constant blasting on the president because he did not accomplish more as a progressive would want.Just like Glen Greenwald -- who supported the Iraq invasion, and started throwing childish tantrums over anything president Obama could not get passed due the inefficacy of the republicans in congress. I believe is futile to continue to debate Murph’s view points. But heck…even if I disagree with you on this one, I stand by your side to express yourself freely.Hugs.;)

      • monicaangela says:

        Hello EXFAN!

        This comment is what I love about the Planet, we can agree to disagree and continue being friends, however I do not disagree with anything you said in your comment. In my comment I was expressing what I did not like that the President has done and what I did like. I tried to be fair and give him props for what he has been able to accomplish, while at the same time expressing my reasons why what he did accomplish did not go far enough. I as much as anyone realize the opposition he has had and I give him a credit for trying against odds when he did, however, sometimes he did not try, and he even went further than he needed to in order to try to accomplish a bi-partisan agreement with congress. I feel he wasted too much time on trying to pacify the republican opposition. I believe he could have done better by taking his case to the public. I also did not like his willingness to tie Social Security to Chained CPI. Again, I am not against the President, but I am not going to point out his accomplishments without admitting he has made a few blunders. He’s human, and nobody is perfect. I suppose he had his reasons, but that still doesn’t make me like what he was willing to do. That is what I am saying, nothing more. I take the good with the bad because I have to, but I will continue as does Mother Jones and Glen Greenwald to express my dissatisfaction with things I see he could have done better or should not have done at all. I believe he is far and away a better president than many that have come before him.

        • choicelady says:

          Do you remember that the President’s ‘offer’ to use Chained CPI (which has been massively overblown by Bernie Sanders who really OUGHT to know better) was tied to the GOP raising taxes on the rich? PBO knew the latter would never occur, so he ‘gave’ CCPI as a ‘trade’ to prove the GOP would do what would get them what THEY wanted by giving an inch on taxation issues.

          Understand politics and give up the faux outrage. It’s all horse trading, and a lot of what is out there is to make a point. The president did this to make a point and MADE that point. And CCPI is no longer an issue.

          Now -- how are you going to fund Social Security beyond 2023? If you want, as most of us do, to have the cap lifted on contributions, then go out and elect the WORST DEM you ever saw because the point of elections isn’t the individual but the HOUSE. If we could get back the houses, we’d move like lightening to get all you want and more. But to sit and grouse about how you didn’t get it all (and actually you did but can’t see it) so you’re not going to vote -- suicide.

          • monicaangela says:

            I’m so glad you believe you know what you are talking about.

            • choicelady says:

              LOL!!! Yes I do know what I’m talking about because I don’t take it from hair on fire blogs that LIE.

              Do we have CCPI? No. It was a horse trade that the president knew would NEVER be made but that gave the GOP no grounds for griping. They blinked.

              You want purity? Enter a convent. You want policy? Understand how democracy works. And read bills not blogs. A handful understand policy, and some sites -- Center for Budget & Policy Priorities -- provide analysis. One of the great things about PPOV is the degree to which FACT prevails here. Without that it’s all just whining, and that never has solved a damned thing.

        • EXFANOFARIANA says:

          Being friends mean RESPECT each other’s opinions even if we might disagree on some issues. I am an agnostic yet I accept and respect all people with faith….I have a libertarian friend, very very intelligent -- well he is a Mormom (;) -- with whom I disagree most of the time. He abhors MittRobme and says Robme is a MINO…..I happen to agree he bent far too much some times…one of them I clearly remember it was either the goobers way or the highway. Like extending wages for those unemployed…..Have a great one, my dear!


  8. GreenChica says:

    Thanks for the reminder, Murph. I’ve been feeling cranky with the president ever since he approved those damn sonic canons they use in the ocean to hunt for oil. I am still flummoxed by that. However, I agree he’s pulled off some amazingly progressive changes considering the saboteurs from the right and their billion dollar masters. I am a bit discouraged these days about our system’s sluggish response to environmental issues but I can’t think of anyone I’d rather have in the White House. I know in my heart that Mr. Obama is a genuinely decent human being and his family is spectacular. The thing I admire most about him is his calm, gentlemanly manner. (I like his smile too.) Surrounded by myopic hysterics on both fringes and a dysfunctional congress, he keeps his cool.

  9. SearingTruth says:

    Gentle friends, I hope someone remembers FDR and the New Deal.

    And that a President is not a weak and powerless pawn of injustice.

    Unless they wish to be.

    “Reality is the heaviest of burdens.”

    A Future of the Brave

    • kesmarn says:

      When F.D.R. took over the Presidency in 1933, the Democrats controlled 64 percent of the Senate seats and 73 percent (!) of the House seats, counting independents who were sympathetic to the party. And those numbers only increased over the next couple of midterms — during their peak during 1937-38, the Demorats actually controlled about 80 percent (!) of the seats in both chambers.

      This made all the difference in the world.

      Because in the way the Constitution has set up the government, if a president doesn’t have the support of Congress his hands are tied. The only way for him to consistently get his way in that circumstance would be for him to seize power and assign himself dictatorial powers. (He’d probably need the support of the military to accomplish that.)

      This is what is commonly referred to as a coup.


      • SearingTruth says:

        Gentle friend kesmarn, I disagree.

        FDR was a man of great principle, and compassion.

        At the time he ruled the Democrats and Republicans were basically the same, just as today.

        And yet he appealed to the people for both approval and protection.

        This, along with incredible political instincts and moral power, assured that he prevailed.

        I hope I live to see such power and compassion, married together, again.

        “My country is lost.

        All that remains are those debating the particulars of its dissemination.”

        A Future of the Brave

        • kesmarn says:

          If you truly believe that Republicans and Democrats were the same during the Great Depression, I can only conclude that you haven’t read any primary source material from that era.

          The GOP loathed FDR. The only reason he was able to accomplish so much is that voters for the most part loathed the GOP during the 30s. Only the wealthy and the deluded voted Republican then. And fortunately they were in the minority.

  10. SearingTruth says:

    “I am fighting for humanity.

    As others fight for politics.”

    A Future of the Brave

  11. SearingTruth says:

    “The state of our union is desperate, brutal, inhumane, and unconstitutional.”

    A Future of the Brave

  12. SearingTruth says:

    Gentle friends, all the excuses you are making for the crimes of Obama are the same as the excuses the right wing used for Bush.

    “I find myself constantly wondering what cherished American principle we will abandon next.”

    A Future of the Brave

    • AdLib says:

      ST, when one ignores all the facts people have presented that contradict one’s claims and one just repeats generic attacks against Obama…and those supplying the inconvenient facts…legitimacy is lost.

      Your claim that healthcare for 10 million who didn’t have it is a crime of Obama’s escapes reason. Trying to blame him for Congress’ failings and decisions makes no sense.

      If I’m wrong, please correct me but it seems more that you begin from a position of not liking Obama then try to apply whatever “crimes” you can attach to him as justifications for your dislike of him. Maybe it’s because you’d prefer someone far more liberal (who had dictatorial powers to make things happen that Presidents can’t), who knows, but most of the “crimes” you apply to Obama are simply untrue and reflect an unfamiliarity with the limitations of Presidential powers.

      You’re free to apply whatever claims you wish, to justify your feelings about Obama and to discount the folks here you disagree with but in the view of reasonable people, one only undermines their own opinion when taking such great pains to ignore truth and facts.

      • SearingTruth says:

        Gentle friend AdLib, I understand.

        It doesn’t matter if I plead on FOX forums, or PlanetPOV, most Americans have accepted that our Constitution, and humanity, are simply toilet paper to be used and flushed.

        So long as their favored politicians are doing the flushing.

        The crimes don’t matter anymore.

        Just who’s doing them.

        “It’s like letting the plague in, because we wished a few mosquitoes out.”

        A Future of the Brave

        • EXFANOFARIANA says:

          Dear ST your comments are ALL here and apparently you and MonicaAmgela share the same thoughts.You were not deleted.Sometimes, when you get too many votes down, some blogs automatically delete it. You must be having tech problems.PEACE.

        • AdLib says:

          ST -- You seem disconnected from conversation, just providing vague and nebulous references to protecting The Constitution as a response to whatever replies you receive. You refuse to acknowledge facts that are ironically, in The Constitution (such as the division of powers between the three branches of government).

          One can’t be a crusader for The Constitution if one refuses to acknowledge truths that are in it (it’s kind of a requirement). You’ve criticized others as disregarding the Constitution while you repeatedly disregard The Constitution in order to avoid admitting that your criticism of Obama is inaccurate. That’s a bit of a problem when one tries to center their whole argument on their superior respect for The Constitution.

          I don’t know why you don’t like Pres. Obama but it’s clear that you can’t provide many legitimate reasons for it, just false accusations which have been proven by several here to be untrue.

          No one has to like Obama, Bush or any President but many here could offer true and legitimate reasons for opposition to a particular President and they wouldn’t need to ignore parts of The Constitution to do so.

          Having to make up reasons to denigrate a President, distracting from one’s true reasons for harboring dislike is a bit unflattering and it’s doubtful that the perception others have of such arguments would be what was hoped for.

          • SearingTruth says:


            Okay gentle friend AdLib.

            Since I don’t agree with your “experts” I will give up.

            The United States of America was always intended to be a fountain of inhumanity, and our Constitution actually says that we were always intended to be a police state.

            And the Bill of Rights was just a college prank.

            And the President has nothing to do with anything.

            He just sits there, incapable of upholding our abandoned Constitution, but making sure his residence has the latest in fine furnishings.

            I hope that was enough of a surrender.

            “I hope I am not our last siren.”

            A Future of the Brave

            • AdLib says:

              ST, I don’t believe anyone here seeks a surrender or for anyone to change their personal beliefs or convictions.

              Speaking for myself, all I was hoping for was a simple acknowledgement of the actual and indisputable content of The Constitution.

              At least to clarify this, here is a description of The Constitution’s content from The National Constitution Center which was founded by an act of Congress, that summarizes the separation of powers as contained in The Constitution:

              Among the many powers given to the legislative branch, or the Congress, are the powers to introduce bills, collect taxes, regulate commerce with foreign countries, coin money, and declare war. The head of the executive branch, or the president, serves as the commander-in-chief of the U.S. Army and Navy, has the power to make treaties, can propose and veto legislation, and nominates ambassadors and justices of the Supreme Court. The president also appoints public officials, such as members of the Cabinet and heads of executive agencies, all of whom round out the executive branch. Lastly, the judicial branch, which includes the Supreme Court and lower federal courts, has the power to interpret U.S. law by issuing judgments in cases.


              What is explicit in the separation of powers, as contained in The Constitution, is that the President does not have the power to pass legislation, he may only propose or sign or veto legislation that has already been passed by Congress. Only Congress can pass legislation.

              Many of the “crimes” you allege that Obama is guilty of, are premised on the mistaken belief that The President has the power to pass legislation.

              The Constitution is very clear that this is not the case.

              Thus your listed “crimes” including the passage of the ACA without Single Payer, the passage of a bill preventing Obama from moving prisoners from Guantanamo, etc. are not within the scope of powers any President has and are not actions that Obama has done.

              The Constitution puts the power and responsibility for passing legislation in Congress’ hands. If you don’t agree with that then you are ironically at odds with The Constitution, which is your right but it does detract from pleas to respect The Constitution.

              I think it is quite clear where we both stand on this issue, don’t wish to beat a dead horse on this so I’m fine with leaving it here.

    • Kalima says:

      Those “excuses” you mention are actually facts, ST. It might help if you actually did some research on how your government works before accusing your President of anything. Choicelady should know and she has explained these same issues to you on several occasions, so why insist that they are excuses?

      You are entitled to your opinion but you are wrong about how much the President can do without the approval of Congress. I’m not even an American and I know that much.

      • SearingTruth says:

        Gentle friend Kalima, so Bush was right?

        And there was no reason to replace him or his Party?

        Or their ideology?


        “Our last great hope is doing the same as our last great tyrant.”

        A Future of the Brave

        • Kalima says:

          I can’t see how your reply has anything to do with what I wrote. I said that when someone who knows more about how your government works than any other member here, takes the time to explain it to you as choicelady has, your reaction is that what she and others here say, must be excuses and not facts. I find that rather disconcerting, so suggested that you might want to research how your government works before accusing the President. Bush has nothing to do with my comment above so why bring him up?

          • SearingTruth says:

            Gentle friend Kalima, if you believe that others know more about government, and humanity, than me, you should ignore my posts.

            And follow theirs.

            “And in that last moment, just before our eyes close for the last time, we are all one. No matter which side we thought we were on.”

            A Future of the Brave

            • Kalima says:

              Gentle friend Kalima, what facts are you referring to?

              I’m not sure if you are deliberately running around in circles or you just didn’t bother to read AdLib’s, choicelady’s or my comments, but instead of making up your own rules about how you think your government should work as opposed to how it actually does work, and criticising the President for imaginary wrongdoing, I recommend that you remember what he has accomplished despite the Right’s opposition.

              What Has President Obama Done? Here’s a List of 253 Accomplishments, with Citations


            • SearingTruth says:

              Gentle friend Kalima, what facts are you referring to?

              The claims of others that the President is powerless and not responsible for crimes against our Constitution?

              That is not a fact, it’s a simple lie.

              His number one job is to defend it.

              “I wish Obama would end the police state that Bush created.

              Like he promised.”

              A Future of the Brave

            • Kalima says:

              Sorry ST, facts are facts whether you like them or not, and btw, I wasn’t born yesterday so gullibility is not a part of my character, but you wouldn’t know that because you know nothing about me.

            • SearingTruth says:

              Gentle friend Kalima, take care when you believe others know more than you.

              “How tragic that any human would think they needed any leader, other than themselves.”

              A Future of the Brave

            • Kalima says:

              Hard to do when it’s part of my job to read all of the comments, and it’s a fact that choicelady knows more about the workings of your government than we do, as she works closely with many in government to try to bring about meaningful legislation for many people. As for humanity, I think that every member of The Planet shares this, and that’s why we are here. It’s not exclusive.

  13. choicelady says:

    I respect this president as the best of my lifetime. Thank you for making these points, Murph. I am watching him carefully work through the REAL threat of ISIL (I cannot get past the photo I saw of them killing people with a power drill) by enlisting and supporting the nations whose very existence as human beings ISIL threatens. It is NOT Bush Redux -- it is a withdrawal of imperialism and a stand on behalf of human rights that we support those nations in their fight against a vicious and demented force of evil.

    Trolls, right and left, are the knee jerk but thoughtless reactors of our time. Standing up to them is more important than it has ever been, and you are making a clear and unambiguous case for the transformational nature of this administration. Thank you!

  14. Dbos says:

    Good on you as usual Murph

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