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The Real Obama

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Posted on Feb 8, 2009

By E.J. Dionne, Jr.

Editor’s Note: This column was updated on Monday, February 9th to reflect recent developments.

It took less than three weeks for the real Barack Obama to come into view. He turns out to be both a conciliator and a fighter.

    These are not contradictions in his character. They represent different sides of a politician who sees some issues as more susceptible to compromise than others, and who wants his adversaries to know that his easygoing style does not make him a pushover.

    The sudden clarity emerged in the two best speeches of his short presidency and in the ongoing saga of the stimulus bill.

    Obama addressed the National Prayer Breakfast on Thursday with a warning against the use of religion “as a tool to divide us from one another—as an excuse for prejudice and intolerance.”

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    Obama did not cite Isaiah’s injunction that we should come and reason together, but it seemed to be on his mind: “For it is only through common struggle and common effort, as brothers and sisters, that we fulfill our highest purpose as beloved children of God.”

    That was in the morning. By evening, when the president spoke to Democratic House members in Williamsburg, Va., he had cast aside his efforts to placate Republicans who had no intention of reasoning with him on the stimulus bill. Obama had turned the other cheek often enough.

    “Don’t come to the table with the same tired arguments and worn ideas that helped to create this crisis,” the born-again campaigner thundered. “We are not going to get relief by turning back to the very same policies that, for the last eight years, doubled the national debt and threw our economy into a tailspin.”

    Deploying a preacher’s unapologetically judgmental cadences, Obama denounced “the losing formula that says only tax cuts will work for every problem we face.” He reiterated that argument in his Saturday radio address and will press it in speeches on the road this week.

    The Williamsburg speech let loose a great gnashing of teeth from those who seem to believe that bipartisan form matters more than substance. But the new tone reflected the very thing about Obama that has won so much notice: He’s a pragmatist who takes a method and tries it until it no longer works.

    Initially, Obama hoped to win broad Republican support for his stimulus package, but most Republicans preferred to bloody up this new, young president. Obama adjusted. If the GOP wanted a fight, he would not back down.

    Obama’s tougher rhetoric and the terrible new economic news helped push a handful of wavering senators to agree to a compromise stimulus bill on Friday. Still, there was a cost to Obama’s delayed response to Republican provocations. By giving conservatives a week to savage the House-passed stimulus, Obama weakened his negotiating hand.

    The changes made in the proposal to pick up votes from a few     Republican senators made it less effective than the House bill. Programs that would spur the economy—aid to fiscally ailing states, more help for the needy, spending on education and the environment—were cut back. Kept in were tax cuts with limited stimulative value that the Senate had added.

    Nonetheless, Obama staved off defeat, and the Senate bill is better than it might have been. A House-Senate conference should fix some of the inequities in the compromise, and its critics can use Obama’s own arguments to explain their insistence on a better final product.

    But fighting for his recovery program does not preclude Obama’s efforts to ease the cultural conflicts that have divided the country since the late 1960s. Obama is happy to wage war on right-wing economic theories and overpaid Wall Street executives; he does not want to pick fights with those who are moderate or conservative on cultural and religious matters.

    Obama’s own cultural instincts run right down the middle of the road. His politics are more neo-Truman than neo-Woodstock, more compatible with “It’s a Wonderful Life” than “Easy Rider.”

    He supports abortion rights but argues for fewer abortions. He supports religious liberty, but thinks religion has a legitimate public role. MTV loyalists love him, but he models a family life more likely to play on the Disney Channel.

    So Obama’s decision to fight Republicans on the stimulus bill doesn’t mean he’s lost his conciliatory instincts. It means he’s neither a chump nor a wimp. There are rank-and-file cultural conservatives willing to join Obama to end the feuds of the 1960s. But Washington conservatives, insisting that tax cuts are the one and only important matter in American life, are stuck in a 1980s time warp.
   
    E.J. Dionne’s e-mail address is postchat(at)aol.com.

    © 2009, Washington Post Writers Group


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By altlic, February 9, 2009 at 3:12 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther: “He won’t, CAN’T, change until there is a gigantic REPUDIATION of Bushite Business as Usual by the Amereican people.  It’s all that can save us.”

Exactly. This is where I think the focus of debate needs to be, not in demonizing Obama.

jonny: Americans are almost hopelessly fractured and isolated, culturally and individually. Let’s hope that there are some gifted leaders in our midst, a Ghandi or an MLK,  who can act as a catalyst to get things moving.

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By Max Shields, February 9, 2009 at 2:50 pm Link to this comment

Tony,

You’re such a pol. Our pathological economic system didn’t all of sudden go off the tracks because of George Bush.

What movement are you running with, by the way. The one that got Obama elected and who than hired every neoliberal, some neocons, kept Bush’s military honchos in charge and brought in much of the same warmongers who walked the halls of power during the Clinton administration. That movement?

You’ll coop every chance you get there Tony, just like a pol, shamelessly.

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By Tony Wicher, February 9, 2009 at 2:43 pm Link to this comment

Re Folktruther, February 9 at 1:25 pm #

“As Paul Craig Roberts said today in his article on Counterpunch, HEADING OVER THE CLIFF, people don’t understand the enormity of the unreality of the Obama team.  His entire effort is getting elected next time, following the Middle Way, while everything goes to hell.  He won’t, CAN’T, change until there is a gigantic REPUDIATION of Bushite Business as Usual by the Amereican people.  It’s all that can save us.”

I totally agree with Paul Craig Roberts, former assistant secretary of the treasury under Reagan, considered one of the fathers of “Reaganomics” and a 9/11 Truther. Actually there are several prominent Reagan Republicans in the movement. Here I agree with you that it doesn’t matter whether you are a Democrat or a Republican or neither, it only matters whether you are honest. So I say, as Paul Craig Roberts says, that there will only be a massive repudiation of Bushite Business as Usual by the American People when it comes out who perpetrated 9/11. This is the only real revolution, folks. Get informed, join the movement, get active, talk to your friends, talk to any qualified scientists and engineers you might know. The movement is growing by millions every year. More and more senior government officials are demanding an investigation.

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By Folktruther, February 9, 2009 at 2:25 pm Link to this comment

Yeah, your right, Max Shields, the problem is not Obama so much as the American power system, which is near of the end of its historical life cycle. 

Obama is just a public relations con.  He was nentored by Zbig Bryzinski at Columbia, spent a year being prepped at a CIA front afterward, and was adopted by Zionists at Harvard and U of Chicago.  Wall street gave him twice as much money as McCain.

Not to change Bushite policies, but to rehabilitate them.  He is continuing the wars, the neoliberal policies, the torture and militarized police state, all with his own inimimitable spin.  While the Zionist neocons chortle in glee over his appointments, the Dems say it is to early to criticize.  Dem leadess follow him blindly while he triangulates the whole fucking political process.

As Paul Craig Roberts said today in his article on Counterpunch, HEADING OVER THE CLIFF, people don’t understand the enormity of the unreality of the Obama team.  His entire effort is getting elected next time, following the Middle Way, while everything goes to hell.  He won’t, CAN’T, change until there is a gigantic REPUDIATION of Bushite Business as Usual by the Amereican people.  It’s all that can save us.

tony, you are getting to be as dingy as Sheronymous.  No power system is going to reveal that their regieme commintted mass murder on their own people.  Especially to initiate a Zionist inspired War on Terrorism that Obama is still pursuing. Try to get a hold of yourself.

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By altlic, February 9, 2009 at 2:24 pm Link to this comment

Max

I, too, was infuriated by Obama’s choices in finance, but I don’t think he is a true believer in the style of previous oinkers elected to POTUS. So I say again, if the electorate responds forcefully and organizes with intent, Obama will ride that wave and not resist it.

All I’m saying is, I think it’s a mistake to dismiss Obama as more of the same. Yes, let’s be realistic; but making him the enemy at this point is playing into the hands of the right-wingers. And I say again, the onus is now on the disaffected and zombified public to pull its head out of its consumption orifice and get mobilized. As far as leadership, we shouldn’t be counting on the POTUS to lead the revolution.

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By truedigger3, February 9, 2009 at 2:22 pm Link to this comment

“He turns out to be both a conciliator and a fighter.”

Dionne,

You are a hack who is no more relevant.
Obama is neither fighter nor a conciliator. He is
a politician who is working for big Money/Business and is doing what he is being told to do.
All what is going on ritht now is just pure bullshitting and theatrics and in the end big Money/Business well get what they want.
The Republicans and Democrats are engaged in a puppet show with the strings pulled by big Money/Business.
The specators of this show the average Joes/Janes
will get screwed big time.

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By Tony Wicher, February 9, 2009 at 2:17 pm Link to this comment

By 99jonny100, February 9 at 1:11 pm #


What is any one of us going to DO about it is what I’d like to know;

          x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x

Answer: press for an honest forensic investigation of 9/11. Inform yourself by visiting ae911truth.org and http://patriotsquestion911.com/. Speak to any architects, engineers and scientists of your acquaintance. This has to come out this year. There is hope! It’s up to us.

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By Tony Wicher, February 9, 2009 at 2:11 pm Link to this comment

Re Max Shields:

“As far as Tony W.‘s interest in putting science in it’s “rightful place” (whatever that is), that’s just the frick and frack talk of old style Dems countering old style Republicans.”

                x=x=x=x=x=

Max,

It’s not surprising that you wouldn’t understand what the rightful place of science is. Fortunately, there may be enough Americans left who do.

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By 99jonny100, February 9, 2009 at 2:11 pm Link to this comment

What is any one of us going to DO about it is what I’d like to know; everything is
all set to go. New World Order clampdown is under way, complete with militarized riot police and internment camps springing up everywhere you look. 30 000” illegal” immigrants are behind razor wire at the time of this writing. 
Your common antiwar demonstrators may join them soon! Let’s be realistic—has the time for “action” already come and gone?  Was our new Revolution just a fleeting dream after all? These are the questions I ask myself. European citizens
are marching or rioting over the same “recession” we’ve got. I don’t think
Americans have the stomach for it, under our new brand of fascism.

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By Tony Wicher, February 9, 2009 at 2:09 pm Link to this comment

Re altlic, February 9 at 11:37 am #

“I appreciate the insight and genuine desire for an enlightened US expressed by posters on truthdig. I appreciate the frustration aimed at triangulating pols and career-oriented “journalists”. I agree that Obama ia not ahead of the curve, nor is he the Pied Piper leading us out of the dark.

However, we are at a point in history where things are going to start moving pretty fast for better or for worse, and I believe Obama will respond positively when he sees the American public wake up out of their stupor and becoming a political force once again. I’m talking about demonstrations, civil disobedience, community involvement.

In other words, don’t be disappointed in Obama, but rather we should be disappointed in ourselves as Americans citizens, that we are still sitting in our denial and fear while the ship is sinking.

The longer we wait, the more hopeless it looks.

          X X X X X X X X X X

Pied,

I agree completely. So what should we be doing as American citizens? Answer: demand an investigation of 9/11, the most egregious crime in the history of the country. Flood all government sites with demands. Make appointments with your congresspeople. Do everything to make it possible for Obama to make this or allow this to happen. He can’t do it without our help.

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By Max Shields, February 9, 2009 at 1:24 pm Link to this comment

altlic

First, Obama has placed himself squarely in a corner.

His appointees are created or pushed along the economic and foreign dilemma.

As tsunamia becomes apparent it will be far too late for Obama, et al to do more than react to preserve the empire.

It won’t be possible, but that’s where all that energy you think he’ll use to begin the real changed needed will go.

This is not the past. This is NOW and we’d better get use to the dark and start creating a future, one that looks essentially nothing like the one we’ve all grown up with.

There will be less of the material world. That’s a good thing. We’ll have to become more acquainted with one another as human-beings.

But, let’s be clear, this is not about Obama. This is about a new world. The political system cannot match the demand for change which is needed, and will be ever more prevelent with the passage of time.

And that time is not far off, altlic.

As far as Tony W.‘s interest in putting science in it’s “rightful place” (whatever that is), that’s just the frick and frack talk of old style Dems countering old style Republicans.

The god of science is not our answer, though science can be good, it has given us through our application horrific endless war.

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By 99jonny100, February 9, 2009 at 1:05 pm Link to this comment

To Tony Wicher et al:  An excellent resource with many links to reputable sites
authors, scientific reviews etc. is 911truth.org. There isn’t much that’s out there
that isn’t covered. Heads up, and good day.

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By altlic, February 9, 2009 at 12:37 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I appreciate the insight and genuine desire for an enlightened US expressed by posters on truthdig. I appreciate the frustration aimed at triangulating pols and career-oriented “journalists”. I agree that Obama ia not ahead of the curve, nor is he the Pied Piper leading us out of the dark.

However, we are at a point in history where things are going to start moving pretty fast for better or for worse, and I believe Obama will respond positively when he sees the American public wake up out of their stupor and becoming a political force once again. I’m talking about demonstrations, civil disobedience, community involvement.

In other words, don’t be disappointed in Obama, but rather we should be disappointed in ourselves as Americans citizens, that we are still sitting in our denial and fear while the ship is sinking.

The longer we wait, the more hopeless it looks.

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By Dan D., February 9, 2009 at 12:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The economy seems to get worse every day, but that makes it all the more important to see that the stimulus is properly done—if it needs to be done at all. 

Is Obama making a mistake by not make a bigger effort to see that the stimulus bill is a bipartisan effort?

During the election Obama promised change, specifically change in the way the political system works. 

Wouldn’t a big part of this change be to try to get Republicans and Democrats to work together on a stimulus bill at this critical time in our nations history?

Stumping along the lines of what Obama has been recently saying amounts little more than I won the election so I have a mandate from the people so we are going to do what I want to do. 

How does that help encourage the Republicans to want to work with Obama? 

All of the elected officials—Democrats, Republicans, and Independents—have the mandate of the people that elected them otherwise they would not be holding office.

Obama’s line of reasoning that he has a mandate also forgets that he represents all the people that did NOT vote for him. 

Although they might not have voted for him he still has a responsibility to them as well to not squander their tax dollars and to not ignore the law makers that they have duly elected. 

http://www.weeklypoint.com/2009/02/09/obama-pushes-for-stimulus/

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By mjt01, February 9, 2009 at 12:12 pm Link to this comment

It wouldn’t be so bad if the so called “centrism” was only a matter of economic policies. The destructive, indeed suicidal tax cuts are insanity. But these are issues on which people can disagree. The opinions may be foolish, self serving, even pathological, but they are not criminal.

But there is criminal, and incredibly heinous behavior that is called “centrism” and “bipartisianism”. One of the most flagrant is over torture.Obama (no longer can I call him President Obama) has just announced his thankfulness that the British government is keeping its secrets about what was done to British citizens in Guantanamo. His administration has said that no CIA agents will be prosecuted for torture. It is pretty clear that none of those who ordered the tortures are going to be prosecuted.

Now, less than a week after these announcements, we learn that the tortures were not limited to waterboarding, but included other interrogation techniques like genital mutilation.


“The 25 lines edited out of the court papers contained details of how Mr Mohamed’s genitals were sliced with a scalpel and other torture methods so extreme that waterboarding, the controversial technique of simulated drowning, ‘is very far down the list of things they did,’ the official said,” Tim Shipman and Melissa Kite, report for The Telegraph.

How could he have ever excused such behavior? How could he have ever thought that this information would not come out? This is not just criminal, it is idiotic. Obama has earned the appellation Bush44. His behavior has come to the level of covering up gross criminal acts, some of which have quite apparently led to death. Bush44 is now a criminal.

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By Tony Wicher, February 9, 2009 at 11:45 am Link to this comment

Re Shift, February 9 at 8:25 am #


What happens in Washington is organized crime.  Dionne’s words do not address the crimes.”
       
            x x x x x x x x x
Shift,

The problem is that organized crime, corruption, exists deep inside our government, within our intelligence and security apparatus. These criminals stay while administrations come and go. Among the leaders of the gang who have been in government for a long time are Cheney, Rumsfeld and the neocons in the Project for a New American Century. This gang has been indirectly running “Al Qaida” since its inception. In 2000 this gang, which has been in government for decades, took over the presidency for the first time. They staged 9/11 as a pretext for invading the Middle East. The motive was oil, defense contracts and control of the world’s principal supply of heroin. Other fringe benefits included the multi-billion dollar insurance payoff to the leaseholder of WTC1, 2 and 7, Larry Silverstein.

The only thing that really matters now is whether 9/11 gets exposed or not. That is the real revolution. Everything else is a sideshow. It’s all or nothing now, and the next year will tell. With a new administration in power, will there be an honest forensic investigation of 9/11? There has never been one done by the U.S. government as long as the Bush administration was in power. However, such investigations have already been done by private organizations of qualified people. They prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the World Trade Center towers and Building 7 were brought down by controlled demolition. If this is new to you, or if you have dismisssed this as a nutty “conspiracy theory”, please visit the website of the Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, ae911truth.org. Watch the two-hour presentation by Architect Richard Gage. It is an elementary science lecture. He is joined by hundreds of other professional architects and engineers. There is also a site called Patriots for 9/11 Truth,  http://patriotsquestion911.com/ where you can find statements by hundreds of senior government, military and intelligence professionals who question 9/11. The 9/11 truth movement is gaining momentum and with a new administration, I believe it will break through this year. When this comes out, it’s not going to matter whether one is a Democrat or a Republican.

Obama has promised to restore science to its proper place and to restore honesty and transparency in government. That’s his real mission. If he really makes this happen, or allows it to happen, he will go down as the greatest president in history. If he doesn’t, he will go down as just another sellout bum. My attitude is to hope and pray that he is fundamentally honest and decent, understand what the is up against, and to give him all the help I can.

Remember that if this does start to come out the gang will not go quietly. They will engineer another incident of some kind, much bigger than 9/11, as Cheney has just threatened to do. That is, he “predicted” it would happen, but since he is “Al Qaeda”, it was really a threat.

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By Max Shields, February 9, 2009 at 11:35 am Link to this comment

Folktruether

I’ve made the very same commment upteen times here. Over half the pundit posters on this blog represent the status quo system. The arguments are trite “in-side-the-beltway” tit for tat.

First the Republicans say this, then the Dem pundits say that. Meanwhile, the whole friggin US of A is collapsing, bankrupt to its core and these posters like Dionne, and Eugene, and Boyarsky (the zionist) the list goes on just keep pushing the same crap they’ve been pushing for the last 40 years.

IT DOESN’T WORK DIONNE, ET AL. GROW UP AND FIGURE IT OUT!!! (but they won’t because this is all they know or care to know - it’s just to fu#cking cozy that way)

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By Folktruther, February 9, 2009 at 11:03 am Link to this comment

And you notice, truthdiggers, that this Dioone bullshit is purveyed by a PROGRESSIVE truther on a PROGESSIVE blog.  That is a major reason why the American people are so ideologically disoriented.  Their oppoistion is neutralized by their own poltical leaders.  It is this pseudo-Progessive bullshit that the American people must discard if they are to mobilize into a progressive force.

The Gops routinely support and endorse oppression, irrationality and violence.  One already knows that. What must be done is to discard pseudo-Progressives who gain credibility by attacking Gops, doing so while implicitly supporting conservative policies.  It is the pseudo-Progressives that are the first enemy of the Amereican people, and these must be defeated ideologically before we can take on the rest of the American power struture.

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By Blue Sun, February 9, 2009 at 9:37 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Ah, we have heard stirring speeches from Obama, both on the campaign trail, and now in the past few days.

But, I am reluctantly starting to agree with those in the Democratic party who, during the primaries, wondered if Obama had the fortitude to turn his stirring speeches and ideas into forceful action and truly changed policies.  So far, his desire to foster bi-partisanship or post-partisanship has been in brutal conflict with his promise to act decisively and strongly to enact a stimulus bill large enough and effectively targeted enough to have a real effect on our economic slide into disaster.

And, when push came to shove, it was not the stimulus bill that he fought the strongest for, but the bi-partisanship, not realizing that Republicans never have been bi-partisan, never will be bi-partisan, and consider any Democratic gesture toward bi-partisanship to be nothing but a sign of weakness.  It only spurs them to attack that much more viciously, believing (with some validity) that even as a minority, a viciously partisan party has more strength than a party trying to be conciliatory and inclusive.

Obama keeps extending his hand to the Republicans (and the “centrist” “coalition”) and, each time, only gets another finger bitten off. I hope that Obama learns his lesson before he runs out of fingers, but I am losing hope.

See Paul Krugman’s editorial today in the NYT, entitled “The Destructive Center.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/09/opinion/09krugman.html?_r=1&ref=opinion

It reminds me of a Jim Hightower quote that the only things you find in the middle of the road are yellow stripes and dead armadillos.

Methinks this compromise stim package is a dead armadillo, crafted by a bunch of people with all-to-prominent yellow stripes.

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By 99jonny100, February 9, 2009 at 9:36 am Link to this comment

What a surprise! To paraphrase the old saw: A hawk guarding the dovecote. Obama as hypocrite, foreign policy a la Bushies while “extending
the olive branch”...Give me a break, please. A lifelong pacifist, I won’t leave this
b.s. go under the radar. Our revered savior President. However hypocritical or plain mendacious, any democrat is an improvement over the B word .
We know all too well that the military madness promulgated by
the White House, Congress and Pentagon is out of control, and will be our
undoing. Unliike some, I believe our nation may survive. That’s if Big O turns
around for a Change, and drops the “dependence on foreign oil WARS”. With
appologies to EJ Dionne:  A different take on our “fighting” President.

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By Shift, February 9, 2009 at 9:25 am Link to this comment

What happens in Washington is organized crime.  Dionne’s words do not address the crimes.  The crimes are being addressed outside of Washington; therefore, the news is in the communities of America where change is taking place.  Life has become increasingly difficult in our communities for the last quarter century and now it is impossible.  People cannot afford food, clothing, transportation, medical care, and housing.  These are the things people care about. Forget Washington and the voices therein. Washington and Wall Street have criminalized our economy and nothing they do will save it.  It is in our hands, out here, outside of Washington.

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By coloradokarl, February 9, 2009 at 9:14 am Link to this comment

Everyone is reaching into the submerged log and feeling their way to the biggest yellow cat. The Obama mystery continues to create wonder for you all. This is a pleasant game of He said, She said, I wish, You Hope. SPLENDID !! Nothing will change until the unemployment rate and the Congressional approval numbers achieve balance. Say 12%. I think June is the Magic Month with a little summer Heat and humidity to inflame the passions of freshly sheared sheep, July promises to be a real Eye opener. The Carnival opens in the spring and the tickets are on sale NOW !!  “Step Right Up, Folks!”  Six tickets and the puke bags are FREE !

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By Erudite Ogre, February 9, 2009 at 8:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Huh.  I did not realize that Truthdig posted propaganda pieces.  This just sounds like another “No, really, Obama has a really smart, secret plan to do what we all want him to do!  Continue to pour your hopes and energy into him” reverential supplication.  Obama’s “pragmatism” was not what got him elected, it was his high principles and lofty promises, which seem more and more to be falling by the wayside.  Of course, he did not promise to end the wars or not bombard rural Pakistan, but he hoodwinked a lot of people into thinking that he would be different and take us in some new direction.  There is nary a hint of that in his actions thus far.

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By Louis Proyect, February 9, 2009 at 8:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Mr. Dionne’s commentary is exceedingly banal. Is he aspiring to assume David Broder’s responsibilities once he croaks?

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By SteveK9, February 9, 2009 at 7:55 am Link to this comment

Obama tried to reason with the Republican lunatics and learned that it is not possible.  Anyone watching the Republican primaries would know they have no ideas other than to ‘lower taxes’, primarily on their rich friends, and wait for the benefits to ‘trickle down’.  Obama needs to destroy these guys now and he will do it.  The Republican leadership is laughably inept.  Boehner is from OHIO! and is proud of having blocked a jobs creation bill—-I think Obama will know what to do with that.

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By KISS, February 9, 2009 at 6:56 am Link to this comment

“neither a chump nor a wimp.”  Maybe yes and maybe no, however, this is precisely what E.J. Dionne presents, more of the Washington crap slingers. Aligning themselves with the rest of the cheering press and avoiding the questions that are vital to Amerikans receiving the truth.
Why no questions as to Obama allowing torturing to go on. No question of Panetta and his desire for more dungeons and torture chambers. And why no comments to Obama not establishing the constitution to Pre-Bush? And why not question Obama as to why Bush and Chenny are getting a free skate when they should be tried in a court of, get this, LAW?

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By ThaddeusStephens, February 9, 2009 at 6:52 am Link to this comment

The article makes Obama out to be progressive liberal who will fight for the underdog-or so it seems to me.

Obama gave his stamp of approval to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan-

Obama was given a stamp of approval by the blokes on Wall Street and the banking industry-the same who brought us to our present financial crisis through 12-25 years of overly hyped investment schemes and leverage trickery that puts out 33$ for 1$ put in.

Obama has fawned and groveled before the Israeli lobby and continues to see that our armaments are used to oppress hundreds of thousands of Palestinians and Lebanese citizens.

Obama has named people to his cabinet who are all but neo-con in name and some actually are on track with the far right wing extremist camp.

If both progressives and right wingers dislike Obama its for very different reasons and the fact that we happen to agree that Obama is making a lot of mistakes does not mean we in the progressive camp carry water for the right wingers.

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By thebeerdoctor, February 9, 2009 at 6:12 am Link to this comment

BREAKING NEWS: The news is irrelevant. The hired hands are there to assure something that simply does not exist. The entire system has been exposed as a fraud, yet there is still tons of product to get pushed. Everybody is pretending to not be pretending.

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By FiftyGigs, February 9, 2009 at 5:58 am Link to this comment

Opinions about the future of television news (or the MSM) may be correct. I don’t know.

But I’m astonished by the number of liberal blogs and other channels of the “paradigm shift” which are echoing conservative propaganda. Granted, they’re echoing that stuff to put it down, but still, if the spokesperson is wrong, why in the world even give him or her the time of day, much less space on your website!

Liberal blogs have become Limbaugh’s (and Colter’s and Boehner’s) best promotional vehicle. I’m not sure I see the revolutionary innovation.

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By Verne Arnold, February 9, 2009 at 4:43 am Link to this comment

I would echo “Shift’s” thoughts but in a different way. E.J., I hear you on NPR and they have long since lost credibility for reporting “the news”. What they want is Pablum and what you deliver is what they want. Amy Goodman is getting at the real thing.
You (Dionne) should read the comments here; if you don’t you’ll miss some important input. You along with the rest of MSM are genuinely in danger of becoming irrelevant and your audience will go elsewhere. Some of us haven’t owned a tv for many years and we are active. There is a paradigm shift coming and it won’t be pretty. The times dictate things cannot remain status quo. 

http://whatintheworld-icarus.blogspot.com/

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By Shift, February 8, 2009 at 11:44 pm Link to this comment

Hey Dionne, you and your ilk don’t know jack shyt!  People are shaking things up and leaving you and others in the dust with your false conventional wisdom.  Washington is the problem and you are a part of that.  People dismiss your viewpoints as irrelevant because your words are irrelevant.  The internet has rendered you to just another voice in the ever increasing mix.  Sorry !

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By Pat, February 8, 2009 at 11:18 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is another example of why Barack Obama was elected President.  He shows he can stand up to the best of them when he needs to.  It’s time for the republicans to realize, “We The People” voted to rid our government of the past 8 yr policies and economic disaster.  They need to wake up and smell the coffee!!!

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