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Tag: Barack Obama

Barack Obama
AP photo

And Now, the Hard Part

President Barack Obama’s inaugural speech was an inspiring call to national service. But you have to read it closely.

Posted on Jan 21, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Army / Staff Sgt. Jon Soucy

Obama Puts Gitmo Trials on Hold

President Obama has asked for a stay in all military tribunals at Guantanamo Bay while his administration figures out how to handle the legal cases of the detainees still held in the island prison. The move was welcomed by Human Rights Watch and the ACLU as a positive first step.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


Barack Obama
AP photo

Time to Get to Work

Tuesday was welcome theater, as profound as it gets—but today, as Obama has declared, begins a new era of responsibility and accountability.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


A Long Train Ride

Barack Obama rode to Washington, D.C., for his presidential inauguration on a whistle-stop tour, which was compared to the train ride taken by Abraham Lincoln in 1861. The train holds a deeper symbolism, though, that undergirds Obama’s historic ascension to the White House.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / seiu_international

Cabinet Confirmations: 7 and Counting

Well, Hillary Clinton will have to wait a little longer, but seven others whom President Barack Obama tapped to join his Cabinet had gotten the all-clear from the Senate as of Tuesday afternoon.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


Kennedy Collapses During Inauguration Lunch

An ailing Ted Kennedy experienced seizures during a ceremonial luncheon on Capitol Hill and was removed from the private function, according to reports. President Obama accompanied Kennedy from the room and then returned to offer a few words of support. The luncheon then went ahead, though without Sen. Robert Byrd, who was too upset over his friend’s seizure to stay. Update 2

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Saul Loeb, pool

Good Riddance

Say it with us: former President Bush. After eight crazy years, George W. Bush is escaping to Texas, where he plans to work on his memoirs and, one imagines, clear some brush. He leaves a nation in despair. Perhaps his greatest achievement was scaring America into the arms of Barack Obama. Heckuva job, Bushie.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


Obama Takes the Oath of Office

In case you missed Chief Justice Roberts bumbling the oath of office or you just want to relive the historic moment when Barack Obama became the nation’s 44th president, the first of African descent, here is his swearing in and speech in its entirety.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Charles Dharapak

The President of the United States

At noon Eastern Time, Barack Obama became the 44th president of the United States. His inauguration speech celebrated America’s history of progress, called for a new era of responsibility and rebuked the Bush administration’s abuse of the Constitution.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


Too Soon

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Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


Front-Row Seat

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Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Presidential Inaugural Committee

Thousands Join Obamas for Day of Service

It looks like Barack Obama’s national community service day was a big hit. Reports of thousands of volunteers are appearing in newspaper pages from New York to Philadelphia to San Francisco. Did you participate in your own community? Let us know in the comments.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


Giving Obama the Benefit of the Doubt

Rarely has a new presidency been greeted with such a consensus of good will—and rarely has a new president so needed it.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE


It’s Over—and Not a Moment Too Soon

George W. Bush promised to restore “honor and dignity” to the White House, but he leaves with less honor and with lower public approval than any other president since Richard Nixon.

Posted on Jan 20, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo

Still Dreaming After All These Years

Truthdig normally celebrates Martin Luther King Day by remembering the more complex, more subversive King—the man who railed against America as “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today” and “a society gone mad on war.” But a day before America inaugurates its first black president, we have other things on our mind.

Posted on Jan 19, 2009 READ MORE


Guantanamo
AP photo / Brennan Linsley, pool

Guantanamo Hearings Begin for 9/11 Defendants

The fate of the Guantanamo Bay prison remained unclear on the eve of Barack Obama’s inauguration, but all the same, pretrial hearings began Monday for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other prisoners implicated in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Posted on Jan 19, 2009 READ MORE


Ki-Moon
AP photo / Hussein Malla, Pool

Time for a War Crimes Tribunal?

It’s a wrap, a doddle, an Israeli cease-fire just in time for Barack Obama to have a squeaky-clean inauguration with all the world looking at the streets of Washington rather than the rubble of Gaza.

Posted on Jan 19, 2009 READ MORE


Obama paints
AP photo / Charles Dharapak

Obama Serves, Bush Works the Phones

As he prepared to enter the White House the next day, President-elect Barack Obama observed Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday by lending a hand at a shelter for homeless teenagers and visiting wounded vets at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C.

Posted on Jan 19, 2009 READ MORE


robinson

Bishop Robinson’s Invocation Cut From HBO’s Telecast

Here’s the footage of openly gay Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson’s invocation, which he delivered Sunday before the inaugural concert festivities began—and which was not included in HBO’s special broadcast of the show. But was it the network’s choice or Team Obama’s?

Posted on Jan 19, 2009 READ MORE


‘Anything Is Possible’

The president-elect has so much speech in him he doesn’t even have to wait for his inauguration to Barack the house. A crowd at the Lincoln Memorial got treated to a little pre-inauguration magic on Sunday, after a star-studded concert celebrating “American renewal.”

Posted on Jan 18, 2009 READ MORE


money bags
0-60mag.com

Bailout a Boon for Bankers

So, the government forks over a ton of money to flailing banks and, naturally, their customers (i.e., taxpayers) might expect to gain something from this helpful transaction as well, right? Guess again, customers.

Posted on Jan 17, 2009 READ MORE


Bush
AP photo / Manuel Balce Ceneta

Bush’s PR Blitz Fails to Move a Disapproving Public

Despite his 11th-hour bid to tilt the public approval meter slightly in his direction and put a good word in about his own legacy (see farewell address), outgoing President Bush has been slapped back by an apparently unimpressed public, as demonstrated by a recent New York Times/CBS News poll.

Posted on Jan 17, 2009 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Bye-Bye Bush; Bailout Mania

Ready or not, here comes Barack Obama—let’s hope he’s ready, considering the nature of the action items topping his presidential to-do list.

Posted on Jan 16, 2009 READ MORE


Holder
inquisitr.com

Holder States the Obvious

Attorney general nominee Eric H. Holder Jr. has announced a groundbreaking hypothesis on waterboarding: It’s torture. The position, which contradicts piles of Bush-era law literature defending the practice, is just one step in an avowed process to fix many of the problems riddling current Justice Department policy.

Posted on Jan 16, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Betsssssy

Bank of America, Literally

The taxpayers’ bank opened a new branch on Thursday: Uncle Sam just threw $20 billion Bank of America’s way. The government is also on the hook for $118 billion more in crap assets. Bank of America chief Ken Lewis calls it the “deal of a lifetime.” No kidding.

Posted on Jan 16, 2009 READ MORE


Fool Me Once

Somehow, immediately releasing more bailout funds is being portrayed as a self-evident necessity. Amid Barack Obama’s paeans to “new politics,” we’re watching old-school paybacks from a politician who raised more Wall Street dough than any other.

Posted on Jan 15, 2009 READ MORE


The District of Pandemonium

Our nation’s capital will survive the financial meltdown, the deepening recession and the plethora of foreign crises from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. Whether Washington will survive Tuesday’s inauguration, however, is an open question.

Posted on Jan 15, 2009 READ MORE


Bush farewell address

President Bush Signs Off

George W. Bush gave his last presidential speech to the American public in a farewell address Thursday night that offered him a platform to have the (first) last word on his time in office. True to form, Bush stayed the course, giving little if any ground when it came to defending even the most contested aspects of his legacy.

Posted on Jan 15, 2009 READ MORE


Who’s in Charge—Obama, the Pentagon or Israel?

The military is far too accustomed to getting its way, so it was refreshing to see Barack Obama reject the Pentagon’s sluggish withdrawal plan. But will he stand up to Israel, whose Prime Minister Olmert recently bragged about pulling the American president’s puppet strings?

Posted on Jan 15, 2009 READ MORE


Foreclosure
Flickr/respres

Nationwide Foreclosure Rate Shoots Up 81% in 2008

We knew this news was bound to be bad, but we didn’t think it would be quite this grim: The number of American homeowners who faced foreclosure proceedings in 2008 passed the 2.3 million mark, an 81 percent increase over the previous year.

Posted on Jan 15, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Army / Sgt. Whitney Houston

Obama Will End ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

Here’s what Robert Gibbs, Barack Obama’s top talker, had to say about whether the next president would work to end the military’s policy of discrimination against gay service members: “You don’t hear politicians give a one-word answer much. But it’s ‘Yes.’ ”

Posted on Jan 15, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / exfordy

The Party of No Ideas

Would it be rude to ask whether the Republicans have any new proposals to save the country from this worsening recession? If not, they should halt their reactionary opposition to Barack Obama’s stimulus plan.

Posted on Jan 14, 2009 READ MORE


The Shame Beneath Inaugural Hoopla

Sorry to rain on the inaugural parade, but we need to find a better way to pay for these things. The financing of President-elect Barack Obama’s big day is just as much of an embarrassment to the country as the financing of inaugurations past.

Posted on Jan 14, 2009 READ MORE


So, Just Who Is the Guy Taking the Oath?

Obama has made it hard for anyone to pin him down philosophically. So when he raises his hand on Tuesday, exactly what can the American people expect?

Posted on Jan 14, 2009 READ MORE


A Huge Opportunity for the Mom in Chief

What will happen if Michelle Obama makes the personal her political issue? What would a serious work-and-family policy look like?

Posted on Jan 14, 2009 READ MORE


‘Daily Show’ on Sarah Palin, AKA ‘Blamey Whinehouse’

Jon Stewart takes Sarah Palin to task for her postelection face-saving: “Is it really fair to ask a vice presidential candidate what things they read?”

Posted on Jan 14, 2009 READ MORE


Guantanamo protest
AP photo / Mary Altaffer

U.S. Fails in Human Rights Role

It is unsurprising that a group like Human Rights Watch has condemned the Bush government for jettisoning the U.S. role as a defender of global human rights: Numerous examples—Guantanamo, gay marriage, Iraq, etc.—accentuate this failure.

Posted on Jan 14, 2009 READ MORE


inauguraton memorabilia
AP photo / Jose Luis Magana

Here Comes the Change

Like many other people, I’d like to party all week when Barack Obama is sworn in as president. But this isn’t the year for it, not with unemployment rising and fear spreading through the land.

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


Geithner and Summers
AP photo / Lawrence Jackson

Wall Street Robber Barons Ride Again

Why rush to throw another $350 billion of taxpayer money at the Wall Street bandits and their political cronies who created the biggest financial mess since the Great Depression? And why should we taxpayers be expected to double our debt exposure when the 10 still-secret bailout contracts made in the first round are being kept from the public?

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


Nothing to Fear but No Health Care

Fifty million Americans are without health insurance, and 25 million are “underinsured.” Millions being laid off will soon be added to those rolls. At this perilous moment, we need sweeping New Deal-caliber changes, not the impotent tinkering that has been proposed.

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


Obama
United States Senate

Obama Threatens to Use Veto Against Bailout Dissent

Barack Obama made sure that anyone who might oppose his plan for rolling out the next part of the $750 billion bailout package understands that he means business: In a meeting Tuesday on Capitol Hill, he threatened to veto a possible disapproval resolution, according to Democratic senators who met with him.

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


The Drama of Reciprocal Self-Destruction

The people of Gaza and Israel suffer at the hands of leaders whose bewildering and savage decisions have no rationally achievable purpose.

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


Colbert

‘Colbert Report’: Aromatherapy for Our Economy

President-elect Barack Obama says he thinks he can find a way to fix the American economy, which leads top economic wonk Stephen Colbert to conclude that Obama might just need a little extra confidence—and the help of a strangely alluring body spray for men.

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


Afghan lookout
army.mil

The Afghan Scam

The vision of a reconstructed, peaceful, stable, democratically governed Afghanistan faded fast after the U.S.-led invasion. Most Afghans now believe that it was nothing but a cover story for the Bush administration’s real goal—to set up permanent bases in Afghanistan and occupy the country forever.

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


Clinton and senators
AP photo / Susan Walsh

Clinton: U.S. Must Use ‘Smart Power’

Hillary Clinton began the first phase of her official vetting session for the position of secretary of state Tuesday morning on Capitol Hill, where she made opening remarks and faced her peers on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee as they took a close look at her credentials—and her husband’s globe-trotting fundraising activities.

Posted on Jan 13, 2009 READ MORE


Beyonce
Wikimedia/Jen Keys

Stars to Come Out in Force for Obama

Barack Obama has been known to roll with the celebrity set (paging Oprah Winfrey), so perhaps it’s only fitting that his inaugural festivities will begin on Sunday with a show at the Lincoln Memorial replete with boldfaced names and HBO at the ready to showcase the event.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / tomsaint11

This Common-Sense Solution Brought to You by the 19th Century

Barack Obama wants to spend as much as a trillion dollars on the nation’s infrastructure, from roads to bridges. A video on his transition Web site even touts the economic advantages of fixing potholes. Why so car-centric? A new article in the Washington Monthly claims that spending some of that money on rail lines instead of roads could pay dividends.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009 READ MORE


Bush’s Short View of History

In his eyes, there’s “no such thing as short-term history.” It’s true that some presidencies look different after a few decades. But it’s also true that presidential acts can have immediate consequences—and Bush’s eight years are seen as a nadir that will take years to recover from.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009 READ MORE


One for the Workers

Hilda Solis does not have star power. What the nominee for labor secretary does have is a record of loyalty to those who work and want to work, and who wish to receive in exchange a decent wage and a measure of dignity.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Charles Dharapak

That’s Senator Burris to You, Bub

Although a majority of his state’s voters are opposed to his appointment (according to a recent poll), Roland Burris will be seated as the junior senator from Illinois. Senate Democrats had promised not to seat Burris but, true to tradition, promptly caved.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009 READ MORE


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