Two weeks ago in this space, I posted 90 Reasons Not To Re-Elect President Obama. It was inspired by a re-tweet I saw on Sophia Bush’s official Twitter account. In order to cling to all that unchecked executive power so he can kill even more innocent Muslims, hold many more against their will for years and years without trials, ruthlessly prosecute whistleblowers who expose his criminal actions while protecting those in power who’ve tortured and killed civilians among numerous other crimes, and continue to violate The Constitution at will, The American President has enlisted the help of conscience-free writers, musicians, actors and even comedians to each write an essay espousing one good reason why he should get another four years in The White House. It’s called 90 Days, 90 Reasons To Re-Elect President Obama. Rather than post them all at once (like I did for my own rebuttal post), each reason will be unveiled one at a time every day until the list is complete. (Closing in on its first month, the campaign is up to 26 as of this writing.)
After my own counter list was published, a follower of this site wrote a rather critical comment. I was accused of being unfair, one-sided, closed minded and urged to “tell the entire truth and not just the truth as you choose to see it”. Insisting she was “not pro Obama with blinders on”, she noted, “I so wish I had the time to sit her [sic] and debate the areas you are so wrong in because I feel you need clarification on many.”. One wonders why she didn’t just do that in her comment as another reader pointed out in his response to her.
One also wonders how common her sentiment is regarding the Obama presidency. If it’s wide spread, we’re in a lot of trouble. The bubble of denial his supporters willingly live inside is shocking considering how many of them rightly opposed President George W. Bush’s own criminal, authoritarian foreign policy. (I opposed it as well.) Consider the outrage over Iraq, Guantanamo, the warrantless surveillance scandal, Abu Ghraib and countless other atrocities. Whether they admit it or not, President Obama has gone much further than the last Republican President, as noted in my original piece. The American federal government is now killing its own citizens without any significant domestic legal consequences and thanks to a complacent media and indifferent public, there is no mass movement of outrage within the country to protest it or even stop it. How horrifying and depressing.
Back to that commenter for a second. I wonder why she didn’t respond to earlier critical pieces I wrote about Obama (and the American political system in general). Pieces like Corporate Stooge, The 1% President, The Death Of Liberalism, The Death Of American Justice, Drones, No Democracy In America, Vultures, Video Game Warriors, Occupation, Pity The Poor Murderer, Quicksand Of Indecency, Murderer-In-Chief, You’re Not As Smart As You Think You Are, What If They Were White?, What Happened To America? and Questions For President Obama, all of which apprently escaped her attention. 90 Reasons Not To Re-Elect President Obama was the culmination of all of those earlier entries. It didn’t just materialize out of thin air.
While one can despair for famous people like Sophia Bush and Roger Ebert (as well as that commenter) completely ignoring the ongoing criminal acts of this administration in order to endorse a murderer for President (only because he has far less heinous social views and policies than Republican nominee Mitt Romney), there is hope in the form of John Cusack.
Originally posted a couple of weeks ago on this blog, the actor’s interview with constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley (which follows Cusack’s critical essay in the same posting) has since been re-posted here. (I spotted it originally through The Huffington Post.) It is a must-read, especially for those stubborn folks who continue to live in the dark about what’s really going on in American politics today. I’m looking at you, Democrats.
There’s really no need to re-hash what’s specifically talked about in that piece. It speaks for itself and should be read in its entirety. But a couple of things do need to be said. One, how refreshing it is to have a longtime Hollywood actor not tow the Democratic line here but instead embody the best qualities of a conscientious objector not beholden to any tribal loyalties or self-interests. You wish more stars of Cusack’s calibre would speak up like this. (I’m looking at you, George Clooney. You, too, Ms. Bush.)
And two, much of what Turley and Cusack talk about in their discussion will feel very familiar to anyone who’s read even just one of my above-mentioned pieces or followed the work of Eric Margolis and Glenn Greenwald. All of us are covering the same ground here.
So, if my commenter/critic isn’t happy with my views on The President, I can only imagine how mad she would be if she checked out the commentaries of these other longtime professionals. They’re just as critical, if not more so.
So, if I’m one-sided and unfair to your hero, it’s because I don’t approve of governments killing innocent people. If I’m “closed minded”, it’s because illegally detaining innocent people indefinitely without proper trials matter more to me than a watered-down health care bill and a vocal approval (but no proposed national bill) for same-sex unions. If I’m “so far right” in my thinking (meaning overly conservative), why have I been equally critical of both Republican and Democratic Presidents regarding their super-aggressive foreign policies? And if I “speak one-sided half truth[s]”, it’s because the negative far outweighs the positive.
Make no mistake about it. The Republicans under Mitt Romney will not reverse this murderous tide. They will intensify it. And yes, their social views are equally as repugnant as their chicken hawk foreign policy. (I’ll never understand why old white guys care so much about abortion.) But why reward a Democratic President for being slightly less bad than them? Is that the standard we’re going for now? He orders the executions of Muslims without any shred of evidential wrongdoing but he loves the gays! America continues to torture in secret locations but the Affordable Care Act got passed!
You know what’s truly inspiring about unabashed Obama supporters? They’re not burdened with a conscience.
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Sunday, September 2, 2012