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And, yes, I DO take it personally: Glenn: "The administration has substantial leverage ... on those issues ... actually important to them"
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Saturday, June 26, 2010

Glenn: "The administration has substantial leverage ... on those issues ... actually important to them"

glenn greenwald has been engaged in a lengthy online and highly public debate with other so-called liberals and progressives (i would call them obama "apologists") who insist that obama isn't or can't fulfill much of his promised agenda because he is crippled by the essential powerlessness of the presidency... i happen to be in complete agreement with glenn... talkin' the talk without walkin' the walk is bad enough but when you're doing neither, it's inexcusable...

from time immemorial, people have been able to deduce one's real intentions and motivations from the behavior the person displays... as glenn so rightly points out, what are we hearing about closing guantánamo, about a genuine effort to restore human rights to detainees, about accountability for 4th amendment constitutional violations, about REAL - as opposed to cosmetic - financial reform, about the serious development of alternative energy resources, about a dedicated effort to get our country back from the corporations...? damn little... and what does that tell you...? it can only be one thing... the obama administration has chosen not to exert any effort in those directions whether or not they could be successful in influencing them...

The administration has substantial leverage to influence what Congress does, but they use it only on those issues that are actually important to them. And in those White House actions, one finds their actual priorities. The White House applied vast pressure on Congress to get what it wanted by having a war-funding bill enacted without conditions, demanding progressive provisions be stripped out of the financial reform bill, preventing drug re-importation from being enacted in order to please the pharmaceutical industry, negotiating the public option away with industry interests, and (to their credit) blocking funding for obsolete fighter jets. They exerted great influence over Congress because those were important priorities for Obama. By contrast, they do nothing on a whole slew of issues which they claim they support and which were at heart of the Obama campaign -- such as closing Guantanamo -- thus conveying to Democrats in Congress that they do not really care about such measures (or even oppose them) despite their public assurances to their base that they continue to support them.

at this point, as far as i'm concerned, there is no defense anyone can mount on behalf of the obama administration... actions have always spoken louder than words... much, MUCH louder, in fact, and i've re-learned a lesson i've re-learned so many times in my life as to be downright embarrassing: only pay attention to what a person says when and if it's backed up by congruent action...

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