Taggen sie Thread.
Thank goodness for the tack, i have a couple friends that are on the Cool aid IV
Fuck this guy.
All I needed to know was he is a democrat from Illinois.
Obama: Supports extending the assault weapons ban. Supports national law against carrying concealed weapons, with exceptions for retired police and military personnel. Supports limiting gun sales to one per month.
Clinton: Voted for a 10-year extension of the assault weapons ban. Voted for requiring extensive background checks at gun shows. Supports licensing and registration of handguns, mandatory trigger locks for handguns, holding adults responsible for their children's use of guns, raising the youth handgun ban from age 18 to 21, limiting gun sales to one per month and allowing the Consumer Products Safety Commission regulate guns.
McCain: Sponsored legislation requiring background checks at gun shows. Voted against a 10-year extension of the assault weapons ban. Opposed legislation requiring trigger locks for handguns. Opposed 1994 crime bill, which contained the assault weapons ban. Has a C+ rating from the NRA.
The BEST we can hope for, for the next four years is a C+ rating from the NRA?!
1. Obama sucks.
That about cover it I think!
Don't forget that Obama is the author of that $845 billion global tax proposal that includes the banning of all small arms and light weapons.
He is also for every UN proposal and treaty, such as the Kyoto treaty.
Keep It On Topic... You Want To Discuss Something Else, Start A New Thread. Do Not Derail This One.
Sorry for the late edit, but this subject is too important to let it get hijacked or require people to sift through unrelated nonsense to follow the thread.
Apologize for all the edits, but I don't want this to fall through the cracks.
Part of previous edit...
Part of previous edit...
The American Conservative
Make the World Safe for Hope
Can Barack Obama, who campaigns as an icon of peace, actually be more bellicose than Bush? Yes, he can.
by Brendan O’Neill
Obama-mania is getting out of hand. Full-grown and well-educated men—from swooning Andrew Sullivan to the entire staff of GQ magazine—are developing “man crushes” on Barack Obama, going weak in the knees for his immaculately pressed suits, oratorical skills, and shameless hope-mongering.
“I’ve never wanted anyone more than I want you,” warbles Obama Girl in a song called “I Got a Crush on Obama,” which has been viewed over 6 million times on YouTube. Celebs are queuing up to fall at his feet. “My heart belongs to Barack,” says Scarlett Johansson. There’s a palpable whiff of semi-religious hysteria at Obama rallies. As Joel Stein wrote in the Los Angeles Times, “Obamaphilia has gotten creepy,” and its “fanatical” adherents are starting to embarrass themselves.
Actually, it’s worse than that: they are deluding themselves. Many Democrats have become so goggle-eyed, so insanely convinced that Obama is the savior of American politics (potentially rescuing both the Democratic Party from political ruin and America herself from the decadence and violence of the Bush era), that they are beginning to suffer political hallucinations. They fantasize that he is pure and righteous, a miracle-worker who, in a pique of rage, will overturn the conventions of neocon-ruled America.
The blind hope in Obama-as-messiah is most clearly expressed in the widespread delusion that he would be a “president of peace,” welcomed by a world eager to bury the warmongering ways of the office’s former occupant and renew its respect for America. Columnist Michael Kinsley praised Obama’s “valuable experience … as what you might call a ‘world man’—Kenyan father, American mother, four formative years living in Indonesia, more years in the ethnic stew of Hawaii, middle name of Hussein, and so on—in an increasingly globalized world.” But from my sedate Obamarama-free home in London, I’m not cheered by the prospect of this “world man” in the White House. Rather, I see him for what he is—or for what he threatens to become. Having never been stirred by the sight of Obama giving an MLK-style speech on the need for change, I can only take the candidates at their words. And Obama’s words are ominous indeed.
President Obama would be a warmonger. He would be a wide-eyed, zealous interventionist who would not think twice about using America’s “military muscle” (his words) to overthrow “rogue states” and to suppress America’s enemies, real and imagined. He would go farther even than President Bush in transforming the globe into America’s backyard and staffing it with spies and soldiers. He would relish the “American mission” to police the world and topple tyrannical regimes.
After eight years of Bush’s military meddling in the Middle East, if you want more war, vote Obama.
Two myths must be exploded: first, that Barack Obama was a principled and passionate opponent of the war in Iraq; second, that if he were installed in the White House he would resist the temptation to launch new wars and would instead usher in an era of peace.
Iraq is the Obamabots’ favorite faultline in the clash of the two Democrat contenders: Clinton supported the invasion and Obama opposed it. An open-and-shut case of one candidate being “for the war” and the other being “against the war,” right? Not quite. Obama’s position over the past five years has been strikingly similar to Clinton’s. And that ought to be an issue of serious concern for Obama’s army of acolytes and the peace protesters who have latched on to his campaign because, as Jeff Taylor pointed out in Counterpunch, “Clinton herself provides no substantive alternative to the neoconservative philosophy of the Bush administration.” Obama is little different from Clinton, and Clinton is little different from Bush.
Obama’s campaign frequently invokes his 2002 “speech against the war,” but very rarely quotes directly from it. Why? Because this mysterious speech—which has become the stuff of legend in Obamaphilic circles, talked about but rarely read—is a pro-war tirade. Yes, Obama described the planned invasion of Iraq as “dumb” and “rash,” but his overriding concern—expressed repetitively throughout the speech—was that the Bush administration was damaging the legitimate case for American-made wars of intervention and potentially making it harder for future administrations (Democratic, for example) to send soldiers around the world to depose unfriendly regimes.
Obama gave the speech at an antiwar rally in Chicago in October 2002. Perhaps nervous about being seen at a gathering of critics of American military intervention, he straight away outlined his pro-war credentials: “Let me begin by saying that although this has been billed as an anti-war rally, I stand before you as someone who is not opposed to war in all circumstances.” He reiterated his non-opposition to war another four times in the 921-word speech.
Then Obama went to Washington, where he obediently voted to fund the war in Iraq and opposed the withdrawal of American troops. In 2004, he even talked about sending more troops to Iraq to stabilize the country—he had the idea of a surge before the Bushies did. When he and Hillary Clinton had a chance to enact Sen. Russ Feingold’s measure ordering Bush to withdraw most U.S. troops from Iraq by July 1, 2007, both voted no. Both senators also voted against a June 2006 amendment proposed by John Kerry for the redeployment of U.S. troops out of Iraq. It wasn’t until May 2007 that Clinton and Obama voted to cut off funds.
It is a myth, pure bunkum, that Obama is a brave anti-warrior. He made a brief speech in 2002—peppered with reminders of his generally pro-war leanings—and then, like Clinton, used his muscle in the Senate to fund the war and extend its bloody duration. It is only during the past year, as he has thrown himself into the presidential race, that Obama has decided to pose as a long-standing, level-headed critic. As Taylor argues, “An adept politician, Obama began emphasizing his ‘anti-war’ stance as the war became increasingly unpopular among Democrats across the country and he began gearing up for the 2008 presidential campaign.”
But there is more going on here than Iraq-related opportunism. If elected president, Obama would make it a priority to smash the argument for non-interventionism and to rehabilitate America’s imperial mission to right the wrongs of the world.
His main beef with the war in Iraq is not that it has failed in its stated objectives, fomented terror, and killed thousands, but rather that it has made the American people skeptical about military intervention. “There is one … place where our mistakes in Iraq have cost us dearly, and that is the loss of our government’s credibility with the American people,” he says. Citing a Pew Survey that found that 42 percent of Americans agree that the U.S. should “mind its own business internationally and let other countries get along the best they can on their own,” Obama retorted, “We cannot afford to be a country of isolationists right now. … We need to maintain a strong foreign policy, relentless in pursuing our enemies and hopeful in promoting our values around the world.”
Those foolishly cheering Obama’s promise to bring the war in Iraq to a “responsible end” should recognize why he is planning this: not to liberate Iraq but rather to liberate the interventionist project from the “Iraqi distraction” and rebuild America’s military sufficiently to send its forces to hotspots around the globe. In a long piece for Foreign Affairs in July/August 2007, he argued, “After Iraq, we may be tempted to turn inward. That would be a mistake. The American moment is not over, but it must be seized anew. We must bring the war to a responsible end and then renew our leadership—military, diplomatic, moral—to confront new threats and capitalize on new opportunities.” He calls for adding 65,000 soldiers to the Army and 27,000 to the Marine Corps and vastly expanding their mission. “[D]eposing a dictator and setting up a ballot box” is not enough: Obama wants $50 billion to promote “sustainable democracy,” a gauzy scheme that aims to “build healthy and educated communities, reduce poverty, develop markets, and generate wealth.”
Yet for all his focus on the “politics of hope,” when it comes to outlining his program of international interventionism, Obama parrots precisely the Bush regime’s panic-packed arguments about the horrendous threats facing America. Paying tribute to earlier battles against fascism and Soviet communism, Obama said last year, “This century’s threats are at least as dangerous and in some ways more complex than those we have confronted in the past. They come from weapons that can kill on a mass scale and from global terrorists who respond to alienation or perceived injustice with murderous nihilism. They come from rogue states allied to terrorists and from rising powers that could challenge both America and the international foundation of liberal democracy.” Here, Obama the celebrated new Democrat sounds startlingly like the clapped-out dinosaurs of the neocon project. Like them, he compares today’s shoddy and stateless terror networks to the powerful regimes of fascist Germany and Soviet Russia. And like them he suggests that America is threatened by “weapons that can kill on a mass scale”—a dark hint at the much feared “dirty nuke,” the existence of which has never been established, either in al-Qaeda’s caves or in the nuclear facilities of Iran.
Besides plagiarizing the Bush regime’s book of fear-mongering, Obama embraces two other aspects of Bushite foreign policy: unilateralism and pre-emption. He argues, “No president should ever hesitate to use force—unilaterally if necessary—to protect ourselves and our vital interests when we are attacked or imminently threatened.”
Those expecting the age of Obama to bring a repudiation of the Bush agenda hope in vain. In a speech to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs last April he said, “We have heard much over the last six years about how America’s larger purpose in the world is to promote the spread of freedom.” The anticipated twist never came. “I agree,” Obama told the crowd. Turns out we haven’t done enough to mold the world in America’s image: “America must lead by reaching out to all those living disconnected lives of despair in the world’s forgotten corners.”
Making Bush’s foreign policy look nearly as “humble” as initially promised, Obama declared that America’s security is “inextricably linked to the security of all people,” opining that flu-stricken Indonesian chickens and Latin American corruption put Americans at risk. No, they don’t. Obama’s stress on how everything is interconnected not only sets up the United States to intervene everywhere, but it makes any coherent strategy impossible. If every problem is an American problem, how would Obama set priorities or address one crisis instead of another? It’s a question he hasn’t begun to answer.
Neoconservatives are only too happy to fill in the blank. In a Washington Post column entitled “Obama the Interventionist,” Robert Kagan celebrated the repudiation of the realist consensus: “Obama’s speech … was pure John Kennedy, without a trace of John Mearsheimer.” In 1996, Kagan co-wrote with Bill Kristol a Foreign Affairs essay entitled “Toward a Neo-Reaganite Foreign Policy,” which argued that U.S. foreign policy should seek to preserve “American hegemony” so that we can continue to fulfill our “responsibility to lead the world.” Obama has updated this outlook in PC, Democrat-friendly lingo: “The mission of the U.S. is to provide global leadership grounded in the understanding that the world shares a common security and a common humanity.” Little wonder that Kagan sees in Obama a kindred spirit: “Obama believes the world yearns to follow us,” he writes. “Personally, I like it.”
If President Obama pursued a neocon foreign policy, only with a touch more East Coast-style diplomacy than was ever employed by the Stetson-wearing Bush, that would be bad enough. But he might actually be worse than the neocons.
Obama continually criticizes the Bush administration for pursuing its interests on the international stage instead of spreading “values” and “principles.” He says Iraq was a war based “not on principle but on politics.” Yet if there could be anything worse than the Bush foreign policy, it would be Obama’s principled meddling. At least interventions driven by narrow interests and politics have some kind of endpoint: when the interest has been protected or the political goal realized, the intervention might come to an end. Obama, by contrast, inflamed by his self-defined “values” and motivated by a vision of good versus evil in which it is America’s role to lead the world toward its “common humanity,” would be more reckless and unwieldy than Bush ever was. There is nothing quite so dangerous as a well-armed leader convinced that he has an historic moral purpose on the world stage.
Barack Obama’s Inaugural Address wouldn’t require much work: George W. Bush delivered the first draft in 2005.
At this point I'd be happy with someone who will support and defend the Constitution instead of destroy it which starts with restoring habeas corpus, posse comitatus and complying with Geneva Common Article III and ends with prosecuting every telecom company except Qwest who violated every one of our 4th Amendment rights beginning 6 months before 9/11 until the program stopped once it was leaked as it was discoved to be illegal... hence Bush's demand for amnesty which the Republicans and cowardly Democrats were all to happy to facilitate. Prosecute the perjurers like Gonzalez and prosecute all of the Dem and Republican Senators who voted for the Senate Intelligence Committee version of the FISA bill that granted Unconstitutional ex post facto amnesty. Only about 24 Democratic Senators voted to uphold justice and our 4th Amendment rights, Obama was one of them, and we'd be screwed on any civil or criminal recourse for being spied upon if it weren't for the Democrats in the House who refused to capitulate.
I'm an Independent, not a boot-licking partisan, and I, for one, appreciate anyone who stands up for the Constitution, justice and right verses wrong. I'll praise whomever does something I agree with and kick them in the balls when they don't. We have laws and they should be respected - and campaign donations be dammed.
The day we actually get money out of politics, as in not taking "donations" or BRIBES to vote for amnesty for their illegal activities that should carry 10 years imprisonment per offense, is the day America will be America again. Whether it's drug companies, telecom, defense - whatever - is the day the people will matter once again. Until that day I'll support neither of these parties or their self-serving agendas.
"Part of me shares the enthusiasm for Barack Obama. After all, how could someone calling themselves a progressive not sense the importance of what it means to have an African-American so close to the presidency? But as his campaign has unfolded, and I heard that we are not red states or blue states for the 6th or 7th time in his TV ads, I realized I knew virtually nothing about him.
Like most, I know he gave a stirring speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2004. I know he defeated Alan Keyes in the Illinois Senate race; although it wasn't much of a contest (Keyes was living in Maryland when he announced). Recently, I started looking into Obama's voting record, and I'm afraid to say I'm not just uninspired: I'm downright fearful and I'd like you political intellectuals to address my concerns if you want my vote. Here's why:
This is a candidate who says he's going to usher in change; that he is a different kind of politician who has the skills to get things done. He reminds us again and again that he had the foresight to oppose the war in Iraq. And he seems to have a genuine interest in lifting up the poor.
But his record suggests that he is incapable of ushering in any kind of change I'd like to see. It is one of accommodation and concession to the very political powers that we need to rein in and oppose if we are to make truly lasting advances.
The war in Iraq:
Let's start with his signature position against the Iraq war. Obama has sent mixed messages at best.
First, he opposed the war in Iraq while in the Illinois state legislature. Once he was running for US Senate though, when public opinion and support for the war was at its highest, he was quoted in the July 27, 2004 Chicago Tribune as saying, "There's not that much difference between my position and George Bush's position at this stage. The difference, in my mind, is who's in a position to execute." The Tribune went on to say that Obama, "now believes US forces must remain to stabilize the war-ravaged nation – a policy not dissimilar to the current approach of the Bush administration." This makes me sick! Is there an explanation for this type of behavior from someone we want to lead our already problematic country into the next term?
You guys at the campaign say he was referring to the ongoing occupation and how best to stabilize the region. But why wouldn't he have taken the opportunity to urge withdrawal if he truly opposed the war? Was he trying to signal to conservative voters that he would subjugate his anti-war position if elected to the US Senate and perhaps support a lengthy occupation? Well as it turns out, he's done just that.
Since taking office in January 2005 he has voted to approve every war appropriation the Republicans have put forward, totaling over $300 billion. He also voted to confirm Condoleezza Rice as Secretary of State despite her complicity in the Bush Administration's various false justifications for going to war in Iraq. Why would he vote to make one of the architects of "Operation Iraqi Liberation" the head of US foreign policy? Curiously, he lacked the courage of 13 of his colleagues who voted against her confirmation.
And though he often cites his background as a civil rights lawyer, Obama voted to reauthorize the Patriot Act in July 2005, easily the worse attack on civil liberties in the last half-century. It allows for wholesale eavesdropping on American citizens under the guise of anti-terrorism efforts among other things. This was a huge mistake and a very contradictory stance. Where is this mans sense of principle? Liberty? I do not see change.
And in March 2006, Obama went out of his way to travel to Connecticut to campaign for Senator Joseph Lieberman who faced a tough challenge by anti-war candidate Ned Lamont. At a Democratic Party dinner attended by Lamont, Obama called Lieberman "his mentor" and urged those in attendance to vote and give financial contributions to him. This is the same Lieberman who Alexander Cockburn called "Bush's closest Democratic ally on the Iraq War." Why would Obama have done that if he was truly against the war?
Recently, with anti-war sentiment on the rise, Obama declared he will get our combat troops out of Iraq in 2009. But Obama isn't actually saying he wants to get all of our troops out of Iraq. At a September 2007 debate before the New Hampshire primary, moderated by Tim Russert, Obama refused to commit to getting our troops out of Iraq by January 2013 and, on the campaign trail, he has repeatedly stated his desire to add 100,000 combat troops to the military. Again where is this change we keep hearing about?
At the same event, Obama committed to keeping enough soldiers in Iraq to "carry out our counter-terrorism activities there" which includes "striking at al Qaeda in Iraq." What he didn't say is this continued warfare will require an estimated 60,000 troops to remain in Iraq according to a May 2006 report prepared by the Center for American Progress. Moreover, it appears he intends to "redeploy" the troops he takes out of the unpopular war in Iraq and send them to Afghanistan. So it appears that under Obama's plan the US will remain heavily engaged in war.
This is hardly a position to get excited about. I'd like to see these contradictions addressed in some manner and I'd like to also see some of this elusive change..
Class action reform:
In 2005, Obama joined Republicans in passing a law dubiously called the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) that would shut down state courts as a venue to hear many class action lawsuits. Long a desired objective of large corporations and President George Bush, Obama in effect voted to deny redress in many of the courts where these kinds of cases have the best chance of surviving corporate legal challenges. Instead, it forces them into the backlogged Republican-judge dominated federal courts.
By contrast, Senators Clinton, Edwards and Kerry joined 23 others to vote against CAFA, noting the "reform" was a thinly-veiled "special interest extravaganza" that favored banking, creditors and other corporate interests. David Sirota, the former spokesman for Democrats on the House Appropriations Committee, commented on CAFA in the June 26, 2006 issue of The Nation, "Opposed by most major civil rights and consumer watchdog groups, this Big Business-backed legislation was sold to the public as a way to stop "frivolous" lawsuits. But everyone in Washington knew the bill's real objective was to protect corporate abusers."
Nation contributor Dan Zegart noted further: "On its face, the class-action bill is mere procedural tinkering, transferring from state to federal court actions involving more than $5 million where any plaintiff is from a different state from the defendant company. But federal courts are much more hostile to class actions than their state counterparts; such cases tend to be rooted in the finer points of state law, in which federal judges are reluctant to dabble. And even if federal judges do take on these suits, with only 678 of them on the bench (compared with 9,200 state judges), already overburdened dockets will grow. Thus, the bill will make class actions – most of which involve discrimination, consumer fraud and wage-and-hour violations – all but impossible. One example: After forty lawsuits were filed against Wal-Mart for allegedly forcing employees to work "off the clock," four state courts certified these suits as class actions. Not a single federal court did so, although the practice probably involves hundreds of thousands of employees nationwide."
Why would a civil rights lawyer knowingly make it harder for working-class people to have their day in court, in effect shutting off avenues of redress? Please explain?
Credit card interest rates:
Obama has a way of ducking hard votes or explaining away his bad votes by trying to blame poorly-written statutes. Case in point: an amendment he voted on as part of a recent bankruptcy bill before the US Senate would have capped credit card interest rates at 30 percent. Inexplicably, Obama voted against it, although it would have been the beginning of setting these predatory lending rates under federal control. Even Senator Hillary Clinton supported it.
Now Obama explains his vote by saying the amendment was poorly written or set the ceiling too high. His explanation isn't credible as Obama offered no lower number as an alternative, and didn't put forward his own amendment clarifying whatever language he found objectionable.
Why wouldn't Obama have voted to create the first federal ceiling on predatory credit card interest rates, particularly as he calls himself a champion of the poor and middle classes? Perhaps he was signaling to the corporate establishment that they need not fear him. For all of his dynamic rhetoric about lifting up the masses, it seems Obama has little intention of doing anything concrete to reverse the cycle of poverty many struggle to overcome.
Limiting non-economic damages:
These seemingly unusual votes wherein Obama aligns himself with Republican Party interests aren't new. While in the Illinois Senate, Obama voted to limit the recovery that victims of medical malpractice could obtain through the courts. Capping non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases means a victim cannot fully recover for pain and suffering or for punitive damages. Moreover, it ignored that courts were already empowered to adjust awards when appropriate, and that the Illinois Supreme Court had previously ruled such limits on tort reform violated the state constitution.
In the US Senate, Obama continued interfering with patients' full recovery for tortious conduct. He was a sponsor of the National Medical Error Disclosure and Compensation Act of 2005. The bill requires hospitals to disclose errors to patients and has a mechanism whereby disclosure, coupled with apologies, is rewarded by limiting patients' economic recovery. Rather than simply mandating disclosure, Obama's solution is to trade what should be mandated for something that should never be given away: namely, full recovery for the injured patient. WTF?
Mining law of 1872:
In November 2007, Obama came out against a bill that would have reformed the notorious Mining Law of 1872. The current statute, signed into law by Ulysses Grant, allows mining companies to pay a nominal fee, as little as $2.50 an acre, to mine for hardrock minerals like gold, silver, and copper without paying royalties. Yearly profits for mining hardrock on public lands is estimated to be in excess of $1 billion a year according to Earthworks, a group that monitors the industry. Not surprisingly, the industry spends freely when it comes to lobbying: an estimated $60 million between 1998-2004 according to The Center on Public Integrity. And it appears to be paying off, yet again.
The Hardrock Mining and Reclamation Act of 2007 would have finally overhauled the law and allowed American taxpayers to reap part of the royalties (4 percent of gross revenue on existing mining operations and 8 percent on new ones). The bill provided a revenue source to cleanup abandoned hardrock mines, which is likely to cost taxpayers over $50 million, and addressed health and safety concerns in the 11 affected western states.
Later it came to light that one of Obama's key advisors in Nevada is a Nevada-based lobbyist in the employ of various mining companies (CBS News "Obama's Position On Mining Law Questioned. Democrat Shares Position with Mining Executives Who Employ Lobbyist Advising Him," November 14, 2007).
Regulation of the nuclear industry:
The New York Times reported that, while campaigning in Iowa in December 2007, Obama boasted that he had passed a bill requiring nuclear plants to promptly report radioactive leaks. This came after residents of his home state of Illinois complained they were not told of leaks that occurred at a nuclear plant operated by Exelon Corporation.
The truth, however, was that Obama allowed the bill to be amended in Committee by Senate Republicans, replacing language mandating reporting with verbiage that merely offered guidance to regulators on how to address unreported leaks. The story noted that even this version of Obama's bill failed to pass the Senate, so it was unclear why Obama was claiming to have passed the legislation. The February 3, 2008 The New York Times article titled "Nuclear Leaks and Response Tested Obama in Senate" by Mike McIntire also noted the opinion of one of Obama's constituents, which was hardly enthusiastic about Obama's legislative efforts:
"Senator Obama's staff was sending us copies of the bill to review, and we could see it weakening with each successive draft," said Joe Cosgrove, a park district director in Will County, Ill., where low-level radioactive runoff had turned up in groundwater. "The teeth were just taken out of it."
As it turns out, the New York Times story noted: "Since 2003, executives and employees of Exelon, which is based in Illinois, have contributed at least $227,000 to Mr. Obama's campaigns for the United States Senate and for president. Two top Exelon officials, Frank M. Clark, executive vice president, and John W. Rogers Jr., a director, are among his largest fund-raisers." Again here we see the whiff of corruption. WTF? Please explain. Demonstrate change.
On energy policy, it turns out Obama is a big supporter of corn-based ethanol which is well known for being an energy-intensive crop to grow. It is estimated that seven barrels of oil are required to produce eight barrels of corn ethanol, according to research by the Cato Institute. Ethanol's impact on climate change is nominal and isn't "green" according to Alisa Gravitz, Co-op America executive director. "It simply isn't a major improvement over gasoline when it comes to reducing our greenhouse gas emissions." A 2006 University of Minnesota study by Jason Hill and David Tilman, and an earlier study published in BioScience in 2005, concur. (There's even concern that a reliance on corn-based ethanol would lead to higher food prices.)
So why would Obama be touting this as a solution to our oil dependency? Could it have something to do with the fact that the first presidential primary is located in Iowa, corn capitol of the country? In legislative terms this means Obama voted in favor of $8 billion worth of corn subsidies in 2006 alone, when most of that money should have been committed to alternative energy sources such as solar, tidal and wind.
Single payer health care:
Obama opposed single-payer bill HR676, sponsored by Congressmen Dennis Kucinich and John Conyers in 2006, although at least 75 members of Congress supported it. Single-payer works by trying to diminish the administrative costs that comprise somewhere around one-third of every health care dollar spent, by eliminating the duplicative nature of these services. The expected $300 billion in annual savings such a system would produce would go directly to cover the uninsured and expand coverage to those who already have insurance, according to Dr. Stephanie Woolhandler, an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and co-founder of Physicians for a National Health Program. Not the solution I would want to see but far better than what the senator came up with.
Obama's own plan has been widely criticized for leaving health care industry administrative costs in place and for allowing millions of people to remain uninsured. "Sicko" filmmaker Michael Moore ridiculed it saying, "Obama wants the insurance companies to help us develop a new health care plan-the same companies who have created the mess in the first place." This is a major concern for me as government health care free or not will cost taxpayers a lot of money and will surely be mismanaged like every other federal department or program. Please name one that does a good job at anything? Just one?
North american free trade agreement:
Regarding the North American Free Trade Agreement, Obama recently boasted, "I don't think NAFTA has been good for Americans, and I never have." Yet, Calvin Woodward reviewed Obama's record on NAFTA in a February 26, 2008 Associated Press article and found that comment to be misleading: "In his 2004 Senate campaign, Obama said the US should pursue more deals such as NAFTA, and argued more broadly that his opponent's call for tariffs would spark a trade war. AP reported then that the Illinois senator had spoken of enormous benefits having accrued to his state from NAFTA, while adding that he also called for more aggressive trade protections for US workers."
Putting aside campaign rhetoric, when actually given an opportunity to protect workers from unfair trade agreements, Obama cast the deciding vote against an amendment to a September 2005 Commerce Appropriations Bill, proposed by North Dakota Senator Byron Dorgan, that would have prohibited US trade negotiators from weakening US laws that provide safeguards from unfair foreign trade practices. The bill would have been a vital tool to combat the outsourcing of jobs to foreign workers and would have ended a common corporate practice known as "pole-vaulting" over regulations, which allows companies doing foreign business to avoid "right to organize," "minimum wage," and other worker protections.
Some final thoughts:
On March 2, 2007 Obama gave a speech at AIPAC, America's pro-Israeli government lobby, wherein he disavowed his previous support for the plight of the Palestinians. In what appears to be a troubling pattern, Obama told his audience what they wanted to hear. He recounted a one-sided history of the region and called for continued military support for Israel, rather than taking the opportunity to promote the various peace movements in and outside of Israel.
Why should we believe Obama has courage to bring about change? He wouldn't have his picture taken with San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom when visiting San Francisco for a fundraiser in his honor because Obama was scared voters might think he supports gay marriage (Newsom acknowledged this to Reuters on January 26, 2007 and former Mayor Willie Brown admitted to the San Francisco Chronicle on February 5, 2008 that Obama told him he wanted to avoid Newsom for that reason.)
On September 29, 2006, Obama joined Republicans in voting to build 700 miles of double fencing on the Mexican border (The Secure Fence Act of 2006), abandoning 19 of his colleagues who had the courage to oppose it. But now that he's campaigning in Texas and eager to win over Mexican-American voters, he says he'd employ a different border solution.
It is shocking how frequently and consistently Obama is willing to subjugate good decision making for his personal and political benefit. Is this the man to be the next president? Is this a joke?
Obama aggressively opposed initiating impeachment proceedings against the president ("Obama: Impeachment is not acceptable," USA Today, June 28, 2007) and he wouldn't even support Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold's effort to censure the Bush administration for illegally wiretapping American citizens in violation of the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. In Feingold's words "I'm amazed at Democrats … cowering with this president's number's so low." Once again, it's troubling that Obama would take these positions and miss the opportunity to document the abuses of the Bush regime. Furthermore that he would pander to the bloodthirsty Israelis. Again I am sick. And this one gets me real fired up. These people in this administration have committed various crimes against humanity and impeachment is the least of what they deserve but Mr. Change wants to let them walk away from their path of destruction without even a slap on the wrist. I don't wonder why that is...
Medical Marijuana/war on drugs:
The senator has yet to state his real position on the use of federal funds and police force to put sick and dying people in prison in states that have legalized medical marijuana. Not only that but he has clearly stated several times that he would continue the failed war on drugs putting a burden on our already overstuffed prison system and drawing on more federal funds. Since the drug wars inception drug use has only increased in this country and the fact is Americans want drugs. According to a recent study by an organization within the government, the American appetite for drugs, of all kinds, is insatiable. You will never curb the American appetite for drugs via any means and any one who is serious knows this. I will refrain from diving further in on this as we have already discussed it in person and remember you offered me nothing but things I don't want hear which are out of touch with reality in every way. I would love to hear the senator offer up some change here?
Once I started looking at the votes Obama actually cast, I began to hear his rhetoric differently. The principal conclusion I draw about "change" and Barack Obama is that Obama needs to change his voting habits and stop pandering to win votes. If he does this he might someday make a decent candidate who could earn my support. For now Obama has fallen into a dangerous pattern of capitulation that he cannot reconcile with his growing popularity as an agent of change. He needs to wear one mask and not several.
I remain impressed by the enthusiasm generated by Obama's style and skill as an orator. But I remain more loyal to my values, and I'm glad to say that I want no part in the Obama craze sweeping our country. He is a fake and corrupt typical, but young, politician. What really gets me is that he will be put in office and 4 years from now everyone will be cursing him or singing his praises for saving their way of life while the rest of the world wonders what happened to the U.S.? I just want some proof that he really cares about the American people and not the military/pharmaceutical/industrial complex which runs the country now. Can he even be man enough to admit this is the case? Or will he use rhetoric to relegate the truth to the title of conspiracy theory or marginalized political crazies like most politicians do. The nation is waking up slowly and it may be another 4-8 years until it comes mainstream but it will. These cries for change from the senator are hollow; fill them up."
Part of previous edit...
Part of previous edit...
Part of previous edit...
Just a few selections C&P From Obama's webite:
Zero to Five Plan:
Obama's comprehensive "Zero to Five" plan will provide critical support to young children and their parents. Unlike other early childhood education plans, Obama's plan places key emphasis at early care and education for infants,
Obama will create Early Learning Challenge Grants to promote state "zero to five" efforts and help states move toward voluntary, universal pre-school.
Expand Early Head Start and Head Start:
Obama will quadruple Early Head Start, increase Head Start funding
Affordable, High-Quality Child Care:
Obama will also provide affordable and high-quality child care to ease the burden on working families.
Address the Dropout Crisis:
Obama will provide funding to school districts to invest in intervention strategies in middle school...
Expand High-Quality Afterschool Opportunities:
Obama will double funding for the main federal support for afterschool programs
Create the American Opportunity Tax Credit:
Obama will make college affordable for all Americans by creating a new American Opportunity Tax Credit. This universal and fully refundable credit will ensure that the first $4,000 of a college education is completely free for most Americans...
ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT:
Cap and Trade:
Obama supports reducing carbon emissions by 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.
Obama's cap-and-trade system will require all pollution credits to be auctioned.
Confront Deforestation and Promote Carbon Sequestration:
Obama will develop domestic incentives that reward forest owners, farmers, and ranchers when they plant trees, restore grasslands, or undertake farming practices that capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Invest $150 Billion over 10 Years in Clean Energy:
Obama will invest $150 billion over 10 years to advance the next generation of biofuels and fuel infrastructure...
Double Energy Research and Development Funding:
Obama will double science and research funding for clean energy projects
Clean Technologies Deployment Venture Capital Fund:
Obama will create a Clean Technologies Venture Capital Fund
Obama will invest $10 billion per year into this fund for five years.
Require 25 Percent of Renewable Electricity by 2025:
Obama will require that 25 percent of electricity consumed in the U.S. is derived from clean, sustainable energy sources, like solar, wind and geothermal by 2025.
Develop and Deploy Clean Coal Technology:
Obama will significantly increase the resources devoted to the commercialization and deployment of low-carbon coal technologies.
Obama will consider whatever policy tools are necessary, including standards that ban new traditional coal facilities, to ensure that we move quickly to commercialize and deploy low carbon coal technology.
Deploy Cellulosic Ethanol:
Obama will invest federal resources, including tax incentives, cash prizes and government contracts into developing the most promising technologies with the goal of getting the first two billion gallons of cellulosic ethanol into the system by 2013.
Expand Locally-Owned Biofuel Refineries:
Obama will create a number of incentives for local communities to invest in their biofuels refineries.
Obama's plan will reduce oil consumption by at least 35 percent, or 10 million barrels per day, by 2030.
Increase Fuel Economy Standards:
Obama will double fuel economy standards within 18 years, provide retooling tax credits and loan guarantees for domestic auto plants and parts manufacturers
Obama will also invest in advanced vehicle technology such as advanced lightweight materials and new engines.
Establish a Grant Program for Early Adopters:
Obama will create a competitive grant program to award those states and localities that take the first steps to implement new building codes that prioritize energy efficiency.
Provide a "Making Work Pay Tax Cut" for America's Working Families:
Barack Obama will restore fairness to the tax code and provide 150 million workers the tax relief they deserve.
Obama will create a new "Making Work Pay" tax credit of up to $500 per person, or $1,000 per working family. It will offset the payroll tax on the first $8,100 of their earnings while
The "Making Work Pay" tax credit will completely eliminate income taxes for 10 million Americans.
The tax credit will also provide relief to self-employed small business owners who struggle to pay both the employee and employer portion of the payroll tax. The "Making Work Pay" tax credit offsets some of this self-employment tax as well.
Provide a Living Wage:
...Even though the minimum wage will rise to $7.25 an hour by 2009, the minimum wage's real purchasing power will still be below what it was in 1968.
Obama would further raise the minimum wage, index it to inflation and increase the Earned Income Tax Credit to make sure that full-time workers can earn a living wage that allows them to raise their families and pay for basic needs such as food, transportation, and housing -- things so many people take for granted.
Expand the Earned Income Tax Credit:
Obama will reward work by increasing the number of working parents eligible for EITC benefits, increasing the benefit available to parents who support their children through child support payments, and reducing the EITC marriage penalty which hurts low-income families.
Under the Obama plan, full-time workers making minimum wage would get an EITC benefit up to $555, more than three times greater than the $175 benefit they get today. If the workers are responsibly supporting their children on child support, the Obama plan would give those workers a benefit of $1,110.
Expand Paid Sick Days:
Obama will require that employers provide seven paid sick days per year.
Expand the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA):
The FMLA covers only certain employees of employers with 50 or more employees. Barack Obama will expand the FMLA to cover businesses with 25 or more employees.
Barack Obama will expand the FMLA to cover more purposes as well, including allowing workers to take leave for elder care needs; allowing parents up to 24 hours of leave each year to participate in their children's academic activities at school; allowing leave to be taken for purposes of caring for individuals who reside in their home for 6 months or more; and expanding FMLA to cover leave for employees to address domestic violence and sexual assault.
Encourage States to Adopt Paid Leave:
Barack Obama will initiate a 50 state strategy to encourage all of the states to adopt paid-leave systems.
Obama will provide a $1.5 billion fund to assist states with start-up costs and to help states offset the costs for employees and employers.
Expand the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit:
The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit provides too little relief to families that struggle to afford child care expenses. Barack Obama will reform the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit by making it refundable and allowing low-income families to receive up to a 50 percent credit for their child care expenses.
Protect Against Caregiver Discrimination:
Workers with family obligations often are discriminated against in the workplace. Barack Obama will commit the government to enforcing recently-enacted Equal Employment Opportunity Commission guidelines on caregiver discrimination.
Expand Flexible Work Arrangements:
Barack Obama will address this concern by creating a program to inform businesses about the benefits of flexible work schedules for productivity and establishing positive workplaces; helping businesses create flexible work opportunities; and increasing federal incentives for telecommuting.
Obama will also make the federal government a model employer in terms of adopting flexible work schedules and permitting employees to petition to request flexible arrangements.
Support Job Creation:
Barack Obama believes we need to double federal funding for basic research and make the research and development tax credit permanent to help create high-paying, secure jobs.
Create New Job Training Programs for Clean Technologies:
The Obama plan will increase funding for federal workforce training programs and direct these programs to incorporate green technologies training...Obama will also create an energy-focused youth jobs program to invest in disconnected and disadvantaged youth.
Boost the Renewable Energy Sector and Create New Jobs:
The Obama plan will create new federal policies, and expand existing ones, that have been proven to create new American jobs. Obama will create a federal Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) that will require 25 percent of American electricity be derived from renewable sources by 2025...
Create a Universal Mortgage Credit:
Obama will create a 10 percent universal mortgage credit to provide homeowners who do not itemize tax relief. This credit will provide an average of $500 to 10 million homeowners, the majority of whom earn less than $50,000 per year.
Create Fund to Help Homeowners Avoid Foreclosures:
Obama will create a fund to help people refinance their mortgages and provide comprehensive supports to innocent homeowners. The fund will be partially paid for by Obama's increased penalties on lenders who act irresponsibly and commit fraud.
Combat Employment Discrimination:
Obama will work to overturn the Supreme Court's recent ruling that curtails racial minorities' and women's ability to challenge pay discrimination.
Obama will also pass the Fair Pay Act to ensure that women receive equal pay for equal work.
Expand Hate Crimes Statutes:
Obama will strengthen federal hate crimes legislation and reinvigorate enforcement at the Department of Justice's Criminal Section.
Reduce Crime Recidivism by Providing Ex-Offender Support:
Obama will provide job training, substance abuse and mental health counseling to ex-offenders, so that they are successfully re-integrated into society.
Obama will also create a prison-to-work incentive program to improve ex-offender employment and job retention rates.
Reverse Bush Tax Cuts for the Wealthy:
Obama will protect tax cuts for poor and middle class families, but he will reverse most of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest taxpayers.
Cut Pork Barrel Spending:
Obama introduced and passed bipartisan legislation that would require more disclosure and transparency for special-interest earmarks. Obama believes that spending that cannot withstand public scrutiny cannot be justified.
Obama will slash earmarks to no greater than year 2001 levels and ensure all spending decisions are open to the public.
Make Government Spending More Accountable and Efficient:
Obama will ensure that federal contracts over $25,000 are competitively bid.
End Wasteful Government Spending:
Obama will stop funding wasteful, obsolete federal government programs that make no financial sense.
Obama has called for an end to subsidies for oil and gas companies that are enjoying record profits, as well as the elimination of subsidies to the private student loan industry which has repeatedly used unethical business practices.
Obama will also tackle wasteful spending in the Medicare program.
End Tax Haven Abuse:
Obama will give the Treasury Department the tools it needs to stop the abuse of tax shelters and offshore tax havens and help close the $350 billion tax gap between taxes owed and taxes paid.
Obama's Plan to Cover Uninsured Americans:
Obama will make available a new national health plan to all Americans, including the self-employed and small businesses, to buy affordable health coverage that is similar to the plan available to members of Congress.
National Health Insurance Exchange:
The Obama plan will create a National Health Insurance Exchange to help individuals who wish to purchase a private insurance plan. The Exchange will act as a watchdog group and help reform the private insurance market by creating rules and standards for participating insurance plans to ensure fairness and to make individual coverage more affordable and accessible. Insurers would have to issue every applicant a policy, and charge fair and stable premiums that will not depend upon health status. The Exchange will require that all the plans offered are at least as generous as the new public plan and have the same standards for quality and efficiency.
Employers that do not offer or make a meaningful contribution to the cost of quality health coverage for their employees will be required to contribute a percentage of payroll toward the costs of the national plan. Small employers that meet certain revenue thresholds will be exempt.
Mandatory Coverage of Children:
Obama will require that all children have health care coverage. Obama will expand the number of options for young adults to get coverage, including allowing young people up to age 25 to continue coverage through their parents' plans.
Expansion Of Medicaid and SCHIP:
Obama will expand eligibility for the Medicaid and SCHIP programs and ensure that these programs continue to serve their critical safety net function.
Help Americans Grab a Hold of and Climb the Job Ladder:
Obama will invest $1 billion over five years in transitional jobs and career pathway programs that implement proven methods of helping low-income Americans succeed in the workforce.
Create a Green Jobs Corps:
Obama will create a program to directly engage disadvantaged youth in energy efficiency opportunities to strengthen their communities, while also providing them with practical skills in this important high-growth career field.
Improve Transportation Access to Jobs:
Obama will work to ensure that low-income Americans have transportation access to jobs.
Obama will double the federal Jobs Access and Reverse Commute program to ensure that additional federal public transportation dollars flow to the highest-need communities and that urban planning initiatives take this aspect of transportation policy into account.
Reduce Crime Recidivism by Providing Ex-Offender Supports:
Obama will work to ensure that ex-offenders have access to job training, substance abuse and mental health counseling, and employment opportunities. Obama will also create a prison-to-work incentive program and reduce barriers to employment.
Support Parents with Young Children:
Obama will expand the highly-successful Nurse-Family Partnership to all 570,000 low-income, first-time mothers each year. The Nurse-Family Partnership provides home visits by trained registered nurses to low-income expectant mothers and their families.
Expand Paid Sick Days:
Today, three-out-of-four low-wage workers have no paid sick days. Obama supports guaranteeing workers seven paid sick days per year.
Create an Affordable Housing Trust Fund:
Obama will create an Affordable Housing Trust Fund to develop affordable housing in mixed-income neighborhoods.
Fully Fund the Community Development Block Grant:
Obama will fully fund the Community Development Block Grant program and engage with urban leaders across the country to increase resources to the highest-need Americans.
Establish 20 Promise Neighborhoods:
Obama will create 20 Promise Neighborhoods in areas that have high levels of poverty and crime and low levels of student academic achievement in cities across the nation. The Promise Neighborhoods will be modeled after the Harlem Children's Zone, which provides a full network of services, including early childhood education, youth violence prevention efforts and after-school activities, to an entire neighborhood from birth to college.
Ensure Community-Based Investment Resources in Every Urban Community:
Obama will work with community and business leaders to identify and address the unique economic development barriers of every major metropolitan area.
Obama will provide additional resources to the federal Community Development Financial Institution Fund, the Small Business Administration and other federal agencies, especially to their local branch offices, to address community needs.
Obama will immediately begin to remove our troops from Iraq. He will remove one to two combat brigades each month, and have all of our combat brigades out of Iraq within 16 months.
Obama will make it clear that we will not build any permanent bases in Iraq. He will keep some troops in Iraq to protect our embassy and diplomats; if al Qaeda attempts to build a base within Iraq, he will keep troops in Iraq or elsewhere in the region to carry out targeted strikes on al Qaeda.
Obama will launch the most aggressive diplomatic effort in recent American history to reach a new compact on the stability of Iraq and the Middle East. This effort will include all of Iraq’s neighbors — including Iran and Syria. This compact will aim to secure Iraq’s borders; keep neighboring countries from meddling inside Iraq; isolate al Qaeda; support reconciliation among Iraq’s sectarian groups; and provide financial support for Iraq’s reconstruction.
Obama believes that America has a moral and security responsibility to confront Iraq’s humanitarian crisis — two million Iraqis are refugees; two million more are displaced inside their own country.
Obama will form an international working group to address this crisis. He will provide at least $2 billion to expand services to Iraqi refugees in neighboring countries, and ensure that Iraqis inside their own country can find a safe-haven.
The Seattle Times
probably posted before but after brief search and not finding it I figured it was worth posting.
Thanks, added to the first post.
Wow - great info in this thread.
Best thread ever award. Highly informative every person who visits this site should read this thread.
That's a pretty good video, I emailed it to tons of people.
I threw this together today. Fell free to post it where ever you like.
Just a little food for thought this is a cut and paste from an email I recieved today!
> A Trivia question:
> How long is the beast allowed to have authority in Revelations? Guess the Answer?
> Revelations 13:5 tells us it is 42 months. This is almost a four year term to a Presidency. All I can say is Lord Have Mercy on us!!!!!!
> According to The Book of Revelations the anti-Christ will be a man, in his 40s, of MUSLIM descent, who will deceive
> the nations with persuasive language, and have a MASSIVE Christ-like appeal...the prophecy says that people will
> flock to him and he will promise false hope and world peace, and when he is in power, will destroy everything .
> Is it OBAMA?? I STRONGLY URGE each one of you to repost this as many times as you can! Each opportunity that you have to send it to a friend or media outlet...do it! Refuse to take a chance on this unknown candidate who came out of nowhere.
There are reasons why the gun ban organizations are huge donors to his campaign.
I can't believe that even a fraction of our country are serious about voting for
Barak Hussien Obama...are we kidding? How does this happen??? Wow...it is going to be tougher to celebrate the 4th just knowing he is being strongly considered.
I just hope everyone is pushing for all their friends/relatives to vote this year. We need every vote to beat Obama.
I don't know, between Obama's tax plan, position on gay marriage, stem cell research, universal healthcare plan, the record of the democrats' military success vs. republicans' military success, it seems like his position on gun control is his only bad one. I guess if I were a single issue voter I would vote for McCain, but overall an Obama presidency would do a lot more to help the American people economically, diplomatically, and culturally.
I love this guy.
He's awesome in concert.
Maybe he'll do a Funnybone Comedy Club tour after the election.
lol nice chain letter, but snopes has had at it