Two Peas in an Orwellian pod

July 9, 2013

1127724Overcast and darkly-gloomy this early Tuesday on California’s north coast — a sense felt ’round the world.

And with all the bad news exploding all around, from Egypt to everywhere, there’s this ludicrous note: A Gallup poll last month found that for the first time in his ex-presidency (actually, the first time since 2005), a plurality of Americans have a positive view of Bush. Forty-nine percent viewed him favorably, compared with 46 percent who viewed him unfavorably. This puts him on par with Obama and is a healthy recovery from the depths of the economic collapse in March 2009, when 35 percent viewed him favorably.

(Illustration found here).

History can be a shit stamp on bad. George Jr. by far was the worse president in US history — bar none. However, the great wad of American people don’t seem to remember much about a ‘lost’ decade of war, death for thousands and a shitload of fuck-ups. Maybe, due to current ugly shit.
President Obama has turned out to be not only the most-disappointing president in our history, but as time moves on, he could also be right up there with the worse of them.
The Eddie Snowden saga and the reality behind all the entertainment is a catch-pin for Obama’s legacy.
Patty Culhane at Aljazeera English lays it out fairly-simply:

I can’t tell you how Americans really feel about NSA surveillance.
There have been polls, but I don’t think there has been enough public discussion to say with any degree of confidence that Americans really understand the depth of what Snowden is telling the world.
They do know all about the hotels and bars in the Moscow airport, the potential countries he may end up in, and who he has dated.
Americans know far less about what Snowden says the US government is doing.

Keeps a record of every cell phone call made.
Keeps a record of all emails sent.
Takes pictures of all the letters mailed in the US.
Uses drones for domestic surveillance.
Reserves the right to detain people (including Americans) indefinitely without trial.
Can search homes without telling people they were there.
Can still carry out renditions.
Can get copies of all of your records (from the library, bank or credit card company) without a warrant.
So to sum things up, if you become a person of interest, the government can quickly find out everyone you have ever talked to and written to; everything you have ever read and bought; and everywhere you have ever been.
If you are overseas, they reserve the right to bring you back against your will and possibly hold you forever without trial.

And there’s no bitching about it either:

The Obama administration, in a new court filing, urged the nation’s surveillance court to throw out a request by civil liberties groups to disclose its secret rulings about the scope and legality of the Patriot Act.
In the filing, embedded below, the Justice Department quotes with approval the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court’s own view of its power, expressed in 2007, that “[t]he FISC is a unique court … [o]ther courts operate primarily in public, with secrecy the exception; the FISC operates primarily in secret, with public access the exception.”
The filing, which comes in response to a June lawsuit from the ACLU, coincides with a critical profile by the New York Times that claims the FISA court has “become almost a parallel Supreme Court” with its own “secret body of law” that bolsters the powers of the NSA.

And that NYT piece notes the FISA court …has quietly become almost a parallel Supreme Court, serving as the ultimate arbiter on surveillance issues and delivering opinions that will most likely shape intelligence practices for years to come, the officials said.
Chew on that for awhile.

George Jr. is a near-idiot. He should have never, ever been ‘named’ a US president (as the Supreme Court did) and really didn’t have the good sense to even run a major league ball team. Obama is way-different — educated, bright and articulate.
He knows better, but he’s doing this shit anyway

This weekend, Lloyd Green at The Daily Beast gets into this mounting horror of Obama’s mirror showing the crack. Obama might be not only the most-disappointing president in US history, but worse — part of a shitty doubled-whammy.
Obama and George Jr., one slick-nick pair.

Bush’s incompetence was born of excess idealism.
Rather than seeing a region mired in muck, he envisioned a world created anew and ignored the question of what happens the day after?
As for Obama, he has treated legislative victory as an end in itself, while ignoring the reality of actual implementation.
If Americans needed any further evidence that the respective signature “achievements” of Bush and Obama were failures wrapped in untidy and costly bows, there they were in plain sight.

According to the Bible, pride goes before the fall.
And so it repeatedly has.
Bush the Younger once quipped, “Some folks look at me and see a certain swagger, which in Texas is called ‘walking.’”
Mission accomplished, anyone?
For his part, Obama told his 2008 campaign political director Patrick Gaspard that “I think that I’m a better speechwriter than my speechwriters.
“I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors.
“And I’ll tell you right now that I’m gonna think I’m a better political director than my political director.”

Taken together, Obama and Bush 43 are reminiscent of who and what preceded the two decades of presidential competence, running from 1981 until 2001.
When you think of Bush 43 and Obama, think Johnson, Nixon and Carter, not Reagan, Bush 41 or Clinton.
In Reagan, Bush Senior and Clinton, America was fortunate to have presidents who had what it took to get the job done, did more good than harm, and left the country in better shape than they found it.
Each adapted to the demands of the job and the tasks at hand.
They could shape events, and respond to the unexpected with a degree of deftness, not everything needed to be scripted or read from a teleprompter.
Politics mattered, but so did country.
During their terms, the Cold War came to a peaceful end, we became reacquainted with prosperity, and our position in the world was restored.
After enduring Lyndon Johnson and Vietnam, Richard Nixon and Watergate, and Jimmy Carter and disgrace, America could finally exhale in 1981 and did so for twenty years.
Not anymore.

Obama barely talks to the Democrats and is incapable of communicating with congressional Republicans (for his part, House Speaker John Boehner can’t corral his caucus).
But beyond the mechanics of legislation, Obama appears to be over his head.
Winning the hearts of the Democratic donor base is one thing, but imposing America’s will on foreign governments, gaining Vladimir Putin’s respect, or mastering the implementation of signature legislation are different challenges, and right now Obama seems lacking.

In the midst of a perfect storm of everything leading to something way-horrendous, Obama is leading the way.
And there’s not much we can do — except go to work.
Good Tuesday, boys.

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