Thursday, July 3, 2008

A RUDE AWAKENING

Original Link: http://themountainsage.wordpress.com/2008/07/02/a-rude-awakening/

by Mountain Sage

I remember the month and year of my rude awakening to the fact that the government might not always have my best interests at heart….May 4, 1970, the Kent State massacre.

In the city of Kent, Ohio, Ohio National Guardsmen shot and killed four students and wounded nine more. The student’s crime was protesting the American invasion of Cambodia. I remember the disillusionment and disappointment I felt and the cynicism that has now become deeply entrenched in my psyche. It was a defining moment for many of us baby boomers, a moment that encapsulated all that was wrong with the country at that time.

Remembering that disillusionment, I can almost feel sorry for Obama supporters who have had to deal with Obama’s numerous reversals on key issues. This week many of the Obama supporters are feeling the rudeness of their awakening to the fact that Obama just may not have their best interest at heart….maybe winning at any cost is more important than principle. While this may not rank up there with the death of young people at Kent State as a disillusioning factor, it is for some, the death of their hopes for change.

Obama’s support for the FISA bill comes on the heels of a number of position changes he has made recently in his effort to move to the center and right to attract votes from Independents and Republicans.

WSJ: Backers Fault Obama On His Web Site
By BRAD HAYNES
July 2, 2008; Page A4
The unprecedented online network that has driven Barack Obama’s fund-raising and organizing success may be a double-edged presence in the campaign, as his support for a domestic-spying bill has spawned a challenge from his Internet-savvy liberal base — on his own campaign Web site.
SOURCE

The issues that set off the firestorm:

Obama Supports FISA Legislation, Angering Left

By Paul Kane
Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) today announced his support for a sweeping intelligence surveillance law that has been heavily denounced by the liberal activists who have fueled the financial engines of his presidential campaign.

In his most substantive break with the Democratic Party’s base since becoming the presumptive nominee, Obama declared he would support the bill when it comes to a Senate vote, likely next week, despite misgivings about legal provisions for telecommunications corporations that cooperated with the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance program of suspected terrorists.

[snip]
Obama missed the February vote on that FISA bill as he campaigned in the “Potomac Primaries,” but issued a statement that day declaring “I am proud to stand with Senator Dodd, Senator Feingold and a grassroots movement of Americans who are refusing to let President Bush put protections for special interests ahead of our security and our liberty.”

Obama to expand Bush’s faith based programs
Jul 2, 12:44 AM EDT

DC Gun Ban
Obama Camp Disavows Last Year’s ‘Inartful’ Statement on D.C. Gun Law
June 26, 2008 7:35 AM

Public Campaign Financing
Obama abandons public financing for White House bid
Jun 19, 2008

While many Obama supporters are willing to accept these flip flops as necessary concessions to a more centrist position in order to win the general election, yet one more thing hit the news that was the final straw for some:

June 30, 2008 12:36
Obama Rebukes Clark
Sure enough, just as I was about to publish this blog post, I got an email from Obama spokesman Bill Burton: “As he’s said many times before, Senator Obama honors and respects Senator McCain’s service, and of course he rejects yesterday’s statement by General Clark.”
SOURCE

Some of us older, cynical baby boomers could have told the hopeful “new kind of politics” supporters that this was inevitable. Indeed some of us DID tell them but the naïveté of youth prevailed and Yes We Can drowned out the voices of caution in believing a politician.

I would be less than honest if I didn’t admit that part of me feels vindicated but at the same time I can sympathize. The death of unbridled optimism is never pretty or easy. Yet, I find it ironic that the supporters who are apologists for his changes in position don’t realize that this flip flopping is old politics at it’s worst.

I just hope that the Obama supporters have learned the all important lesson of not listening to the words but looking deeper into the actions or lack thereof….those actions always speak louder than words if you are willing to

1 comment:

Mountain Sage said...

Thanks for posting my article.

If you're interested in a blogroll exchange please let me know.

You have some very interesting stuff on your blog.

Mountain Sage