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Web Letter

The breadth of letters on this thread tells it all: people on the left aren't happy; people on the right aren't happy; hell, even libertarians aren't happy!

If nobody's happy, that's a pretty good sign that Obama's tracking the center just about perfectly. And in the long run, for the Dems in particular and the country in general, that's a very good thing indeed.

Joseph Bland

Sacramento, CA

Sep 20 2009 - 2:06pm

Web Letter

Let's please remember that President Obama was not a passive inheritor of the problems and realities of life in the USA. One supposes he actually understood that being president is not all adulation and ruffles and flourishes, that hard decisions must be made, leadership exercised.

As for me, I am happy to see that Americans are not buying the healthcare fantasy that he is selling. When the battery in your car does not work, you replace the battery, you don't discard the car. Let's fix the individual issues with the current healthcare system and not scuttle what the vast majority of us are happy with.

We can start with the Whole Foods alternative to Obamacare laid out by John Mackey. What's bad about litigation reform, competition across state lines, Medicare reform?

Nothing.

Barbara Dix

Brookfield , CT

Sep 17 2009 - 3:19pm

Web Letter

"The chicanery of the financial system, securitizing highly suspect mortgages, was codified into laws that made the hustle legal." Huh?

Todd Richardson

Nashville, IN

Sep 17 2009 - 1:05pm

Web Letter

This is not a left-right issue. I've run as Reform in 1998, Libertarian in 2002 , and Natural Medicine (my own party) in 2000. The Seattle Ron Paul Tea Party at my house raised $2000 in Dec. 2007. Afterward, I became a pariah Republican PCO in an ongoing attempt to purge all of the existing Washington State Republicans out of the party apparatus. I have been following the LaRouche Movement since 1978. I was Dennis Kucinich's Campaign's landlord in 2004. I had the first fundraiser for Ralph Nader for president at my house in 1996. This is not a left-right issue.

It is a bipartisan elistism issue, as Robert Scheer correctly implies. It's a fundamental Constitutional issue, which Scheer fails to understand, as he belies his prejudice by suggesting that to argue that Obama is a socialist is to be "vile." Won't you even admit to us that you are a socialist? Are you thinking that that's tantamount to calling you a pinko commie? What is the point of political correctness? All it has done is allowed forty years of misrule, as a civil rights era was nothing more than the continuation of the Civil War British plot to subvert us. I was a victim of the original "get whitey" era, and could predict that the school bus attacks would be the natural by-product of Gatesgate, which Obama still needs to apologize for, despite what Michelle thinks.

It's fair game to use any tactic against Obama. Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice.

Stan Lippmann

lippmannforcongress.us<br />Seattle, WA

Sep 17 2009 - 11:44am

Web Letter

Obama has not blundered into an increased role in Afghanistan. He made the incredible “Afghanistan good war, Iraq bad war” campaign statement.

If Obama ditches the public option, it will be politically and fiscally smart. Why is Robert Scheer in favor of increasing the cost of health care and medical insurance?

I agree that Obama is the super W of bad government.

Scheer's criticism about Iraq makes no sense, since we are obligated to withdraw due to agreements made prior to the Obama presidency. On Afghanistan, I agree.

Our economic/financial condition was a bipartisan effort and remains so. This is a combination of the Wall Street banking thing and the "credit for everyone who doesn’t qualify" thing (which Barney Frank loves more than his boyfriend). It is a huge FU to the middle class, Middle America.

The notion that government is a check on medical costs is beyond belief. Medicare and Medicaid have driven up healthcare costs tremendously. And because of their monopolistic power whereby they refuse to cover costs, they have put the burden on the rest of us (insured or not) to pay the difference. I think you should go back and contemplate your paragraph number three. That will give you a clue to being sensible.

Stephen Swofford

Chicago, IL

Sep 17 2009 - 10:42am

Web Letter

I suppose I am one of the "vile" people who oppose much of what the Obama administration is trying to do. Your article almost perfectly exposes the myopia of the left. From your propensity for needlessly labeling those who disagree with your preferred policies to your willingness to overlook that as a candidate, Senator and then as president-elect, Mr Obama supported and often voted for the very policies you descry from Bush.

You are unwilling to admit that those who oppose Mr. Obama could actually have a point, and so you gleefully urge even more spending upon a public treasury that may be headed for disaster. Your unwillingness to even consider your political opponents positions as possibly having any credibility leads you to cavalierly dismiss them out of hand as "vile." I can well imagine you perceive that this vileness has it's roots in racism, thereby justifying your dismissal.

I believe that we are heading for a fiscal train wreck. I know that if we do get to this point, the consequences will be felt most keenly by the poor and middle classes of this country and that for the first time since the 30s they are likely to see their standard of living severely impacted with all the negative consequences that attend such an event.

I believe continued deficit spending anywhere near the levels we are currently experiencing will ultimately be far more damaging to the very people you claim to want to help by increasing government spending. These ramifications will be unavoidable once the cycle of inflation and dollar devaluation sets in and will continue until the inevitable denouement has run its course.

Democracies often do not deal well with catastrophe, and the consequences of an effective bankruptcy of the US government upon the body politic can not be foreseen by anyone. We would be foolish in the extreme to underestimate its power to damage our constitutional form of representative democracy.

I believe that reasoning such as I have espoused underlies the "tea party" protesters and the town hall attendees that you disparage. To dismiss those who disagree with you is not only a great disservice to the very political fabric of our country, it reveals a level of personal hubris which you should spend some time examining within yourself.

Steve walser

Ford, WA

Sep 17 2009 - 10:30am

Web Letter

I agree with Robert Scheer. The president has engaged in and continued many of the policies that disgusted Democrats during the Bush years. President Obama has also not even touched "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (another campaign promise). Many brave and qualified military personnel are being fired from the military during wartime. Please explain to me how this is a reasonable or even sane policy.

Many civil libertarians and Democrats are appalled by the president's apparent lack of intestinal fortitude on the prosecution of torture, the continuation of rendition and the continued use of foreign prisons such as Bagram. These obvious breaches of our international treaties are just being swept under the carpet in favor of a "truth commission" (worthless).

The president is not only being demagogued by the right-wing wack jobs, he stands to lose a large section of the base that poured out their hearts and souls and chose hope over apathy. Right now, apathy seems a lot more comforting and safe.

Robert Rainer

Painted Post, NY

Sep 17 2009 - 7:07am

Web Letter

Obama's credibility is tanking fast. This is not improved when concern on the deficits is attacked as "racism." This is not helped when covering millions more people is touted as "being paid for by eliminating fraud and abuse."

Obama is owed neither more nor less support then we owed Bush on Iraq and "antiterrorism" efforts.

There are thirty-eight months left to the next presidential!

John D. Froelich

Upper Darby, PA

Sep 17 2009 - 3:28am

Web Letter

Robert Scheer would be correct with any presidency up to our last election in 2008. This president was elected on his "best faith word" and promised to do the best job that he can. He has a large volume of former Republicans like me that just left the party after thirty-five years who are just getting warmed up on how vocal and financially we will support someone that has the best interests of the country and our people at heart. He is a centrist. He happened to get this job through the party that was reaching the hardest to recapture the America I knew when I grew up. He has the loneliest job in the world. He will make the hard decisions when he has enough facts and input to make rational choices.

Mark Schlueter

Parker, CO

Sep 16 2009 - 7:32pm

Web Letter

Is The Nation finally coming to its senses? Obama's neoliberal policies have been apparent since before day one: when he picked his cabinet and advisers.

Instead of properly evaluating Obama's performance, The Nation has been engaged in wishful thinking, pleading with Obama and in outright denial of the damage Obama has inflicted on liberal and progressive positions ...

Now the question is: How tough will The Nation be on Obama going forward over his neoliberal agenda? The time is all but over for The Nation to reclaim its credentials as a legitimate voice of the left.

Michael McKinlay

Hercules, Ca

Sep 16 2009 - 2:24pm

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