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Tell The Nation: Obama at One | The Nation

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Tell The Nation: Obama at One

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All the action from this year’s conference

The high point: Obama selects the family dog.

The low point: Everything else.

Alex Hendrick, 47
Los Angeles, CA

Desperate, Not Disappointed

"Disappointment." How typically American to choose such a limp and measly word to use in light of the truly frightening point in history that our country, and the world, finds itself in. But since that is the word you have chosen: I have no "disappointments" because Mr. Obama has performed exactly as I expected him to, which is why I didn't vote for him.

My "disappointment "continues to be with the woefully and willfully uninformed, ignorant, arrogant and childish American people who allow themselves to be lulled into submission by increasingly astute spin doctors who function at the behest of powerful corporations, to the detriment of us all (and by "us," I mean the world). One can only hope that our national somnambulism will end and true leaders like Dennis Kucinich, Russ Feingold, Cynthia McKinney, Alan Grayson and a handful of others will leave the confines of our corrupt political system and start a new party that is truly democratic, that they will enlist the aid of some of our own, and other countries', great thinkers (Howard Zinn, Ralph Nader, Noam Chomsky, Joseph Stiglitz, Tariq Ali, Arundhati Roy), and that they will promote an intelligent, free and independent press (Amy Goodman, Glenn Greenwald, Laura Flanders, Al Jazeera News, Mosaic News, LinkTV).

Our country, as it stands now, is an imperialistic bully that squanders trillions of dollars for a military budget that brings no security, but instead endangers our own citizens and slaughters millions around the world. Meanwhile, thousands of Americans are dying from lack of adequate healthcare, our children are woefully uneducated, our economy continues its steep downslide and our infrastructure is crumbling. Those are the facts, and we'd better face up to them very, very quickly. Disappointed? I think we're desperate.

Terri Tafreshi, 57
San Rafael, CA

Still Holding on to Hope

The sharpest moment of disappointment is obviously the Massachusetts election. But even before that I was dismayed to see that the Obama administration was choosing to ignore its base and any kind of progressive change in this country. The healthcare thing was a horrible experience for everyone, Democrat and Republican alike. The polls were showing that the public wanted the public option. They got it when the president and the Congress didn't. The easiest thing would have been to enact Medicare for everyone. It would have been long done and moved on down the line. Obama has dithered and waffled and used too many words and not enough action. Wall Street and the Banks continue to run amok. People are still getting screwed and they know it.

Right now is our lowest moment, I hope. There is nowhere to go but up. The president's reaching out to other nations has been the high point. Also, he and his wife are a class act. For those two things we can be proud.

Sharon Rasey

Downhill Since Election Night

My high point was being part of the ecstatic crowd in Times Square election night. It has been downhill since.

My biggest disappointment was how Obama did not start off with a strong, symbolic step that he could have easily and unilaterally done, such as ordering the Joint Chiefs of Staff to end discrimination against gays in the military. Disappointment has continued unabated, especially with his healthcare betrayal and bank sellout.

Steve Juniper, 71
Berkeley, CA

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