Friday, 13 January 2017

Obama? A great President?

I'm not much of a leftie. Last time I took the political compass test, I came out a "moderate libertarian capitalist", which is probably about correct. I do believe the state serves a function, and can think of few things more abhorrent than private police forces. However, mine is not usually a popular opinion on Facebook, especially during these emotional days where we see Obama depart the White House. And that has led to more exchanges than one.

Generally, I see little but raw enthusiasm for Obama from the left. His virtues, his magnificence is extolled repeatedly, though there's never any real reasoning behind it. It's always an emotional argument, and should you dare to question it, it usually results in a ban from a "tolerant liberal", and as it did today.

I asked how Obama could possibly be considered a 'great' President in light of the below, factual issues. As said, that prompted no response, but an unfriending, from a fellow who I haven't communicated with about much for months.

  1. Obamacare has been a total disaster, with premiums rising monstrously. He had total control over the 3 chambers, so the GOP really can't be held responsible here, because he did not need them at this stage of his presidency.
  2. He's the first president ever to preside over 8 years of continuous war.
  3. 95% of jobs created are temp/part time.
  4. Debt levels are at the highest level ever. Granted, this is largely down to the deficit Bush left behind, but public debt levels are now rising faster than the claimed deficit, meaning that budget tricks are almost certainly played, Bush-style.
  5. He failed spectacularly at holding wall st execs to account for the 2008 meltdown. In fact, practically the only legislation (Dodd-Frank) was watered down spectacularly.
  6. Racial tension is at the worst state since the 60'es. We now see riots on an almost monthly basis.
  7. He's drummed up the rhetoric with Russia, possibly the worst state he could take on.
  8. He allowed ISIS to flourish (Kerry hidden mike recordings attest to this).
  9. He bribed Iran to the tune of $1.7bn
  10. Iran were allowed 130 tonnes of nuclear fuel, which can be weaponized.
  11. He presided over "Operation Fast and Furious", the ATF gunrunning scandal.
  12. He was continuously outed lying about NSA's domestic spying program, moving goalposts as new revelations outed his most recent round of lies.
  13. Wasted billions on scandal-ridden energy companies; Solyndra especially stands out.
  14. Gitmo was never closed.
  15. Benghazi took place under his watch
  16. As did Clinton's private server, which he publicly stated he did not know about - nevermind the communication released by Wikileaks that conclusively proved that to be an outright lie.
  17. He's a serial breaker of campaign promises, such as those about protecting whistle blowers and government transparency.
That list was literally just from the top of my head. Browsing the web, I find at least 10 others of varying importance. Predictably, I get no response, because there is none, but to wholesale stay militantly ignorant on all issues which could cloud Obama's time.

Putting on my critical thinking hat, I guess liberals would praise Obama for "fixing the economy" (8 years of unprecedentedly low interest rates certainly did theirs to help, as did the supersized quantities of Quantitative Easing - both of which are monetary policy, and hence have nothing to do with Obama). Gay marriage is another, and fair enough, I will give him that. I've seen others credit him with legalizing marijuana, though that has nothing to do with him.

However, most troubling is that I've also seen a range of opinions, essentially praising him for being the first black President, and that's one I have a real issue with. Because were you not racist, the color of his skin would have nothing to do with performance, however bringing it up in essence reflects an expectation of low results. Which, in another word, is racist. Ironically, the thing liberals accuse conservatives of.

Finally, his original campaign slogans of "Hope" and "Change" were most certainly not delivered on. If anything, his Presidency was an epitome of "more of the same".

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