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Wonderment
04-24-2010, 04:56 PM
Readers are invited to give examples of surprising continuities between the Bush and Obama administrations. This one is on the "G" word. (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/25/world/europe/25prexy.html?hp=&pagewanted=print)

From NY Times:



ASHEVILLE, N.C. — President Obama, who as a candidate vowed to use the term genocide to describe the Ottoman slaughter of 1.5 million Armenians nearly a century ago, once again declined to do so on Saturday as he marked the anniversary of the start of the killings.

Trying to navigate one of the more emotionally fraught foreign policy challenges, Mr. Obama issued a statement from his weekend getaway here commemorating the victims of the mass killings but tried to avoid alienating Turkey, a NATO ally, which adamantly rejects the genocide label.

“On this solemn day of remembrance, we pause to recall that 95 years ago one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century began,” Mr. Obama said in the statement, which largely echoed the same language he used on this date a year ago. “In that dark moment of history, 1.5 million Armenians were massacred or marched to their death in the final days of the Ottoman Empire.”

When he was running for president and seeking votes from some of the 1.5 million Armenian Americans, Mr. Obama had no qualms about using the term genocide and criticized the Bush administration for firing an ambassador who dared to say the word. As a senator, he supported legislation calling the killings genocide.

“As president I will recognize the Armenian Genocide,” he said in a statement on Jan. 19, 2008, that used the word 10 more times. He said that “the Armenian Genocide is not an allegation, a personal opinion, or a point of view, but rather a widely documented fact.” He added, “An official policy that calls on diplomats to distort the historical facts is an untenable policy.”

Two years later, as president, he used none of that sort of language, though as he did a year ago, he hinted to Armenians that he still felt the same way. “I have consistently stated my own view of what occurred in 1915, and my view of that history has not changed,” he said. “It is in all of our interest to see the achievement a full, frank and just acknowledgment of the facts.”

The issue has been a point of contention in Congress as well. In March, the House Foreign Affairs Committee voted narrowly to condemn the mass killings as an act of genocide, defying a last-minute plea from the Obama administration to forgo a vote that threatened to jeopardize the United States-backed efforts toward Turkish-Armenian reconciliation.

Turkey, which acknowledges the killings but denies that they were a planned genocide, briefly recalled its ambassador from Washington in protest.

On Saturday, the Armenian National Committee of America, an advocacy group based in Washington, condemned the “euphemisms and evasive terminology” and called Mr. Obama’s statement “yet another disgraceful capitulation to Turkey’s threats.”

“Today we join with Armenians in the United States and around the world in voicing our sharp disappointment with the President’s failure to properly condemn and commemorate the Armenian genocide,” said Ken Hachikian, the committee’s chairman. He added that Mr. Obama’s failure to following through on his campaign pledge was “allowing Turkey to tighten its gag-rule on American genocide policy.”....

Ocean
04-24-2010, 05:16 PM
Readers are invited to give examples of surprising continuities between the Bush and Obama administrations. This one is on the "G" word. (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/25/world/europe/25prexy.html?hp=&pagewanted=print)

From NY Times:

You will certainly not get any examples from me. It doesn't serve any useful purpose. It is destructive, and the potential negative consequences of throwing this kind of unnecessary criticism, is beyond any possible long term commitment to a cause. Sabotaging this administration will only take us farther away from the goals that some of us in this forum seem to share.

Other commenters have expressed similar objections to your strategy. I have kept quiet because I think that I understand your angle and the need to keep a critical view with a firm hold on the ultimate goals.

But I also think there is a time and a format to do it. And there are different roles that we can assume to negotiate principles, strategies, practical considerations and timing. I may be on your camp on other issues, but on this one I pass.

Paz, hermano.

Wonderment
04-25-2010, 02:47 AM
Other commenters have expressed similar objections to your strategy. I have kept quiet because I think that I understand your angle and the need to keep a critical view with a firm hold on the ultimate goals.

So you wouldn't say it wrong to criticize elected officials when they blatantly break campaign promises made to the people who voted for them.

In this particular case, Barbara Boxer and 13 other US Senators wrote to Pres. Obama and implored him to keep his promise and say the GENOCIDE word.

Of course, if you're not Armenian, this issue is not an agenda priority. After all, it's something that occurred almost a century ago.

That's not really the point though. Nor is the point Obama as a person.

I am just suggesting that the 2008 presidential campaign generated an unusual number of lofty promises, which resulted in huge disappointments for many Dem. constituencies. Lessons to be learned: Serious change is unlikely to come from the centrist Democratic Party; charismatic candidacies should be taken with a grain of salt.

Whatfur
04-25-2010, 08:44 AM
I see some continue to provide the emperor with clothes... while other...not so much.

VDH has a nice little synopsis down at the corner. (http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=YzlhOThkMWFkYjQzYmMxNWY3YTdkYjVkYTFiMzJjMWM=)

Ocean
04-25-2010, 09:37 AM
So you wouldn't say it wrong to criticize elected officials when they blatantly break campaign promises made to the people who voted for them.


As I said above, there's nothing wrong with criticizing elected officials. My comment attempts to point out that there should be a difference between criticizing and using arguments or strategies that will end up helping the opposite party.

Right now there is a campaign promoted by right wing groups and the Republican Party, to infuse hatred and fear against the current administration. They use a multitude of arguments to try and catch as much of the public opinion as possible. We will have elections in a few months. You are already aware how difficult it has been to pass legislation, even when Dems have had substantial majorities in the Senate and House. If there is any hope to pass more legislation that was "promised", the results in November will have to be favorable to Dems. The kinds of arguments that you make here, the aggressive rhetoric, is only going to give more material to the right wing, and therefore will hurt the Democrats in the election.

Although I understand your points, I disagree with the form and the timing of your protests. I look at it from a practical perspective. This is a time to be careful in how you direct your concerns through appropriate channels without contributing to the demise of the people that can possibly get you closer to your goals.

Whatfur
04-25-2010, 10:46 AM
Is it ironic that Obama faithful will advocate for the silencing of facts or at the very least suggesting others choose more "appropriate channels"(...somewhere close to that tree that fell in the woods, no doubt...), when it was Obama we heard quoting Brandeis and popularizing the idea of ample sunlight.

Whatfur
04-30-2010, 02:43 PM
I understand George W and George H refer to President Obama as "44" (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/04/29/AR2010042904656.html)

Whatfur
04-30-2010, 02:51 PM
Easier to fight a dead person. (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/36825232/ns/us_news-environment/)

Maybe this doesn't belong here...George W. let Teddy keep his view. In spite of Teddy writing Obama 1 month before he died to try and keep the wind farm off his horizon...Obama sent his CO cowboy to Nantuckett who told them to "blow me".

Whatfur
05-01-2010, 02:27 PM
Bill Maher is such a creep. (http://www.eyeblast.tv/public/checker.aspx?v=Xd6U4znzQu) Ross Douthat looks like the Addams Family's other cousin sitting there.

Whatfur
05-01-2010, 03:54 PM
The "continuity" we were looking for can be found in the NYT of all places.

Can you say Katrina?

"What we do know is that we now face a huge disaster whose consequences might have been minimized with swifter action" (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/01/opinion/01sat1.html)

Whatfur
05-08-2010, 01:34 PM
Once again...

Bush league. (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704370704575228152292941636.html?m od=WSJ_newsreel_opinion)

Wonderment
05-09-2010, 08:59 PM
Goodbye Miranda? (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/09/AR2010050902062.html?hpid=topnews)

The Obama administration is considering changes to the laws requiring police to inform suspects of their rights, potentially pursuing an expansion of the "public safety exception" that allows officers to delay issuing Miranda warnings, officials said Sunday.

Attorney General Eric Holder, in his first appearances on Sunday morning news shows as a cabinet secretary, said the Justice Department is examining "whether or not we have the necessary flexibility" to deal with terrorist suspects such as the Pakistani-born U.S. citizen who tried to detonate a car bomb in Times Square last weekend.

"We're now dealing with international terrorism," Holder said on ABC's "This Week."

Whatfur
05-09-2010, 10:13 PM
...

"We're now dealing with international terrorism," Holder said on ABC's "This Week."

What kind of terrorism are we talking about Mr. Holder?

Whatfur
05-23-2010, 10:37 PM
Certainly not continuity in reaction. (http://bigjournalism.com/sswift/2010/05/23/still-waiting-for-keith-olbermann-to-condemn-obamas-assassination-program/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+BigJournalism+%28Big+Journali sm%29)

Whatfur
05-27-2010, 10:54 PM
"Inevitable" (http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2010-05-27-Spill-poll_N.htm)

bjkeefe
05-28-2010, 12:46 AM
Readers are invited to give examples of surprising continuities between the Bush and Obama administrations.

A telling illustration (http://img197.imageshack.us/img197/4370/douc.png):

http://img197.imageshack.us/img197/4370/douc.png

No One Could Have Predicted™.

Do you now see what Ocean and I have been trying to say, W?

[Added] See also (http://img4.imageshack.us/img4/9123/92009healthydebatemodif.jpg). (h/t: J.D. Crowe (http://blog.al.com/jdcrowe/2009/09/health_care_debate.html))

Wonderment
05-28-2010, 04:08 PM
Well, there's continuity and there's idiocy. I just saw Neil Cavuto on Fox News suggesting that the Sestak scandal was like Watergate.

On the other hand, Newt Gingrich couldn't make this shit up: a (minor) scandal in the Obama administration turns out to have famed sleazebag (or punching bag, if you prefer) Bill Clinton at the heart of it.

Whatfur
05-28-2010, 05:04 PM
Well, there's continuity and there's idiocy. I just saw Neil Cavuto on Fox News suggesting that the Sestak scandal was like Watergate.

On the other hand, Newt Gingrich couldn't make this shit up: a (minor) scandal in the Obama administration turns out to have famed sleazebag (or punching bag, if you prefer) Bill Clinton at the heart of it.

As your name is aligned with this one, just let me know which ones of mine you deam as idiocy and I will delete them. I just saw the thread dying a slow death and it had so much promise...so I figured I would help it out. Hate to see you suffering guilt by association. That peer-pressure can be tough...or so people tell me. ;)

.

Ocean
05-28-2010, 05:11 PM
Deem.

Wonderment
05-28-2010, 06:19 PM
just let me know which ones of mine you deam as idiocy and I will delete them.

Well, I haven't followed all the links, so I'll give you the benefit of the doubt on the ones I haven't. But start deleting with the Krauthammer "lawlessness" one. That one is clearly absurd.

I am totally with you on drones, putting out assassination orders for US citizens (or any citizens) and the Afghanistan surge, however.

To clarify I didn't mean to call you "idiotic." I am just acknowledging the critique from Ocean and BJ that invoking the horrors of administrations past every time Obama does something wrong can be carried too far.

I just saw the thread dying a slow death and it had so much promise...so I figured I would help it out. Hate to see you suffering guilt by association.

Actually it's Obama who is suffering the guilt by association -- today with the creepily corrupt operators (Clinton and Rahm) -- and in general with historical bedfellows.

But I'm ready to move on. Calling attention to continuity only made sense as Obama transitioned from campaign mode to governing mode. The point was to question the Historic Change rhetoric. By now everyone realizes Obama is just another centrist Dem. president and that far too much was made of his character, intellectual gifts, eloquence and charm. He is very gifted, but we are also very gullible.

Whatfur
05-28-2010, 06:24 PM
"Lawlessness"

Done.

I won't be back here. Been fun. Peace out.

Lyle
05-29-2010, 08:21 PM
http://legalinsurrection.blogspot.com/2010/05/can-war-crimes-charges-be-far-off.html

The use of human rights laws against democracies defending themselves against terrorists is a favorite tactic, and Israel is the usual target. The goal is to tie the hands of civil societies through false moral equivalencies, in which the terrorist trying to kill civilians is equated to the people trying to stop the terrorist.

Expect more of this, as the world becomes less enthralled with Obama, and seeks to give him some small measure of the attention given George W. Bush.

What goes around comes around, and it will come around for Obama and those in his administration who were so quick to accuse Bush and Cheney and Rumsfeld of violating international and domestic law as they struggled to find a means of stopping al-Qaeda.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/28/world/asia/28drones.html?ref=global-home

A senior United Nations official is expected to call on the United States next week to stop Central Intelligence Agency drone strikes against people suspected of belonging to Al Qaeda, complicating the Obama administration’s growing reliance on that tactic in Pakistan.

http://volokh.com/2010/05/28/drone-warfare-the-cia-and-charlie-savages-nyt-article/