Obama is especially weak on trade. He has gotten off scot-free thus far because the media has not taken him to task on it. If you visit his website, you will find it hard to discern where he stands on trade in America although he does come out in support of unions. Whether that support of unions is sincere or not should be followed closely by members of top unions in America. Anways, A blog on Barack Obama's site reads:
I want a politician to answer with specific words. dont play games. The middle class is hurting because you politicians sold your souls to Big Businesses to allow them to write how they will proceed with business, stifle wages, and retake benefits. Deregulation caused this as well add to it NAFTA and CAFTA. U want a polotician to be honest and forthright then follow through on your promises. Its funny that those running for office promises anything to get a vote from the American citizen, then once elected the elected official get their marching orders from Big Business. The Middle Class is being squeezed because our elected official allow Big Business to do the squeezing and got paid for their inaction by Big Business. Look at Gas, Health Care, banking, Mortgage, Food, Clothing....every facet of our lives our elected officials turn over to Big Business. Read Allstate Insurance and the Mckinsey Report. Read your house insurance policy and check to see if your insurer will pay 100% replacement costs or "extended replacement costs." Dont listen to your insurance agent as they are on the side of their employer.
I believe this blogger made a great assessment of the situation Americans face today in regards to trade and our polticians' ties to Big Business. She rightfully takes people like Obama to task for allowing capitalism to take over so much of our government.
How does Obama feel about issues that have resulted because of NAFTA? This comment on his blog touches on some of the problems:
My only concern in all of these reforms that are necessary is that entrepreneurship and the small business man doesn't get squeezed out.
And if you want jobs to stay here, then people need to do their job as if they were paying themselves, and we need to be willing to pay more for goods and services, and stop supporting all the merchandise that comes from around the world.
Obama has not made any mention of the importance of buying American again nor has he said exactly what he plans to do about NAFTA. But Obama has said in regards to trade that:
"Globalization, right now, is creating winners and losers...But the problem is it's the same winners and the same losers each and every time. And we've got to mix it up and that does mean by the way that you've got to have a president in the White House who is not subject to whims of corporate lobbyists." [Source]Well, Obama is not off to a good start. All one has to do is go to OpenSecrets.org to find that he has accepted money from the same corporations who were criminally aided and abetted Enron. These corporations turned a blind eye to what Enron was doing and let them steal millions and ruin the lives of thousands of Americans. Go through the list and you will find: JP Morgan, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, and Citigroup who all were involved in the Enron scandal. He also has accepted contributions to his campaign from Viacom and Time Warner, which ensures that he will not force those media conglomerates to change their devious ways of reporting news anytime soon.
That he would stand up and say he has no corporate ties when he has accepted money from corporations is continuing a pattern of events that has gone on for too long. George W. Bush stood up and reassured us that he had nothing to do with favoring Enron. But did we listen? We let him con us into believing his corporate support would not matter. Oh were we wrong.
On Character & Persona
Obama's perceived persona and character could be considered dangerous for Americans who have already begun to accept his policies even when they are questionable. Just read this comment on his blog:
With months left until the primary, one should be frightened that sentiments of this nature are being tossed around. To not continue to question his stances and fight to mold him into the best Democratic candidate for America is criminal to the future of America. No American should have to accept him as is and should push him to take stronger stances.
P.S. I know these are generalities, but dissecting every issue would be tedious, and would get off the point of why we need to elect him, and get off the fact that being a person of color is a possible negative.
Not only is he getting a free pass, but he is also gaining more and more notoriety for what he could mean for black people. In fact, lack of experience and his color seem to be the only features of his persona that show vulnerability. He has tackled lack of experience by using ad hominem attacks, which shifted the problem from him to people like Cheney and Rumsfeld who have had plenty of experience but who have made many poor judgments. In respect to his color, he has fashioned himself as the candidate who will bring back Democratic popularity in the South and other areas where if only black voters turned out Democrats would have no problem winning.
The media and his supporters have accepted this without asking properly what he would do for black people or let me rephrase that, people who are in the lower class, poor, unemployed, struggle with the justice system, face a decision of poverty or sports stardom as a young child, deal with violence and gang warfare, suffer from weak family relationships, etc. Obama does have proposed solutions on his website for much of these issues facing black people but do they do anything? Can government enact legislation that will help solve these problems? Or is Obama just spewing rhetoric to pump up his popularity?
Barack's supporters also make the claim that he is a progressive:
"What Obama is doing is very different from what Clinton is doing. Clinton is moderating her positions and moving towards an imagined "center". Obama is changing the discourse--not his core priciples--so that people who have considered themselves, incorrectly, as conservatives or Republicans, can more easily identify with and choose progressive values. Without feeling blamed and shamed by being chided with "I-told-you-sos"."However, if one were to look at the truth behind this, one would find that there are only two true progressives running in this race (Note the diagram of US Presidential Primaries for 2007 on the right hand side.)
From another supporter of Obama:
Barack Obama's biggest asset, to me, is that he is a 21st century leader. He weilds the power of the message; he knows how it can mobilize the people. In today's world, words are important.With larger than life popularity, support from Oprah and therefore, much of Hollywood, unmatched attention by the media that has overshadowed all other candidate's campaigns, and flocks of young "foot soldiers" coming to rallies to support him like he is some rock star, just what does it mean for America if we allow him to be elected on his weak stances? What does it mean for America if people think his "words are important" but do not research the meaning behind his words?
Last time I checked, actions speak louder than words. And Obama may not be the best candidate when looking at the actions he has taken on these issues in the past. Until the media and his supporters do the proper research and give his track record and his campaign donors the proper attention, Obama's supporters remain in the handcuffs of blind faith in much the same way that so many Americans have been handcuffed by blind faith during the Iraq war.
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