Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend 12 (12 Shares)  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Stats   12 comments

OpEdNews Op Eds

The Problem With Elena Kagan Is Barack Obama

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Well Said 4   Must Read 3   Supported 2  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H1 5/10/10

Become a Fan
  (37 fans)
- Advertisement -

I have no idea what kind of Justice Elana Kagan is going to be, and almost no one else does either. She might be a terrific progressive or she might move the Court to the right, as some fear. My problem with her isn't her stated positions, as she doesn't have very many.

My problem with her is my problem with Obama. Cheney and Bush moved the ball 80 yards down-field, whether that was on executive power, warrantless wiretapping, pre-emptive wars or just about any other issue you can think of. And Obama's bold and brilliant response is to move the ball 10 yards in the opposite direction. Not good enough. Not remotely good enough.

His every action drips of conciliation, compromise, gradualism and incrementalism. The conservatives take miles of ideologically territory and convert it into the status quo. Then Obama brags about converting inches back. This isn't change we can believe in. This is pocket change.

So, when conservatives yelled at him about trying Gitmo detainees in civilian courts, his instinct was to back down. When they yelled at him for giving detainees Miranda rights, he is now on the verge of backing down. When they yelled at him about foreign wars, he escalated them. When they yelled at him about the $50 billion "bailout" fund in the financial reform bill, he asked to take it out. When they yelled at him about offshore oil drilling, he gave them more. How did that turn out?

Did you know that after Joe Wilson yelled out "You lie!" on the issue of how immigrants would be treated in the healthcare bill, they quietly gave into him and changed that provision? Is there anything that this guy can't get bullied on? Well, of course, there is. Everything from the left.

So, that brings us to Elana Kagan. Bush picked arguably the two most conservative judges in the country to fill his Supreme Court vacancies. He easily shoved it down the throat of the Democrats. What has been Obama's response - let me pick a centrist!

He can't help himself. He loves establishment players. Look at nearly all of his appointments. Rahm Emanuel, Tim Geithner, Ben Bernanke. These are the pillars of the establishment. What kind of change is this? He nominated for the head of the Fed the same exact guy who helped destroy our economy for George W. Bush. He can't help himself. He is a politician through and through, and he desperately wants the approval of those around him. And those around him now are the power players in Washington.

So, we get the blank slate of Elena Kagan, with almost no record to speak of, except her affinity for executive power. Joy. Could she turn into a lion of progressivism? Sure. But why do we have to hope against hope on that? Why can't we get a progressive Justice if we elected a progressive president? Because the ugly truth is that we didn't elect a progressive president.

- Advertisement -

Obama (and Rahm Emanuel) are going to love it if progressives attack Kagan. They will brandish that as a signal that they are soooo centrist. They will crow to their Washington reporter friends that they are being attacked from the left and brag about how much credibility that gives them. And when they win this nomination (non)fight, they will declare victory again, as if they accomplished some major objective. No one loves beating up progressives and winning easy battles in DC more than this administration.

My guess is that at some future date this article will be misinterpreted to say that I argued against Elena Kagan. Except for executive power (where I am as progressive as anyone in the country), I am a judicial moderate. Kagan might wind up being exactly my kind of justice. And so far, Sonia Sotomayor has been great - and Obama picked her (which some will argue is evidence to "trust" him again). My point isn't that Kagan is terrible or can't do the job. My point isn't that Obama secretly wants to pick a conservative (or a progressive, as his defenders would claim). My point is that Obama has no intention of burning up political capital (according to his perception) by publicly standing up and fighting for for his own so-called side and will defer to the center or right-wing given any opportunity to do so. And this is another example of that.

Elena Kagan - safe, no record, never challenged power in any meaningful way, never stood up for progressive ideology, beloved by the establishment in Washington - the perfect Obama candidate. I'm tired of it. The ball is down against our own goal line and the guy thinks he just scored a touchdown.

He is never going to throw the ball down the field. If you like two yard pick-ups by a running-back going straight up the middle, you'll love Obama. It's the Eddie George presidency. What he doesn't seem to get is that the other side is eventually going to get the ball back and then it won't seem like a major accomplishment that we went from our own two-yard line to our own twelve-yard line. It'll be viewed as a tremendous disappointment.

Watch The Young Turks Here

- Advertisement -

Follow Cenk Uygur on Twitter: www.twitter.com/TheYoungTurks

 

Cenk Uygur is host of The Young Turks, the first ever live, daily web television talk show. The Young Turks are on XM Satellite Radio 8-9PM ET (XM 167, America Left) and on Sirius Left 146. The Young Turks is one of the Top 100 You Tube Partners, with over 18 million views a month on (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon


Go To Commenting

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles
- Advertisement -

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Fox News Comes Out of the Closet

Glenn Beck's Horrific Lie

Where Are the Tea Party Protests About Wall Street?

How the Rich Conduct Class Warfare

Who is More Conservative: Ronald Reagan or Barack Obama?

Is Barack Obama Stupid?

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
7 people are discussing this page, with 12 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

Everyone said that Obama was a true progressive. N... by Davey Jones on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 1:24:41 AM
That was right after he voted for FISA, in the sum... by Jill Herendeen on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 9:23:48 AM
are the talking heads on major media and the GOP! ... by Michael Shaw on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 1:58:47 PM
Amen!... by Herbert Calhoun on Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at 12:24:49 PM
"Everyone said that Obama was a true progressive."... by Marika on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 2:30:25 AM
After the disastrous Bush, we were hoping we would... by Michael Shaw on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 2:27:29 PM
Why pick yet another Jewish person, who may or may... by Bia Winter on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 9:52:37 AM
Well put Cenk,And I would add, to the people like ... by Herbert Calhoun on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 12:01:59 PM
I want my vote and money back. I was TAKEN. I ha... by daveys on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 5:43:22 PM
I want my vote and money back. I was TAKEN. I ha... by daveys on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 5:47:15 PM
...for a mere $400 bucks! I wrote back to them and... by Bia Winter on Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at 8:47:03 AM
Why is it when republicans nominate federalist soc... by Michael Shaw on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 1:49:25 PM