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President Obama's
late April 2009 report card...

...as seen by someone who voted for him in November 2008.

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This page last updated on or about late 4-20-09
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President Obama makes a big deal of leadership in much of his talk. And also of change from the status quo, and from the way the previous Republican Administration was running things.

And yet...

Thus far, since his Administration assumed power, President Obama has brought precious little real change to the country. The biggest difference has been a more conciliatory tone to allies and other nations in general, compared to the often bellicose one taken by Bush and Cheney.

Obama has merely continued the Bush Administration's approach towards the financial crisis, also using many of the same personnel to deal with it, so far as I can tell from news reports.

In military matters too, Obama seems to have changed virtually nothing from how Bush was doing things before-- but for possibly discouraging Israel from continuing its wholesale massacre of Palestinians. Obama touts defense budget cuts, but any cuts so far seem either vanishingly small or entirely non-existent.

Obama has made grand announcements about rolling back many of Bush's and other Republicans' more egregious offenses, which seemed obviously unconstitutional and criminal-- but in actuality Obama has left much of the worst policies in place-- and even begun to defend them from further court challenges, himself!

Once the Republican-dominated mainstream news media (led by Fox News) get over their extreme knee-jerk reaction to Obama's election win, and actually begin noticing how he's governing, they might warm up to him tremendously. For so far in most matters, you couldn't even call him Bush Lite-- for there's too little difference between Bush and Obama in Obama's domestic actions so far to use that adjective.

Well, I guess I do have to give an honorable mention to Obama's reversal of Bush policies on stem cell research. He also raves about his stimulus package, but where I live I see absolutely no sign of it. And haven't heard a peep from anyone else seeing that particular cavalry riding over the hill, either. So far, Obama's stimulus seems to be disappearing into the same rich corporate pockets as he and Bush's bailout monies.

If a restart for stem cell research, a few less Palestinian dead and wounded, and a more polite tone to foreign nations is the only real change Obama has given us in his first months in office, I sure don't feel comforted about the rest of his term. For he told us he was going to hit the ground running, and do lots of things immediately.

On TV though, he looks like he's vacationing instead. In places like Europe and Mexico.

The best that progressives can say about Obama so far is that at least he's not McCain-- or Palin. They damn well better not say he's the anti-Bush. For many of Obama's actions since taking office would be difficult to distinguish from Bush's own, if names and dates were randomly switched between their descriptive texts.

Like many other 2008 Obama voters, I'm desperately hoping Obama does a lot more and better than this when he gets finished with his vacationing around the world on the taxpayer's dime. But up to now, I sure can't say he's providing much leadership. For he definitely doesn't seem to be leading the way on change regarding these issues:

Limiting or scaling back Presidential power over-reach

Universal healthcare


Drug policies reform

Pulling back on US empire-building and absurd military spending levels

Accountability for wealthy criminals, corrupt politicians, unethical CIA and NSA, and others

Governmental and corporate transparency

Privacy rights and consumer rights

So just what issues IS Obama leading on?

That's a good question for late April 2009.

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Copyright © 2009 by J.R. Mooneyham. All rights reserved.