Barack Obama has been a disappointment

Barack Obama might be crying about how he’s perceived–and of course right-wingers are always going to greet any Democrat in the White House with attacks and lies. But his liberal critics are the ones who matter–he pretended he was one of them on the campaign trail. It’s not a pleasant prospect for political idealism, but it is clearly, terribly true: Obama should be upset about how lousy of a job he has done in his first year in office.

I hung back, not saying much about Barack Obama last year for two reasons–first, he was newly in office and it was hard to know the true direction of his administration without at least a modicum of observation; and second, every time some conservative idiot like Glenn Beck or Jim Demint fanned the pointless right-wing rage against Obama, it reminded how much worse the world would be if some filthy Republican like John McCain were president.

But those ratinales have run their course–the first expiring due to the new year, and the second largely evaporating in the face of Obama’s collusion with the vile and moronic George W. Bush on Haiti relief (yes the Haitian tragedy is awful and asking for donations is good, but do you really want George Katrina Bush up there ranting about “shysters” when you’re trying to raise money for disater relief?). To the powerful, it is all a game and working “across party lines” over epic foreign tragedies is arbitrarily fine, while pulling together to pass a bigger stimulus bill to put more Americans back to work is argued about and filibustered endlessly–or not even considered. Don’t give them the benefit of the doubt over their false distinctions.

And that goes for Mr. Obama. Elected on a wave of popular disenchantment with America’s crusty, broken, self-righteous and lobbyist-dominated political culture, Obama has turned into another monster to rebel against, and nothing better.

I will list five of the enormous failures of the Obama administration:

A crazy and downright evil Afghanistan policy.

The lack of follow-though on the campaign promise to repeal the pointless and morale-undermining “Don’t ask, don’t tell” anti-gay policy in the military.

An economic policy driven by greedy Wall Street thugs Tim Geithner and Lawrence Summers.

A corrupt, useless and inadequate attempt at health reform, including support for a deeply illiberal mandate for health insurance that Obama campaigned against.

Obama’s sneaky little attempt to sneak fascism in by the back door by asking for powers of “preventive detention.”

These aren’t the only things Obama has done wrong–there are many more–and in fairness he has actually done a few things right like passing the stimulus bill and slowing down the assault by mineral extracting industries on America’s national parks and forests. But his overall stance has been one hostile to the American people and their rights, and time for deference is over.

Barack Obama is better than Republicans, but still terribly vile.

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