Glen Ford of the Black Agenda Report, and an unapologetic man of the left, disdained Obama right from the beginning. Even before the beginning. Viewing Obama, the candidate, in early 2008, as no more than a symbolic tool who was being "imposed on the African American polity by corporate forces in the Democratic party," Ford denounced those whom he called "unprincipled Black Left misleaders," who willingly contorted their politics "beyond recognition."
Ford detected the imperialist hawk in Obama, in spite of The Great One's early declarations to the contrary. In a recent column, he writes about the "legions of Obama-smitten activists" who shut down their antiwar activities for fear of harming the Hero's presidential prospects. This Hero who presumably shared their abhorrence of the chaos that the Bush machine had perpetrated on our country and the world. Or had these deluded souls simply gotten themselves ensnared in the well-known trap of the lover, who invests his own meaning in every utterance and gesture of the beloved?
Ford wonders if these "peacenik groupies" realize the degree to which they are held in contempt by Obama's "funders and packagers." He writes:
With the president’s hearty embrace on December 1, of not only current US aggressions in South Asia but the entirety of the glorious rise of US global hegemony since the end of World War Two, it should now be clear to even the most dense among self-styled “progressives” that Obama was never worth a damn.
Years ago, observes Ford, Obama was already engaging in "imperial speak," in his discussions about Afghanistan, and warned that "under the Bin-Laden-Might-Be-There-Doctrine, he would refuse to respect the sovereignty of Pakistan." Obama groupies fooled themselves, says Ford, and then proceeded to fool lots of other people.
In My friend the president, Glenn Greenwald describes what he calls the emotional attachments of those Obama followers who express anger at critics of their Leader. He writes:
These outbursts include everything other than arguments addressed to the only question that matters: are the criticisms that have been voiced about Obama valid? Has he appointed financial officials who have largely served the agenda of the Wall Street and industry interests that funded his campaign? Has he embraced many of the Bush/Cheney executive power and secrecy abuses which Democrats once railed against -- from state secrets to indefinite detention to renditions and military commissions? Has he actively sought to protect from accountability and disclosure a whole slew of Bush crimes? ...
Are the criticisms of his escalation of the war in Afghanistan valid, and are his arguments in its favor redolent of the ones George Bush made to "surge" in Iraq or Lyndon Johnson made to escalate in Vietnam?
Ultimately, Obama's defenders do not care about any of these issues. Greenwald observes that these adherents simply believe that "It's just wrong, morally, ethically and psychologically, to criticize the President." This is a sentiment reminiscent of that which engulfed the tenure of George W. Bush.
The traditionalist pastor, Chuck Baldwin, is one who disdained the Bush administration right from its beginning, and frequently wrote of his aversion to the blind, even simple-minded worship of this imperial warmonger. He spoke of Christians especially and their hero worship of Bush:
They acted as if he were a god. Life-size posters filled Christian bookstores. Religious broadcasters and televangelists swooned over him like 16-year-old girls used to swoon over Elvis Presley. Pastors invoked his name almost as a prayer. The Religious Right acted like they had died and gone to Heaven. In the minds of Christian conservatives, G.W. Bush could do no wrong.
Baldwin called this "sophomoric silliness" the expression of a Religious Right that had become "blind, impotent lackeys to a big government, big-spending Orwellian and inept administration." He claimed that the Bush administration was maybe "one of the worst in U.S. history." Baldwin cites a similar sycophantic behavior on the political left, which anointed Barack Obama as President. "Obama was not inaugurated," he says, "he was canonized."
Baldwin, a staunch constitutionalist, is not surprised that the political left appears interested in constitutional principles only when it is a Republican trampling on them. Where is the outrage, he asks, against the Military Commissions Act, the suspension of Habeas Corpus, and other government intrusions into Americans' private lives, that were first institutionalized under George W. Bush and now continue under Barack Obama?
"For eight years," Baldwin proclaims, "Christian conservatives had 'Lord Bush.' Now, liberals have 'Lord Obama.' Seems to me that gods come pretty cheap these days." He rhetorically asks:
What in the world has happened to us? How is it that otherwise intelligent and educated people can so quickly forget virtually everything their principles and values taught them, and become little more than clumsy chumps for a Presidential administration – any Presidential administration?
In The Bush-Obama War, Baldwin tells of his travels across the country during the 2008 campaign season, where Democrats tried to convince him that Obama would end Bush's wars. Baldwin protested that whoever won the presidency, the wars would continue. "Now they know I told the truth," he says.
Baldwin mocks Obama's West Point speech, in which the Leader revealed that the Taliban is a "ruthless, repressive and radical movement." Baldwin declares, "This is the same Taliban that the US government SUPPORTED, back when it was fighting Soviet forces in Afghanistan." And, further, concerning the United States' connection to the Taliban:
Obama even had the unmitigated gall to criticize the Afghan government for being "hampered by corruption, the drug trade." Need I remind readers that for all its faults, when the Taliban controlled Afghanistan, there was virtually NO DRUG TRADE coming out of Afghanistan? For all intents and purposes, the Taliban destroyed the drug business in Afghanistan. Opium and drug production only returned to Afghanistan after US forces displaced the Taliban. In fact, drug production in Afghanistan takes place right under the noses (no pun intended) and with the passive compliance of US forces.
The primary mechanism for control of our society is the tool of war. Without keeping us at war, the omnipotent elites, who will not be denied, would not possess the power to manipulate a population that willingly remains quiescent. Most of the significant political transformations of our society have been done in the name of war. Don't question! We are at war!
The warmonger Obama, who indicates his intention to expand US military intervention even beyond Afghanistan and Pakistan, serves the same interests as those whose finances supported and sustained the Bush/Cheney regime. There will be no respite.