I was at an editing conference early this week and had a chat with a friend. When I brought up politics with him and decried the unfair treatment President Obama has gotten from many on the left, the right and the our dysfunctional media, he started spouting the usual “he caved to the Republicans” and “he could have issued executive orders” and of course, “what about Guantanamo Bay, he didn’t close it like he said.” I asked him if he knew that we also had a congress and that they appropriate money — you know, reality. His response was something like, “those are just excuses.” It was at this point that the session we were in began, I think it was best for him that I had to shut up, I was about to get extreme on him.
It reminded me that a lot of people who either don’t pay a lot of attention to politics or are just blatant liars, continue to pin the blame for Gitmo still being open on President Obama. It’s time for a little “reality reminder.” On President Obama’s SECOND DAY in office, this was MSNBC’s headline on their website…
Obama orders CIA prisons, Guantanamo shut
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Thursday moved quickly to undo a contentious Bush administration national security program, ordering the CIA to close down secret overseas prisons and the Pentagon to close down the Guantanamo prison within a year. The president also banned the harshest interrogation methods. [...]
With three executive orders and a presidential directive signed in the Oval Office Thursday, Obama started reshaping how the United States prosecutes and questions al-Qaeda, Taliban or other foreign fighters who pose a threat to Americans.
The centerpiece order would close the much-maligned U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba — a complicated process with many unanswered questions that was nonetheless a key campaign promise of Obama’s. The administration already has suspended trials for terrorist suspects at Guantanamo for 120 days pending a review of the military tribunals.
I am so sick of people lying about the effects of the stimulus plan, which by the way was a deal that was put together by most of the greatest minds in the country to prevent a depression. Republican politicians tried to have it both ways — talking out of both sides of their mouths. They went from rousing speeches about how President Obama is a socialist, to giant check presentation ceremonies in their districts — taking credit for putting all those teachers back to work and fixing that bridge or overpass in their town.
The common argument to bolster the myth is the very parochial one of saying, the unemployment rate is still high or there are still a lot of people out of work. No shit, but what would that unemployment rate have been without it? According to several measures, millions more would be without jobs. It worked for those people. It worked for all the people I saw working along the roads for the last two summers. It worked for all those teachers who didn’t have to apply at McDonalds for a drive-thru position. It worked for me when my taxes were lowered considerably and I was able to pay a few bills.
The Stimulus worked very well and arguing that it should have been bigger ignores the reality that Republicans are also in our government. We all wished it had been all stimulus and less tax cuts, but in order to pass a bill in our selfish country, that’s the way it works. It also ignores what we’ve learned recently, that we were in much worse shape than what the Bush administration told the new President on their way out. There seems to be a lot of ignoring going on in order for people to justify their need to perpetuate this myth. Omissions are lies, in my mind. When people conveniently ignore massive variables in an equation, like millions of jobs saved and the fact that there was NO DEPRESSION, they are just plain lying.
Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles