Does Obama have the guts?

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President Barack Obama has ordered inspections on US mines with "troubling safety records," after the deaths of the 29 miners in West Virginia. The White House said Obama will meet with Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis and Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health Joe Main for a preliminary report on the deadly mine accident and the state of mine safety nationwide. It'll be interesting to see if what comes out of this is a call for greater unionization of our mines, like in Canada where the entire industry is unionized - and thus very, very safe compared to the US. Will the Obama Administration have the guts to call for democracy in the mining workplace?

Thom's picture
Thom
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

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Hey Thom, love you and all, but this is really not about "guts." There is so much that needs doing, and it has such interconnection, that each issue becomes a matter of political capital. This may be a great point of entry where public outrage can be mobilized to political gain. This may also be an issue where so much money is involved that Congress will be unable to go where Obama wants even if he makes a big speech.

Obama makes calculated decisions with long term strategy and has not been quick to jump on the popular issue of the moment. It disappoints some of us, but it is not about his courage. I think he could stand up to anyone if he believed it was the right strategy. I can disagree with his strategies without attributing any lack of guts to his actions.

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DRC
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

"guts"? You gotta be kidding. Except for the smallest minority, politicians do not have "guts".

Obama has made it perfectly clear that he is not interested in doing anything remotely contrary to the status quo. The so-called "health reform" thingie is a perfect example of what he is about.

Now, let's all get our shorts in a knot whining over 25 dead miners and ignore the 120 people who will die today because Obama has no balls.

"Progressives" are killing this country with their rubber spines.

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Dusty
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Thom:

(...) Will the Obama Administration have the guts to call for democracy in the mining workplace?

Thom,

I don't believe it's a matter of guts but of motivation and political convenience.

Obama didn't hesitate to indignantly grandstand for the prosecution of probable crimes resulting in the miners' deaths -- but what about the many obvious crimes of the Bush Administration? Not a word from him about that.

No matter how many good things Obama does his unwillingness to promote accountability for the damage done to this nation by the Bush Crime Family is assurance that the same things, and worse, are inevitable because of his nonfeasance. Whatever good he is doing now will be swept aside by the next right wing administration as easily as BushCo swept aside all concerns about the Constitution. The only way to prevent recurrence of BushCo's crimes is to impose deterrents, which Obama arrogantly refuses to do.

Obama is a nice fellow as well as a smart and articulate man. But deliberately leaving the back door open is clear evidence of his contempt for the future interests of the American People. It is a serious betrayal.

"The quality and nature of a man is seen not only in the things he does but just as clearly in the things he doesn't do." (Bertrand Russell)

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MikeK
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Great post, Mike. I often wonder why so many people repeatedly fail to understand multi-millionaires running the government is not the recipe of a democracy. Capitalism is incompatible with democracy - and so is Obama, although I look forward to having a $5 million year some day.

Dusty's picture
Dusty
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Dusty:

Great post, Mike. I often wonder why so many people repeatedly fail to understand multi-millionaires running the government is not the recipe of a democracy. Capitalism is incompatible with democracy - and so is Obama, although I look forward to having a $5 million year some day.

Don't set your sights so low. Become a hedge fund manager (bet manager) and make 5 million a day...after day...after day in bonuses. When you screw up, the government will step in to guarantee your profits...courtesy of your own lobbyists and the productive citizens of the country.

25 Hedge Fund Mgrs. shared $28 billion between them. Las Vegas has a lot to learn about running a Casino.

Back to Obama: QUOTE: "Obama’s repeated pleas to the Republicans to acknowledge that both his and their strategic values and aims are and should be identical is an ironic confirmation of Nader’s campaign claim, repeatedly referenced and indignantly dismissed by the Democratic faithful, that there is no significant difference between the Democrats and the Republicans. The sneering citations of Nader’s remark are offered as a reductio ad absurdum of any kind of third-party politics: how could anyone worth listening to claim that there isn’t the teensiest difference between, say, Clinton and Bush?"

"But Nader held no such thing. On the contrary, he insisted that there is the teensiest difference between these similaria. Just not enough to make a difference to wars (Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan) and other military intrusions (Yugoslavia, the Iraq sanctions), the trashing of the legacy of the New Deal and Great Society, deference to the financial plutocracy, indifference or hostility to unions, insensibility to now-historic inequality, and the rest. Sure, they dispute among themselves, but Obama’s continuity-politics makes this look increasingly like a game played with a wink and a nod."
Alan Nasser is Professor Emeritus of Political Economy at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.

From his article: "When Democrats are to the Right of Libertarians - Social Security in the Bullseye."

http://www.counterpunch.com/nasser04162010.html

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

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polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

"It disappoints some of us, but it is not about his courage." DRC

Sure it is, he has none.

"I think he could stand up to anyone if he believed it was the right strategy." DRC

Not from what I've seen so far. SOS

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

The question is, can Obama order the Justice Department to do anything?

In my opinion, the mine owner should be up on charges of murder because of his reckless disregard for the lives of his workers.

The question should be put to Eric Holder whether he is going to prosecute.

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spankycrissy
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