on, “Would We Be Better Off If John McCain Were President?”

“Democrats were united on one issue in the 2008 presidential election: the absolute disaster that a John McCain victory would have produced.


And they were right. McCain as president would clearly have produced a long string of catastrophes: He would probably have approved a failed troop surge in Afghanistan, engaged in worldwide extrajudicial assassination, destabilized nuclear-armed Pakistan, failed to bring Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu to the negotiating table, expanded prosecution of whistle-blowers, sought to expand executive branch power, failed to close Guantanamo, failed to act on climate change, pushed both nuclear energy and opened new areas to domestic oil drilling, failed to reform the financial sector enough to prevent another financial catastrophe, supported an extension of the Bush tax cuts for the rich, presided over a growing divide between rich and poor, and failed to lower the jobless rate.


Nothing reveals the true state of American politics today more than the fact that Democratic President Barack Obama has undertaken all of these actions”[1] [Check out the original for all the links initially embedded above]


Articles like these are increasingly laying bare the fact that with the most consequential policy decisions of the U.S. government are largely a result of unaccountable institutional forces that are the ground under which both of the two major political parties operate.


Comments and Discussion on “Ron Paul vs Robert Reich On Larry King”

“@thinkahol sure. show me the spot.

Ravengaurd6 9 minutes ago
@Ravengaurd6 more than willing to get into a long discussion on my blog “Thinkahol’s Blog”

thinkahol 24 minutes ago
@Ravengaurd6 So when businesses grow past a certain size, they should have become democratic. The type of anarchism that I would support has only existed in brief flashes before being violently externally defeated. The Paris Commune of 1871, and anarchists in the 1936 Spanish Civil War are a couple of examples.

thinkahol 27 minutes ago

And so it’s a dangerous error to place market values as supreme over humans and the environment. Market efficency arises through competition. The ideal market recognizes that collectively/democratically agreed upon rules setting the space in which we want efficient outcomes can arise are legitimate and necessary. That we have shitty regulation doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have rules, to the contrary we need more accountability and better rules.

thinkahol 31 minutes ago

Those are some big questions. I’m on the libertarian left not the libertarian right. I think power from concentrated wealth is as much a threat to our liberty as the power of the state, and less accountable. It’s a mistake to over “scientize” economics. The complex mathematical models (physics envy) create over confidence because they’re based on false premises. Economics can’t be a hard science because markets don’t exist independent of their socio-political context.

thinkahol 41 minutes ago
@thinkahol and what is your Ideal version of the market. why do you support it? how does it work? and has it been proven?

Ravengaurd6 1 hour ago

I think Ron Paul is right about a lot of things and wrong about plenty of others, but he’s certainly better than any establishment candidate. It’s his free market fundamentalist supporters that give me headaches.

thinkahol 1 hour ago

[More than willing to edit the name out.]

another video to get started:

Has Obama kept a single campaign promise?

“As Social Security emerged as a target in White House budget negotiations, Sen. Bernie Sanders insisted that the retirement program must not be cut as part of any deficit reduction deal. ‘Let us be clear,’ Sanders said. ‘Social Security has not contributed one nickel to our deficit or our national debt.’ The program that benefits more than 50 million seniors and disabled has a $2.6 trillion surplus, he stressed, and will be able to provide full benefits for every eligible American for the next 25 years. ‘I am especially disturbed that President Obama is considering cuts in Social Security after he campaigned against cuts in 2008,’ Sanders added.

Obama made his position clear on Sept. 6, 2008, when he said: ‘John McCain’s campaign has suggested that the best answer for the growing pressures on Social Security might be to cut cost of living adjustments or raise the retirement age. Let me be clear: I will not do either,’ Obama said. ‘The American people expect the president to keep his word,’ Sanders said.”[1]


Obama hasn’t closed Guantanamo and people are still being tortured at Bagram[2], the U.S. is bombing at least six Muslim countries that we know of (Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, Pakistan)[3], and the healthcare bill fiasco in which he had secretly traded away the public option from the beginning[4] very clearly show that he definitely hasn’t changed the way Washington works. If anything he’s made every conceivable pernicious undemocratic influence stronger.


And all of that is to say nothing of things like targeted assassinations of American citizens[5] without oversight[6], let alone due process. Gosh, I wish someone had asked him to promise not to try that one!


Unconditional Support Ensures Political Impotence

“Obama knows full well that he can slash Medicare, Medicaid and even Social Security — just like he could sign an extension of Bush tax cuts, escalate multiple wars, and embrace the Bush/Cheney Terrorism template recently known in Democratic circles as “shredding the Constitution” — and have most Democrats and progressives continue to support him anyway.  Unconditional support ensures political impotence, and rightly so.  He’s attending to the constituencies that matter: mostly, Wall Street tycoons who funded his 2008 campaign and whom he hopes will fund his re-election bid, and independents whose support is in question.  And he’s doing that both because it’s in his perceived interest and because, to the extent he believes in anything, those are the constituencies with which he feels most comfortable.”[1]


Obama’s policies cannot be more antithetical to our constitution and values. Obama’s administration has even arrogated the power to assassinate American citizens without oversight let alone due process.[2] If Obama does not lose your support for this, what would it take?

[1] Greenwald, Glenn. “Reports: Obama Pushing for Cuts to Social Security, Medicare – Glenn Greenwald – Salon.com.” Salon.com – Salon.com. 7 July 2011. Web. 09 July 2011. <http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2011/07/07/social_security/index.html&gt;.

[2] Greenwald, Glenn. “Confirmed: Obama Authorizes Assassination of U.S. Citizen – Glenn Greenwald – Salon.com.” Salon.com – Salon.com. 4 Apr. 2010. Web. 09 July 2011. <http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/04/07/assassinations&gt;.