Voices from Russia

Sunday, 7 June 2015

7 June 2015. Russian Demot… It Shows What the Rodina Thinks of Anglo Threats

00 white house down. putin. 07.06.15

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The original post was:

When push comes to shove…

this outcome could happen…

but WHO really is the BULLY?

What Should happen to the Bully?

‪#‎IstandWithRussia

Russia isn’t scared of Anglo posturing and threats. America had best heed this…

BMD

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Saturday, 28 September 2013

28 September 2013. Good or Evil? Will the Real Barack Obama Please Stand Up?

00 Barack Obama. He's not an angel. 28.09

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Editor’s Foreword:

There’s much mud in the air at present about President Obama. I present a British article below, plus some Cabinet commentary afterwards. I’ll give my take on him then.

BMD

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What Has the President Ever Done for Us? Plenty!

In recent weeks, it’s become prevailing orthodoxy on both sides of the Atlantic to call Barack Obama a spent force. The argument goes like this… in screwing up over Syria, a President who was always weak and ineffective, who foolishly inflated expectations ahead of his first term, accelerated America’s decline and exhausted his own authority. Thereby, history will judge him a failure. It’s White House Down. Like most prevailing orthodoxy, it’s bunkum. We’ll come on to the Syrian mess in a moment. First, a brief review of the wider critique.

I guess it’s true that Obama did nothing very useful; except achieving, in public healthcare, something that presidents going back a century or more have wanted, but failed to get. Then, there are such small matters as substantial Wall Street reform, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act… that did much to reduce the pay gap between men and women… repeal of the vile “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” rule for gays in the military, and the exceptionally competent response to Hurricane Sandy. Then, there are his radical moves towards energy independence through investment in shale, and his personal supervision of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, and the scheduled withdrawals from Iraq and from Afghanistan. Finally, when he took over as President, the world was on the brink of depression and America was losing 700,000 jobs per month… but since 2010, it’s grown an average of 2.3 percent per quarter.

So, apart from healthcare, Wall Street and social reforms, getting Bin Laden, green investment, and smart stewardship of the world’s biggest economy, what the hell did Obama do for the USA? Not much, I guess; though note that his detractors think that we sorely miss his predecessor. They often champion Britain’s economic recovery, where quarterly growth since 2010 averaged 0.28 percent, fuelled by a disgraceful housing bubble. It’s true that Obama screwed up over Syria. His error wasn’t breaking the pledge about crossing a red line, but making it in the first place… something that he did on his diplomats’ advice. The hesitancy that he and Secretary of State John Kerry showed energised his critics, who see international affairs as a contest over who can put the biggest willy onto the negotiating table.

That’s not how it works. Diplomacy is a combination of patience, strategy, and luck. Obama has all three. On Syria, the Russians, of all people, gave him an exit strategy. Tomorrow, at the UN in New York, almost unthinkably, Iran’s new leader will shake Obama’s hand. Although the Israelis are… justifiably… sceptical, there’s been an astonishing thawing of relations between Iran and America of late. Iran’s leaders released political prisoners, sent Rosh Hashanah greetings to Jews via Twitter, and exchanged letters with the White House via the Swiss. The Americans reciprocated. If you chastise Obama over his handling of Syria, so, you should applaud him over his handling of Iran. It’s far too early to tell, of course; but he could yet convert the latter from pariah to partner. That won’t convince his silly critics, but it might shut them up for a bit.

23 September 2013

Amol Rajan

London Evening Standard

http://www.standard.co.uk/comment/amol-rajan-what-has-the-president-ever-done-for-us-plenty-8834751.html

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One of the Cabinet wrote:

The phrase “Lesser of Two Evils” isn’t just a phrase. It’s an apt description of this present occupant of the Oval Office. I despise those who’d malign his race. I also despise his capitalist policies encouraging war, aggression, oppression, and slavish obeisance to Transnational Capital. I agree that we need a REAL Left Party here. However, the moneyed classes always destroyed such movements in utero here.

Another Cabineteer piped up:

The Left hailed Obama when he won the election, and some buffoons in California actually started waving the Hammer & Sickle. The Right fumed and ranted against “communist” Obama. Both were wrong… he’s just a typical president, that is, a tool of the rich who own and control the corporate structure and Wall Street.

My take? It’s simple… the choice was between Barack Obama and Willard Romney… not between Barack Obama and some perfect leftist. That’s what was on offer… that’s all that was on offer, and one had to choose one or the other. True, you could sit out the election, and some leftists argued that allowing the righties to triumph would advance the date of a putative revolution. As for me, I didn’t want to take chances with my immediate future. Ryan made it clear that the Republicans would gut Social Security and Medicare to benefit their oligarch paymasters. Besides, any decent person has an obligation to oppose the racism of the Republican Party (any party that embraced Strom Thurmond is no friend of equality).

In other words, Barack Obama’s no prize package. However, he’s far above the only real alternative out there. Willard Romney wanted to spread Neoliberal Anarchy (AKA Neoconservatism) as far as he could, meaning an imposition of laissez-faire economics, an embracing of warmongering (far worse than anything bruited by Obama), and social anarchy typified by “Stand-Your-Ground” laws. The choice wasn’t great… but we did have it, and we had the obligation to pick the lesser of two evils. I did so, and have no regrets.

Did you want eight more years of misrule by another Republican junta? Well, Barack Obama was the only alternative. As for me, he didn’t do badly… after all, the Republicans have done their best in Congress to neuter him. He’s still standing… thank God…

BMD

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