For disillusioned Obama supporters, the ACLU's July report "Establishing the New Normal" is not a heartening read.
After being voted into office on promises that included undoing abuses carried out under the Bush administration - promises to protect privacy, to end government-sanctioned torture and rendition programs and to end the use of military commissions for non-enemy combatants - President Obama's administration is proving it is far easier to toe the line than buck a trend.
According to a report by the ACLU, the current White House has not just failed to meaningfully follow through on its promises, but has also taken abusive policies, and, as shown in the case of targeted and interminable detentions, eroded civil rights to unprecedented levels.
Anybody have any idea why Obama has been resisting nominating Elizabeth Warren? She literally wrote the book on the stuff she would be doing, and seems extremely well-respected by just about everybody.
The base would love it, he's be nominating somebody extremely qualified.... and the only ones that wouldn't like it is Wall Street, who Obama doesn't care about, right?
So, to recap: (1) The Professional Left are totally irrelevant losers who speak for absolutely nobody, and certainly nobody in Real America who matters; but (2) they're ruining everything for the White House!!!
And: if you criticize the President, it's only because you're such a rabid extremist that you harbor a secret desire to eliminate the Pentagon -- that's how anti-American you are! You're such a Far Left extremist that Dennis Kucinich isn't far enough Left for you, you subversive, drug-using hippies! You're so far to the Left that you want to turn the U.S. into Canada.
As David Frum put it today: "More proof of my longtime thesis, Repub pols fear the GOP base; Dem pols hate the Dem base."
The Democrats have been concerned about a lack of enthusiasm on the part of their base headed into the midterm elections. These sorts of rabid, caricatured, Fox-News-copying attacks on the Left will undoubtedly help generate more enthusiasm -- more loud clapping -- for the Democrats.
I know I'm eager to go canvass and clap for Democrats after reading Gibbs' noble, inspiring vision. If it were Gibbs' goal to be as petulant and self-pitying as possible, what could he have done differently?
Perhaps one day the White House can work itself up to express this sort of sputtering rage against the Right, or the Wall Street thieves who destroyed the American economy, or the permanent factions that control Washington. Until then, we'll have to satisfy ourselves with White House explanations that the Real Culprits are not (of course) them, but the Professional Left, that is simultaneously totally irrelevant and ruining everything. I'll give credit to Gibbs for putting his name on this outburst: these are usually the things they say anonymously and then deny afterward on the record that it's what they think.
I'm not necessarily a "moderate" democrat like you. I'm more of a die-hard who sepnt a bunch of time living in a hotel room in the fall of 2008 to help with the Obama Campaign.
I'm sick of this BS from the White House.
It's not our fault that Obama has decided to be just as bad or even worse than Bush on presidential powers, the war on terror, and some civil rights issues.
It's not our fault that Obama cuts deals with companies that have systematically abused us, to the extend of even forcing us to be their customers.
It's not our fault the White House continually pokes Labor in the eyes and has illogical and self-conflicting stances on gay rights.
It's not our fault that Obama stacked his administration with Goldman Sachs flackies. It's not our fault Summers never gave to Obama Romer's suggestion that the Stimulus needed to be a lot bigger.
It's not our fault that Obama steals and legitimizes a bunch of right-wing talking points.
It's not our fault that Obama and the Democrats don't use all available procedural moves to get stuff done (reconciliation, anyone?)
It's not our fault that Rahm emanual runs to Lieberman to tell him he can have all his demands within an hour of those demands, but twists Progressive arms.
It's not our fault that we are now wowed by Obama signing a HCR bill into law that basically ripped off a 90's Bob Dole and Herritage Foundation compromise.
It's not our fault that Obama lies to us about Afganistan and sends our children off to die for nothing.
It's not our fault that Obama won't use recess appointments when he needs to.
It's not our fault that Obama won't fully try to spotlight the GOP fillibusters of his appointments, or have a major showdown over help for the unemployed.
I'm just sick of this, and I went from putting in a lot of hours campaigning for the guy and being part of Obama's Voter Protection Program to probably not even voting for him next time around, and no amount of the Administration calling me names is going to help that.