Thursday, April 01, 2010

OMG! I got this email about Obama's sinister plans! Forward this to everyone you know!!!1!

No one completely knows how to combat the gullibility of certain people who will believe anything that lands in the Inbox as long as it preys on their fears, but here's something to keep in mind if you're tempted to dismiss the power of this phenomenon out of hand. From Justin Elliott of TPM:

The Detroit Free Press notices that charged Hutaree militia member Tina Stone bemoaned the passage of H.R. 1388 on her Facebook page recently. That bill has been the subject of a false chain email that warns President Obama provided money to settle Hamas members in the United States.

Boy, that ol' H.R. 1388 just keeps on giving, doesn't it? Remember when it was said by certain members of the hand-tightenable threaded fastener community that this bill was designed to enable President Obama to start up the new Hitler Youth? Srsly.



cybercorrespondent said...

Setting the campaign rhetoric aside and looking instead at his cadre of advisors, I don't think the change Obama has in mind is what the American people had in mind when they blindly elected one of the most outspoken collectivists so far.

Within the first six weeks of office, Barack Obama proposed spending programs that exceeds the total government spending of the U.S. since it's founding to Obama's enauguration. He has borrowed Trillions of dollars and ensured the slavery of our children for generations to come.

He sent his Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, on a mission to China to beseech them to continue buying U.S. debt... and what did she use for collateral? Our children's lives and property.

Brendan Keefe said...

First off, I am curious what led you to a blog post that's nearly three years old.

To your first paragraph, I'd say three things. First, I have been disappointed by his hesitancy to use the mandate he had in 2008. Second, his "cadre of advisors" (the fiscal ones, at least) have seemed to me to be most interested in doing what's in the nation's best interest, both in the short-term, with their actions to keep the economy from crashing completely, and in the long term, with their views on getting control of health care costs, putting the brakes on runaway military spending, investing in education, and trying to reverse the trend of growth in the gap between the haves and have-nots.

To the first sentence of your second paragraph, I will say only this: citation needed.

To the second, I will say he's far from the first president to have record-setting budget deficits, Reagan and GW Bush beig the two most recent examples before him. I'd say also that (1) deficit spending during a severe recession is a good thing, (2) that a nation running a deficit is not like a household running a deficit, and (3) that a big part of the reason we have such a deficit problem, to the extent that it is a problem, is due in large part to the GOP's intransigence on tax policy.

To your choice of a couple of terms: first, "collectivist." I am not sure what, exactly, you mean by this. I am aware it connotes all manner of nameless, yet horrible, things in the minds of many conservatives. I don't see anything that Obama has done as being even remotely qualified to be included among those dark fears. I suppose we disagree on Obamacare. If you want to call a plan to guarantee some sort of minimum health coverage to every American "collectivist," I'll agree, but I'll also say the plan as passed does not go nearly far enough. I believe we should have a public option, for one thing.

More generally, while I strongly believe in free enterprise, the opportunity to be rewarded for personal initiative, and so on, I also believe in the concept of a community working together for the benefit of all, whether we're talking town, county, state, nation, or world scale. The two ideas are at odds, granted, but I think elements of both can be simultaneously in force, to positive ends.

Regarding "slavery:" with all due respect, I'd suggest you spend too much time listening to hysterics and those who act like hysterics to further their own media careers. You (and they) will have to do a lot more than just yell buzzwords to persuade me that selling T-bills is somehow going to lead to the next generation wearing chains.

And, finally, if you really think the deficit is that much of a problem, I'd suggest you spend some of your writing energy getting the teabaggers in Congress to get their heads out of their asses about raising taxes on the rich. (See here, for example.)

I think that we probably disagree philosophically on any number of points, but I will say in closing that my own view of President Obama, who I continue to admire for a number of reasons, is that he's been too timid on on fiscal matters. Or, put another way, he is a moderate Republican, by any reasonable definition of the term; i.e., before that party got taken over by lunatics.