Suspicious Minds

We woke up Monday with a curious revelation:

We no longer trust Barack Obama.

Really, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. We stopped calling him Unicorn back in summer 2008. We were deeply bummed by his symbolic decision to invite a Proud Bigot to his Inaugural. We were an early bungee jumper into the Enthusiasm Gap. We heartily assent to all the nasty things Glenn Greenwald has said about him, to the point of wondering whether Obama is creating the most oppressive national-security state in American history — which would be quite a feat, considering the competition.

So it’s not like our canoe suddenly tipped over.

And it’s not like we have a habit of trusting Our Nation’s Preznits in the first place. Hey, we grew up with Nixon, after all. We only watched the Watergate hearings because they pre-empted the Match Game.

And we’ve long said that any politician who aspires to the highest office in our land, much less achieves it, is inherently untrustworthy. Decent people don’t do that. Those who try have so severely compromised their souls, it’s a miracle they don’t burst into flames when they take the oath of office.

But with all that, with all the evidence we’ve been noting ourself, somehow we hadn’t quite yet cut the cord. Hadn’t given up. Hadn’t completely lost faith.

Hadn’t yet reverted to our default position.

All that remained, we now realize, was The Last Straw. The snapping of the thread. Or, to use a metaphor that quickly captured our imagination: The Blowing of the Fuse.

One of those car fuses. Or, for illustration purposes, a speaker fuse. There’s a filament that passes juice between the two ends. If the system shorts, the fuse melts. The connection is lost.

That’s what happened Saturday.

The Senate had just repealed DADT, against all odds. But before OFA could fire off its victory email, official word came from Robert Gates that the current law remains in effect.

Now, we understand the technicalities. The repeal was conditional — conditional upon the military getting around to it. Procedures have to be devised, regulations have to be issued. We have to do it right. because you can’t just provide civil rights willy nilly. That would be irresponsible.

But really — and we’re sorry if this is over-the-top, but it’s the first thought that came to mind — Who wants to be the last soldier to die after the truce has been signed?

Our take all along is that Obama could have suspended DADT if he wanted to. Yes, the law’s the law, but he’s Commander-in-Chief, and he could have issued a stop-loss order or whatever. It’s a big government. A determined President would have found a way. Obama chose not to. Fine.

But now — now that repeal has finally passed, with huge public support — the least he could do is suspend DADT while the military figures out the details. Or keep the policy technically in place, but delay prosecutions for — what, six months? Something. Anything.

Anything other than letting the damn thing continue as is.

And hey, maybe he will yet. Maybe he’ll do it the moment he signs the repeal into law. A Grand Gesture. Get the shutterbugs to Times Square, boys, there’s some kissing going on!

But we haven’t heard any indication he will do that — quite the opposite. Maybe a year ago, maybe even last week, we would have still trusted Obama to Do the Right Thing, all evidence to the contrary.

No longer.

Funny thing about trust: Once you lose it, it’s very hard to get back. Obama could spend the next year being the Bestest Preznit We Ever Had, and still there would be that lingering doubt in the back of our mind.

That’s the thing about fuses: Sure, we could just pop in a fresh one, re-establish the connection. But after the system has shorted once, you just know the damn thing’s gonna blow again.

Timing of ‘don’t ask’ change unclear [Politico, via Sully]

Obama to sign ‘Don’t Ask’ repeal Wednesday [Washington Blade]


True. He could run as “least worst” preznit of the 21st century. On the other hand, I can trust that a GOPer preznit will be equal parts stupid, nasty and incompetent.

But look, puppies!

Um, because I’m weak willed and going there…

We’re caught in a trap
I can’t get out
Because they’re (GOPers) even worse, Barry

Why can’t you see
What you’re doing to me
When I don’t believe a word you say?

We can’t build a police state
With suspicious minds
And we can’t hope our hopes
On suspicious minds

So, if a tax cut you know
Does more than say hello
Would you still see suspicion in our eyes?

Here we go again
Asking when you’ve bent
You can’t see these tears are real
I’m crying

We can’t build a police state
With suspicious minds
And we can’t hope our hopes
On suspicious minds

Oh let our hope survive
Hang up when you call for cash
Let’s don’t let that freedums die

When honey, it’s sad
It’s you or McCain/Palin
Mmm yeah, yeah

Note: critical Barry article got a Goldline ad.

Really Google Adsense?

I missed the fucking eclipse!

I’m not sure that one is supposed to trust politicians. I’m not sure that’s what they do. He does seem to have very little interest in claiming credit for anything. So one never knows what he thinks about anything. Usually we get politicians who are shrewd but not particularly intelligent. This one seems to be the reverse: intelligent but not shrewd.

Hey, you guys!!!!! OMFG!!111

I just noticed the widget on the bottom right corner of the comment box. If you can drag it you can make it longer AND thicker!!!!11

That’s every boy’s dream.

@Benedick: I have no idea what you’re talking about. The !!1!!one!!1 should have tipped me off, but I’m waving my cursor all around the comment box looking for the drag/grab thingy. Story of my life.

@ManchuCandidate: What’s that to the tune of? (I’m glad you’re posting songs again.)

the deal I made with myself a few weeks ago was that if Barry did not get DADT repealed this year I was done. that I would never vote for him again if he let McStain stop it will all the momentum it had.

and I totally meant it.

but he did. so I have to re-evaluate. I would be surprised if many soldiers get singled out between now and the implementation.

@JNOV: Look at the cross-hatch in bottom right corner – two diagonal lines – of the comment box. Click and hold. Drag down and right. You can make yours longer and thicker too. (that’s a joke that never gets old).

Is this noje’s present to us all?

@Benedick: Apparently it’s his present to you or WP’s present to your browser. You know he loves you longer and thicker more than he loves me.

@ManchuCandidate: Ta. (I’ve been watching Scotttttish movies. Red Road is pretty good.) Anyway, your version is much better. I’m sure you lip synch and dance better than dude.

@Capt Howdy: Little remarked on, it seems, is that the Pentagon changed the procedures two months ago to make it more difficult to discharge soldiers under DADT. The biggest changes, as I understand it, are that only senior officers may recommend someone for discharge, and only the highest ranking officials (undersecretaries and so on) may approve that recommendation, meaning greater scrutiny of fewer cases.

@Benedick: Oh, hey! Safari is good for something!

Now, if someone weren’t so obsessed with running a clean site, we could have some fun…

ADD: Ta.

@JNOV: Love Safari 5. LOVE IT. Way better than its predecessors. I do everything with it now.

@Benedick: Simply by using two little diagonal slashes! Strangely, the emails that flood my junkpile haven’t mentioned this.

@Dodgerblue: They caught my eye and I tried doing stuff. Pretty impressive.

Just to confirm, it’s a Safari Thing. Apple has your back. Or box. Whatever.

Can’t part with Firefox for some reason, and Safari holds my phone hostage. Boo!

@nojo: Yeah, but whom do you like love better? Benedick or me?

@JNOV: Not the best question when the featured graphic is a blown fuse. Nor when somebody is very cranky for waking up batshit early two days in a row.

@nojo: Sorry. I’ll keep the time difference in mind the next time I sext you.

Seriously, I understand cranky. Hope you get a nap in.

@Mistress Cynica: That would make sense — Chrome is based on the same underlying programming, called WebKit.

@JNOV: It’s my own damn fault for my mind not letting me rest, having discovered a simplish means for using WordPress to create custom thumbnails for a client, but still needing to work up a proof-of-concept prototype. Inspiration is a bitch.

I’m gonna have to carry this water myself, aren’t I?

Exactly who did you guys think we elected, Dennis Kucinich? Here’s yet another time when the President, as head of the majority party in Congress, delivered exactly what he said he would: nothing less than a repeal of DADT. It’s over. Done, and done in a way that make it well-nigh permanent. And yet, after he has done so, we villify him for being cautious.

He is not king, friends. He exists in a political system which depends on compromise for it’s very existence. Please don’t throw the baby out because the temperature of the bathwater isn’t exactly what you thought you ordered.

@Capt Howdy: No, sorry, Obama didn’t get DADT repealed. It happened in spite of Obama. Credit should go to the American people and the LGBT community.

@karen marie doesn’t want to know: Really? You really think this happened without the White House providing strategy and support? You don’t think the party heads spoke at all, or decided who would take the political hit when it happened?

I don’t take anything away from the activists sand the community, but it’s a shame to say that the White House had nothing to do with it, and more than a bit naive.

Not to disrespect you at all, by the way…

@Tommmcatt is with Karin Marie on This One: Blah, blah, blah. Obama has ceded ground to the Republicans in every possible instance, not once has he stepped up and fought publicly for anything. Tell me one thing on which he has exhibited a hint of leadership. Just one.

ADD: No disrespect taken, or meant.

@karen marie doesn’t want to know: I’m wondering if it happened because Rahm and his negative influence on progressive policies are gone.

@karen marie doesn’t want to know:

that may or may not be so but I was totally ready to blame him if it did not pass. so I have to cut him some slack when it does.

and I have heard he was working the phones pretty furiously in the final hours.

@karen marie doesn’t want to know: This is so easy to say, but just as easy to rebut: he provided leadership on health care, banking reform, DADT, the auto industry bailout.

Leadership isn’t getting in front of a camera and calling John Boehner a cock- monkey. Leadership is getting things done. Obama does get things done. It might not be the Kenyan fascistosocialist paradise we all want, but to say he hasn’t provided leadership is factually untrue.

@Capt Howdy: Thanks, could you give me a hang with these 15 cases over here? I’m out of hands.

I’m with Catt on this. I think the left is too hard on Bamacakes. He never was a liberal, he never was progressive. That was clear from his campaign. It is very frustrating when he acts like George HW Bush but he has got a lot done. And if they ratify START it will be a big accomplishment.

BTW, my health insurance just went up by 9%. Next year 80% has to go towards paying for care. That’s a big step forward.

@Tommmcatt is with Karin Marie on This One:
Obama is a center rightie! Im shocked SHOCKED.

like I said I break it down this way, I was ready to blame him, and so were a lot of other people if it failed to pass. it passed. if you believe he deserved blame he has to deserve some credit.

honestly it is a watershed for gay rights. it will defang arguments against gay equality across the board. but it galls me a little that congress (or Obama for that matter) will get the credit. IMO the main reason it passed is because it was becoming clear that the courts would do it if they did not. not that much courage involved. but whatever. I will take it. and in the end a congressional repeal will go down better with the haters. that is to say they will still hate it but it will be harder for them to condemn it.

I am gratified that it appears that I will live long enough to see this and national gay marriage.
there were many times I did not think I would live to see either of those things.

@Capt Howdy: I may not live to see Spiderman: teh Musical – Turn off the Tap open. Seems that AEA (my beloved union) has shut it down. As per the website they are ‘in talks’ with management and Dept of Labor. Performances won’t resume till they are safe. Meantime the show is most likely losing $300 to $400,000 a day.

Git yer totally unsubstantiated rumors here, folk.

and you want to see this because . . . . .

Not surprising as someone fell and stopped the show to the horror of the audience last night.

The producers should be more inclined to push for the universe to Turn Off the Gravity.

@Benedick: I don’t. Wild horses. But I’ve been puzzled that Equity hasn’t stepped in. Perhaps now they will.

@Benedick: You don’t collect flops? I always wanted to do that, there is something liberating about a horrendous musical. I had friends that saw previews of Carrie.

@Tommmcatt is with Karin Marie on This One:
that sounds a bit like torture for those of us who think most musicals are horrendous.

however I probably would have bought a ticket to Springtime for Hitler.

@Tommmcatt is with Karin Marie on This One: I’ve been in too many – though not on this scale. It gives me no pleasure. I was involved with the first show ever to used computers to move the scenery. It was just about the most hideous experience I’ve ever known. Big tech musicals always go through this phase. They have to run out all the kinks and then they’re OK. They just don’t usually hurt so many people. I’m already seeing their Gypsy of the Year number.

Carrie is being revived off-Broadway, I hear.

@Capt Howdy: Look for the recent revival of South Pacific. Live from Lincoln Center. Should be online. You might find one or two things to like.

Speaking of Unicorn Black Eagle Barry, The Onion is proving its zeitgeisty chops once again.

I love ya Bene but I wont be doin that.

@Tommmcatt is with Karin Marie on This One: Leadership isn’t getting in front of a camera and calling John Boehner a cock- monkey. Leadership is getting things done. Shit. Now I gotta cancel my press conference. When did we think that Obama was a liberal? Was I the only one who assumed he was as much a lying sack of shit as any other politician and the Unicorn moniker was totally ironic?

Speaking of lying sacks of shit … I’d like to put another plug in for the U.S. Attorney in Arizona as asshole of the year. I’ve heard that he’s still turning down good cases in Indian Country despite his assurances that his office will take rez crimes seriously.

@TJ/ Jamie Sommers /TJ: I have a tribal client who did a forensic accounting of theft from an Indian organization (as the criminal statute at 18 USC 1163 is titled), gift wrapped it, tied it with a bow and hand delivered it to the FBI.

/calendar pages whip off in the wind to show the passage of 23 months

Zero. Zip. Nada. It was only $60,000 of a school board’s money . . .


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