eRobin at Fact-esque has been saying for a couple of weeks that we need to demand from Democratic candidates statements to the effect that they will definitely overturn Bushian anti-Constitutional imperalist power-grabs, while noting that only Chris Dodd has done so – albeit in a limited, lame shuffle that leaves him lots of wiggle room.
Today at Yearly Kos, in answer to a questioner during the Q&A session, Barack Obama became the second candidate to take a stance, and there was nothing wishy-washy about it. No transcript and I can’t type fast enough to give you his statement verbatim but this is pretty close: he said that virtually all of the Bush/Cheney power grabs had come in the form of executive fiats, and pointed out that that meant that when he became president, he could use executive fiats to reverse Bush’s orders, and he would.
The crowd applauded, of course, but he then added that he thought there could be good reasons for signing statements and that he wouldn’t promise not to use them.
That, in a nutshell, is what makes supporting Obama so frustrating. Whatever he gives with one hand, he takes away with the other. He has a good, potentially workable health care plan, but then it turns out he’s going to maintain the participation of private, for-profit insurers who will game the system, whatever it is, the way they always do. He wants to get out of Iraq but only, apparently, so he can send the Army back into Afghanistan. It all amounts to talking left even as he gives the right most of what it wants.
This makes him a good politician but a good president? Not so much.
There has been no scientific evidence of it up to now but recent developments in the Congress have, I believe, proved fairly conclusively that Alzheimer’s is viral in nature and suggests that the carrier of this dread disease is none other than Alberto Gonzales.
Consider: ever since Gonzo’s first appearance before the House Judiciary Committee when he uttered the phrases “I don’t remember” or “I can’t recall” some 55 times in the course of the first 2 hours, a rash of Administration witnesses have appeared who were unable to remember key sections of their lives. Monica Goodling, GSA Administrator Lurita Doan, Kyle Sampson, and what seems like dozens of others appear to have lost access to their memory centers, saying they “can’t recall” who they are, what they’re doing in the White House, or what exactly the “Constitution” might be.
Mr Gonzales’ case seems from his latest testimony to have advanced to the stage where he can barely remember his own name. He can’t describe his position, his duties, or his role in the government, answering as if he thinks he works for Karl Rove in the political office. He became confused whenever anyone referred to him as the “Attorney General”, insisting that he worked for the president directly in much the same capacity as Bebe Rebozo used to work directly for Nixon – getting him coffee, fluffing his pillows, and answering “Yes sir” to anything Bush says.