Obama, Drones, and the 11th Commandment

Double standards are anathema to most Americans. This ought to be especially true when it comes to civil liberties, executive powers, and justice.

So where is the outrage from the Left and Democrats about drones and the executive powers born of Bush and being wielded still by Obama? We may no longer torture people, but Gitmo remains open and the President is choosing targets and authorizing the killing of American and non-American civilians.

Image

This video frame grab provided by Senate Television shows Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. speaking on the floor of the Senate on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 6, 2013. Photograph: AP

To Liberals, Progressives, Democrats, and supporters of the president everywhere, Glenn Greenwald’s piece in The Guardian last week, “Three Democratic myths used to demean the Paul filibuster”, is especially for you. It will probably make you uncomfortable. It should.

If you identify yourself as a Conservative, Libertarian, Republican or some combination thereof, then I suspect that you’ll enjoy and embrace Greenwald’s article. On some level, you should. It has all the talking points you could want for calling out the Left’s hypocrisy and double standards, at least on the issues of civil liberties and executive power. That is, of course, provided that you remain comfortable defending Bush and his administration for their atrocities and their violations of power and of the civil liberties conveyed on us by the Constitution. It was, after all, W and his administration who laid the foundation for your sworn mortal enemy, President Obama, now to be the one using – and even expanding – those executive powers.

Greenwald sheds truthful light on well-accepted Democratic values. He reveals the truths of a Democratic “empathy gap”, liberal authoritarianism, and the distortions of AG Eric Holder’s letter. He makes clear the case for why the attacks from the Left on Rand Paul for his criticisms of the president and his drone policy are partisan, disingenuous, and a glaring double standard by Democrats.

It comes down to this. One’s outrage over the abuses of power is almost always a matter of convenience and political persuasion.

It seems reasonable to ask where Rand Paul was between October of 2001 and March of 2013 when it comes to his filibustering strategy as a means for making any points about civil liberties and executive power. Late is better than never.

His 13-hour talk-a-thon has opened a door of opportunity for every American to be more aware of the abuses of executive power and the fact that those abuses continue today under Obama. Democrats, Liberals, Progressives, and everyone on the Left should not squander this opportunity. They should unite to press for the kind of changes in DC and from this president that are supposed to be at the core of Democratic and democratic values.

Late is better than never.

If Americans truly believe in our Constitution and in a way of life in which laws and justice are applied equally and to all, then we should be outraged with Obama and how he is wielding his executive power.

Late is better than never.

Our civil liberties have been under threat since 2001. The threat is not foreign, it is domestic. It’s the result of our willingness to accept that an extremely small number of very powerful people – the very same people presumably elected by us to represent us and our values – have been granted and are now abusing that power. Obama’s actions don’t seem all that different from W’s. They seem to be getting ever more dangerous and unilateral.

I still want to believe that one of the things that make Democrats more appealing than and different from Republicans is that Democrats reject Reagan’s 11th Commandment as utterly and completely wrong-headed and wrong for America. It is the epitome of partisan politics. Every thinking person knows that it’s only through the courage to speak truth to power, and to challenge that power and its self-perpetuating and self-serving conventional wisdom, that progress can be made.

So I ask again, where’s the outrage? Where are the Democrats in DC standing up to challenge the Executive Branch? Why does it take a Libertarian to shed light on the dangers of unchecked executive power which defines ‘war’ and ‘battlefield’ and ‘enemy combatant’ to now encompass the entire planet and even an American citizen on American soil?

I marched in DC twice during the Bush years.

Where are the marches now?

Late is better than never.

About these ads

About Peaceful Patriot

Proud middle class husband, father, and progressive liberal. Registered Non-Partisan but have much more in common with Democrats than Republicans. Consider Libertarians to be immature and underdeveloped in their understanding of reality. An atheist who doesn't care what you believe so long as you stop pretending the Founding Fathers intended for you to legislatively force your beliefs on everyone else. Laughs out loud in mocking disdain at the abject lunacy of birthers, climate science deniers, and hard core tea partiers. If that offends you, too bad. You're not rational and have no place at the adult table.
This entry was posted in Democrats, human rights, Obama, politics and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Obama, Drones, and the 11th Commandment

  1. Pingback: Obama, Drones, and the 11th Commandment | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it

  2. Jeff Nguyen says:

    You might want to check out Glen Ford at Black Agenda Report. He has called Obama the “more effective evil” because of his ability to neutralize dissent from the progressives.

  3. Pingback: Obama, Drones, and the 11th Commandment | Coffee Party Originals | Scoop.it

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s