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Obama Watch

Archive: Viewer Comments

Question: (2009-04-16)

+ Obama Watch Question Archive - Obama Watch Question Archive
Do you think Congress will pass Obama's health reform bill? Do you think Obama's health reform summit will lead to a bipartisan reform bill? Do you think the federal stimulus has significantly helped the economy over the past year? What was your reaction to Obama's State of the Union speech? Do you think Obama has been devoting enough attention to environmental issues? What should Obama's Afghanistan troop strategy be? Are you concerned the U.S. is becoming too involved in military operations in Pakistan? Did Obama deserve to win the Nobel Peace Prize? Do you think Obama should send more troops to Afghanistan? Twinkies? Soda? Cigarettes? What items would you pay higher taxes on to ensure health care for all? Do you agree with Obama's decision to continue the practice of sending terrorism suspects to third countries for detention and interrogation? Should President Obama be tackling both the economy and health care at the same time? Some gay rights activists say Obama is not taking their concerns seriously enough. Are they right? How should Obama prioritize the battles he takes to Congress? Will Obama's speech in Egypt improve America's image in the Muslim world? Who should Obama nominate as the next Supreme Court justice and why? Has the press been too lenient on Obama in his first 100 days? What do you think of Obama's performance on his debut trip abroad as president? Do you think Obama's budget plan is too ambitious? How do you think Obama has done in his first 50 days in office? Do you blame Obama for not living up to his no-earmark pledge?

Commenter: DJ
Is he perfect? No! Will he keep each and every promise? Probably not! With all the criticism and the question of his media friendliness, how soon we forget what administration he succeeded. We are talking about a president who's approval rating hit below 45%. It's odd that we're complaining about Obama's first 100 days, but we conveniently misplace the last 2,920 days prior to his first 100.In his position he will never publicly play the race card, but I'm not a public figure so I will!!!!! Don't be naive about the country we live in. Contrary to popular belief it was founded on racism/slavery and that will never change.


Commenter: Dennis
Americans have become sophisticated in how they interpret much of what the media produces whether TV, radio, newspaper, or internet. Often I wonder if they don't often "tone down" the voices and words, and judge the President by some "unspoken" standard. Whether the media has been too lenient, or too hard might be irrelevant to most ...... they have watch Obama through the primaries and now as President and have reached two critical decisions on their own: they trust him (thus far) and they feel that the direction of the country IS changing (which is what they voted for).


Commenter: Greg
I think the media is in love with Obama and have been from the beginning. It shocks me how little the media is willing to play hardball with Obama or his administration and ask tough questions. They have effectively been giving the current administration a free-pass while they hype up all the rhetoric.


Commenter: Tony
Yes we can pull the strings of our media puppet (CNN). Better know as the all-day-Obama-network.
Yes we can raise your taxes because we've trained our media puppets to make you feel good about it all.
Now repeat after me...There's no pork in my stimulus package.
Repeat it every hour on the hour.


Commenter: Tony
Of course the press has been lenient on President Obama. For heaven sake, the press elected the man. This is one for the ages, Mr. Obama will go down in the annals of history as the first U.S. president to be elected solely on Media Hype and a catchy slogan.


Commenter: Adriene
I have mixed feelings about this. The media bias in favor of Obama was shocking during the campaign. If he had to run his campaign under the kind of criticism that Hillary Clinton was subjected to (or not even the same contant derogatory sexist slams, but just normal scrutiny) he would not have run such a "smooth" impressive campaign, which he is still being praised for. This bias continues after the election, and it has led to uncritical support for grave mistakes, including the appointment of Timothy Geitner, and including the bailouts that leave in power the corporate "Bernie Madoffs" with a "get out of jail free, keep your job, and pay yourself millions in bonus" card, those who created the economic crisis in power through manipulation and fraud. Obama has also appointed fewer women to his cabinet than his recent predessors, even George Bush. Feminist groups are silent about these things, seemingly afraid to criticize him - or perhaps the media doesn't give such criticism coverage. One problem fosters the other - when there is so little criticism and critical thinking in the media except from FOX, people seem to be afraid to publicly criticize him. After all, that would be "racist", right? People are afraid of being accused of racism if that criticize him, and for good reason. During the campaign, people who were simply in favor of Hillary were immediately scrutinized for their "racism". Often times Hillary supporters' "racism" was simply assumed, for instance, in "explaining" the white working class support for Hillary. (Actually the working class support for Hillary was multi ethnic/racial, excepting African Americans. This was never mentioned in the media.)

All that said, I do think there is an upside to the media's lack of scorn and derogatory treatment of a candidate or elected official, in this case, Obama. That upside is that this allows a candidate to maintain a dignified demeanor and spend less time in scrappy counter-responses (which Obama did engage in during the brief moments he was criticized). Being treated in dignified way by the media, I think, allows an official concentrate on the job and its priorities. But there is a difference between dignified treatment and reverential treatment. It has been the latter that has been so destructive and interfered with democratic dialogue should leave choice in the hands of the people.


Commenter: Penney Kome
I made a list for an article I wrote at http://www.straightgoods.ca/2009/ViewFeature.cfm?Ref=232

Day by day, I think most media have reported his work fairly. Analysis, though, has shortchanged him.

So what has Obama done in three months? Well, among other things, he has:

* ordered that Guantanamo Bay be shut down;
* forbidden US troops to use torture for interrogation;
* made public the top secret legal opinions which the previous administration used to justify torture;
* acknowledged the dangers of climate change and committed the USA to reduce greenhouse gases 80 percent by 2050;
* allocated $16.8 billion to improve energy efficiency and develop renewable energy sources;
* signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which requires fair pay for everyone, regardless of their gender, race or age;
* restored funding for stem cell research;
* restored funding for international development aid that recommends using condoms for family planning and HIV/AIDS education;
* lifted the ban on federal funding for organizations that provide abortions or abortion counselling;
* resumed high-level talks with Russia, as a step towards reducing tensions with Iran;
* announced that the USA will start reducing its nuclear weapons stockpile unilaterally, and reached out to other nations (especially Russia) to agree to abolish all nuclear weapons;
* tripled federal spending on public education;
* allocated $13 billion to revive the railroad system in the USA, including ten high-speed lines up to 1000 km long;
* signed the largest wilderness preservation bill since 1994, which oil interests had blocked under the previous administration;
* allowed news media to cover the return of caskets containing soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan;
* relaxed the nearly 50-year-old policy of shunning Cuba;
* reached out to Hugo Chavez of Venezuela and Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua;
* ordered all Cabinet members to review their department budgets with an eye to cutting wasteful and inefficient spending, starting with the Department of Defense;
* pledged to protect Net Neutrality;
* pledged to promote diversity in media ownership;
* and of course, pioneered the use of the Internet to engage with US citizens and to promote transparency and accountability in government.


Commenter: Andy Galligan
Certainly his approval rating is very high, but I feel that is because most people at present can see through the constant downgrading of Obama by the right wing media (Limbaugh, Hannity, Gingrich, Fox network, et al.). That media certainly has NOT been too easy on him. I would expect the other media (MSNBC, NBC, etc.) to be far easier on him, but even they have called him to task many times of late for apparently renaging on some campaign promises, attempting not to prosecute higher ups in the Bush administration, and still allowing "terrorist" prisoners to be transferred to Bagram or other
allied countries who do not outlaw torture. So, NO, I do not think the press has been too easy on him.


Commenter: Rebecca Squires
I think he is swiftly attacking all fronts, war, health care, global warming the economy. He is a man of action and dedicated to our country. I applaud him.


Commenter: Frank Mazzotta
Everyone in the mainstream media has given this guy a pass. They are so caught up in his hollywood style image and the historic nature of his candidacy that they are afraid to report anything negative or controversial. In part their fear of being accused of racism has toned down nany truthful and full disclosure reporting that should be happening.


Commenter: pxlmvr
The press is definitely for Obama. Actually the coverage has been somewhat fair, but definitely bias toward Obama. If some of the things that he, his Vice President, his cabinet or nominees had done were in the Bush Administration, there would be a *firestorm*. It would be named 'The Tax Cheat Administration'. Bush was never treated this well. Anything that happened was blamed on him.

Clearly Obama is spending waaaaaaay too much money and we will pay a huge price with inflation in the next four years.


Commenter: Bonnie Patrick
The real test for President Obama is what he does with healthcare and if it is meaningful change or rhetoric. Families USA is working with Congress on a plan to increase the poverty level to include more people in medicaid. They are against all people being covered by insurance industry because the "poor" people can't afford high out of pocket expenses, high deductibles, exclusions from serious illness and other manipulative techniques the industry is famous for. Families USA is for an insurance industry bailout. This does nothing for the bulk of the population who still has to struggle with this corrupt industry that is about their bottom line. If a family earning 20,000 per year is unable to deal with these mafia like tactics, maybe the rest of us shouldn't have to deal with this either. We are ready for true healthcare reform (and the insurance industry has nothing to do with healthcare). HR 676 is the only true reform on the table at this point.

What Families USA is proposing is for the taxpayers to take in all of the disabled and the poor (medicaid) and the retired/fixed income and elderly (medicare) while the insurance industry sucks in all of the healthy people. What is this group about? Is it a lobbyist for the insurance industry?

Sincerely,

Bonnie Patrick, LCSW


Commenter: mackey mathew
BARAKA OBAMA


JUST KEEP THIS IN YOUR MIND

AMERICAN ARE VERY DISRESPECTFULLY TO THEIR
AUTHORITY AS WELL AS THEIR LEADERS
THEY CAN SAY ANYTHING THEY WANT TO
YOUR CABINET AS WELL AS YOUR FAMILY
WHAT EVER YOU DO GOOD OR BAD
SO STAY PUT DO NOT JOIN THIS
RESPECT THOSE WHO RESPECT YOU AND THOSE
WHO DO NOT RESPECT YOU
YOU WILL MAKE IT

I COMMEND THE BRITISH
THEY RESPECT THEIR LEADERS
AND THEIR AUTHORITIES
THAT IS WHY THEY ARE THE MOST
RESPEPTFULLY NATION IN THE WORLD
BLESSED BE THE YOUNG AND OLD
QUEENS AND KINGS OF BRITAINS

WE LOVE THE PREMIER LEAGUE AND
ALL THE LEAGUES OF BRITAIN

WHAT DO WE LOVE-LIKE ABOUT AMERICA_
IT IS HIGH TIME AMERICA MAKE REALLY CHANGES


Commenter: JD
The collective press is Obama's best friend - they got him elected...they'll keep him looking like a hero all the way to socialism - even beyond where Europe is willing to go. At the recent world summit, Germany


Commenter: Phylis
Absolutely not. Look at the mess he has to deal with from the last administration.


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