Monday, March 31, 2008

Barack, Disconnected

First impressions are usually something I'm good at, except when trying to meet women of course. However, the evidence continues to mount against my initial impression of Senator Barack Obama. What I've noticed over the last few months is an increasing disconnect between Obama's rhetoric and his personal beliefs and philosophy. And this has significantly changed my perception of him.

On personality alone, Obama is still the most charismatic by far. But as for fitness for the Presidency, I (with the taste of vomit in my mouth) think Hillary Clinton would be the better choice of the two to infect the White House with liberalism. I can't bring myself to endorse Hillary in any way, but intellectual honesty sometimes requires admitting terrible but true things.

So let me take you through the process that brings me to this point:

Back in 2007, Barack Obama was a relative unknown. He was positive sounding, spoke about hope and change, and avoided fighting the gutter politics that marks the losers in a contest. He was a clean cut black man who didn't appear to focus on his race. And he seemed to be a true alternative (except on policy) to the established politics of the Clinton machine. He was so appealing that I endorsed him as the Democrat candidate, due to the fact that I wanted to see the Clintons gone.

There were small things, increasingly dissonant, that appeared, culminating in the Wright controversy. I won't cover every point I've already made, but it became increasingly obvious that what Obama says is meant to sell himself as the ideal candidate, while he quietly plays Chicago politics and the race card.

The most recent piece comes from the Allen Hunt Show. I was listening on the way home as he was discussing charitable giving and Barack Obama. And while he had been defending Obama during the Wright controversy (where I think he, like so many, missed the point) he was pointing out yet another piece of information that highlights Obama's duplicitousness. In comparing presidential donations, Obama donated a smaller percent of his income than any sitting president. Bush Sr and Bill Clinton were the most generous on the list while Ronald Reagan was a cheap bastard, but not as cheap as Barack. I will admit that this isn't a perfect picture, as I don't have data on the Presidents when they were just candidates, but the numbers do tell a story.

The point is that Obama speaks about helping people and lifting people up. But it appears that he wants to have the government do it while he holds onto his money. The fact that his giving went up only when he began to seriously vie for high office, but not enough to even surpass Reagan's abysmal numbers, is telling for a man of the people.

As this disconnect grows, I think we will learn enough about Obama to put another Clinton in the White House. Damn, that's scary.


Obob said...

After hearing Obama speak in 04 at the Democratic convention, I admit I was impressed. He was articulate and appeared a solid moderate. Boy, were we proved wrong.

Dave Miller said...

But alas boys, we may soon have our chance to see how he really is.

As of yet, I remain unconvinced he will be the nominee, and I am certain it will not be Hillary. Maybe Gore of Edwards.

Patrick, I gave you a link on my side bar.

Toad734 said...

Must I point out that Obama isn't a President like Reagan, Bush and Clinton were? Kind of hard to make a donation as a President if you aren't actually a President. Well, he was President of Harvard Law Review but I don't think thats what you meant.

I would also like to point out that it doesn't always take money to help the poor. Obama has been a community activist for a long time. He has donated his legal expertise and his time to the cause of the poor on the South Side of Chicago a lot longer than Bush has been donating to faith based snake charmers.

Toad734 said...


What make Obama so liberal? What make him more liberal than McCain?

5 examples would be great since they have clearly already been "proved".

Patrick M said...

I did point out that Obama was not a president. But he does have the money, and has promised to spend a lot of ours to "help" people.

Also, I noticed you can't seem to discuss anything without fixating on idiot right-wing preachers. Seriously, I don't waste my time on them here, and I'm done talking about J Wright as well.