Back on April 28th I wrote an article called "100 Days - 100 Mistakes
". You can find it at...http://viewhigh.blogspot.com/2009/04/100-days-100-mistakes.html
Well, this is a follow-up to that article. As of last week, President Obama was in office for 200 days, and his average of one mistake per day has not changed. Like my previous article, to keep it simple I have not provided any references, attributions or links. With that, Obama's mistakes continue, including...
101-His low-altitude Air Force One photo-op over the Statue of Liberty and lower Manhattan without notifying New York City officials. The stunt triggered a mass panic and the evacuation of buildings over fears of another 9/11 incident.
102-His failure to develop a plan for closing Gitmo, which resulted in a bipartisan rejection of his request for money to close the facility. Democrats as well as Republicans agreed to strip money from a spending bill that would have funded the closing of Gitmo because Obama failed to provide a plan for how to do it.
103-His failure to follow through on a promise that citizens would be able to track "every dime" of the $787 billion stimulus bill. A government website dedicated to following the spending won't have details on contracts and grants until October, and may not be complete until next spring. "Recovery.gov" now lists programs being funded by the stimulus money, but provides no details on who received the grants or contracts.
104-His less-than-inspirational observance of the 'National Day of Prayer' by nixing a formal early morning service, and by not attending a large Catholic prayer breakfast the next morning. All Obama would agree to do is sign a proclamation honoring the day, which was originated by Congress in 1952. For the past eight years, President George W. Bush invited selected religious leaders to the White House East Room, where he typically would give a short speech followed by the prayers of several participants. Apparently Obama doesn't "cling" to his religion.
105-His welcoming of Republican Senator Arlen Specter into the Democratic party, which was based on a promise to Specter that he would be allowed to keep his seniority. The welcoming event was followed soon thereafter by an announcement that Specter would become a Junior Democrat, losing all his seniority. The move painted the Democrats as untrustworthy, and they were forced to abide by their original promise.
106-His failure to follow normal bankruptcy procedures in the Chrysler and GM situations. In order to expedite the bankruptcy process and "save an industry", the rights of secured creditors were violated and the interests of the unions who supported Obama were favored. Representative Eric Cantor (R-VA) told the Associated Press: "They said, 'Set aside the rule of law, let's strip secured creditors, bondholders, of their rights. Take them away outside of the bankruptcy process and give them to the political cronies and the auto workers' unions."
107-His preliminary consideration of the idea to force Israel into giving up its nuclear weapons as a leveraging option against Iran's nuclear ambitions. When this plan met resistance, he subsequently considered the idea that a nuclear Iran was inevitable, which also drew fire.
108-His proposal to impose taxes on U.S. companies that make a profit overseas. According to Obama, U.S. corporations are failing to pay "their fair share". Obama fails to recognize that some U.S. corporations have moved operations overseas because the U.S. corporate tax rate is too high. Currently, the average combined federal and state corporate tax rate in the U.S. is 39.3%, second only among OECD countries to Japan's combined rate of 39.5%. If Obama wants to create jobs in the U.S., he should reduce the U.S. corporate tax rate or provide other incentives to business. Besides that, U.S. corporations already pay taxes to the foreign countries in which they operate. Double taxation would only make U.S. companies uncompetitive there. Business and profits would be lost, which would only reduce any potential tax benefit to the U.S. government.
109-His initial threat to kill the D.C. school voucher program, followed by his later decision (in the face of strong public opposition) to keep it alive -- but only until all 1,716 current participants have graduated from high school. This was accompanied by his decision to allow no new students to be accepted into the current voucher program. Naturally, a successful program must be stopped at all costs. According to NEA (teachers' union) president Dennis Van Roekel, the D.C. voucher program is "an ongoing threat". In other words, when kids succeed in school and the NEA had nothing to do with it... the union feels threatened (as well they should be).
110-His criteria for replacing U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter, saying that, "We need [judges] who've got the heart, the empathy
, to recognize what it's like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy
to understand what it's like to be poor, or African-American, or gay, or disabled, or old. And that's the criteria by which I'm going to be selecting my judges." In other words, according to Obama, justice should not be "blind" but rather tilted in favor of: 1) irresponsible youths [ie, "a young teenage mom"], 2) the "poor", 3) people of color [ie, "African-American"], 4) sexual orientation [ie, "gay"], 5) the disabled, and 6) the elderly [ie, "old"].
111-His nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor who failed to meet any of his own selection criteria, being neither "a young teenage mom", nor "poor", nor "African-American", nor "gay" [as far as we know], nor "disabled", nor "old". Aside from that however, Sotomayor IS
an activist judge who cares little for the Constitution and seeks to "make policy" from the bench.
112-His nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor who is a 'racist-feminist', saying that she considers herself "a wise Latina woman, [who] with the richness of her experiences would, more often than not, reach a better conclusion than a white male
..." At the prompting of Republicans, Judge Sonia Sotomayor was forced to resign from an elite all-women's club called 'Belizean Grove' when it was brought to her attention that federal judges are bound by a code that says they should not join any organization that discriminates on the basis of race, sex, religion or nationality. Sotomayor said she "forgot about that".
113-His nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor who has had several decisions overturned by the Supreme Court, including perhaps the most widely anticipated ruling being the Ricci case, a reverse-discrimination lawsuit. Now that she is on the Court, there is no one to correct her mistakes.
114-His failure to understand the difference between a "spending cut" and a "tax increase". His fiscal year 2010 budget contained what his administration referred to as 9 "spending cuts" that are in reality energy tax increases. These tax hikes increase revenue to the government and make the budget bigger, not smaller. By definition, "spending cuts" reduce the size of the federal budget. These are not spending cuts, and there are a dozen other examples of such "cuts" in his budget.
115-His authorization of census takers to go out before the census and "mark" every home in the United States with GPS coordinates. He did so without providing the public any warning or explanation for these activities. Many Americans, already suspicious of this administration, rightly feel that this act was frightening, unnecessary, and an invasion of privacy.
116-His failure to get economic stimulus money into the economy. Five months after he signed the economic stimulus package, only about 10% of the stimulus money has gotten into the economy. It is far from clear if that stimulus money is having an effect on the economy. This recession has already been much longer than any we have seen since the Great Depression, and the economy may be beginning to turn around on its own.
117-His claim that the economic stimulus is "working", when very little of the stimulus money has been "stimulative". The term "economic stimulus" is defined as "government fiscal policy designed to increase aggregate
consumer demand and the level of economic activity." Most of the "stimulus" money has gone to the states to use for unemployment compensation, filling state budget gaps, and so on. These expenditures have not increased "aggregate consumer demand" or "the level of economic activity". If anything, they have merely been maintaining the status quo.
118-His claim that a $13 per week wage increase is "stimulus". The typical employee saw an average $13 reduction in his or her Federal income tax withholding as a result of the stimulus bill. For many people, that is only enough money to buy lunch maybe once or perhaps twice a week. It is hardly an incentive to go out on a spending spree. In addition, some people who saw their withholding decreased will have to pay it back in taxes at the end of the year.
119-His claim that the economic stimulus package he signed in February has "saved or created" 150,000 jobs. While there may be some truth to the notion that jobs have been saved or created, it is impossible to measure the number of jobs that have been "saved". How do you measure "potential" layoffs (ie, something that never happened)?
120-His expenditure of $78 billion in order to "save or create" 150,000 jobs. That's an average of $520,000 per job over 5 months. Will these jobs be permanent? Will funding of these jobs need to be maintained at these levels? No one seems to know. In any case, we have not received "the best bang for our buck". [Christina Romer, chairwoman of the White House Counsel of Economic Advisers, recently suggested 485,000 jobs have been "saved". Again, that can't be measured.]
121-His claim that the economic stimulus package would create 4 million "new" jobs in two years. Five months after he signed the economic stimulus package, 2.2 million jobs have been lost, which means that now Obama needs to create 6.2 million jobs in order to meet his original target. With each passing month, it seems less likely that Obama will be able to make good on his claim.
122-His claim that if the economic stimulus package was passed, the unemployment rate would not exceed 8%. In June, the unemployment rate hit 9.5%. The only reason it dropped to 9.4% in July is because the number of people who stopped looking for work in July exceeded the number of those who lost their jobs (274,000). If you add in all the workers who have become "discouraged" since the start of the recession, the unemployment rate would actually be at 16.3%!
123-His dropping poll numbers, which suggest that there is an increasing number of people (primarily independents, but also Democrats) who are losing confidence in him. His approval rating is down in various categories, including: his handling of the economy, his handling of the health care issue, and his overall approval rating. More people now "strongly disapprove" of his performance than "strongly approve", by a margin of almost 10%.
124-His restructuring plan for GM, where GM receives billions of dollars in federal bail out money, while the proportion of GM cars sold domestically but manufactured overseas
will rise from 15% to 23% over the next five years. Obama is effectively outsourcing jobs to China.
125-His stimulus package that includes $2 billion in funds available to ACORN, an organization that has been under investigation in 14 states for voter fraud, and against which the IRS has filed three tax liens totaling almost $1 million, most of which concerned employee withholding issues.
126-His decision to have Wanda Sykes do a comedy routine at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner, in which she made some rather nasty remarks about Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin. "Rush Limbaugh said he hopes this administration fails... I hope his kidneys fail
, how about that?" said Sykes. Her jab at Sarah Palin was a lewd remark that began this way: "I know Governor Palin... She's not here tonight. She pulled out at the last minute..."
127-His unfair allocation of infrastructure stimulus money which is going to areas with low unemployment over areas with high unemployment. An Associated Press analysis of more than 5,500 planned transportation projects nationwide revealed that states are planning to spend the stimulus in communities where jobless rates are already low. Altogether, the government is planning to spend 50 percent more per person in areas where the unemployment is low, than in communities where the unemployment is high.
128-His unfair allocation of stimulus money to areas of the country that supported him in the election. According to USA Today, "Billions of dollars in federal aid... have gone overwhelmingly to places that supported President Obama in last year's presidential election... The reports show the 872 counties that supported Obama received about $69 per person, on average. The 2,234 that supported McCain received about $34 [per person]."
129-His decision to give the commencement speech at Notre Dame, which angered pro-life Catholics around the country and lost the college millions in donations. Alumni were so upset by the university's decision to honor pro-abortion President Barack Obama, that they decided to withhold their donations to the Catholic college. In total, pro-life alumni and donors withheld nearly $14 million in gifts they otherwise would have given.
130-His continued failure to abide by his campaign promise of transparency: "When there's a bill that ends up on my desk as president, you the public will have five days to look online and find out what's in it before I sign it, so that you know what your government's doing." During Obama's second 100 days, he continued to sign bills only one or two days after being posted. There are a dozen other examples of his failure to be transparent that could be cited, including his expenditures estimated in the hundreds of thousands of dollars to prevent the release of his personal information.
131-His statement in a C-SPAN interview with Steve Scully, where he said that: "We are out of money." This admission crystallized the feelings of many that we need to stop growing the deficit. His admission effectively put in jeopardy any future legislation that contributes to the debt problem.
132-His statement that current deficit spending is 'unsustainable' warning of skyrocketing interest rates for consumers if the U.S. continues to finance government by borrowing from other countries. Of course, he failed to mention that it was his own policies that have quadrupled the government deficit for fiscal year 2009. And he was only in office a mere 4 months when he made the statement. In effect, Obama indicted himself
and his Democratic controlled Congress for excessive spending!
133-His ambitious legislative agenda, which has led many to question whether he is trying to accomplish too much, too soon. Economic recovery, climate-and-energy, gays in the military, national health care, and immigration reform are all on his list. Even Colin Powell who endorsed Obama said, "You can't have so many things on the table that you can't absorb it all." And, speeding legislation through Congress has raised concerns that: "Haste makes waste." Fast legislation is probably bad legislation, and many fear what may be hidden in those 1000+ page bills that no one seems to have time to read.
134-His automotive task force (manned by people who have no auto industry experience), which put pressure on Chrysler to close 25% of its dealerships. There was never any explanation given as to how those dealerships were selected, but (coincidentally?) a significant portion of the dealerships affected had donated almost exclusively to GOP candidates.
135-His Attorney General, Eric Holder (an African-American), who dismissed charges against the New Black Panther thugs who wielded batons and shouted racial slurs at the entrance to a polling station during the November presidential election. This despite the fact the voter intimidation case had already been won!
136-His Vice President Joe Biden who said he wouldn't get "into any confined spaces with anyone right now" (in regard to the swine flu scare). He urged people not to fly, take a train, or ride a bus.
137-His celebration of "Cinco de Mayo" (5th of May) on May 4th. The White House called the early celebration "Cinco de Quatro" (5th of 4th).
138-His decision to withhold billions of dollars in federal stimulus money from California if the state did not reverse a scheduled wage cut for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which lobbied the federal government to step in.
139-His decision to try some of the Gitmo detainees through U.S. military commissions, for which he had roundly criticized George W. Bush.
140-His consideration of continuing to imprison non-U.S. citizens currently detained at Gitmo indefinitely
, even if they have been acquitted of terrorism charges by a U.S. military commission. This is in direct opposition to his pledge to restore habeas corpus, and for which he also criticized Bush.
141-His failure to recognize that there is growing skepticism about global warming, and that polls have been showing that addressing climate change (and the environment in general) is the last item on people's list of concerns. The 'economy' is number one, and 'jobs' is number two.
142-His push for a climate-energy bill which is nothing more than a new tax on energy. Representatives who voted for the Waxman-Markey bill in the House were "hammered" by their constituents. Senators began receiving 100 to 200 calls per day to vote against the bill, and it is not likely to make it through the Senate.
143-His failure to condemn the Iranian government when they obviously perpetrated election fraud to steal the presidential election from reformers, thereby endorsing an illegitimate government.
144-His failure to support Iranian protesters who took to the streets by the hundreds of thousands demanding free and fair elections, thereby failing to support a democracy movement.
145-His failure to condemn the Iranian government when they began a brutal and bloody crackdown against protesters, until well after all the other democracies around the world had already done so, and people were beginning to question his silence.
146-His White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, who called Iranian President Ahmadinejad "the elected leader
" of Iran, but then 24 hours later corrected himself calling Ahmadinejad simply "the leader" of Iran.
147-His overexposure in the media. Obama has already had four prime time news conferences while President Bush only had four during his entire eight years as President. One lady sold both of her TVs complaining that Obama was on "every station, all the time". Pundits have suggested that the more Obama is exposed, the more his approval ratings decline.
148-His fourth prime time news conference to sell his health care reform bill, which most pundits said was a waste of time. He provided no new information and failed to convince nervous citizens that they would not see any reductions in services or benefits. While saying on one hand that 47 million new people would be provided health care, he also said the primary reason for the reform was to cut skyrocketing costs of Medicare. You can't expand a program and cut costs at the same time without sacrificing benefits or services.
149-His answer to the final question at his fourth prime time news conference in which he said that police in Cambridge, MA acted "stupidly" when they arrested his friend and Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr, despite having initially said that he didn't know all the facts of the case. Obama implied that racism was involved. Police in Cambridge were angered and supported their officers at the scene which included an African-American, a Hispanic, and a white officer (James Crowley) who teaches courses against racial profiling. Police officers around the country were also angered.
150-His failure to apologize for his accusatory statement when the facts of the case became clear, and it was shown that racism was never in play. Arresting officer Crowley was responding to a 911 call about a possible break-in. He was in touch with his headquarters by radio throughout the incident. Gates, who was argumentative, abusive and non-compliant, was arrested for "disorderly conduct". The Cambridge Police graciously dropped the charges against Gates without admitting to wrong-doing of any kind.
151-His statement that this whole Gates incident was "a teachable moment", suggesting that Obama would use the opportunity to teach someone (other than himself of course) about racism in America. Obama needs to learn from this incident that it was he himself who acted "stupidly" by jumping to conclusions about racism.
152-His "beer summit", in which he invited Henry Gates and arresting officer Sergeant James Crowley to have a beer at the White House. The event only served to reward Gates for his unruly behavior, who had screamed at the officer: "You don't know who you're dealing with!", implying a personal friendship with the President. Obama proved to Crowley that Gates was correct. You can act like a jerk, but if you're a friend of Obama's, you will get a pass... and maybe an invite to the White House.
153-His claim that the health care reform package would be spending neutral and would not add to the deficit. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) contradicted Obama saying that the program would would not save any money at all, would cost more than $1 trillion, and would "bend the cost curve up", not down.
154-His increasingly authoritarian style of rhetoric as can be seen in the following examples.
155-His urging to have citizens report those who dissent against his health care reform package to the White House. "If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org"
156-His suggestion for dissenters to just shut up. "I don’t want the folks who created the mess to do a lot of talking. I want them to get out of the way
so we can clean up the mess. I don’t mind cleaning up after them, but don’t do a lot of talking
157-His threat to fight against health care reform dissenters. Top White House aides gave Senate Democrats a recess period battle plan saying: "If you get hit, we will punch back twice as hard
158-His silence when members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) attacked Kenneth Gladney who sat in a wheelchair holding a flag that read: "Don’t Tread on Me" at a townhall meeting in Mehlville, Missouri.
159-His speech to the Muslim world in Cairo, Egypt, in which he once again subtly apologized for America, saying: "I've come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning
between the United States and Muslims around the world -- one based upon mutual interest and mutual respect
." This is merely code speak for: "America screwed up in the past. George W. Bush screwed up in the past. I'm different. Please show me some respect."
160-His Cairo speech, in which he said civilization owes a great debt to Islam. In the speech Obama calls himself "a student of history", but he credited Islam with various scientific advancements that are not in fact attributable to Islam.
161-His Cairo speech, in which he created a moral equivalence between the Holocaust's destruction of 6 million Jews and the 60-year Palestinian pursuit of a homeland. They are not even closely comparable. The 6 million Jews who were killed were largely innocent civilians, while the Palestinian problems were largely brought on themselves by their leaders who advocated terrorism.
162-His Cairo speech, in which he said: "I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear." That is not in the U.S. Constitution. That is not one of the responsibilities of the president.
163-His Cairo speech, in which he created a moral equivalence between the struggle for women's rights in the Muslim world with "the struggle for women's equality... in many aspects of American life". It is ludicrous to even suggest such a comparison, when women are being beheaded or stoned to death in many parts of the Muslim world.
164-His statement in a French interview, that the United States could be considered as "one of the largest Muslim countries in the world". Aside from being dismissive of America's approximately 86% of people who consider themselves to be Christian, Obama's claim is highly dubious. A reputable survey by Pew puts the number of Muslims in the U.S. at 1.8 million, which would make it the 48th biggest Muslim country.
165-His decision to bring "a top al-Qaida suspect" held at Guantanamo Bay (Ahmed Ghailani) to New York for trial, just one day after Democrats promised not to bring terrorists to "prisons in the United States."
166-His reference to "Secretary of Defense William Gates." Robert Gates is the correct name. Bill Gates is the founder of Microsoft.
167-His decision to fly to New York City with wife Michelle for "date night". After criticizing auto executives for flying to Congressional hearings; and fully aware that the country is "out of money"; and knowing that millions have lost their jobs; he nevertheless felt no qualms about jumping onto Air Force One for an evening of entertainment on the tax payer's dime, with Secret Service in tow, Presidential vehicles, and the inevitable disruptions in New York City.
168-His decision to consider taxing Americans' health care benefits after criticizing John McCain for suggesting it during the election campaign.
169-His Vice President's admission that stimulus money will be mis-spent. "We know some of this money is going to be wasted... Some people are being scammed already!" said VP Joe Biden. This is interesting considering that it is Biden's responsibility to make sure the stimulus gets to where it's supposed to go, which spurred Obama's reference to Biden as "Sheriff Joe".
170-His decision to have the FBI start reading Miranda rights to terrorism suspects detained in Afghanistan. The practice could potentially prevent interrogation of the suspects which, without the presence of a lawyer, might produce evidence that would be inadmissible in a court of law. Furthermore, it places the lives of our soldiers in great danger because a suspected suicide bomber might have to be read his rights before he could be incarcerated.
171-His decision to send four ethnic Uighers (Chinese Muslims) who were formerly detained at Gitmo, to Bermuda. Unfortunately, he never notified the British government. Bermuda is a British overseas territory.
172-His decision to fire Inspector General Gerald Walpin. Walpin was investigating misuse of federal AmeriCorps grants by a nonprofit education group led by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, who is an Obama supporter.
173-His failure to follow the correct procedure in the firing of Inspector General Walpin which, according a law co-sponsored by Obama himself
, requires a 30-day notice be given to Congress prior to any action.
174-His appointment of nearly 3 dozen "czars" to manage everything from closing the Guantanamo Bay detention facility to ending the genocide in Darfur. Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV), wrote a letter to Obama complaining that: "The accumulation of power by White House staff can threaten the Constitutional system of checks and balances." These czars are accountable to no one but the President. Their work is not transparent. They don't require confirmation hearings, and are under no obligation to testify before Congress. They have staffs and budgets, thus spending taxpayer money without any accountability to the taxpayer.
175-His TARP program, which could put U.S. taxpayers on the hook for $23.7 trillion. Neil Barofsky, special Inspector General for the Treasury's Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), said in testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, that "TARP has evolved into a program of unprecedented scope, scale and complexity." Barofsky's estimates include $2.3 trillion in programs offered by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), $7.4 trillion in TARP and other aid from the Treasury, and $7.2 trillion in federal money for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, credit unions, Veterans Affairs and other federal programs.
176-His cabinet's failure to meet a 90-day deadline for finding $100 million in spending cuts. After proposing an astounding $3.6 trillion federal budget for fiscal year 2010, President Obama promised that his cabinet would find $100 million in spending cuts. The proposed cuts were laughable, because they would amount to less than 3/1000ths of 1% of the total budget. The deadline came and went, without a report from the White House on whether or not that promise was fulfilled.
177-His decision on July 20th to extend the deadline for a recommendation on how to close Gitmo. Obama granted a 6 month extension to his task force charged with determining how terrorism suspects detained at Gitmo should be interrogated, held in custody, or handed over to other countries. The delay puts Obama's promise to close Gitmo by the end of January 2010 in jeopardy. Pushing back the deadline on how to handle more than 200 Gitmo detainees illustrates just how complicated it is to solve this problem, for which Obama severely criticized George W. Bush throughout the election campaign.
178-His decision to accept the concept of mandated enrollment in a health care plan. This is in direct opposition to his earlier position against mandates, for which he criticized Hillary Clinton during the election campaign. His decision was based on the premise that health care costs must be spread out over a larger population. In this way, young healthy people will subsidize the costs of the sick and the elderly.
179-His administration's brief consideration of a second stimulus package. With the apparent failure of the first stimulus to do any real stimulating, the Obama administration briefly considered the concept of a second stimulus package before they realized the political fallout would be a PR disaster.
180-His decision to delay the annual midsummer budget update that is sure to show higher budget deficits and slower growth than originally projected in February (and updated in May). The update, usually scheduled for mid-July, was put off until at least mid-August, fueling speculation that the White House feels the report would complicate his efforts to get his global-warming and health care initiatives through Congress.
181-His VP gaffe machine Joe Biden who said "We misread the economy", after having earlier called it the worst economic situation since the Great Depression. Perhaps he should have said it was the worst economic situation since the Bubonic Plague? Biden also said we have to spend massive amounts of stimulus money to keep from going bankrupt. "People, when I say that, look at me and say, 'What are you talking about, Joe? You're telling me we have to go spend money to keep from going bankrupt?... The answer is yes."
182-His failure to recognize that Americans are on average satisfied with their current health care coverage. According to a Zogby poll, fully 84% of Americans are either "satisfied" or "very satisfied" with their health care coverage. This is one reason why Obama's proposed health care reform is facing such stiff resistance. If people like what they have, there is no incentive to change it. If Obama keeps talking about reforming health care to control costs, people can only assume that benefits and services will be cut.
183-His decision to join Hugo Chavez in a call to restore deposed Honduran president Manuel Zelaya to power. Zelaya was trying to use mob rule to undermine Honduras's institutions in much the same way that Chavez has done in Venezuela. But as Washington lawyer Miguel Estrada pointed out in the Los Angeles Times on July 10th, Zelaya's actions were expressly forbidden by the Honduran constitution. The Honduran Congress move to defend the country's constitution by relieving Zelaya of his presidential duties was both lawful and necessary as a precaution against violence. It is not surprising that Obama would support the undermining of a country's constitution, since he is doing that very thing here in the United States.
184-His failure to provide Democrats with specific guidance on the health care reform bill. As the August recess began to approach and prospects for passage of a health care bill became bleaker, Democrats began grumbling about the lack of leadership from President Obama. One senator told CNN that Democrats were "baffled", and another said they were "frustrated" that they were not getting more specific direction from him on health care -- especially how to pay for it. It's one thing to set deadlines for Congress. It's another thing to provide leadership and guidance.
185-His attacks on Republicans calling them "obstructionist" in their opposition to health care reform, while reporters and journalists were quick to cite the Democratic majority in both houses of Congress. It is not the Republicans who are to blame for holding up passage of the measure, but rather the conservative "Blue Dog" Democrats. The "Blue Dogs" heard from their constituents in no uncertain terms that they were upset about the climate bill, and they are even more upset about the proposed health care bill. The Blue Dogs, as a group, have demanded that major changes be made to the health reform bill before they can approve it.
186-His radical agenda, which has motivated 37 states to introduce sovereignty resolutions. Such resolutions claim sovereignty for their state under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over "all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States." Such resolutions, while not carrying the force of law, lay the ground work for future legislation, should it become necessary. It sends a strong signal to Washington that these states do not intend to be bullied or have their rights (guaranteed under the Constitution) usurped by the federal government.
187-His health care reform bill, which includes funding for abortions. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) admitted that there is dissension among House Democrats about whether the final bill should contain federal funding for abortion. The debate has apparently split Democrats because "there are very strong feelings on both sides of that issue."
188-His mis-handling of the U.S.-Israeli alliance. On his first visit to Washington, Benjamin Netanyahu met a chilly reception. Instead of seeking to avoid confrontation with Israel and working to advance Israeli-Palestinian cooperation, Obama chose to embark on a collision course with Israel. This strategy of confrontation was a mistake. Obama has been misled by his advisers. People like Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod had two goals in mind: to deter Israel from taking any initiative, especially against Iran, and to change Netanyahu's order of priority from Iran first, to "peace in our time" with the Palestinians.
189-His pressure on Israel to halt all construction in East Jerusalem, which triggered anti-American outrage in Israel. Obama's policies were slammed as "racist" by participants in a rally on July 27th that drew about 2,000 Israelis in front of the U.S. consulate in Jerusalem. Speaking at the rally, Rabbi Eliezer Waldman, who heads the prestigious "Nir" Torah seminary in the West Bank city of Kiryat Arba, called Obama a "racist." Waldman said, "How dare he tell the Jews where they can or can't live! The era when Jews were banned from living in different places has ended."
190-His same Israeli policy which ended a friendship and created a crack in his Chicago base of support. Alan Solow, one of the president's closest Chicago friends and long-time supporters, released a highly critical statement on behalf of the 52-member group, in which he thoroughly disagrees with Obama's demand that Israel halt all construction of Jewish housing in East Jerusalem. Solow was named chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations last December. Solow said he found "disturbing the objections raised to the proposed construction of residential units on property that was legally purchased and approved by the appropriate authorities." He also said, "In addition to the Jewish housing, the project called for apartment units for Arabs as well."
191-His numerous staged events. He has planted people in the audience at press conferences, speeches, and "townhall meetings". At one event, described as a "townhall meeting" about healthcare, 70% of the attendees were selected from people who applied online at an Obama website. The other 30% of the tickets were given to local Obama supporters. The event was so one-sided, that Obama had to ask the audience if anyone was opposed to his plan. When a woman got up to ask a question, she smiled and sighed: "He winked at me!" Even White House correspondents Helen Thomas and Chip Reid complained that Obama's staging of events was unprecedented. Thomas derided White House press secretary Robert Gibbs saying: "We have never had that in the White House. I’m amazed that you people... call for openness and transparency."
192-His deliberate spreading of misleading information about health care reform, saying such things as: his goal is not a single-payer system, that you can keep your private insurance if you like it, that health care will not be rationed, that health care will be better, that AARP endorses his plan, that private insurance companies can compete with the government, and that it will not add to the deficit.
193-His health care reform bill in the House, which prevents private insurance companies from writing new policies after the year in which the legislation is signed into law, forces people into the public option if they lose their jobs, forces people into the public option if their private insurance plan changes ANY
benefit whatsoever, fines people who do not have a "qualified" plan, fines employers who do not provide a "qualified" plan, fines doctors if they re-admit people into the hospital shortly after they have been released from the hospital, discourages new investment in hospitals, discourages use of specialists in favor of general practitioners, mandates end-of-life counseling that includes options for assisted suicide via starvation or dehydration, imposes a care analysis ratio that compares cost of the service to the expected length of the benefit (read: life expectancy), expands enrollment in Medicaid (ie, low-cost, low-quality treatment), creates a government position to establish standards of health care, and more.
194-His top medical adviser, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel (Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel’s brother), who has called for denying treatment to senior citizens outright. Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel believes that health care should be denied to those "who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens." His vision of health care reform empowers federal government to determine a citizen's worth to society.
195-His claim to want energy independence while doing nothing to encourage development of domestic energy supples such as coal, oil or natural gas, which we have in abundance. He has also done nothing to encourage the use of clean nuclear power. Instead, he has pushed for renewable energy sources that are low-yield, expensive, intermittent, unreliable and consume large land areas.
196-His determination to leave Iraq according to a fixed schedule, and his refusal to stay in or return to Iraq, even should the Iraqi government request it. His attitude sends a strong signal that the U.S. will not be a good ally in the future to a democratic Iraq. It appears that he intends to squander whatever relationship we have developed with Iraq, squander the money and lives we have invested there, leave Iraq to fend for itself, fail to support a fledgling democracy, and send a message to future potential allies that the United States CANNOT
197-His "cash for clunkers" program which ran out money after only one week in operation. One dealership sold a 100 cars in that first week, which represents a federal outlay of $450,000 to that one dealership alone. If this is how Obama intends to run health care, the country is in trouble. Aside from that, the program discriminates against those people who have already purchased fuel-efficient cars. For example, a 2-year old Hummer that gets 12 mpg would qualify for the program, while my 1993 Nissan that gets 34 mpg does not qualify. This is another example of Obama's policies that reward bad behavior and penalize good behavior. In addition, the used cars which are turned in to the dealers must be destroyed, which has hurt charitable organizations that accept used cars as donations, and reduced the availability of used cars for resale. The federal government could have even sold those used cars to developing nations to help offset the cost of the program, rather than destroying them.
198-His claim that he is not a big-government guy. He said he's "amused" by charges that he wants to grow government. "I want to disabuse people of this notion that somehow we enjoy meddling in the private sector," Obama said. However, everything that Obama has done since he's been in office has tended to increase the size and scope of the government, and his policies and legislation have been increasingly intrusive into the lives of Americans.
199-His claim that he is not a socialist. When asked outright by a New York Times reporter if was a socialist, Obama dismissed the question apparently having been caught by surprise. Shortly afterward, he told reporters aboard Air Force One that: "It was hard for me to believe that you were entirely serious about that socialist question." But in fact, Obama was formerly a card-carrying member of the DSA (Democratic Socialists of America) which is the largest socialist organization in the U.S., and the principal U.S. affiliate of the Socialist International. Since taking office, his policies and legislation have been viewed by many as taking America on a path towards socialism.
200-His community organizing skills, which have served only to organize his opposition as evidenced by the Tea Parties and the August recess townhall meetings. He has unified conservatives far better than he could have ever imagined, and far better than his own political base. While the Democrats appear to be in disarray, and liberals scold Obama for not being liberal enough, Congressional Republicans have come together to oppose his legislation, and average citizens who would rarely consider joining a protest movement have come out in droves.