Nine Reasons I Like Obama, Still …

by on December 15, 2010 · 15 comments

in Civil Rights, Economy, Election, War and Peace

By Kit-Bacon Gressitt / Excuse Me, I’m Writing / Originally published Dec 12, 2010

I voted for President Barack Obama, and I don’t care what anyone says, I still like him. And you know why?


I still like Obama because he is not any of the other parties’ alternatives who vied for voter approval in 2008. He is not Senator John McCain or former Governor Mike Huckabee or former Governor and perpetually-tanned Mitt Romney or Congressman Ron Paul or former Senator Fred Thompson or former Congressman Duncan Hunter or former Mayor Rudy Giuliani or perpetual candidate Alan Keyes or Senator and Governor-elect Sam Brownback or former Governor Jim Gilmore or former Congressman Tom Tancredo or former Governor Tommy Thompson — or Prohibition Party Candidate Gene Amundson. (Yes, the Prohibition Party is still on the books, but it has really petered out. Kind of like an opened beer you find beside the Naugahyde recliner after a night of debauchery.)

With the exception of Gene Amundson, who died seven months into Obama’s presidency, imagine what any of these candidates would have done to stem the economic greed bleed created under President George W. Bush’s watch: Any one of them would have given obsequious tax breaks to corporations and the wealthiest two percent of folks, tossed two aspirins to the rest of us, and obstructed an unemployment insurance extension in the morning. The hypocrisy of it is not entertaining: Congressional Republicans disdain unemployment extensions “because they increase the deficit,” but they are infatuated with extending Bush-era tax gifts for the rich — even though they increase the deficit. Consequently…


I still like Obama because, contrary to the pundits who have to say pesky things to sell ads and contrary to the congressional Democrats who are now pandering to the progressives they abandoned in the healthcare insurance reform debate, I think President Bill Clinton is correct: President Obama negotiated the best deal possible on the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act. And if the Dems hold it up until January, when the House shifts to a Republican majority, any semblance of a balanced compromise is unlikely.


I still like Obama because some imperfect healthcare insurance reform is better than no healthcare insurance reform — in a life or death sort of way. So far, the reform bill has stopped insurance companies from denying coverage to our kids because they have pre-existing conditions. Insurance companies can no longer impose lifetime caps, which is critically important to those of us with chronic illnesses. Our young adult offspring can now stay on our policies until they turn 26. Standard preventive services are now free for people in new plans. And the list goes on — as long as Congress doesn’t screw it up. Of course, the list would have gone on a lot longer than that, had congressional Democrats stood by their president and voted for the reforms he requested rather than backpedaling in hope of surviving midterm elections, a disloyal tactic that — gosh, what a surprise! — didn’t work out for many of them. Had the Dems accepted their economy-driven fate and voted with some compassion, we could have had an absolutely fabulous reform bill. Nincompoops.


I still like Obama because, true to the historical sequence of suffrage, we had to elect an African American man to the presidency before we could elect a woman. Obama’s presidency means women are up next. Damn time.


I still like Obama because unlike Clinton or George W., Obama will make sure Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) goes away, the military survives, and all those fearful heterosexuals can continue to self-perpetuate. And he’s aligned with a majority of the public, who poll consistently at almost 60 percent in favor of allowing gays to serve openly. (I wonder which polls McCain is reading.) Also, although DADT wasn’t the first thing on Obama’s agenda and he is too conservative on same-sex marriage, unlike the trepidatious men I know, Obama gives full-frontal same-sex hugs. And if that doesn’t do it for you, think about those 2008 candidates. Can you picture any of them posting a video message to gay kids to tell them “It Gets Better”? Nope, not one of them did, but Obama did, and I’d give him a full-frontal hug for that.


I still like Obama because, after the battering midterm elections and in the throes of a lame duck session, he isn’t hunkered down licking his wounds, trying to stay out of the line of fire, deflecting his frustration to the hostility of Call of Duty: Black Ops or some equally bloody war-making game. No, he is out in the field, trying to get things done despite the opposition, such things as the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), which should have been as easy “Yes” for the Senate; he is calling the Republicans and the Democrats on their fruitless behavior; he is leading, not posing for reality television with the sickening satisfaction of a recreational hunter, à la Sarah Palin.


I still like Obama because he understands we are a nation that cares. We don’t always show it, but in a crisis of need you can count on us to give our money, to give our time, to clear out our closets and donate all those treasures we really will never use to those who will, to show we care. That’s why the DREAM Act (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act) is such a great piece of legislation for us: It addresses a long-term and tortured problem, fraught with border-skulking secret agent-wannabes, prejudice and ignorance, and it offers the nation an opportunity to turn all that compassion inward. The DREAM Act provides for the offspring of illegal immigrants, raised but not born in the United States, to become citizens via successful college or military service. The DREAM Act is one of the few wise responses to the great immigration debate to emerge in far too many moons: It tells these kids we care about them, and they need that. Quelle idée!


I still like President Obama because he is not any of the overly-coiffed egos vying for a Republican nod in 2012. He is not Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour or still-tanned Mitt Romney or South Dakota Senator John Thune or outgoing Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty or Mike Huckabee or former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum or former House Speaker Newt Gingrich or former Sarah Palin, who has become a mockery of herself — and she was a distinctly undistinguished public figure to begin with.


And, I still like President Obama because, well, okay, I admit it! I like President Obama because he is African American — and I am an anti-racist pig. Slave owners five or six generations ago, my family celebrated his success and wept at the terrible and wonderful significance of his election. The African American rental car worker at the airport the next morning celebrated and wept with me. My friends and I celebrated and wept while watching the inauguration. And still I celebrate and weep for my president. This is an unappreciative country he leads. Oh, Obama is not liberal enough for me — no one who can be elected president would be — and I could join the fray and rail endlessly about the things I don’t like, but he is making progress on many of the issues that are important to me. He is making as much progress as Congress, his own party and politics allow. And for that I like him, still.



{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Gary Ghirardi December 16, 2010 at 10:01 am

#10. If we support our leaders because they are black or better than the others who dominate our political culture, we do so in collusion with some consistent American assumptions:

1. That we are raised on and nurtured in the culture that we have the right to dominate the planet.

2. That we are comfortable with war and those those of us who call ourselves progressives can justify this ultimately because of assumption #1.

3. That everyone else is on the planet is worse so in the final analysis what-ever the United States does (use nuclear weapons against civilians, bomb an innocent people seeking unification nearly to oblivion) and justify this position in perpetuity in the comfort of assumption #1

4. That endless wars has really no social or political dimension for us to conceptualize our future as a people and our place in the world of nations as we can continually place these events on the tables of administrations and not against the measure of our cultural and political philosophies (Liberal).

5. That we are basically a just and caring people because that is what we are continually being told by our media and our political culture.

6. That America is the leading world democracy which is reinforced again by our media and political culture. We believe this even in the face of a diminished public common , and we move forward with this as our guiding principle without the need of peripheral vision or to seriously entertain world opinions that may differ in their estimation of this fact.


avatar blaw0013 December 16, 2010 at 10:29 am

Gary, I appreciate greatly what you added. But it doesn’t seem to be a #10 in a list of “Why I LIke Obama, Still….” Rather, you seem to want to scream at those people willing to be mad at Obama yet still believe that it’s alright, he’s actually doing a pretty good job given the circumstances: HOLY EGOCENTRIC & UNTHINKING BLINDNESS Batman!


avatar Gary Ghirardi December 17, 2010 at 4:59 am

Once again, An American avoiding to address American assumptions. You did not realize what I said. It is not about Obama… It is about us.


avatar Shane Finneran December 16, 2010 at 10:22 am

Wow, I think all 9 reasons are lousy. Do I win a prize or something?

Some rebuttals:
#1: Obama does not get a hall pass just because he is not Republican
#2: If the best deal he could manage was giving the other side 100% of what they want, he’s not a good deal-maker
#3: Health care “reform” was drafted by health insurers, another “compromise” where big-money received every item on its wish list
#4: If Obama’s presidency is good just because he’s black, would Sarah Palin’s be good just because she’s a woman?
#5: If Obama is going to end Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, what is he waiting for? Repub Senate?
#6: Obama does not get a hall pass just because he is not Sarah Palin
#7: Sorry, but Don’t Ask Don’t Tell would end before the DREAM Act passes, and you shouldn’t count on either
#8: Again, like #1 and #7, Obama does not get a hall pass just because he is not Republican
#9: If only we could focus on the content of his character…


avatar blaw0013 December 16, 2010 at 10:31 am

You missed it on #4. Sarah Palin would be good because her head is actually lighter than the air it displaces.


avatar annagrace December 16, 2010 at 11:35 am

And may I add- Obama does not get a hall pass just because he is not a Republican:)


avatar blaw0013 December 16, 2010 at 10:34 am

Is Obama a Jedi Warrior?? I didn’t know! How is that working for him? (maybe he’s still in training–think Luke, Empire Strikes Back, and the sinking x-wing fighter)


avatar Joshua September 23, 2011 at 2:50 am

he’s definitely not a fantastic president, but regardless, he’s a much better president than a lot of people give him credit for. I’ve found that the people who complain about him usually present one of four main reasons:

1) the Tea Party wacko’s who hate him because he’s black and has a funny sounding name
2) people who call him socialist just because he was pushing for health care reform. They are abusing the word socialist and turning it into the new era of McCarthyism. I don’t think most of them realize that, by their definition, everyone who’s driven on a public road, checked a book out at a public library, gone to a public school, etc., must be a socialist…..

3) The economy is still bad so Obama lied to us all!!! Okay, these people honestly expected Obama to solve the problems overnight? Give the guy a break.

4) this is the only somewhat rational argument against him, which is the fact that is nothing but compromises. He needs to put his foot down against the republicans and get some shit done. If he does, then he would be a great president.


avatar Kim October 7, 2011 at 12:42 pm

Hey. I’m happy to read this because I like Obama too. I recently tried shopping for health insurance on my own and got denied because of my pre-existing conditions for harmless heart palpitations, low back pain, and patellofemoral syndrome (i’m a of course knee problems are going to pop up here and again right?). I was really shocked when I saw my denial letter. But now I’m happy to know that there is something else out there to protect me besides the unreachable COBRA and HIPAA plan (after exhausting COBRA). It was the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Pool offered by CA after the health care bill passed. It allows people like me with pre-existing conditions to buy health insurance from the state for a reasonable price when I can’t get it through my employer. I am so happy I have this option because of Obama’s health care law. I just wished other people knew about it. My fear is that this option will go away if the country decides to vote a Republican president in. I’m praying that won’t happen.


avatar Matthew Spritzer March 14, 2012 at 7:47 am

Hey guys, I’m not going to go into this whole thing, but one thing I would like to say is that Ron Paul is exempt from that list that you made of people who you feel like would do these things. “imagine what any of these candidates would have done to stem the economic greed bleed created under President George W. Bush’s watch: Any one of them would have given obsequious tax breaks to corporations and the wealthiest two percent of folks, tossed two aspirins to the rest of us, and obstructed an unemployment insurance extension in the morning.” You don’t understand Ron Paul’s position at all. But I can understand that you see the word “Republican” and “Lower Taxes”, and you assume the worst. I assume you don’t understand the reasoning behind Austrian Economics as well, and that you feel like this nation has a limitless supply of money. Its okay to like Obama, but its not okay to overlook the unfulfilled promises and the hypocrisy of his campaign, and then look at someone else’s campaign without even understanding the full extent of their campaign and plan. I’m not going to argue about this, but I definitely think you have it wrong about Ron Paul.


avatar Adriana March 14, 2012 at 8:09 am

In total agreement with you Matt … Ranting is one thing lying because your misguided is another ! You need to do your homework … You should always learn something new everyday!


avatar Charlie March 14, 2012 at 12:43 pm

I didn’t and won’t vote for Obama because;

1) He has shown no intention of stopping the excess spending habits of the Congress. In fact he has been there with them all along.

2) He thinks that he can make war on anyone that he may wish without getting the consent of congress and the American people . Even the much maligned GW Bush (of whom I am not a big fan) got this and I might add that most Democrats were in agreement although after we were committed they changed their minds at least in public

3) He signed into law Obamacare without anyone having a chance to even read it. It at least seemed to be good politics at the time. Now it is getting more and more expensive with each passing day. Do we need Health Care Reform, no one questions that but this mockery has to go. We can’t afford it.

4) He and his minions are devaluing the dollar in order to deflate the money that we seem to owe everyone around the world. This will lead to disaster for us when no one will accept our dollars for payment of goods or buy our bonds. The Dollar will no longer be the Reserve Currency of the World. Prices of all goods will go up and interest rates will become abominable. You need only look to what happened to the UK when they did this. You all need to read Economic History as these things are easily predictable as well as inevitable should we continue on our present course.

5) He won’t fire Eric Holder who allowed the harassment of voters going to the polls and is in the end responsible for the “Fast and Furious” fiasco. He even allowed the promotion of those who were immediately in charge. If he didn’t know he is incompetent and if he did he is complicit.

6) He made recess appointments (unconstitutional) when congress was in recess even though the were not in recess.

7) He always tries to lead from behind. Even the Democrats won’t vote for the nonsense that he has proposed.

8) He stole from the stock holders of GM and Chrysler, against all legal precedents, and gave it to his Union buddies who were at least half the cause of these great American Corporations demise (management being the other half). Keeping in mind that a large percentage of these stock holders were middle class workers trying to save for their retirements thru investment groups, retirement plans, etc. Their only crime was believing that their investments would be protected by the government as had historically been done. Anyone who objected was threatened by government thugs.

9) He and the Democrats are now trying to claim credit for the fact that now we are producing more oil than in 2008. Let us just review a little bit of history. In 1994 Senator Charles Shumer (D) NY said; “If we started drilling in ANWR today we wouldn’t have a drop of oil for ten years.” How does that fit with his claims of doing it in less than 3? He also blamed the hated GWB for the high gas prices in 2008, why is he not then responsible for them in 2012? He has in fact shut down most drilling on public lands which will effect us in 2022 if Sen Charles Shumer is right. The oil we are getting today was in fact a product of the Bush Administration whether you like or not.

10) Anyone who always has to read from a teleprompter or he says the wrong thing is not speaking from conviction. All his speeches are carefully vetted by his munchkins so he won’t to wander too far from the party line. He even used a teleprompter when addressing a grade school. geez!

I could go on and on but I think that you should be able to get the point. I am sure that now many of you will call me a racist, a fascist, heartless, etc, etc. This is the norm and what can be expected from those of you who blindly hate anyone with whom you disagree. These are just the facts though some of you will try to deny them. Please show me where I am wrong and maybe you can change my mind. It is called a discussion maybe you have heard of it??


avatar Sarah April 8, 2012 at 11:20 pm

First of all, it is not easy to clean up after your idiot(Bushy). Your guy, Bush, destroyed our economy, destroyed GM, started two wars, and never got the guys who attacked us. I think Obama is a wonderful president. He saved our economy, GM. He ended the war in Iraq, got BIN LADEN, and the list goes on.


avatar Christopher Moore April 9, 2012 at 10:40 am

I wouldn’t say I still “like” Obama very much, he’s been too eager to compromise on the wrong things, and has appointed some real disasters (I’m looking at you Eric Holder) – but I still dislike him far less than his likely opponents.

I’m used to being politically homeless, not having much faith in any prefabricated ideologies/parties/platforms, and used to holding my nose and voting for the lesser of evils.

So it goes…


avatar JMW April 10, 2012 at 8:52 am

Okay, had McCain become president, things might be worse; though, perhaps a reason to be happy with my vote, it is still not much to say given how things are.


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