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View Diary: What if Barack Obama weren't a leftist? (278 comments)

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  •  Civil Rights Act of 1964 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    0wn, aliasalias, Bob Guyer

    Medicare.  Tennessee Valley Authority.  Wagner Act.  Just to name a few.

    "Better the occasional faults of a Government that lives in the spirit of charity than the consistent omissions of a Government frozen in the ice of its own indifference." - Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by puakev on Fri Mar 30, 2012 at 12:19:35 PM PDT

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    •  Good points, but (0+ / 0-)

      Medicare only covers the elderly. It is not universal healthcare. I could argue the PPACA, if upheld, is more significant, as more in need are covered through the Medicaid expansion.

      The TVA is a great example from a bygone era. As has been noted by everyone from the ASCE to bloggers here, a modern day WPA is not practical because the projects could not be started in time.

      The EPA and CWA would also be good examples.

      But I can also point to financial reform, the auto bailout, DADT repeal, the stimulus, and the end of DOMA as other pieces of legislation with impacts almost up on those pedastals.

      My point is, historically, there has never been a President substantially more "leftist" than President Obama.

      •  Yeah, but (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        0wn, chuckvw

        your question was "What is a shining example of prog. legislation" and that "going back through history" you were "having a hard time coming up with an example of True Progressive Legislation".  So I pointed out some shining examples of progressive legislation throughout history.

        And so what if Medicare only covers the elderly?  It still remains a shining example of progressive legislation.  And you didn't say anything about bygone eras or whether past examples could apply today or if they had to be of sufficient universality, you just wondered about shining examples throughout history, so I pointed some out.  

        "Better the occasional faults of a Government that lives in the spirit of charity than the consistent omissions of a Government frozen in the ice of its own indifference." - Franklin D. Roosevelt

        by puakev on Fri Mar 30, 2012 at 12:30:22 PM PDT

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      •  Um, no. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Kurt Sperry, chuckvw
        My point is, historically, there has never been a President substantially more "leftist" than President Obama.
        You are merely counting resume pages.  There really hasn't been anything to match the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which LBJ signed.

        "I've seen the flame of hope among the hopeless/ And that was truly the biggest heartbreak of all" -- Bruce Cockburn

        by Cassiodorus on Fri Mar 30, 2012 at 12:50:08 PM PDT

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        •  Was LBJ more "Leftist" than Obama (0+ / 0-)

          I didn't see an attempt by LBJ to repeal DADT. And, of course, there was that whole Vietnam thing.

          This is not to denigrate LBJ, but prove the point that there really hasn't been a President as leftist as Obama.

          •  You have proven nothing. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            chuckvw, Claudius Bombarnac

            Maybe you should post a diary or something.

            "I've seen the flame of hope among the hopeless/ And that was truly the biggest heartbreak of all" -- Bruce Cockburn

            by Cassiodorus on Fri Mar 30, 2012 at 02:12:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Let's do a side by side comparison (0+ / 0-)

              So LBJ's views on gay rights were to the left of Obama's? You really want to try and make that case?

              See, the problem with you is that when you leave the Occupy camp, you're confronted with these pesky things like history, and fact, and you're bubble just pops.

              Try opening up a history book. You're way in over your head here.

              •  Oh, I historicize. (0+ / 0-)

                You just compare, as if all historical figures lived in the same era.

                Should we compare Thomas Jefferson's views on civil rights with the elder Bush's?  Of course not.  

                "I've seen the flame of hope among the hopeless/ And that was truly the biggest heartbreak of all" -- Bruce Cockburn

                by Cassiodorus on Fri Mar 30, 2012 at 05:50:07 PM PDT

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                •  Of course... (0+ / 0-)

                  I shouldn't have to tell this to a patronizing, condescending pompous ass who's telling me I'm "in way over my head"...

                  "I've seen the flame of hope among the hopeless/ And that was truly the biggest heartbreak of all" -- Bruce Cockburn

                  by Cassiodorus on Fri Mar 30, 2012 at 05:51:23 PM PDT

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                  •  You're right (0+ / 0-)

                    You said it yourself: Different eras.

                    Barack Obama is far more left than, say, FDR or LBJ on issues of race and equality and civil liberties (yes, civil liberties). But he may not be as left on economic policy.

                    You see the trap you've fallen into with this sophomoric diary?

                    You're comparing the leftist economic beliefs of the progressive era, when socialism was a mainstream party affiliation, with the leftist beliefs on equality and civil rights of the modern era. You can't do that.

                    Barack Obama is firmly a leftist of the modern era.

                    •  Nope. (0+ / 0-)

                      The "leftist economic beliefs in the progressive era" were beliefs which promoted the possibility of a universe of greater economic equality.  The fact that neither Obama nor Congress believes in resurrecting such a universe into the realm of possibility does not make either Obama or Congress "left," not even "for this era."

                      Thomas Jefferson, who owned slaves and raped at least one of them, still believed in the possibility of a universe of human equality, because he believed that slavery was eventually going to come to an end.  Those things don't make him a "conservative" in the same sense that Barack Obama is in fact a conservative because he strives to maintain the corporate profit rate in an era of declining global growth, and because he strives to maintain the military-industrial complex in an era of its fading relevance.

                      Your idea of "left" is that Presidents who were born on third base should be credited for hitting triples.  Leftist achievement, not inherited legacy, makes people leftists.

                      LBJ's signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 promoted progressive social change in a way in which no act of Barack Obama's ever did.  The fact that Barack Obama came to the Presidency long after LBJ, and with no apartheid regime to remedy in the US, does not change that.

                      "I've seen the flame of hope among the hopeless/ And that was truly the biggest heartbreak of all" -- Bruce Cockburn

                      by Cassiodorus on Sat Mar 31, 2012 at 02:49:37 PM PDT

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    •  add Social Security,Head Start, Voting Rights Act, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chuckvw

      Medicaid,Medicare, Unemployment Insurance, Food Stamp Act, Public Broadcasting Act of 1967, Wholesome Meat Act of 1967 (required inspection of meat to federal standards), Truth in Lending Act, National Environmental Policy Act, Higher Education Act of 1965 (which increased federal money given to universities, created scholarships and low-interest loans for students, and established a national Teacher Corps ), the 19th amendment (giving women the right to vote), Child labor Act, the FDA,...to name just a few things.
      Btw the list is long.

      without the ants the rainforest dies

      by aliasalias on Fri Mar 30, 2012 at 01:30:13 PM PDT

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