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There is no real need to recount the many reasons why Tom Friedman has been justly ridiculed on this site.

His record of numbingly wrong headed ideas and seemingly endless list of silly pronouncements in the Times and lightweight fictions like The Lexus and the Olive Tree have been well catalogued.

But just as an incompetent batsman flirting with the Mendoza Line might make solid contact with the ball every fifth at bat, this morning Mr. Friedman hit one in the gap.

Follow me over the fold for an explanation ...

With all the venom he can muster (well, okay without any venom at all) Friendman leads with a bit of a zinger ...

President Obama's handling of the Gulf oil spill has been dissappointing.

... and then throws a smart punch ...

No, the gulf oil spill is not Obama’s Katrina. It’s his 9/11 — and it is disappointing to see him making the same mistake George W. Bush made with his 9/11. Sept. 11, 2001, was one of those rare seismic events that create the possibility to energize the country to do something really important and lasting that is too hard to do in normal times.

For me this is the key critique and observation.  So far, President Obama has wasted the gulf oil spill crisis with a temperate and often tepid response.  Where is the outrage?  Where is the understanding that this is a singular moment?  Where is the recognition that this is an opportunity to act, to rally the nation around a new energy future, to move boldly and decisively beyond the carbon age?

Here Friedman links Obama's lack of a vigorous response to a critique of GWB's post-9/11 behavior, a response that has been much ridiculed on this site ...

President Bush’s greatest failure was not Iraq, Afghanistan or Katrina. It was his failure of imagination after 9/11 to mobilize the country to get behind a really big initiative for nation-building in America. I suggested a $1-a-gallon "Patriot Tax" on gasoline that could have simultaneously reduced our deficit, funded basic science research, diminished our dependence on oil imported from the very countries whose citizens carried out 9/11, strengthened the dollar, stimulated energy efficiency and renewable power and slowed climate change. It was the Texas oilman’s Nixon-to-China moment — and Bush blew it.

Had we done that on the morning of 9/12 — when gasoline averaged $1.66 a gallon — the majority of Americans would have signed on. They wanted to do something to strengthen the country they love. Instead, Bush told a few of us to go to war and the rest of us to go shopping. So today, gasoline costs twice as much at the pump, with most of that increase going to countries hostile to our values, while China is rapidly becoming the world’s leader in wind, solar, electric cars and high-speed rail. Heck of a job.

So the failure of imagination and will that was rightly pinned on President Bush is one Friedman (and I share his opinion) thinks should be directed at Obama.

I don’t buy it. In the wake of this historic oil spill, the right policy — a bill to help end our addiction to oil — is also the right politics. The people are ahead of their politicians. So is the U.S. military. There are many conservatives who would embrace a carbon tax or gasoline tax if it was offset by a cut in payroll taxes or corporate taxes, so we could foster new jobs and clean air at the same time. If Republicans label Democrats "gas taxers" then Democrats should label them "Conservatives for OPEC" or "Friends of BP." Shill, baby, shill.

It is time for President Obama to lead.  It's time for him to recognize this disaster as the defining moment of his presidency.

Please don’t tell us that our role is just to hate BP or shop in Mississippi or wait for a commission to investigate. We know the problem, and Americans are ready to be enlisted for a solution. Of course we can’t eliminate oil exploration or dependence overnight, but can we finally start? Mr. President, your advisers are wrong: Americans are craving your leadership on this issue. Are you going to channel their good will into something that strengthens our country — "The Obama End to Oil Addiction Act" — or are you going squander your 9/11, too?

He must not let a failure of will or David Axelrod's imagination or an abundance of Rahm Emmanuel's fear force him to miss this once in generation opportunity to steer away from the brick wall civilization is speeding towards.

This is Obama's moment to lead.  It is his 9/11 moment. He must seize the day.

Originally posted to hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:13 AM PDT.

Poll

In response to the gulf oil spill President Obama has

6%5 votes
62%45 votes
1%1 votes
9%7 votes
6%5 votes
4%3 votes
8%6 votes

| 72 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

    •  Why doesn't Obama get a Friedman delay? (4+ / 0-)

      The bush slime got unlimited "six more months" to straighten things out, yet Obama has to act right away?

      No Friedman units for democrats?

      Friedman is a foolish idiot, he should be digging a ditch somewhere, oh wait, the "World is Flat" so why dig a ditch when Friedman has repealed gravity and the earth's curvature?

      "Drill Baby Drill": Stupid in 2008, criminally stupid now.

      by MD patriot on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:27:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Does the fact that TF is an idiot absolve Obama (5+ / 0-)

        of his responsibilites as LEADER of the nation?

        This isn't about TF, it's about BO.

        We need to president to lead on this one.

        No quarter. No surrender.

        by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:30:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, but it isn't an Argument (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MD patriot, bay of arizona, jalenth

          Friedman is a fucking Piece of Shit -- and it is the likes of him that have gotten us into the many messes we have found ourselves

          Friedman blaming Obama is like Cheney blaming Obama for shooting that guy in the face

          Friedman has NO CREDIBILITY on this -- and his argument rings as hollow as any persons head who thinks that Friedman has anything of substance to add

          "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

          by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:35:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I am talking about the SUBSTANCE of the (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            pletzs, bay of arizona, SolarMom

            argument, not the fucking messenger.

            Do you think the president's response has been appropriate and does he understand the opportunity it presents for changing course as a nation?

            No quarter. No surrender.

            by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:38:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Friedman has NO substance (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MD patriot

              he is the categorical definition of "All Style, No Substance"

              because You seem so intent on thinking Friedman had something to say, i actually went and read his fluff piece ... and i suggest that You go back and re-read it ..

              there is NOTHING THERE

              again, i expect nothing more from Friedman ... but i do expect more from those that read him

              Americans are craving your leadership on this issue. Are you going to channel their good will ...

              again, i expect nothing from Friedman, and he faithfully delivers

              but have YOU been living under the same fucking rock?

              what political climate do YOU live in that people are 'craving leadership' on "Obama's 9/11 - the gulf oil spill" -- it isn't just that the hyperbole is absurd to the point of obscenity; it is that it is a valueless statement that does not reflect the political reality of this country ...

              it is a completely USELESS column -- IF Friedman wanted to actually offer something of substance, he would do better to get up and look in the mirror and say "holy fuck, this whole 'flat world' shit has really fucked things up -- lemme work at correcting THAT misconception" -- for those that think Friedman has anything to offer -- THAT little tidbit would be far more helpful than his typical asinine vomit inducing columns -- of which this is far more typical of than You seem to realize ... and i don't have fucking clue as to why You think there is Anything there!?

              "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

              by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:14:46 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I can understand your anger at TF, but (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                bay of arizona

                why do you so easily translate that anger to me?

                but have YOU been living under the same fucking rock?

                You seem to realize ... and i don't have fucking clue as to why You think there is Anything there!?

                My point was the TF pointed out that the President did not understand that this was a teaching/leading momement.  I happen to agree with that.  You have taken that to suggest that I am fool for that POV.

                I could be offended by that, but choose not to be.  I am focused on working for a better future for my children and their children and believe that leadership and imagining a post-carbon future is the first step towards getting there.

                No quarter. No surrender.

                by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:25:56 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Don't repeat any Friedman words (0+ / 0-)

                  I would not have seen the idiot Friedman's latest spew except that you repeated it here.  He is total slime, and a long time bush-war cheerleader, he should be digging ditches, not bloviating in the NYT.

                  "Drill Baby Drill": Stupid in 2008, criminally stupid now.

                  by MD patriot on Wed May 19, 2010 at 08:09:41 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  What, exactly, has Obama failed to do? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MD patriot, jalenth

              Are you blaming him for not stopping the leak?  Are you blaming him for the presence of the rig in the Gulf in tghe first place?  This is a disaster of colossal proportions.  There's simply no way to put the genie (oil) back in the bottle (well).  Obama will be rightly judged by how he pursues BP for the costs (all of the costs) of this debacle.

              "He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind."

              by lordcopper on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:09:53 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Not blame, I am asking him to seize this (0+ / 0-)

                moment to focus the nation (and his agenda) on a post-carbon future.  He has to do all the things he is doing PLUS use this as an inflection point that changes the course of our politcal economy.

                I know I'm asking alot, but that's why I worked and spent my butt off to help him get elected.

                I'm asking him to extend himself and lead as more than just a supremely compentent adminstrator (which I surely appreciate).

                No quarter. No surrender.

                by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:23:34 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  You're asking a lot of the voter, to focus (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  hegemony57, jalenth

                  on all of these issues at the same time.

                  "He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind."

                  by lordcopper on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:29:05 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yes I am. nt (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    lordcopper

                    No quarter. No surrender.

                    by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:30:14 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  This is going to sound elitist, but the average (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      jalenth, cheforacle

                      voter simply isn't capable of waying in on the economic, foreign policy, environmental, etc. matters perplexing the country.  That's why the very people that caused these problems (the GOP) will potentially gain seats in the mid term.  The Obama Administration has to continually manage this "reality", while attempting to put the country on the path the "fact based" governance.

                      "He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind."

                      by lordcopper on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:43:38 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Some people are ready, some are not. The job (3+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        lordcopper, adrianrf, cheforacle

                        of a president is to lead on issues that may not have yet achieved critical mass, but pose a long term threat to society.

                        Carbon-based energy reliance is perhaps the uber issue in this category.

                        Do you think people are focused on arms control?  I submit they are not.  But has that stopped the president from doing a treaty with Russia and looking forward to greater cuts down the road?  It has not.  We need the president to lead on this and the gulf oil spill gives him the perfect platform to launch his campaign.

                        No quarter. No surrender.

                        by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:58:38 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I agree with your point but there is less (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          lordcopper

                          political downside in pushing arms control treaties right now than addressing global warming.  That being said, we have no room now not to act.

                        •  I would like to see the government cut the (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          a night owl

                          defense budget, and make direct investments in alternative energy to the tune of $50-100 Billion/year, for a few years.  But we both know that will never happen, and the reason why is that we are culturally predisposed to defense spending.  So does the Obama Admin do the right thing, and potentially turn the govt over to the Republicans because of a voter revolt?  Or do they try not to incite the electorate and gradually get the country on the right path?  This argument can be replayed for every major issue discussed on this site.  

                          "He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind."

                          by lordcopper on Wed May 19, 2010 at 08:11:57 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

          •  ...and the point is also.. (4+ / 0-)

            ..that whatever you or I or anyone on this site thinks of Tom Friedman, the fact remains that his words are far more widely read than ours.

            He's influential as all hell, so it's noteworthy when he says what we're saying.

            Thanks, hegemony57, for diarying this.  btw, I added the eKos tag to get this diary listed in the next Earthship.

            •  Thanks SolarMom. What is most interesting to (3+ / 0-)

              me is the really angry and vehement response by some Dk community members to the idea that the President has any role in moving the country to a post-carbon economy.

              I am really suprised by the level of anger and cycnisicm about what the President can do to move us in a better direction.

              Thanks for the ekos tag.

              Cheers.

              No quarter. No surrender.

              by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:18:36 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm surprised at that too. (3+ / 0-)

                My 81-year-old mom remembers how Roosevelt made people feel, even though she was a kid then.

                "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

                Those words MATTERED.  When people trust the president, they trust what he's asking them to do, or to believe.

                Kennedy inspired a generation too.  "Ask not.."

                Obama can do it too.  "Yes we can."  

                He just has to want to.

                •  Exactly. My dad is 85 and he says the same (0+ / 0-)

                  thing about FDR and JFK.  I wish BO would push us, but it seems that we need to push him.

                  Thanks again for your support.  I've been writing diaries and commenting on DK since 2006 and I still don't get why people feel it's perfectly fine to get nasty right out of the box.

                  No quarter. No surrender.

                  by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:59:04 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

  •  Funny How a Repub Politician Remains Correct (5+ / 0-)

    until a Democrat eventually comes along and does the same thing.

    Suddenly the Republican had been wrong. Why, everybody knew that!

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:19:04 AM PDT

  •  Yeah, just saw it. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pletzs, hegemony57, shaharazade

    We can squawk all we want at the Obama-Junior comparisons, but, so far, this one rings true.

    How 'bout it, Mr. President?   A little leadership here?

    Does this sig line make me look fat? __________ Songs at da web site!

    by Crashing Vor on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:22:12 AM PDT

    •  He deserves to get dinged for this. In fact (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Crashing Vor

      he deserves to get scorched.  I've been feeling so broken hearted about the spill that I was almost completely unaware that the President has not been leading on this.

      He MUST pick up his game god damn it!!!!

      No quarter. No surrender.

      by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:26:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Friedman is a moron. Obama cannot change (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    josephk, Livvy5, amk for obama

    American culture.

  •  What a crock of shit (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jalenth, amk for obama

    Americans are ready to be enlisted for a solution

    it is the Friedmans of this world and their "flat earth" lowest common denominator policies that have led us down the path of drilling for oil out in the middle of the ocean

    Friedman is so full of shit while NEVER taking upon ANY responsibility HIMSELF for helping create this fucking lunatic asylum

    my advice to Friedman is to get his own fucking house in order and start appologizing and working at correcting all the fucked up situations for which he is responsible before complaining about ANYONE -- especially a POTUS who is so peripherally connected to this disaster - compared to himself

    Friedman can go FUCK HIMSELF

    "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

    by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:33:08 AM PDT

    •  Jesus. You're more pissed at TF for pointing out (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pletzs, shaharazade

      that Obama's response has been inadequate than you are at the president for his inadequate response.  TF is an idiot, but that is no excuse for not responding to what may be the most damaging environmental disaster of our lifetime.

      No quarter. No surrender.

      by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:36:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What do you want him to do? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jalenth

        Specific answers please.

        •  I want him to address the nation and say (5+ / 0-)

          that the oil spill is the defining moment in America's 100+ year love affair with oil.  I want him to make the EPA extend is carbon rules.  I want him to say that as a nation we will cut our use of fossil fuels by 50% by 2025.  I want him to create a climate corps that will enlist 100,000 americans to reduce fossil fuel use in their communities.  I want him to propose a $100B 10 year program to build bicycle lanes, walking paths and a national human powered transportation grid.  I want him to announce a 10 year plan to build a national high speed rail network.  I want ....  

          No quarter. No surrender.

          by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:45:36 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  and what are YOU willing to sacrifice for that (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jalenth, amk for obama

            when You get Your pony -- what is the COST that YOU (and more specifically - the American population) are WILLING to pay ...

            ... as Bush said, a dictatorship would be a great thing

            but what is the ACTUAL political solution rather than "Everyone gets a Pony, and we are starting with hegemony57's ponies"

            "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

            by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:49:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Human powered transportation grid?? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            amk for obama

            How many people do you know who are going to ditch their cars and reduce their power consumption because of this oil leak? I rest my case. No President can change these things.

            •  You asked for specifics and offer none of your (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              pletzs, bay of arizona, shaharazade

              own except saying that you rest your case?  I respectfully propose that all big changes start with the imagination.  You have to see a different future before you can work to make it happen.  What I am hearing from you is that since people have become dependent on their cars and the convenience they offer there is no chance that they can change.  I don't believe it will be easy nor do I think the President can snap his fingers and make Americans abandon their way of life.  I do believe he has an obligation to show us a better way.  Some will ignore him, some will follow, and some will push farther faster.

              I just want him to see this as an opportunity to move us away from our destructive ways.  It's not too much to ask.

              No quarter. No surrender.

              by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:13:46 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  If No One (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              hegemony57

              Can make these changes in a controlled manner, then these changes will occur in a chaotic and harsh manner.

              If that is the case, then, political activism is a futile and useless pursuit at this point.

              If you president can't do anything about the most pressing issue facing the nation (and humanity), then what's the use of having a president?

      •  actually - i am pissed off at Your diary (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jalenth

        i expect absolutely NOTHING but ignorant self serving drivel from Friedman

        But Your embrace of Friedman's drivel is abhorrent and simple minded

        Obama's 9/11?  What kind of monumental crock of shit is that ... and for You to embrace this is offensive

        Did You even fucking witness the Health Care debacle? ... and that was a simple solution compared to fixing the energy economy

        Do You even remember Jimmy Carter catching shit -- for wearing a fucking sweater?

        Do You even know what fucking country You are living in (assuming You live here in the US)

        Pretending that one can snap their fingers and correct the literal DECADES of damage done by Friedman, his cronies and enablers -- and then BLAME it on Obama for not even trying to snap his fingers is fucking mind blowing

        Friedman is an Idiot? -- Holy shit is that ever minimizing the damage he has done; and the parroting his self serving shit that attempts to displace HIS responsibility on to the like of Obama -- are YOU fucking kidding me!?!?!?

        "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

        by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:45:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Some feedback .. (3+ / 0-)

          When you write that my "embrace of Friedman's drivel is abhorrent and simple minded" and ask "Do you even know what fucking country You are living in (assuming You live in the US)" I would suggest you are not interested in any sort of learning dialogue.

          You are of course entitled to your opinion, but it seems you don't believe that substanitive change is possible and following from that concluded the President should stop trying to do really difficult things or ask us to reach beyond our narrow self interests.

          I am not blind to the challenges, but believe we must continue to try to do big things.

          No quarter. No surrender.

          by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:07:49 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  i don't disagree (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jalenth

            I am not blind to the challenges, but believe we must continue to try to do big things.

            THIS i agree with -- and, i believe that so does President Obama

            but Tom Friedman doesn't ... he lives in a fantasy US where "Americans are craving" leadership on the gulf coast oil spill -- NO THEY ARE NOT

            i am not saying that it isn't an environmental disaster
            i am not saying that the long term effects won't be felt for years/decades

            i AM saying that the American people of 2010 are at the pinnacle of a dysfunctional society (GLADLY enabled by congressional/corporate plutocracy) that is frighteningly short sighted and self serving -- ALL of which has been promoted by Friedman -- Friedman has been a leading "voice" that has brought the American people to their current dysfunctional status, and any proposition that ignores the monster he helped to create -- is nothing more than pandering useless drivel ...

            "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

            by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:23:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You were NOT saying that. You were (0+ / 0-)

              blasting me for pointing out that TF said he thought the President's response was inadequate.  You were clearly treating me like a fool and the enemy.  If you think that is not so please go back and re-read your own words.

              No quarter. No surrender.

              by hegemony57 on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:28:12 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  i don't care what Friedman says (1+ / 1-)
                Recommended by:
                jalenth
                Hidden by:
                pletzs

                so Yes ... i freely admit that i was :

                "blasting me for pointing out that TF said ..."

                because Friedman has NOTHING to say on this ... and his column is USELESS -- in fact, it is worse than USELESS because it pretends to offer something of substance that completely IGNORES the political reality of 2010

                this is most certainly NOT 2001 after September 11th

                nor is it the 1930's

                pretending that Obama can somehow magically inculcate the political realities of those times and apply them to today -- don't You think he would have done that with healthcare already? ... or do You NOT think that there was and continues to be a "healthcare crisis" in this country

                healthcare is one of my favorite examples -- Obama says -- we want to offer You cheaper and more secure healthcare ... and somehow, enough people were convinced THAT wasn't a good idea

                healthcare was EASY compared to fixing the 'energy economy' ... and YES i would to see some actual leadership on this issue from the WH -- but after watching the fiasco on health care, i realize that the REAL problem isn't health care, the environment, energy ... or any other issue -- it is the FUCKING BRAIN DEAD American population and their corporate/congressional plutocratic masters -- You can't actually fix ANYTHING in this country until You fix THAT -- You can only PRETEND to fix things --

                So,  You are more than welcome to join Tom Friedman and pretend to offer solutions and for all the good it will do -- the president can join You ... but it actually won't change anything until the American people change, and THIS oil spill sure as hell ain't going to do it

                "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

                by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 06:44:20 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I'm TRing You (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  hegemony57, Jodster

                  For thread jacking at this point. You don't like Friedman. Fine. The diary isn't about Friedman (or you).

                  •  Really? (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    jalenth

                    The diary isn't about Friedman (or you).

                    hmmmm ... sorry, i clearly MUST be illiterate:

                    Thank You Tom Friedman - Really, Thank You

                    and threadjacking?

                    41 comments on this diary -- 7 of which are mine, and then Your additional comment to "spank me" and then another 7 replies means that i have somehow "threadjacked" a diary with 26 "unrelated" comments?

                    You have set a pretty low bar for Your TR in this case ...

                    "I want to keep them alive long enough that I can win them to Christ," - Rick Warren, Professional Greed Driven Scumbag

                    by josephk on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:10:25 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

  •  I stopped reading him (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    amk for obama

    about 5 or 6 fried man units ago.

    not another dime to the dnc, dscc, dccc until i have my civil rights.

    by scooter in brooklyn on Wed May 19, 2010 at 05:34:42 AM PDT

  •  Yeesh! (8+ / 0-)

    I get all the way down here and still the bozos are blasting you for diarying Tom Friedman.

    Back off, haters! If Friedman writes it, BO will hear about it. Whether we like him or not, TF's writing matters.

    So stop with the venom, already.  Hegemony57 did a good thing.

    •  BO actually likes and respects Tom Friedman. You (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hegemony57, jalenth, SolarMom

      are right, he will read it. He probably emailed BO a copy in advance.

      But I disagree with TF's premise of comparing it to 911 while we have Exxon Valdez a similar occurrence for comparison.

      •  this is measureabley worse the Valdez (0+ / 0-)

        it is not a 'spill'. It's a gusher that is spewing gas into the ocean with no end in sight. TF is an asshole but this administration is not only blowing aoff a teaching moment it is aiding and abetting BP. Drill baby drill should be stopped and we should be pouring our money into clean energy. Instead we bailed out GMC so they can produce more earth destroyers and we have GS running our economy. Then there is the Kerry Lieberman bill that subsidizes more of this madness.

        3 cents a gal in 30 years as Bernie says is not worth destroying our planet and setting the world on fire with wars and gushers of oil that they cannot or will not stop because were invested. How about we invest in energy technology and innovation that does not involve carbon burning? TF is a nasty rich neocon, but even he seems to have more sense than those who say that it's cultural and we cannot change. What bs. it's survival. Obama seems pretty adept at throwing out Friedman Units, maybe he should listen to a 'free market' asshole who at least can see that we need to move beyond petroleum.          

    •  I'm late to this diary, but I'm shocked at the (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pletzs, hegemony57, DWG, cheforacle, SolarMom

      nasty reactions.  Friedman may be a jerk, but he's spot on just as Robert Redford is spot on.  This could be Obama's moment to speak up, repudiate his prior decision to expand offshore oil, and tell Kerry/Lieberman to pass a bill without the taint of Big Oil.  Instead, the administration (Salazar at hearings yesterday) keeps affirming the "need" to keep drilling.

      Can people here concentrate on the policy, not the personality, at issue?

      Good diary, hegemony57 -- rec'd.

      proudly Excluded from Cliques of Online Advocates; still twittering RL_Miller

      by RLMiller on Wed May 19, 2010 at 07:21:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  So we're just coming out of the worst economy (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    josephk, jalenth

    in a couple of generations, BP and other petro corporations cause a horrific environmental disaster, and Friedman's solution is to raise taxes on gasoline.  

    Oh yeah, I forgot one thing, there's an election for control of Congress in 6 months.  I wonder how an increase on gasoline taxes might play in this political season.  I'm willing to bet on this GOP spin:

    Obama's socialism means you don't get to take your family on vacation.  He fuels up Air Force One to go anywhere he wants, and you can't afford to take your kids to the state park!

    Even doing the right thing can be the wrong thing if it means that you lose your opportunity to move the rest of your agenda.  Ask yourself: what's the likelihood of the US moving toward a green economy if the Republicans set the congressional agenda?

    Of course the next few months will be decisive in how this oil spew defines Obama's presidency; right, Tom?

  •  I've disliked Friedman for a while now but, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hegemony57, SolarMom

    in this instance, he is correct.  I have believed that, since before the inauguration, Obama needed to address global warming as it has been the most urgent crisis we face.  Our country has dawdled on this issue and, it  not only imperils people all over the globe but also prevents us from reaping the economic gains which will derive from companies involved in green technologies.  Obama understands this but he has not put this front and center in our country's agenda despite the fact he deserves great credit for putting spending and tax incentives in the stimulus in this regard.  

    I reject those people who believe, because of Friedman's previous missteps, he should not be listened to at all.  I say judge each of his opinions on their own merit.  There are many people with great ideas who have been wrong on other matters before.

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