Sunday, August 21, 2011

Obama the Emperor

I see it everywhere:

- Obama caved on the debt deal!
- Obama is a secret Republican!
- Why isn't Obama focusing on jobs?
- Why isn't he leading us?

I shared the sentiments and assumed that as always, the person who could have really led us and got us back on the progressive track was going to play legacy instead and ignore the people who elected him.

But the more that I think about it, the more I realize that Obama has absolutely no interest in domestic policy. None. He's miserably devoid of it, in fact.

Why? Because he's an Emperor, capital E.

This guy campaigned on an expanding focus in Afghanistan. He promised to end the wars, but lets be honest, in what decade will the last U.S. soldier leave Afghanistan or Iraq? And he's ignored domestic policy for the most part, unless the Republicans were going to actually cause real harm. So what's he been doing this whole time?

Well, a short recap:  He campaigned and has followed through on an expanded front in Afghanistan. He is still in charge of Iraq and will be until he leaves office, first term or second. What else? Like he promised in the debates, he has no qualms about sending rockets or boots into Pakistan. Remember?

What else? Oh yeah. Osama bin Laden: Deceased.

Right now we have Special Forces in quite a few countries in the middle east. And I can guarantee you that it has only increased since Obama was elected.

We're an Empire, although it is almost never spoken aloud. Obama likes foreign policy, and you can be sure he loves his job. Most people criticized him for Libya, and rightfully so. I'll be honest, my opinion was either go in and remove Qaddafi, or get the hell out. I thought that the middle ground wasn't a very good place to be, and I worried that Libya would become a years-long endeavour. Well, I don't want to assume it's all over now baby blue, but if Qaddafi is thrown out with a minimal investment by US, with zero confirmed U.S. dead...I was really wrong.

We're definitely on the ground and active right now in Libya, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. And take a look at the Predator drone strikes since Obama has come into office. Those things are flying around everywhere, apparently. I wonder if the reason he seems so indifferent to domestic policy is because he has direct feeds into all sorts of ongoing missions, just like the Osama death video he got to Seriously?

We're an Empire alright, and if anyone looks at you funny, or averts their eyes if you say it aloud, they are the ones who are most ashamed of it, because they pretend it doesn't exist. I'm not making an argument that Obama is any more militaristic than any other U.S. President. But he certainly excels at it, and it makes me cringe to say this: he seems pretty effective at it too.

But there are hundreds of dead civilians, dead by our weapons, fired from our hands, by drones built here, and I certainly don't like it. They're our imperial death ships floating above countries of our choosing, raining down death...or is it reigning down death.? Either one works, actually. I just imagine the families of dead civilians who will never forgive us, while most of us don't ever spend a minute to actually think about it, because it's absolutely horrible.

How mad are we as a society?

Imagine a non-human but intelligent being studying our culture right now. We spend most of our time doing things we might enjoy on a good day, and if we're lucky, tolerate the rest of the time. We do this to earn money so we can buy as much stuff as we can before we die. Meanwhile, the institution we've given power to has built a pretty solid world empire over the last century or so. And most people don't even think about it. Refer to US as an Empire and many people will look at you like you've just stepped on a kitten. They've compartmentalized their knowledge of world events and our massive military into at least two separate boxes. And never the twain shall meet.

Our government is mentally abusing us. I said it. Someone get me an attorney. Get US an attorney.

So, that's it. Obama is a foreign policy President, and not that I'm condoning it, but he seems good at it. I mean, if you're going to play Empire, which almost every President has, you should at least be effective in the role. And Obama is. He'll bring some troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan while maintaining a decent sized regiment of "advisors" in both countries indefinitely. That'll take it out of the forefront, to the relief of our selective amnesia muscle. Yet we'll still be over there, chugging away. It won't cost as much, it won't be as noisy, and it won't take up as much time on the news.

For the United States that is a textbook victory.

Did Obama never care about domestic issues, or is he, like W., extremely worried about the state of affairs in that region of the earth we think of with disdain? I don't know. Like everything else in the universe, it's probably a little of everything.

I wish that Obama cared about domestic issues. But he doesn't. He's willing to agree to whatever little piecemeal legislation he can stomach, so he can get back to the war.

It's one war, by the way. The United States of America versus whomever we say.

So, for the love of all that isn't sacred for a change, stop thinking that Obama is weak. He isn't. Stop paying attention to domestic issues for a few weeks, since no one in charge will either. Really focus on our foreign policy, and you'll see that our President is most definitely Commander of our Armed Forces.

Medicare? Social Security? Pfft, whatever. Our President is busy running our Empire. If you really believe that deep-down he is going to start focusing on problems here at home...maybe in his next term if re-elected...stop believing. He won't.

Obama is the President-Emperor of the United States of America. Elected by his citizens to sign laws that Congress manages to pass, while enforcing the law here at home.  And the Emperor part comes about through enforcing OUR law out in the world. Obama isn't the first, and won't be the last. And he's not even as flagrant as the last guy. But he is good at it, give him that. Even his critics would likely admit, off-the-record of course, that Obama can usually get his way on what he wants, even if what he wants isn't what his constituents want.

Obama is a foreign policy President just like W. The mistake that most of us have made is ignoring what he has actually accomplished as President while complaining about what he hasn't accomplished.

That is utterly our fault as citizens. He doesn't care about domestic policy, as he has made abundantly clear. Instead, he seems intent on solving some foreign policy problems, just like W.

And damn't, say what you want, but he hasn't done too bad of a job on that front thus far.

Remember America: if you want a strong President on foreign policy, vote for the Democrat. They've proven time and time and time again that they don't mess around when it comes time to deploy the military. And unlike the Republicans, they do it effectively and efficiently.