Obama: Just another political phony?

As the race for the Democratic Presidential nomination descends further into political hell, the Barack Obama campaign of change is changing into just another charade of false hope, shrill promises and tired rhetoric.

Gone are the bold promises of change, replaced by a tired candidate whose gaffes show an amateur who may not be ready for prime time. As the aura of confidence and hope fades, a typical arrogant, political swagger emerges, revealing an opportunistic candidate who adapts his positions to the audience and his strategy to the shifting sands of public opinion.

The smiling, upbeat candidate of new is now the angry, belittling purveyor of old. As the façade of Barack Obama falls away, what lies beneath merits a second, and perhaps a third, look.

When compared to Hillary Clinton and John McCain, Obama may still emerge as the best hope for a demoralized nation but recent actions by the Illinois Senator suggest he is not who he claims to be and will not be the President he promises to become.

There is a lot of truth in Obama’s claims that small-town voters in Pennsylvania (and perhaps elsewhere) are angry and bitter and clinging to their guns and religion but what bothers me about those comments are his choice to make them behind closed doors at a fundraiser with San Francisco fatcats and not on the stump in the Keystone State.

When confronted with what he said, Obama’s first reaction was anger at being questioned, then feigned contrition that he may have said it poorly and, finally, admission that what he said might not be exactly what he meant.

Say what? Barack Obama is a political phenomenon whose entire persona is based on being an electrifying candidate who uses words to motivate crowds, draw new voters into the process and start a political revolution.

His speeches offer heady promises for the future, fueled by enthusiastic, fawning crowds and an almost religious fervor. Yet closer examination suggests a manufactured candidate whose words offer up an image that does not honestly portray the man who utters them.

His reluctant admissions about his relationship with a Chicago political fixer currently on trial have been modified several times and testimony at the trial show his own accounts of that relationship are less than forthright.

His stories about his relationship with controversial pastor Jeremiah Wright have changed over time and still raise doubts about just how much influence the minister might have on a future President.

Obama’s confidence and style are his political strengths but they also show a man who may look at disdain at those he considers “typical white people” or small town residents who value their religion or their guns.
If Obama wants to convince us that he is truly a different type of candidate who will restore faith in the Presidency and bring this country back from the abyss he needs to prove he is who he says he is. He needs to be the same candidate on the stump in small town America as he is behind closed doors in San Francisco.

That’s a big challenge for any candidate for the highest office in a land where the people have been burned by too many charlatans who took up residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

At this point, I’m not convinced Barack Obama is all that different from the rest of the remaining field of Presidential contenders.


  1. Siannan

    I didn’t pass an inaccuracy on to my daughter. She was raised to have a brain of her own, and managed to figure this one out all by herself. Kindly keep your assumptions about my 19 year old young adult to yourself.

  2. Doug Thompson

    This is not a “blogsite.” Never has been, never will be. It is a news site. Always has been, always will be.

    The column is called “The Rant.” If it weren’t precisely that I would call it something else.

  3. Carl Nemo

    Nice thoughts Doug concerning Obama’s foibles etc.

    Guess what good buddy…! I like others are so burnt out on Bushista~Clintonista chicanery that we’d probably vote for Satan before these creeps or at least I would…!

    Regardless of my indepth knowledge of these transgenerational criminals; ie., the Bush/Clinton gang and even Obama’s shortcomings, I still believe Obama is the best bet for this nation for the next four years.

    All Hillary or McCain can provide is more teflon lubricant for our slide into a NWO sponsored hell-on-earth for this once great nation.

    I appreciate your non-partisan “shoot’em all and let God sort’em out” attitude as a fair and balanced journalist, but these are my thoughts as to why we need Obama in office to provide a necessary seachange from the way things have been going; ie., business as usual, courtesy of Hillary and McCain. Even if Obama’s performance is somewhat less than promised it will be refreshing to say the least.

    As far as his inexperience is concerned; I’m more than willing to let him do OJT while holding the presidency.

    We don’t need any more so-called experienced crim-pols such as the likes of “Billary” and “McPain” in office. : |

    Carl Nemo **==

  4. adb8917


    This is your blogsite, so you can do with it as you like; but the Diogenes thing doesn’t really offer much except more noise about the poor quality of our candidates. That can be as corrosive to public sentiment as any ill-conceived, fatigued, or just plain stupid statement the candidates make.

    I happen to be fan of this site, despite occasionally finding your rants just that — rants. Given our collective notions of self-promotion and aggrandisment to the exclusion of the needs of society, we may have finally gotten to Hesse’s “Age of the Feuilleton.” And if so, then perhaps we are on the cusp of serious social change.

    Play on, Magister…

    Joseph Knecht (ADB)

  5. inibo

    What we need is to see one candidate have the courage to say, we need to go back to the principals that made the U.S.A. the greatest nation on all of Earth!

    We have one, but no one is listening, or rather, the message of limited, constitutional government, a non-interventionist foreign policy, truly free markets and sound money is dismissed as the ravings of a kook.

    Well, America, you’ve made your choice, I hope you enjoy what’s coming.

  6. NotoriousJP

    We don’t have a lot to choose from, do we?

    McCain is an old war horse. He should be in a field somewhere, eating his clover and alfalfa or in a van heading to the glue factory, not the White House.

    Hillary has no core beliefs or values other than wanting to be the president. No thanks. I have had enough lies from Bush and Cheney. She needs to go away. Far away. I don’t particularly care where, just as long as it is not the White House.

    Obama appears to have mastered the art of public speaking. People like him. If he wins, he has to deliver more than speeches about hope. If he does not deliver anything good for the poor, especially poor black people, he will be in severe trouble. He has to make good.

    Ralph Nader….fuggedabout it. No chance and no purpose in him running either. No way, Jose.

    If anybody half way credible chooses to run against this motley crew of contenders, I will vote for him or her.

    Failing that, Obama is the lessor of three and a half evils.
    He might do OK as a president. We have had worse, haven’t we?

  7. Dr.D

    Doug,Still looking for an honest politician?
    Over the years,I had come to the conclusion that putting those two words together constituted an oxymoron.Until I learned of the existence of Ron Paul,I had lost all hope of finding a true ‘public servant’.Too bad that the immoral and evil ‘powers that be’ were successful in derailing his campaign,and too bad that ‘we the people’ were too stupid to see through the lies of the MSM.
    I can’t bring myself to vote for any of the 3 remaining choices that they have handed to us.They all have the ‘NWO’ seal of approval,so I will either vote for Dr.Paul on a 3rd party ticket or write him in.
    I won’t subscribe to the’lesser of evils’philosophy any longer,the lesser of evils is still evil. Ed

  8. cettel

    Shame on Doug Thompson for this one.

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=6oGF3cyHE7M “Barack Obama on Rural and Working Class America,” an excerpt of “The Charlie Rose Show,” from 23 November 2004, presented Obama having said on this PBS show the very same thing he did in private at the 6 April 2008 S.F. fundraiser to an audience of billionaires; but Obama wasn’t running for President then, and so CNN, Fox “News,” and the rest of the American major media — and Hillary Clinton and John McCain — didn’t demagogue it then. But now Doug Thompson adds to that demagoguing.

    I demand that Doug retract his false assertion that “what bothers me about those comments are his choice to make them behind closed doors at a fundraiser with San Francisco fatcats and not on the stump in the Keystone State.”

    He was at a closed-to-the-public fundraiser answering a question from a contributor who asked why so many lower-middle-class white voters haven’t been voting their own economic interests. It’s the same question that Charlie rose had asked him in 2004 on PBS, and Obama gave exactly the same answer (using only slightly different words). He gave that answer in public in 2004, but now an anti-Obama mole who had infiltrated this closed-to-the-public event “caught” him saying this in private. And, of course, Hillary and McCain lunged at this chance to make him seem like a phony — WHICH HE IS NOT.

    And now you’re adding to that scam, instead of exposing it like an authentic journalist would.

  9. Doug Thompson

    You can make demands until the cows come home but it doesn’t change what I said, which was:

    There is a lot of truth in Obama’s claims that small-town voters in Pennsylvania (and perhaps elsewhere) are angry and bitter and clinging to their guns and religion but what bothers me about those comments are his choice to make them behind closed doors at a fundraiser with San Francisco fatcats and not on the stump in the Keystone State.

    What he may or may not have said on a PBS show in 2004 is not saying it on the campaign trail in Pennsylvania. Try reading what I said first before making demands.

  10. woody188

    Great rant Doug. Of course I expected the Obama maniacs to flow forth, and they have with “he’s the best of the bunch” type responses.

    Well the best scat is still just scat, after all.

    As I have said before, we have no candidate that is truly for change. No one really will stand up for the middle and lower classes. All the candidates belong to the globalists of the CFR/Bilderberg. They serve only themselves and their corporate masters. They open their mouths and out fall the lies.

    Remember these?

    George W. Bush said he wanted a humble foreign policy.
    Bill Clinton ran by promising a new social compact and ended up slashing the welfare rolls.
    George H.W. Bush promised no new taxes. He also promised he would punish the “butchers of Beijing” but instead increased trade with China.
    Ronald Reagan was to beef up the military, then signed arms-control agreements with the Kremlin.

    No I don’t have any solutions other than vote 3rd party or write in. I’m going to write in Ron Paul. Wasted vote? At least I’m voting for a human who believes in America and not globalist scat!

  11. Hoosier_CowBoy

    In the old Soviet Political Apparatchix, most decisions were by committees of colorless old technocrats that weren’t visible or accountable for their policies. A visible Party Official would take the credit for their success, and during Stalins’ time, would be set up against a wall and shot if things went wrong.

    This policy has also been the defacto way of running government in the U.S. since the Cold War.

    Who we elect is irrelevant,who’s behind the the curtain is paramount. I just wish we would be told who those invisible people are, and what are their intentions.

    They’re all phonies, front men and women for those in the shadows. Like American Idol, we judge the singer and not the song.

  12. Stratocaster

    Power corrupts. Even if one has the best of intentions what one is capable of doing after being elected should be enough to scare the hell out of anyone. You cannot put your faith in one mere mortal to solve all of your problems. The only way of preventing an abuse of power is through a balance of power. How do we get from where we are back to what this country was intended to be? We need better ways of selecting our leaders and better ways of keeping them in line once they are in office. If you do not think the President is above the law, just take a look at what presently occupies the White House.

  13. mary cali

    Although I never succumbed to Obamania, I still find him a compelling candidate. My problem has been his lack of foreign policy and military experience, which can be remediated. However I would never vote for McCain because of his policy inclinations. Even though he has “experience”, his deficiencies can never be remediated.

    As for Doug, he needs to find another planet. This one is just not living up to his standards as it is populate with such imperfect people.

  14. Alexandria Lupu

    NY native At last the facade is wearing thin and the true face is beginning to show. All show, all words and saying nothing. Maybe now, people have caught on to Obama. I hope it’s not too late.

  15. JudyB

    Strato has pinpointed what we need..but how do we get it??
    I find it amazing that presidential candidates are not put through a battery of psychological and emotional tests along with a complete physical BEFORE they are put on the November ballots. Personally, would really like to see a Lie Detector test given to each of them to determine their true agendas, and hefty fines paid every time one of the lied while on the campaign trail..since they all have agendas and they all lie most of their campaign funds would be spent paying fines instead of buying campaign ads.

    Before we cast our vote, we should know if a candidate is wearing that nice suit just to cover up a shitty diaper!

  16. JerryG

    Quite frankly, the issues that I believe Obama is authentically and genuinely going to address and tackle when he is President far outweigh any gaffes of flaps he may have during his campaign. I find all this chatter about Rev. Wright and the bitter Pennsylvanians nothing more than the politics of distraction by his opponents. I also find it totally and completely irrelevant to the vision and promise that Obama is bringing to the table!

  17. Flapsaddle

    “Contract with America” redux? At the time, didn’t that draw considerable snickering from the left-leaners? Didn’t it become even more glaringly pathetic as, one after another, the pledge-takers revealed themselves to be all too fallible?

    I promise you again and again and again that your sons will not be sent to die in a foreign war – FDR

    Read my lips!…No new taxes! – GHW Bush

    Most sincerely,

    T. J. Flapsaddle

  18. geb353

    Pangaea – isn’t it just EASIER to whine and moan that
    the only decent person running here

    [And, even if JC WERE running, there are just a few things on HIS plate that need ‘vetted’….]


  19. Pangaea

    Doug . . .

    This is what we’ve got, so please allow moderated reason to take the upper hand.

    Hillary is out, McBusheep is an idiot and promises a deeper morass on every issue . . . and though Obama may not be your knight in shiny armor, at least he provides a modicum of perceived hope and change. The others, by their very natures, are the last thing the soul of this country needs should we wish to escape the very models of intellectual tardiness, cronyism, and anti-middle class classism that have driven this country into perdition.

    Understanding where all change starts gives one a leg up over negative programming and inaccurate comparative historical references to previous administrations (Carter). Nothing, absolutely nothing compares . . . should one take the time to embrace both fact and nuanced reasoning. Money, the internet, the increasing congressional majorities . . . and an emboldened “We the People” (compared to the slovenly and uninvolved who so easily allowed Carter his demise). Carter was ahead of his time, so he didn’t fail. It was the inability for American’s to work hard for the greater dream that allowed the neo-con rampage to take root. We are the ones who failed Carter and passing on inaccuracies to our 19 year olds, does nothing but perpetuate stupidity and stereotypes. So, to some who post here . . . rather than call Obama a “stuffed suit” (which is strange, given the consistent character he has shown in succeeding his way through the quite respectable (life’s) positions he has attained, in a system that smart people know doesn’t readily benefit those within his circumstances), why not shed your own stuffed suit and get ACTIVELY involved in that change.

    Perception (literally) drives everything in this country and at least with Obama, that perception of “hope” is the necessary fuel in any attempt to reverse this train wreck, even though that reversal will likely take decades.

    We are where we are Doug . . . either work hard for the (most rational, albeit imperfect) transfer of power, given the current reality for such the massive necessity of change . . . or respectfully sir, STFU!

  20. OldandSlow

    In lies we trust is what we have now at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

    Hillary Rodham Clinton’s track record in this regard is not good and it shows.


    I disagree with the 19 year old’s assessment that Barack Obama is an empty suit. Ronald Reagan was in many ways an empty suit, but he was a consummate salesman. George W are John McCain are both empty suits without Ronald Reagan’s or Bill Clinton’s charm factor.

    Barack has yet spell out his vision for America in a Reaganesque way – which is worrisome this late in the season. Clinton hasn’t either, but I know what Hillary is selling and she is not nearly as smooth as Bill was.

    Frankly, at best Barack will be another Jimmy Carter – followed by Mitt Romney in four years. If I had a choice between two CEO’s to work for, I’d choose Barack over Hillary any day.

    Andrew in Austin, TX

  21. AustinRanter

    In politics, there are no guarantees. We are still somewhat of a captive audience to a system that has evolved away from public interest.

    Hillary Clinton and John McCain are two presidential candidates who have something in common. “The Nation” reports that they have not signed a statement supporting “the restoration of basic Constitutional principles after the battering they have taken during the Bush-Cheney era.” Obama has signed the pledge.


    “Clinton won’t commit to renew the Constitution: Illinois Senator Barack Obama has finally signed the American Freedom Pledge, joining his fellow Democratic presidential candidates in encouraging the restoration of basic Constitutional principles after the battering they have taken during the Bush-Cheney era.


    New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd, Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich and Alaska Senator Mike Gravel had signed the pledge, while former North Carolina Senator John Edwards and Delaware Senator Joe Biden had responded with supportive statements.


    The effort to get presidential contenders to sign on the American Freedom Pledge has been promoted by organizations ranging from the Center for Constitutional Rights to Human Rights Watch, MoveOn.org , Amnesty International USA, the Brennan Center for Justice, the Campaign to Defend the Constitution, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and True Majority.


    The pledge is anything but radical. It simply asks candidates to affirm a statement that reads: “We are Americans, and in our America we do not torture, we do not imprison people without charge or legal remedy, we do not tap people’s phones and emails without a court order, and above all we do not give any President unchecked power. I pledge to fight to protect and defend the Constitution from attack by any President.”

    I don’t know about you boys and girls, but it would seem to me that we need a President who is willing to work toward restoring rights and the Constitution.

    Obama has signed the pledge. Clinton and McCain have not.

    Is Obama going to withdraw his signature on that pledge…and resort to status quo politics? I don’t have a clue. But, we have to start somewhere.

    We The People have to employ our civic responsibility and renew the government with those who support the rights and will of the people and of course make sure that the Constitution is fully functioning as designed by our founders.

  22. Flapsaddle

    I think that would be an usurpation of legitimate executive power to allow, say, Congress to nominate potential justices. Consider the logical unfolding of that to the ultimate Hegelian contradiction: The President having the power of nominating members of the legislature for committee chairmanships, and the USSC having the power to rule on the nominations.

    All in all, I think we’d be better off if all parties would go back to the Constitutional drawing board and reacquaint themselves with their duties and responsibilities instead of trying to second-guess one of the other branches.

    Even West Virginia’s Senator Byrd – who would never be accused of being a friend of the WH in general and especially the tenure of the current squatter – said that a President is perfectly entitled to nominate whoever he wishes and, barring really serious matters, have him generally approved by the Senate.

    As it is, many people surely make suggestions as to who should be a nominee. Isn’t there generally a “long list” of possibilities that the WH prepares after input from various sources? Isn’t that list then fussed over and culled to become a “short list” from which the most confirmable candidate is then nominated to the Senate Judiciary Committee for further review?

    Most sincerely,

    T. J. Flapsaddle

  23. Stratocaster

    On the Supreme Court issue what I was trying to say is the people under consideration should not be limited to the people he nominates, but he should have the power to veto someone else’s nomination. By limiting the applicants to his nominations the viewpoint of the nominees gets very narrow.

  24. Siannan

    I knew the scales would fall off your eyes eventually. My 19 year old daughter refers to him as an empty suit. I figured if she saw it, you’d get it soon enough, Doug.

    I personally dislike all these candidates and would really have preferred to be voting for John Edwards, although I imagine some think he’s just as bad.

    McCain is a nightmare waiting to happen, worse than George Bush. Hillary is just more of Bill. And as I have said previously, I think Obama is going to be worse than Jimmy Carter was, and sadly just as naive.

  25. Flapsaddle

    I was wondering when you would unleash a salvo against Obama. Do you suppose that now a chorus from the other side of the congregation will accuse you of running a pro-Clinton site?

    Am I correct in assuming that, once the question has been resolved as to which Democratic candidate gets the nod, that you will be impartially bombarding both sides without regard to whose skivvies get knotted?

    Most sincerely,

    T. J. Flapsaddle

  26. Wayne K Dolik

    We don’t need change. What we need is to see one candidate have the courage to say, we need to go back to the principals that made the U.S.A. the greatest nation on all of Earth!

    Let’s repeal the Un-Patriot Act. Let’s restore Habeas Corpus in America. Let’s get the Military out of Civilian Law Enforcement. Let’s get secrecy out of our government once and for all. Let’s be Americans again. Let the sunshine in.

    Obama is not perfect. But, I am sick and tired of seeing the same old tired faces returned to power by more same old tired faces like Bush and Clinton. These are nothing but two American Crime Families.