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The Forum > Article Comments > Obama's change you can believe in - the mad men did well > Comments

Obama's change you can believe in - the mad men did well : Comments

By John Pilger, published 5/5/2009

Barack Obama is the BBCís man, and CNNís man, and Murdochís man, and Wall Streetís man, and the CIAís man. The mad men did well.

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Brilliant summary and unpalatable truths in there for most of us I'm sure.

Yes, I had been observing some adroit side-stepping and back-pedalling from Obama and his seeming appeal to all groups for some time now, but I was clinging doggedly onto the dream.

You've pretty much shattered it now! And I have to ask what's left? If not Obama, who will lead us to a better world? Yes, the more hope we invest in our shining knights, the harder it is to watch their image tarnish.

Having said that, we're still in a better place than we were under Bush, and also where we'd be had Obama's rival won instead.
Posted by Bronwyn, Tuesday, 5 May 2009 10:41:17 AM
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I am once again reminded of a saying that we had in the army when I was doing National Service back in the fifties. "Bullshift baffles brains".

David
Posted by VK3AUU, Tuesday, 5 May 2009 11:19:37 AM
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The problem with progress is that it always comes with unintended consequences. Each time a new idea is promoted, it allows new people to come forward, but it displaces someone else in the process. This create waves which, if too big and abrupt, knock many people about too much.

So, the art to making change is to make change that people can partake in. That means not doing too much too soon, but doing things in bite-sized instalments while opening people's eyes to the idea that things can really be done much better. This, I think, is the real benefit of having people like Obama and Rudd in political power. Even if they don't actually achieve anything else, their political ideas will rub off on all those that come after. Out of the melange following will come a few who will be able to achieve some really great things. It's actually best we don't know who they are.
Posted by RobP, Tuesday, 5 May 2009 11:22:29 AM
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Are you sure we're in a better place Bronwyn. I think McCain would have been far more honest and transparent. Obama's glibness is his most dangerous quality.
Posted by GrahamY, Tuesday, 5 May 2009 11:23:14 AM
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If I may answer that, Graham. Yes, we ARE in a better place.

We would be in a better place if my Auntie Nellie's cat had been elected President.

(So-called Democrats/Labour politicians, are always the biggest disappointment for me, and I judge them harshly in their endeavour to be seen to be 'of the common man', when they are nothing of the kind nowadays. For me though, it's all relative. They are the lesser of two evils).

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Posted by Ginx, Tuesday, 5 May 2009 12:19:00 PM
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Ginx

"We would be in a better place if my Auntie Nellie's cat had been elected President."

LOL

Well I can't top that and won't attempt to, but in regards to your comment, Graham, on McCain being 'far more honest and transparent' than Obama, I would, after choking on my lunch (twice now) have to vehemently disagree.

McCain was never going to be able to hack the pace for a start. Not only that, but his campaign was an even more orchestrated front than Obama's in my opinion. He was sold as Mr Moderate, just as John Howard sold himself as a reformed centrist in the 1996 campaign. You can bet had McCain got in, his Mr Moderate position would have been ditched just as smartly as Howard's was. Even if he had attempted to take a genuinely moderate position on some issues, there were just too many conservatives and neocons within the party structure to ever give him much rope. The fact too that his main claim to so-called glory was a disputed war story says it all really, IMHO.

RobP

Good analysis and thank you for giving me back some small glimmer of hope to hang onto! :)

I think you're right, there is an element of incremental change. Let's face it, it's the only change possible in the face of the powerful vested opposition that both men face. Rudd is not a hope-inspiring example though, I don't think. His apology speech, his binning of Work Choices and his efforts to humanise the asylum seeker process are all welcome, but none of them have gone far enough yet. His capitulation to big business on the introduction of climate change abatement measures is totally unacceptable and a betrayal of all who voted for him. Giving away bucketloads of untargeted money to combat the economic downturn and now promising money we don't have on over-the-top defence systems we don't need are just about the last straws for me.

So no, if you tell me Obama is to follow Rudd's example, that small glimmer of hope will flicker very weakly. :)
Posted by Bronwyn, Tuesday, 5 May 2009 1:23:31 PM
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