I never believed Obama represented real change. I thought it was more like the status quo. Which is pretty bad in itself, with Bush's shocking power grabs and disregard for the law.
But it might be even worse than that. Obama is in many ways no different from Bush. And in other ways he's more extreme than Bush.
When Bush was President he liked to kidnap people from around the world, including non-combat zones, such as Britain, and he'd just incarcerate people indefinitely without letting them have a chance to prove they were innocent. A judge ruled against Bush, so instead he decided to ship people to Afghanistan thinking that the ruling doesn't apply there. Obama praised the judge while on the campaign trail as he sought the nomination. Since then another judge has ruled against the Bush Afghanistan work around. Obama is fighting tooth and nail to retain his secret, private, outside the law prison in Afghanistan. See here for details.
In the same vein, on the one hand Obama says we can't disregard the rule of law. The Constitution is sacrosanct. On the other hand he said in the same speech that he needs the authority to impose "prolonged detention" without permitting these persons to have a chance to have a day in court. Rachel Maddow is stunned that Obama can say these contradictory things in a single speech. It is a little shocking. Doesn't he think that someone might notice?
It's no secret that Obama has increased troop levels in Afghanistan, and he's been consistent on that point. But he did promise to have combat troops out of Iraq within 16 months according to his campaign website, including bringing home 1 or 2 brigades a month immediately. That's pretty much out the window now. His new timetable is the same as Bush's.
He was emphatically opposed to warrantless wiretaps on the campaign trail. In fact he was ready to fillibuster any bill on telecom immunity. He ended up voting for telecom immunity before his election. And now he's still listening to your phone calls without a warrant as he fights in court to retain the power.
The list here could go on and on. So to my right wing friends, are you glad to have given away so many liberties to your evangelical President now? You trust your fellow Christian believer when he incarcerates people in secret prisons without recourse. He'll get it right when he identifies enemy combatants. But eventually we knew we would get a new President. That day has arrived. Who's the enemy combatant now?
To the left wingers, we've got a President wiretapping without warrants, increasing troop levels in the Middle East, expanding the war into Pakistan, defending secret prisons, ignoring due process. Heck, he won't even give gays a break as far as policy is concerned, only in rhetoric. The Onion is on the story. How is this President of Hope and Change working out for you?