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Obama the Politician

The Obama campaign kicked the reporters for papers that endoresed Senator McCain off the campaign’s plane, and the campaign has refused to give another interview ever again to a TV station that asked Senator Biden tough questions in an interview. The campaign and its friends has sued or threatened to sue its critics. Senator Obama has not held a press conference in ages, or even given reporters significant access. When Jack Tapper caught up with Obama on an airport tarmac just today, and asked the Senator how he would spend the $700 billion in funds now allocated to backstop the financial system, Obama refused to respond, saying it was not the time or place. When Tapper suggested that he hold a press conference. Obama said he would do so on Wednesday. Senator Obama has sat back and allowed his campaign to make it relatively easy to contribute illegally. (As I understand it, the default settings of credit card receiving software check the credit card number against the name and address. If that’s the case, the people raising money for Senator Obama, unlike those doing so for Senator McCain, turned that part of the software off.) In all these cases, Obama is being an effective politician. He is doing everything he can within the law to further his own cause. Moreover, he is good at working the system. He is, in other words, a clever lawyer and will probably be an effective bureaucrat.

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Regarding legislation, is his comment about using the tax system to make coal power impossible a sign? It would be a good way to kill the industry without seeming to. Is that what he really wants to do, or was that what he said to please the audience of a liberals? In foreign policy, recall this bit from the debates, discussing sitting down with Ahmadinejad without preconditions: “So we sit down with Iran and they say they’ll wipe Israel off the face of the map and we say ’No you won’t’?” How would a President Obama respond to such a situation? McCain gave a fair summary of what Obama seemed to be saying. Presumably there is more to Obama’s position, but what is it? We don’t know. And, given Obama’s professed hope to bring us all together, will he regard those who oppose his plans with the good will he has often displayed in his manner? Or will he try to shut them up as his campaign has tried to do? (An extension of his litigation against his political opponants in the past?) (Does he agree with his friend Cass Sunstein that the government must regulate speech and the press in order to re-unify our culture in the age of talk radio and the internet.) All these questions remain unanswered as we go to the polls.Richard Adams

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