Here's another one of my letters to the editor of the SB NewsPress. I'll update with info if it's published in the hardcopy paper.
Update: The letter appeared in the NewsPress on August 5, 2009.
To the editor:
A liberal’s assessment of Obama’s brief tenure.
His Sotomayor nomination rocks. However…
The economy. I grant that he’s not had nearly enough time to reverse the disastrous impact of decades of America’s profligate, credit-addicted consumption, but he’s hearkening to the same persons and institutions to effect “change” that created and fed on those now-entrenched cultural/economic memes. While he seeks to improve our financial straits—to constrain our unregulated markets, to cure our loss of decent-paying jobs and widening earnings disparities—there’s little prospect of stemming America’s decline so long as he employs the tools crafted by the same folks who wrecked—and profited from the wreckage of—our nation’s economy.
Our “security.” His rhetoric occasionally feels satisfying, but his actions—the buildup in Afghanistan/Pakistan, the still-growing Pentagon budget, the continuing secrecy—are doggedly similar to those of his predecessors. He also promotes America’s global-policing role, thereby energizing the “military-industrial complex” that Eisenhower warned about five decades ago. Indeed, but for his recent (and politically safe) elimination of some Pentagon-derided F-22’s, Obama’s foreign/military policy appears as pugnacious as Reagan’s.
Surely he’s too well schooled to be ignorant of an acutely salient lesson of history: empires invariably decline due to consumptive over-indulgence and militaristic over-reach. Therefore, his failure to activate true “change” must be the result of something in his character that is ultimately ruinous of meaningful achievement: fear.
After suffering through eight years of an executive who acted through ignorant arrogance, must we now endure one who suffers from informed cowardice?