Rise of the Obamabots

Ted Rall writes about how he’s been pushed out of the liberal freelance world because of his criticisms of Obama. (If you want to donate a few bucks, by all means do so. He could use it.)

Does Obama ever do anything right? Not often, but sure. And when he does, I shut up about it. Cartoonists and columnists who promote government policy are an embarrassment.

But that’s what “liberal” media outlets want in the age of Obama.

I can’t prove it in every case. (That’s how blackballing works.) The Nation and Mother Jones and Harper’s, liberal magazines that gave me freelance work under Clinton and Bush, now ignore my queries. Even when I offered them first-person, unembedded war reporting from Afghanistan. Hey, maybe they’re too busy to answer email or voicemail. You never know.

Other censors are brazen.

There’s been a push among political cartoonists to get our work into the big editorial blogs and online magazines that seem poised to displace traditional print political magazines like The Progressive. In the past, editorial rejections had numerous causes: low budgets, lack of space, an editor who simply preferred another creator’s work over yours.

Now there’ s a new cause for refusal: Too tough on the president.

I’ve heard that from enough “liberal” websites and print publications to consider it a significant trend.

A sample of recent rejections, each from editors at different left-of-center media outlets:
· “I am familiar with and enjoy your cartoons. However the readers of our site would not be comfortable with your (admittedly on point) criticism of Obama.”
· “Don’t be such a hater on O and we could use your stuff. Can’t you focus more on the GOP?”
· “Our first African-American president deserves a chance to clean up Bush’s mess without being attacked by us.”

I have many more like that.

What’s weird is that these cultish attitudes come from editors and publishers whose politics line up neatly with mine. They oppose the bailouts. They want us out of Afghanistan and Iraq. They disapprove of Obama’s new war against Libya. They want Obama to renounce torture and Guantánamo.

Obama is the one they ought to be blackballing. He has been a terrible disappointment to the American left. He has forsaken liberals at every turn. Yet they continue to stand by him. Which means that, in effect, they are not liberals at all. They are militant Democrats. They are Obamabots.

As long as Democrats win elections, they are happy. Never mind that their policies are the same as, or to the right of, the Republicans.

“So what should I think about [the war in Libya]?,” asks Kevin Drum in Mother Jones. “If it had been my call, I wouldn’t have gone into Libya. But the reason I voted for Obama in 2008 is because I trust his judgment. And not in any merely abstract way, either: I mean that if he and I were in a room and disagreed about some issue on which I had any doubt at all, I’d literally trust his judgment over my own. I think he’s smarter than me, better informed, better able to understand the consequences of his actions, and more farsighted.”

Mr. Drum, call your office. Someone found your brain in the break room.

Barack Obama and the Democrats have made it perfectly clear that they don’t care about the issues and concerns that I care about. Unlike Kevin Drum, I think–I know–I’m smarter than Barack Obama. I wouldn’t have made half the mistakes he has.

So I don’t care about Obama. Or the Democrats. I care about America and the world and the people who live in them.

Hey, Obamabots: when the man you support betrays your principles, he has to go–not your principles.

6 thoughts on “Rise of the Obamabots

  1. Yes, we might end up entangled in three wars, an economy on the skids, disappearing social programs and living in a surveillance state, with Rick Warren visiting the White House!

    Oh… never mind.

  2. OBL is dead! This is the game changer…. Be patient. It is 11 dimensions of chess. The right is scrambling. They don’t need the liberals to make them look stupid. It is out there for all to see. The stupid, it burns. Get out the popcorn. Be patient, please. Look at the outrage against the Ryan Medicare plan. I am seeing a “Bastille Day” soon. I can feel the momentum!

  3. Hey Steeveboy, the “liberal circular firing squad” school of criticism makes me laugh. Obama has let down liberals on every front, every issue. His policies and overall approach have little to do with liberalism. If there’s shooting going on, it’s between those of us who think a Democratic president should by definition be liberal and those who think Dems can behave like right-wingers once they’re elected.

  4. Since The Nation, Mother Jones and Harper’s have been critical of Obama, maybe they’re just not all that into Rall anymore.

  5. My take on President Obama is this: policies and politics are debatable, opinions, often guesses, balancing act decisions of the greatest good for the most people. Some agree and some disagree. I disagree. On taxes, budgets, policies I disagree but others don’t. Its debatable.

    But the law is a life and death thing. To claim the right to wiretap, search and arrest without cause and evidence is wrong and illegal; it ruins people’s lives; it puts innocent people in jail. To claim the right to arrest, judge, condemn people to prison without trial for unlimited time is wrong; it is a crime. To claim the right to execute people without any process of law is wrong; it is a crime. And I think President Obama has committed crimes and should be put out of office and on trial for them. He has also sheltered other criminals who were previous presidents and obstructed justice from trying and punishing them as well.

    I can not and will not vote for somebody I believe is a criminal who has abused his power and office to commit injustice. This is not strategy or opinion or policy or politics. It is not right or left, liberal or conservative. It is right and wrong.

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