Obama and Europe: Nanny state bedfellows

It has surprised me that the media has shown genuine disbelief to the iconic status Barack Obama has cultivated in Europe and other regions abroad.  When one is well received by his contemporaries, observers should simply ask themselves “What’s in it for each party in this union,” and the answer to that question will usually lead you to the underlying motives of both respective parties.

Barack Obama is a “Greenhorn” (as they say on my favorite reality show “Deadliest Catch” on the Discovery Channel) and a bonafide rookie to geopolitical strategy, and a substantial percentage of the American electorate are aware of the Illinois Senator’s lack of executive expertise, but guess what? Its irrelevant.  In the aftermath of the Bush/Neo-conservative foreign policy, economic failures, corruption charges, wiretaps, Donald Rumsfeld, Alberto Gonzalez and the like, and behold the America people are ready to “throw the bums out” and put Senator Obama in the White House.

The international community shares American resentment of the Bush Administration, and undoubtedly want Senator Obama to become the 44th President of the United States of America.  Europeans and other “America Haters” believe that the U.S. will be in lock step with their political stroll if Obama can slay John McCain in the November 4th election, and on the surface their hopes seem to be well founded.  The European Union shares basic tenets with the potential Obama Administration that demonstrate why their love-fest with Obama has bordered on the excitement of “Beatlemania” ala the 1960s and 70s.  The EU supports large sweeping governmental policies, high tax rates, Universal Health care for its citizens, passive foreign policy, and social policies (e.g. gay rights, abortion rights, and invisible national borders), and on most of these issues Barack Obama is the Anakin Skywalker to Europe’s Obi-wan Kenobi.

For their part, most of the international community indulged Senator Obama’s aspirations during his recent trip abroad, and leaders including French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown all provided Obama with crucial photo-opportunities which portrayed the Illinois representative as a skilled statesman who will revitalize America’s image abroad with one staged appearance after another.  Almost all of these leaders have similarly met with Republican John McCain, but none of them dispelled the widely accepted belief that somehow Obama’s visit was more important and more Presidential that that of the McCain campaign.

Most of the world secretly shares the view that a McCain presidency will be a 4 year extension of the Bush era, and some nation-states genuinely fear that the Arizona Senator will continue to implement the hawkish foreign policy the U.S. has so ineffectively projected during the last 8 years.  Despite the hope and security provided by “the surge” policy, the Iraq War is still greatly unpopular abroad, and many EU members are apprehensive to the idea that a McCain Administration will force them to actually address Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons with tougher sanctions or even a possible military strike against the Islamic state.  President Obama would most likely give the EU a pass on Iran since the Obama campaign has repeatedly voiced its intentions to negotiate with Iranian leader Mahmoud Admadinejad (with few if any preconditions) and avoid war with the radical Iranian President at all costs.

The United States has traditionally shunned the socialist tendencies of Europe, and has excelled in the international community by forcing its people to rely upon their own will and secure their destiny threw hard work not government handouts and safeguards.  America remains the world’s sole superpower because it leads others not because she mindlessly pursues policies that will improve our approval/favorability ratings on the world stage to the detriment of our immediate strategic position.  It behooves U.S. Presidents to ignore the popularity contest that has become foreign diplomacy, and take positions that best protect and serve American interests abroad not European ones.  And although we share many interests with our Atlantic allies, America would be better served if the next President skillfully recognized where these interests intersect and divide, because if the next Commander-in-Chief fails to address that political reality America may well find itself a very popular but an increasingly weakened member of the European Union.  

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~ by americalives on July 27, 2008.

4 Responses to “Obama and Europe: Nanny state bedfellows”

  1. Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.JohannWolfgangvonGoetheJohann Wolfgang von Goethe, 1749-1832

  2. Indeed in their irrational hateful mood “the American people are ready to ‘throw the bums out.’ But the irony is that they will be replacing the hard bums of the Republicans with the soft and WET bum of Obama, who will defecate, with the ‘diarrhoea’ of his geopolitical inexperience, all of America.

    And it will be interesting to see whether the American electorate will ultimately allow hate to trump reason.

  3. Empty Senate record? How’s this?

    In a nut shell:

    Senator Obama has sponsored or co-sponsored 570 bills in the 109th and 110th Congress.

    Senator Obama has sponsored or co-sponsored 15 bills that have become LAW since he joined the Senate in 2005.

    Senator Obama has also introduced amendments to 50 bills, of which 16 were adopted by the Senate.

    His record is in fact quite impressive for a junior Senator from Illinois.

    And in detail:

    Of the 15 bills Senator Obama sponsored or co-sponsored in 2005-7 that became law:

    Two addressed foreign policy:
    Promote relief, security and democracy in the Congo (2125)
    Develop democratic institutions in areas under Palestinian control (2370).

    Three addressed public health:
    Improve mine safety (2803)
    Increased breast cancer funding (597)
    Reduce preterm delivery and complications, reduce infant mortality (707).

    Two addressed openness and accountability in government:
    Strengthening the Freedom of Information Act (248
    Full disclosure of all entities receiving federal funds (2590)

    Two addressed national security
    Extend Terrorist Risk Insurance (467)
    Amend the Patriot Act (2167)

    One addressed the needs of the Armed Forces
    Wave passport fees to visit graves, attend memorials/funerals of veterans abroad (1184).

    Of the 570 bills Senator Obama introduced into the Senate during the 109th and 110th Congress (Senate Bill numbers are in parentheses), they can be summarized as follows:

    25 addressed Energy Efficiency and Climate Change
    Suspend royalty relief for oil and gas (115)
    Reduce dependence on oil; use of alternative energy sources (133)
    Increase fuel economy standards for cars (767, 76
    Auto industry incentives for fuel efficient vehicles (1151)
    Reduce green house gas emissions (1324)
    Establish at NSF a climate change education program (1389)
    Increase renewable content of gasoline (2202)
    Energy emergency relief for small businesses and farms (269)
    Strategic gasoline and fuel reserves (1794)
    Alternative diesel standards (3554)
    Coal to liquid fuel promotion (3623)
    Renewable diesel standards (1920)
    Reducing global warming pollution from vehicles (2555)
    Fuel security and consumer choice (1994, 2025)
    Alternative energy refueling system (2614)
    Climate change education (1389)
    Low income energy assistance (2405)
    Oil savings targets (339)
    Fuel economy reform (3694)
    Plug-in electric drive vehicles (1617)
    Nuclear release notice (234
    Passenger rail investment (294)
    Energy relief for low income families (2405)

    21 addressed Health Care
    Drug re-importation (334)
    Health information technology (1262, 141
    Discount drug prices (2347)
    Health care associated infections (227
    Hospital quality report cards (692, 1824)
    Medical error disclosure and compensation (1784)
    Emergency medical care and response (1873)
    Stem cell research (5)
    Medical Malpractice insurance (1525)
    Health centers renewal (901, 3771)
    Children’s health insurance (401)
    Home health care (2061)
    Medicare independent living (2103)
    Microbicides for HIV/AIDS (823)
    Ovarian cancer biomarker research (2569)
    Gynological cancers (1172)
    Access to personalized medicine through use of human genome (976)
    Paralysis research and care (1183)

    20 addressed Public Health:
    Violence against women (1197)
    Biodefense and pandemic preparedness and response (1821, 1880)
    Viral influenza control (969)
    End homelessness (151
    Reduce STDs/unintended pregnancy (1790)
    Smoking prevention and tobacco control (625)
    Minority health improvement and disparity elimination (4024)
    Nutrition and physical education in schools (2066)
    Health impact assessments (1067, 2506)
    Healthy communities (106
    Combat methamphetamines (2071)
    Paid sick leave (910)
    Prohibit mercury sales (833, 181
    Prohibit sale of lead products (1306, 2132)
    Lead exposure in children (1811, 2132)

    14 address Consumer Protection/Labor
    Stop unfair labor practices (842)
    Fair minimum wage (2, 1062, 2725, 3829)
    Internet freedom (2917)
    Credit card safety (2411)
    Media ownership (2332)
    Protecting taxpayer privacy (2484)
    Working family child assistance (21
    Habeus Corpus Restoration (185)
    Bankruptcy protection for employees and retirees (2092)
    FAA fair labor management dispute resolution (2201)
    Working families flexibility (2419).

    13 addressed the Needs of Veterans and the Armed Forces:
    Improve Benefits (117)
    Suicide prevention (479)
    Needs of homeless veterans (1180)
    Homes for veterans (1084)
    GI Bill enhancement (43)
    Military job protection
    Dignity in care for wounded vets (713)
    Housing assistance for low income veterans (1084)
    Military children in public schools (2151)
    Military eye injury research and care (1999)
    Research physical/mental health needs from Iraq War (1271)
    Proper administration of discharge for personality disorder (1817, 1885)
    Security of personal data of veterans (3592)

    12 addressed Congressional Ethics and Accountability
    Lobbying and ethics reform (230)
    Stop fraud (2280)
    Legislative transparency and accountability (525)
    Open government (2180, 248
    Restoring fiscal discipline (10)
    Transparency and integrity in earmarks (2261)
    Accountability of conference committee deliberations and reports (2179)
    Federal funding accountability and transparency (2590)
    Accountability and oversight for private security functions under Federal
    contract (674)
    Accountability for contractors and personnel under federal contracts
    (2147) Resctrictions awarding government contracts (2519)

    10 addressed Foreign Policy:
    Iraq war de-escalation (313)
    US policy for Iraq (433),
    Divestiture from Iran (1430)
    Sudan divestment authorization (831)
    Millennium Development Goals (2433)
    Multilateral debt relief (1320)
    Development bank reform (1129)
    Nuclear nonproliferation (3131,977,2224).

    9 address Voting/Elections
    Prohibit deceptive practices in Federal elections (453)
    Voter access to polls and services in Federal elections (737)
    Voter intimidation and deceptive practices (1975)
    Senate campaign disclosure parity (185)
    Require reporting for bundled campaign contributions (2030)
    Election jamming prevention (4102)
    Campaign disclosure parity (223)
    Presidential funding (2412)
    Integrity of electronic voting systems (1487)

    11 addressed Education
    Increase access of low income African Americans to higher education (1513)
    Establish teaching residency programs (1574)
    Increase early intervention services (2111)
    Middle school curriculum improvements (2227)
    Public database of scholarships, fellowships and financial aid (242
    Summer learning programs (116)
    TANF financial education promotion (924)
    Higher education (1642)
    Build capacity at community colleges (379)
    Campus law enforcement in emergencies (122
    Support for teachers (2060).

    6 addressed Hurrican Katrina
    Hurricane Katrina recovery (2319)
    Emergency relief (1637)
    Bankruptcy relief and community protection (1647)
    Working family tax relief (2257)
    Fair wages for recovery workers (1749)
    Gulf coast infrastructure redevelopment (1836)

    5 addressed the Environment
    Drinking water security (218, 1426)
    Water resources development (72
    Waste water treatment (1995)
    Combat illegal logging (1930)
    Spent nuclear fuel tracking and Acountability (1194)
    Asian Carp Prevention and Control Act (Introduced in Senate)[S.726.IS ]

    4 addressed Discrimination
    Claims for civil class action based on discrimination (1989)
    Domestic partnership benefits (2521)
    Unresolved civil rights crimes (535)
    Equality or two parent families (2286)

    4 addressed Homeland Security
    Judicial review of FISA orders (2369)
    National emergency family locator (1630)
    Amend US Patriot Act (2167)
    Chemical security and safety (2486)

    Clearly he has no clue.

    Methinks it is YOU who has no clue.

  4. wow msjoanne

    everytime i tell a liberal that obama has no substantial voting record they just crawl in a hole. i really really appreciate the list of achievements.

    i think you and i can agree that either

    A. we could probably come up with a list of legislation achievements for each and every person in the senate that is equally as long. if you at the party its hard not to drink a beer

    or

    B. other than that ethics bill and the things he did addressing walter reed and supporting webbs gi bill most of those bills were not large enough to make or break presidential candidates resume

    and

    co-sponsor ship is dime a dozen and irrelevant

    what say you msjoanne

    by the way i looked at ur blog love ur opinions ill make some comments on the article that really caught my eye a second ago

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