The Stone Unturned: A Critique of Barack Obama
Blythe CA - Ehrenburg AZ
The past decade has been a blur. I have just realized that I did not have a capstone for this time period. Barack Obama's acceptance speech for the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize has provided me with such. Below is a working draft without a summary that will change and will be completed by the New Year! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
President Barack Obama has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. The texture will remain open as to whether the interests of the Nobel Organization bear out in making this choice in the history of the human race. The honor was rationalized on the belief that creating an environment for dialog concerning nuclear disarmament vis a vis with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran justified the prize in spite of a lack of tangible accomplishments that usual accompany laureates.
The Nobel Committee has stated that it researched many qualified candidates from the past year and the winner was Obama.
I was camping in a field south of Big Pine, California on October 9 when news of the prize broke. I have been living under constant attack since April of 1986, with totalitarian electronic surveillance and Chemical Assault - Scorched Earth since June 17, 1987, the 200th anniversary of the United States Constitution.
My alienation has engendered the most successful censorship and sanitization of history to date. My argument is that the manifest concrete condoning of my systematic torture will transform the thinking and methodologies of leadership and warfare.
I will end my preface on the panorama of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize with closing statements of the president:
Somewhere today, in the here and now, in the world as it is, a soldier sees he's outgunned, but stands firm to keep the peace. Somewhere today, in this world, a young protestor awaits the brutality of her government, but has the courage to march on. Somewhere today, a mother facing punishing poverty still takes the time to teach her child, scrapes together what few coins she has to send that child to school -- because she believes that a cruel world still has a place for that child's dreams.
The Stone Unturned: A Critique of Obama’s Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech
After acknowledging his audience Obama spoke the following words:
I receive this honor with deep gratitude and great humility. It is an award that speaks to our highest aspirations -- that for all the cruelty and hardship of our world, we are not mere prisoners of fate. Our actions matter, and can bend history in the direction of justice.
A centerpiece of Obama’s speech is that he was awarded the prize while he is acting as commander in chief of a nation in war. He argued that this war was an act of collective security not just one nation defending itself in a unilateralist posture.
But perhaps the most profound issue surrounding my receipt of this prize is the fact that I am the Commander-in-Chief of the military of a nation in the midst of two wars. One of these wars is winding down. The other is a conflict that America did not seek; one in which we are joined by 42 other countries -- including Norway -- in an effort to defend ourselves and all nations from further attacks.
Obama then proceeded to discuss the basic concept of jus belle or just warfare. This also acknowledged the emergence of international law and human rights. Obama also began to foreshadow another key concept of his doctrine: the building of institutions to create peace. After recapitulating the past centuries failures of two world wars and the League Of Nations, the president also pointed out that war is not the conventional use of armies and alignments but now of terror. Here we have a convergence which begins to demonstrate the apperception and lack of volition of both the Nobel Organization and Barack Obama.
And yet, a decade into a new century, this old architecture is buckling under the weight of new threats. The world may no longer shudder at the prospect of war between two nuclear superpowers, but proliferation may increase the risk of catastrophe. Terrorism has long been a tactic, but modern technology allows a few small men with outsized rage to murder innocents on a horrific scale.
Presidents usually are evaluated on their skill on identifying and solving the nation’s problems. This has lead to the first presidents being seen favorably as Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln being seen in a positive light. This is due to state creation and human rights. Due process is a right. Persons who often plead in forma pauperus use the 14th Amendment, the due process clause, to civilly petition the government as a last resort if criminal actions are not recognized by the state itself on it’s citizen’s behalf. This amendment reflects the rise of Jim Crow Laws in the Deep South after the Civil War. Obama points out that he does not have solutions to war. Obama quotes Martin Luther King Jr. to reason that, “Violence never brings permanent peace. It solves no social problem: it merely creates new and more complicated ones."
Following this statement a crest of tension or arsis is presented :
But as a head of state sworn to protect and defend my nation, I cannot be guided by their examples alone. I face the world as it is, and cannot stand idle in the face of threats to the American people. For make no mistake: Evil does exist in the world. A non-violent movement could not have halted Hitler's armies. Negotiations cannot convince al Qaeda's leaders to lay down their arms. To say that force may sometimes be necessary is not a call to cynicism -- it is a recognition of history; the imperfections of man and the limits of reason.
Here I will state that Obama confirms his role as a sophist, he also introduces his apologetics, of a consequentalist nature, invoking a strongman posture derived from Plato’s Thrasymachus in his Republic. Here I am not changing the subject. Obama speaks of al Qaeda. I am speaking of censored violence and EVIL here against myself in the United States and other living life.
Obama is correct in that self defense after exhausting resources against a recalcitrant enemy is justified. He is grossly in error in his axiology and duties as Head of State and Commander in Chief of the United States.
Obama then begins to build another arc of tension with his historical acknowledgment over structures and processes and the concrete zeitgeist that the United States exists in at the present time.
I raise this point, I begin with this point because in many countries there is a deep ambivalence about military action today, no matter what the cause. And at times, this is joined by a reflexive suspicion of America, the world's sole military superpower.
The president seeks to then build consensus over the role the United States is performing by stressing that the sacrifices American servicepersons have made is in the collective interest. His statement that the future’s children and grandchildren will be better if others offspring are secure is hypocritical. I am under severe CHEMICAL ASSAULT - SCORCHED EARTH. I HAVE NEVER MARRIED AND HAVE NEVER HAD CHILDREN. This statement is simply an abstract straw man. There is severe fallacy of separation from this idealistic statement and the real world condition under which natural persons and citizens exist in the United States.
But the world must remember that it was not simply international institutions -- not just treaties and declarations -- that brought stability to a post-World War II world. Whatever mistakes we have made, the plain fact is this: The United States of America has helped underwrite global security for more than six decades with the blood of our citizens and the strength of our arms. The service and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform has promoted peace and prosperity from Germany to Korea, and enabled democracy to take hold in places like the Balkans. We have borne this burden not because we seek to impose our will. We have done so out of enlightened self-interest -- because we seek a better future for our children and grandchildren, and we believe that their lives will be better if others' children and grandchildren can live in freedom and prosperity.
In the context of being a commander in chief Obama acknowledges what apparently seems counter-intuitive that war is necessary and also a folly. Here there is a materialist self evident truth that human systems are differentiated and that the benefit to cost ratios determine correct leadership choices. Obama invokes a trajectory from Kennedy to make a concrete statement in the direction and goals in which he intends to lead the United States and the world.
So part of our challenge is reconciling these two seemingly irreconcilable truths -- that war is sometimes necessary, and war at some level is an expression of human folly. Concretely, we must direct our effort to the task that President Kennedy called for long ago. "Let us focus," he said, "on a more practical, more attainable peace, based not on a sudden revolution in human nature but on a gradual evolution in human institutions." A gradual evolution of human institutions.
Before Obama clarifies this activity, he recapitulates his role as a sovereign head of state. This is centered on the unilateral right to use deadly force. This is an issue that deeply divides the United States and the majority of the world. He reasserts his position as Thrasymachus the sophist in Plato’s Republic. Hence, that Justice is in the interest of the stronger, to help our friends and harm our enemies. Plato’s Socrates’ answer is that Justice is in the interest of the weaker. Here this means rights. Justice means that the good or the strong take up the argument for the weak and defenseless to see the good or truth. This is the Greek philosophic basis for human rights of the UDHR and the Bill of Rights of the United States.
Here my criticism is based on concrete objective empirical history. This is not stating a correct abstract principle. Obama and the analysis must not be totalitarian and isolate reality from perception. (I am writing along the Colorado River near Blythe CA - Ehrenberg AZ, and the river is despoiled.)
To begin with, I believe that all nations -- strong and weak alike -- must adhere to standards that govern the use of force. I -- like any head of state -- reserve the right to act unilaterally if necessary to defend my nation. Nevertheless, I am convinced that adhering to standards, international standards, strengthens those who do, and isolates and weakens those who don't.
Furthermore, America -- in fact, no nation -- can insist that others follow the rules of the road if we refuse to follow them ourselves. For when we don't, our actions appear arbitrary and undercut the legitimacy of future interventions, no matter how justified.
The unattractive truth emerges. Barack Obama states in the affirmative that the use of deadly force is justified against a sovereign nation-state is culpable against attacks against it’s own citizens and natural persons living in it’s territory.
And this becomes particularly important when the purpose of military action extends beyond self-defense or the defense of one nation against an aggressor. More and more, we all confront difficult questions about how to prevent the slaughter of civilians by their own government, or to stop a civil war whose violence and suffering can engulf an entire region.
I believe that force can be justified on humanitarian grounds, as it was in the Balkans, or in other places that have been scarred by war. Inaction tears at our conscience and can lead to more costly intervention later. That's why all responsible nations must embrace the role that militaries with a clear mandate can play to keep the peace.
Duplicity is the lack of respect of persons. Here the world is condoning the attack in the United States as most of the free world is dependent on the United States to maintain the peace and economic prosperity. This type of mass defection is irrational. It is however the main choice of action where the immediate short payoff is for everyone to defect to receive a payoff in prisoner’s dilemma. Obama divides the argument. Unity is strength and fragmentation is weakness. The best efficient optimization is to uphold the Bill of Rights and stop the Chemical Assault - Scorched Earth here. Then, international security of which the United States has lesser control and whose legal jurisdiction is more questionable will be STRONGER!
America's commitment to global security will never waver. But in a world in which threats are more diffuse, and missions more complex, America cannot act alone. America alone cannot secure the peace. This is true in Afghanistan. This is true in failed states like Somalia, where terrorism and piracy is joined by famine and human suffering. And sadly, it will continue to be true in unstable regions for years to come.
Obama is preparing to close his presentation. In doing so he clearly positioning himself as a hypocrite who states one thing and does the other. Obama exhorts a legal - moral posture for other nation-states and natural persons while he looks the other way as a Prefect Dictator while secret police actions carry out abuse against his own citizens.
Let me make one final point about the use of force. Even as we make difficult decisions about going to war, we must also think clearly about how we fight it. The Nobel Committee recognized this truth in awarding its first prize for peace to Henry Dunant -- the founder of the Red Cross, and a driving force behind the Geneva Conventions.
Where force is necessary, we have a moral and strategic interest in binding ourselves to certain rules of conduct. And even as we confront a vicious adversary that abides by no rules, I believe the United States of America must remain a standard bearer in the conduct of war. That is what makes us different from those whom we fight. That is a source of our strength. That is why I prohibited torture. That is why I ordered the prison at Guantanamo Bay closed. And that is why I have reaffirmed America's commitment to abide by the Geneva Conventions. We lose ourselves when we compromise the very ideals that we fight to defend. (Applause.) And we honor -- we honor those ideals by upholding them not when it's easy, but when it is hard.
Obama signals that the arrival of his thesis is to begin. This is a three step plan to achieve future peace. This will reconcile the tensions he evokes. He ends his acceptance with some embellishments in the style of a codetta. Here there is tough talk about nuclear weapons and human rights that he claims will be backed up in deeds. He states that he can cooperate with Russian President Medvedev in constraining Iran and it’s nuclear program which has pitted Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran and Obama in brinksmanship similar to Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis during the early 1960s.
First, in dealing with those nations that break rules and laws, I believe that we must develop alternatives to violence that are tough enough to actually change behavior -- for if we want a lasting peace, then the words of the international community must mean something. Those regimes that break the rules must be held accountable. Sanctions must exact a real price. Intransigence must be met with increased pressure -- and such pressure exists only when the world stands together as one.
It is interesting to note that Obama states that he favors a approach to disarmament in his détente. It is not clear how much diplomacy will occur between the United States and Iran and Korea. To do such would escalate the prestige vis a vis with the United States. This is not desirable to the nuclear and economic status quo. Here is another recurring concrete act of hypocrisy. How can Obama keep these two actors clean and not game the system when HE IS GAMING THE SYSTEM ON CHEMICAL ASSAULT - SCORCHED EARTH.
Barack is handling his oratory with kid gloves. As street smarts and unattractive realities persist - If you play the game, YOU BECOME THE GAME…
But it is also incumbent upon all of us to insist that nations like Iran and North Korea do not game the system. Those who claim to respect international law cannot avert their eyes when those laws are flouted. Those who care for their own security cannot ignore the danger of an arms race in the Middle East or East Asia. Those who seek peace cannot stand idly by as nations arm themselves for nuclear war.
The same principle applies to those who violate international laws by brutalizing their own people. When there is genocide in Darfur, systematic rape in Congo, repression in Burma -- there must be consequences. Yes, there will be engagement; yes, there will be diplomacy -- but there must be consequences when those things fail. And the closer we stand together, the less likely we will be faced with the choice between armed intervention and complicity in oppression.
Obama’s second point is a manifest - latent function operating in unity.
This brings me to a second point -- the nature of the peace that we seek. For peace is not merely the absence of visible conflict. Only a just peace based on the inherent rights and dignity of every individual can truly be lasting.
Obama on defining point two also refers to differentiation and externalities. He is tacitly acknowledging to his audience that his leadership will have to elements of pragmatism and sin to become good tradeoffs. I am not begging the question or creating a red herring and defeating such. One has to acknowledge the CONCRETE. Barack Obama is going to enter nuclear disarmament without establishing his legitimacy on internal problems as my persecution which is also an act of warfare. If the United Kingdom is the Origin and authorship than we are at War with a external democracy something he early states the United States has never done.
…There's no simple formula here. But we must try as best we can to balance isolation and engagement, pressure and incentives, so that human rights and dignity are advanced over time.
Obama’s point three affirms socio-economic justice as well as the right to legal person before one’s government. He directly mentions the need for clean medicine, shelter, and clean water is something I ABSOLUTELY DO NOT HAVE. THE COLRADO RIVER IS CLEARLY CONTAMINATED AND HEADED INTO MEXICO!
It is undoubtedly true that development rarely takes root without security; it is also true that security does not exist where human beings do not have access to enough food, or clean water, or the medicine and shelter they need to survive. It does not exist where children can't aspire to a decent education or a job that supports a family. The absence of hope can rot a society from within.
Barack Obama recapitulates the thesis.
Agreements among nations. Strong institutions. Support for human rights. Investments in development. All these are vital ingredients in bringing about the evolution that President Kennedy spoke about. And yet, I do not believe that we will have the will, the determination, the staying power, to complete this work without something more -- and that's the continued expansion of our moral imagination; an insistence that there's something irreducible that we all share.
Barack then asserts with his oratory skills that substance is the principle that is behind all of assumptions and activities of which he will lead into the future. He is also a man of faith and morality which is essential for the success of the human race.
For if we lose that faith -- if we dismiss it as silly or naïve; if we divorce it from the decisions that we make on issues of war and peace -- then we lose what's best about humanity. We lose our sense of possibility. We lose our moral compass.
...Let us reach for the world that ought to be -- that spark of the divine that still stirs within each of our souls. (Applause.)
Barack Obama closes his speech by pointing out the faceless average persons who will not get recognized for their sacrifices in the context of war and peace. His role is that of a sovereign head of state and commander in chief.
Let us live by their example. We can acknowledge that oppression will always be with us, and still strive for justice. We can admit the intractability of depravation, and still strive for dignity. Clear-eyed, we can understand that there will be war, and still strive for peace. We can do that -- for that is the story of human progress; that's the hope of all the world; and at this moment of challenge, that must be our work here on Earth.
Thank you very much. (Applause.)