Well, it has been almost a year in office, certainly a year since the “transition team” started pouring coal in the fail train. I’m not big on the “First 100 days” thing, but I do think you can get a sense of an administration after a year. Let’s start by reviewing that famous Obama’s Blueprint for Change (PDF).
The very first section is “Ethics”. I think we would all agree that ethics in Washington is something that needs change. So how are we doing?
Shine Light on Washington Lobbying
Centralize Ethics and Lobbying Information for Voters: Obama will create a centralized Internet database of lobbying reports, ethics records, and campaign finance filings in a searchable, sortable and downloadable format.
Require Independent Monitoring of Lobbying Laws and Ethics Rules: Obama will use the power of thepresidency to fight for an independent watchdog agency to oversee the investigation of congressional ethics violations so that the public can be assured that ethics complaints will be investigated.
Yeah, not so much. In fact, what info we do have shows that the lobbyists have spent more this year than in any year in history. So, yeah, lobbyists have not only continued to run Washington, they are increasing their influence.
Sunlight Before Signing: Too often bills are rushed through Congress and to the president before the public has the opportunity to review them. As president, Obama will not sign any non-emergency bill without giving the American public an opportunity to review and comment on the White House website for five days.
Sure seems pretty dark here. In fact, the Senate is voting on hugely significant bills at midnight on Sunday. They are as far from sunlight as they can get, and I don’t think that Obama has waited five days for half they bills that have been signed.
Make White House Communications Public: Obama will amend executive orders to ensure that communications about regulatory policymaking between persons outside government and all White House
staff are disclosed to the public.
Conduct Regulatory Agency Business in Public: Obama will require his appointees who lead the executive branch departments and rulemaking agencies to conduct the significant business of the agency in public, so that any citizen can watch these debates in person or on the Internet.
Release Presidential Records: Obama will nullify the Bush attempts to make the timely release of presidential records more difficult.
Close the Revolving Door on Former and Future Employers: No political appointees in an Obama administration will be permitted to work on regulations or contracts directly and substantially related to their prior employer for two years. And no political appointee will be able to lobby the executive branch after leaving government service during the remainder of the administration.
Except of course, for the 3/4 of his cabinet that he signed “waivers” for. Because as long as the rest aren’t lobbyists, everything is OK, right?
I would get into the healthcare section, but hey, no one actually knows what is in the bill in front of the Senate, so it wouldn’t matter. In any event, Obama isn’t driving that, if he ever was in the first place. Leadership skillz; he don’t haz dem.
Obama will cut income taxes by $1,000 for working families to offset the payroll tax they pay.
Restore Fiscal Discipline in Congress
Obama will reinstate pay-as-you-go (PAYGO) budget rules, so that new spending or tax cuts are paid for by spending cuts or new revenue elsewhere.
Cut Pork Barrel Spending
Obama will cut skyrocketing pork barrel spending projects by forcing more transparency about who is requesting projects and what the projects would accomplish before Congress votes to approve them.
Cut Down on Tax Haven and Tax Shelter Abuse
Obama will build on his bipartisan work to penalize companies that abuse the tax code and stop the use of tax havens.
o rly? PAYGO done gone. He tripled the deficit in one year. Cut pork barrel spending? They are creating new pork to get every bill passed — every time a bill gets through, we get the story about which senators had to be paid off with what pork. Cut down on tax havens? Hell, tax criminals like Geithner and Rangel are walking scott free. Geithner is running the IRS.
Create Secure Borders
Obama wants to preserve the integrity of our borders. He supports additional personnel, infrastructure andtechnology on the border and at our ports of entry.
I wish we had Bush 2.0 on this one, he’s actually worse than that do-nothing.
Strengthen Civil Rights Enforcement:
Obama will staff the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department with lawyers who prosecute civil rights violations, employment discrimination, and hate crimes instead of political cronies.
The DoJ had a slam dunk case on the Black Panthers physically intimidating people with weapons at the polling place on election day. The case was won, and all the DoJ had to do was file the final paperwork. They dropped the case. That “political cronies” line seems to be apt in that instance.
End Deceptive Voting Practices:
Obama will sign into law his legislation that establishes harsh penalties for those who have engaged in voter fraud and provides voters who have been misinformed with accurate and full information so they can vote.
Eric Holder, by the way, is currently arguing to have federal funding restored to ACORN. ‘Nuff said.
Go read the whole thing, now that a year has passed. If you stayed home and didn’t vote for anyone, maybe consider holding your nose and voting for the next McCain. If you voted for Obama, well, have you gotten what you were promised?