Without comment or framing, let me pass along this video from the "Joe Mason for President" campaign, up recently on YouTube. I have no idea how "real" this effort is, and it sends some contradictory messages. For instance, its home site is "Vote Third Party," but the video announces itself as a challenge to Obama for the Democratic nomination.
Still, what makes this interesting is its distillation of the critique-from-the-left about the way Obama has presented himself, explained the nation's problems, and confronted his opponents. You get the gist of the complaint in the first 5 or 6 minutes, and the most biting indictment is between minutes 4 and 6.
The main complaint in this video is that Obama's "conciliatory" and "reasonable" approach, far from being wise and strategically far-seeing, has proven to be simply weak and vacillating. This is related to the "chess master, or pawn?" debate about Obama's strategy from earlier this summer.
To show that this remains a debate, as opposed to a settled conclusion, after the jump I offer a comparably strong indictment of the Republican opposition that so far has thwarted Obama more often than he has outmaneuvered them.
This essay is from Truthout today, and it is by a recently retired Congressional staffer named Mike Lofgren. Lofgren's name is barely known to the general public, but among people who have covered or worked in the national-security field, he is a familiar and highly esteemed figure. He spent 28 years as a Congressional staffer, mainly on budget matters, mainly in the defense-and-security realm, and mainly for Republican legislators.