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article imageOp-Ed: False hope, Obama and smog

By Lynn Herrmann     Sep 3, 2011 in Politics
Washington - In an astounding political blunder solidifying his place in US history as a one-termer, Barack Obama announced Friday proposed restrictions on smog and the health of Americans are not as important as corporate polluters and bickering Republicans.
With Obama’s feet stuck in cement and his head in a quagmire, he announced on Friday “regulatory burdens and regulatory uncertainty” helped him in ordering the EPA to forget about proposed regulations on smog in the US.
Insulting Americans’ intelligence, some of them, anyhow, the president added: “I will continue to stand with the hardworking men and women at the EPA as they strive every day to hold polluters accountable and protect our families from harmful pollution,” Environment News Service reports.
In a scathing statement over Obama’s announcement, and deservedly so, Friends of the Earth’s managing director, David Hirsch said the president has trashed fundamental health protection for Americans, calling the decision unacceptable. “Adding insult to injury, President Obama claimed that asking corporations to act responsibly is too much of a ‘burden’ for them, ignoring the fact that studies show responsible environmental protections spur investment in clean technology and create jobs.”
Hirsch also noted another ongoing crisis in America, a complete lack of leadership. “Americans are crying out for leadership, instead we have a president taking his cues from Eric Cantor. To call this discouraging is an understatement,” he added.
Even more succinct, Frank O’Donnell, head of Clean Air Watch called Obama’s move “political cowardice” in an email, The Hill notes.
New jobs numbers released by the government on Friday shine a bright light on that failed leadership, showing the economy is stagnant, flat, done, dead in the water. This comes as no surprise to working class and unemployed Americans.
No one ever asks Republicans, busy pissing and moaning about every move made by Democrats as job killers, why they are never able to come up with their own plan to bring US jobs to life. Instead, their focus is on big business remaining on life support by tax payers.
From the office of Obama’s favorite golfing buddy, House Speaker John Boehner, comes this. “This is certainly a good first step, and we’re glad that the White House responded to the Speaker’s letter and recognized the job-killing impact of this particular regulation,” said Boehner spokesman Michael Steel, according to The Hill. To borrow the catch-all of another great American, you betcha. Who else would the president respond to?
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), had recently provided a 10-point regulation memo for the GOP’s autumn agenda. The EPA regulation was among them. How about a fricking regulation on Republicans? And Democrats, for that matter, starting with Obama.
Failing to act with a sense of urgency required of such a critical situation, let’s forget decency, unless you’re on the other side of the aisle, where America’s first black president has spent so much of his time since swearing he would uphold the Constitution of the US (didn’t he?), barackstar has failed to deliver any action which might possibly be seen as a good move.
As The Nation’s John Nichols wrote this week, Obama ought not be peddling false hope.
Unless a Democrat with backbone rises up to challenge Obama for his office, we’re left with that false hope, or even falser hope in the form of Rick Perry.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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