Still Waiting for that Hope and Change


As reason's Jacob Sullum, David Weigel, and Shikha Dalmia have all noted, President-elect Barack Obama's selection of Eric Holder as the next attorney general doesn't bode well for civil liberties or drug policy reform. Over at The Nation, John Nichols adds his voice to the chorus of disapproval:

Quick! Name the veteran Department of Justice insider who, shortly after the USA Patriot Act was signed into law and at a point when the Bush administration was proposing to further erode barriers to governmental abuses, argued that dissenters should not be tolerated?

Who invoked September 11, explicitly referencing "the World Trade Center aflame," in calling for the firing of any "petty bureaucrat" who might suggest that proper procedures be followed and that the separation of powers be respected?

John Ashcroft? No.

Alberto Gonzales? No.

It was Eric Holder, the man who has reportedly been selected by President-elect Barack Obama to serve as the next Attorney General of the United States.

Whole thing here.

NEXT: Thomas Szasz To Run Department of Health and Human Services

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  1. Need more be said? This guy is a socialist, no a socialist would be better he is a fascist! He is the one that should not be tolerated! he is the one who should be tried for treason for harming this great nation him and the rest o washington socialists and fascistrs!

  2. The guy isn’t even in office, yet, and I’m already hoping for change. Truly, an inspiration!

  3. If you are surprised, much less shocked, at Obama’s personnel selections you are stupid.
    Good luck on your “tax cut”, “green job” and
    “humbler foreign policy”.

    I predict “Bush nostalgia”.

    1. I called it earlier than this!

  4. Well call me a bitter baby, and slap me silly. GOod thing i wasted my vote on Barr.

  5. Wait a minute, you mean you really thought that somehow evil government was going to get a teeny-weeny bit better under Obama? Under Bob Vomit-Face Barr maybe, but Obama? Get the fuck outta here. You know Obama is a big government statist who’s going to appoint evil crypto-commie secretaries to enslave us and undergorund tailors to start making the Mao suits we’ll al be forced to wear on our visits to state-controled doctors. Why report on all this as though it’s real-world politics. This is horror comic shit! Get with the program!

  6. Told you so.

  7. President-elect Barack Obama’s selection of Eric Holder as the next attorney general doesn’t bode well for civil liberties or drug policy reform.

    If anyone was actually stupid enough to vote for Obama with the expectation that they’d be seeing any improvement it those regards, they ought to have their right to vote revoked due to being demonstrably mentally incapacitated. What did you seriously expect?

  8. Before the election all the libertarian pundits were proclaiming their love for Obama. Oh how fickle is thy infatuation!

  9. I do not think anyone was under the delusion of a more free land, with sweeping public changes. i think the ones who voted for him expected it to be a litttle better than bush, since worse is socialism and fascism

  10. Before the election all the libertarian pundits were proclaiming their love for Obama. Oh how fickle is thy infatuation!

    You’re telling me. The poor fucker hasn’t even taken office yet, and they’re already on him like a biker gang on a teenage prostitute. I don’t much care for the guy either, but damn!

  11. We’ve got stacks and stacks of the hottest tracks on wax, and we’re going to pump the wattage into your cottage. And now once again, by popular demand we’re playing the one song as big as king kong all day, here’s the truth Ruth, the real deal Emma Peel, and the fact Jack

    *synthetic intro*
    We’ll be fighting in the streets
    With our children at our feet
    And the morals that they worship will be gone
    And the men who spurred us on
    Sit in judgement of all wrong
    They decide and the shotgun sings the song

  12. This isn’t “turning on” Obama. I’m just noting that he’s confirming my low expectations for the man before he’s even in office. President-Elect Bush showed more independence from his party than Obama is demonstrating. Not a good sign.

  13. oh, of course, I see why Barr had to be so vociferously opposed, because just look at great Obama is turning out.

  14. I predict “Bush nostalgia”.

    You’re delusional.

    Unless one waxes nostalgic for TWO market meltdowns (2001-03 and 2007-08), 4200 soldiers who died for a wrong-headed “crusade” that established the new Caliphate, Bush personally shitting on the Constitution, massive new debts and taxes to be, and Bush himself personally shitting all over the Constitution….

    Yeah – one might miss that all right.

    1. shriek’s a troll so no gloating here.

  15. i think the ones who voted for him expected it to be a litttle better than bush

    Big cluestick time: BUSH WASN’T EVEN ON THE BALLOT!

    We can argue all day whether McCain was the greater or lesser evil, but won’t change the fact that Obama is still one of those two evils. I can understand holding your nose while pulling the Big O lever [sic], but the gleeful way in which many libertarians supported him and wrote glowing odes to him was sickening. Even Richard Sheldon was gasming like a schoolgirl at a Clay Aiken concert.

  16. I voted for the guy, I’ve elucidated why in other posts but recovery of my civil liberties is not and was not a motivational factor at all in voting for the dude.

    However, you guys don’t get it about our soon-to-be-new AG, he’s black! He “transcends” the racial divide and will make everyone feel warm and fuzzy about having a black AG.

    Now when the Feds lock up a brother twenty years in the can for having enough coke to get three people high, he can know that the Man who threw him in the can isn’t a white guy.

    I hate to say it, but getting a black guy to be the AG and therefore help perpetuate the most racially discriminatory and repressive institution in the USA (the War on Drugs and the Federal Prison System) redefines the slur “house negro.” How’s it going Uncle Obama?

  17. oh, I get it – you’re short the market, a Muslim supremacist, hate Locke/American liberalism, and wish for economic meltdown…


  18. shrike,

    I don’t blame Bush for the economy any more than I credit Clinton for the economy in the 90s. However, what I suspect will happen is that Obama will be marginally better than Bush on some fronts and at least marginally worse on others. I’m very concerned about the economic impact of giving ponies to everyone or in continuing the Bush/Congressional attempt to “solve” the economic downturn.

    One important thing to keep in mind. Presidents rarely give back power that their predecessors and/or a wussy Congress have acquired for the presidency. Like it or not, Obama will stand on Bush’s shoulders.

  19. PL – I am worried about the destruction of our currency and the loss of our AAA debt rating.

    Clinton ran a budget surplus during good times with an assist from a GOP House. We are insolvent now – the cause of this current crisis.

    Our October deficit hit $1 trillion.

    We’re fucked – and I don’t care about Obama’s “promises” for healthcare. It was deliberate from the “deficits don’t matter” party.

    The markets don’t lie – and they say disaster is on the horizon.


  20. If we lose our AAA debt rating maybe we can drown the government in the bath tub.

    1. That’s me.I’m only SIV part-time.

  21. Don’t blame me, I didn’t vote for him.

  22. What’s funny is that if the kids would stop meddling in the economy, I think we would endure a relatively deep, but manageable, 18-month recession with a strong recovery at the end. Now, however, thanks to the stupid remarks by Treasury, the President, and many members of Congress, we’re scrambling around doing all sorts of things to avoid something “worse than the Depression.” Are these people totally stupid? We’re not even up to “worse than the 70s”. Egad.

  23. If we lose our AAA debt rating maybe we can drown the government in the bath tub.

    Seriously Andrea/Grover, you crazy bitch, I think this was the sinister plan all along.

    Kill the government!

    And it did not come from the Bill Ayers types – it comes from the Cheney/Norquist/Coburn types.

  24. I predict government meddling will make this down turn worse than “the Panic of 1873”.

    1. Still waitin’ Hope I is WRONG on this one but I’m optimistic in my predicitions.

  25. Hey, “Panic in Detroit”! Bowie is friggin’ precognitive!

  26. We’re not even up to “worse than the 70s”.

    We will be.




  27. Of course those aren’t going to change. In fact, they’re two of the Top Ten Things That Won’t Change Under Obama.

  28. McCain would have been worse.

  29. you know, Jack, you’re probably right. it’d be interesting to see the bed wetting hysteria by the other side when GWB was elected compared with now.

    how much of this is hopeful projection so those that had the slightest bit of support for GWB could save face?

  30. (crap – sorry for double)

    and TAO – Barr? the one who didn’t want wiccan symbols in arlington?

  31. Clinton ran a budget surplus during good times with an assist from a GOP House.

    Wasn’t this actually just a projected surplus?

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