The Democracy Journal
Search Site
Get Involved
This form does not yet contain any fields.
    Support the PJRC

    Support the PJRC for continued original analysis on ending the wars, funding domestic priorities and preserving civil liberties.

    Make a contribution to benefit the PJRC now! 

    Conferences & Events

    Tom Hayden speaks in Port Huron, MI, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Port Huron Statement.

    Invite Tom Hayden to speak in your town! 



    Follow Tom


    Contact Us
    This form does not yet contain any fields.

      Obama Press Secretary Flips Out

      Robert Gibbs may have been speaking for the president when he ripped into “the professional left” last week for not giving enough support for Obama’s achievements.

      But Gibbs offered no definition of this “professional left”, and then went loopy, saying they all should be drug-tested, will only be satisfied “when we have Canadian health care and we’ve eliminated the Pentagon,” and still wouldn’t be content with Dennis Kucinich as president. Seriously?

      Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) can probably take some credit for its slogan “Health Care/Not Warfare” driving Gibbs over the edge.

      Gibbs takes plenty of abuse on his job, but that’s what he’s paid to absorb. But when he throws over-the-top diatribes against an imagined professional left it may be a sign of his own difficulty in swallowing his administration’s compromises.

      Maureen Down thinks Gibbs should be yanked. Will he now demand she be drug-tested?  I personally think Dowd goes too far. A little rehab should do the job. Maybe Gibbs should be required to attend a PDA meeting. Or Code Pink. Somehow Gibbs needs to recover his professionalism.

      Democrats’ hopes for this November, and for Obama’s re-election in 2012, will be imperiled if their campaigns conjure, inflate and insult a Crazy Left. Virtually all progressives can suffer and bear compromise after fighting the good fight. In the heat of the moment, they sometimes may go too far in raging at the White House. But if abused enough and repeatedly written off or taken for granted, it is certain that many of them will not volunteer and will not vote.

      PrintView Printer Friendly Version

      EmailEmail Article to Friend

      Reader Comments (9)

      how soon he forgets--there is no professional left, but there at least was a somewhat organized left who got his President into the White House, and you're right, they won't be there a second time--Gibbs needs to know this--Move On has caved alot, but could Credo Mobile, who often mobilize alot of people, call Gibbs out on this with an online petition--he should n't get away this publicly--or FAIR--what an outrage--thanks for putting it out there

      August 19, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterruth strauss

      Whatever the "Professional Left" is, Mr. Gibbs, and I suspect, Mr. Obama, may need to re-think their strategy. Obama won by only 23,000 votes in Indiana. The reason he won is that dedicated Progressives manned the campaign offices, got people registered to vote, and took them to the polls. I was one of the campaign workers. I would hardly call myself the "Professional Left." Instead, I believed in the campaign promises of Hope and Change. I am a 65 yr. old grandmother of 6 and a retired R.N. I am also a committed environmentalist, and have watched in horror as Obama has thumbed his nose at us time and again. Salazar is a train wreck. The EPA is not much better. The independent voters are angry because of the economy, but also because their health insurance rates, co-pays, and deductibles have risen drastically without a public option. Progressives are angry, too. The list of disappointments is long. Gibbs hasn't helped with his finger-pointing and insulting language. If Obama loses in 2012, he has NO ONE to blame but himself. I may have to hold my nose and vote for him; but I will not be working for him. Neither will a lot of other people who have been ignored and demeaned by an Administration that has taken their efforts for granted and snubbed their concerns. Gibbs might do well to read this and ponder it.

      August 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPatricia Chang

      to Ms. Chang--BEAUTIFULLY SAID AND SO ACCURATE AND ARTICULATE !!! -- I wasn't even FOR Obama due to his staNe on the war BUT I KNEW I couldn't abide McCain (i.e. more Bush)--I TOO therefore, worked phones before election night, and then on election night, was a poll monitor in a town several miles from where I live AND was a poll "closer" to make sure all the ballots weren't tampered with etc, to the point where he had already won the election by the time I got out to my car--and you are so right, I won't be around for that in 2012, and just as you said, alot of others won't either--I'm not a "professional Lefty" -- I'm a dedicated, moral, fight- the-good-fight person, and I demonstrated in the 60's in civil rights marches as a white woman so Obama could be where he is today...(why is it all the press secretaries are such jackasses--I can't remember a good one yet) YOU ARE SO RIGHT ABOUT ALL THE TRANSGRESSIONS YOU ENUMERATED SO WELL ABOUT HIS APPOINTMENTS of people who are downright antithetical to what most of us who supported him stand for. THANKS SO MUCH FOR A BRILLIANT HEART-FELT COMMENT

      I would like to say that I am in total agreement with Maureen Down. Gibbs should be yanked. There is far too much drug testing in this country already! After those incredibly stupid and ridiculous statements that he made about the "professional left" it is Mr. Gibbs is who should be pissing into the cup! I doubt that very much rehab would "fix" what is wrong with this man. He has shown that he is a very poor choice for this position!
      Apparently he is also a big fan of drug testing. I am not. I am very offended by his remarks and I will never forgive him ever for this "transgression". I suspect that he would consider me to be a member of the "professional left". Apparently Mr. Gibbs believes that if we disagree with the policies of the White House that we must be under the influence of some intoxicating substance. THIS BELIEF IS SO INCREDIBLY OFFENSIVE!!! MR. GIBBS SHOULD BE REPLACED!

      August 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWilliam Nusbaum

      Why should Gibbs recover his professionalism when there is so few one there to recognize it ? Sincerely,

      August 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRachel M Hervey PHN

      The question is not "Will I vote for Obama again?" but "Will I bother to vote again?" Obama seemed like the last, best hope we had for President. Kucinich would no doubt be more in sync with my poltical positions, but there was no way he was going to be the viable candidate, let alone get elected. So, I not only voted for Obama, but campaigned hard for him. To say I'm disapointed in him is true, but I'm more than disillusioned with the system we call a Democracy. When will I ever learn? As I've just had my 70th Birthday, I don't have much more time to learni.

      August 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBenda Reeber

      i am so disappointed in Obama's performance as president. I trusted his campaign promises and campaigned hard for him I thought he was a visionary who had the courage to step outside the political system and lead us to a brave new world. Millions of us would follow him. lI donated time and money throughout his campaign, but have not sent a dime since. Sad.

      August 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJan Carroll

      In my view, Gibbs is another mouthpiece expressing what the Administration really thinks about resistance, disagreement and criticism. The people have pushed Obama and his administration. To little avail. We have not brought the "system" to a halt, but the people have pushed and pushed and pushed and screamed and written and demonstrated, and voted. What did we get? More and expanding war, continuation of privatizing US conquests, an expanding mercenary army, privatized health care under the direct control of the insurance companies, a bailed out Wall St., General Motors, and the Banks, massive deficits and horrendous current and future debt, barely anything for workers expect a little extra unemployment, and repeated cave ins by the Democrats in Congress to Republican demands and threats.

      So I conclude that Obama is not running things, but is a leader caught in huge complex web of a US directed imperial system that he actually believes in, but perhaps wants to behave differently. Obama is captive, forced to maintain the image of the leader, but unable or unwilling to alter the reality on the ground of US global ambitions and indeed, the plans of the Project for a New American Century laid out by Cheney et al.

      There is no "professional left", that is effectively mobilizing the people to challenge both the Right and the Democrats. Yet!

      August 22, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDenis Mosgofian

      It is so mean of everyone to gang up on America’s self-professed agent of “change.” Give him credit! Obama did not start a war of aggression against Iran (though admittedly he continues, just like Bush, to threaten one because Iran refuses to accept the principle of an Israeli Mideast nuclear monopoly). Obama has, like Bush, poured money into Wall Street to help maintain our way of life (ah, sir, the way of life you are supposed to be maintaining is that of the American people, not Wall Street billionaires). Obama canceled the appalling phrase “war on terror,” though admittedly he continued the military adventure, moving from Iraq to Afghanistan. In contrast to Bush, who spoke only the language of force, Obama speaks the language of negotiation, though he has yet to offer Iranians, Palestinians, Somalis, Lebanese, or reform-minded Muslims in general a set of concessions that would tempt any patriot, and, by the way, he enthusiastically continues the fighting that occurred under that bad old war on terror. Oh yeah, and about Iraq, how many thousand U.S. mercenary troops outside of Congressional control will remain there after the so-called pullout of US forces? And as for the environment, under Obama’s watch the greatest disaster in known history occurred as a result of corporate refusal to follow the rules established to prevent just such horrors, so that now all seafood from the richest of all US fishing grounds is probably poisoned for the rest of our lifetimes, and there’s not a whisper of holding those responsible accountable. He trumped Katrina, so I guess that’s change…but not in the hoped-for direction. So, actually, Mr. Gibbs, yes, we loud-mouthed leftwing proponents of clean air, clean water, clean fish, employment, health care as a civil right, punishment of elite criminals, carbon tax, and a foreign policy based on compromise rather than violence would in fact be very, very happy to see Congrerssman Dennis Kucinich become president of the US.

      August 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWilliam deB. Mills
      Comments for this entry have been disabled. Additional comments may not be added to this entry at this time.