Obama complaining about our Constitution:
We really should be worried about what Obama has planned for our "Negative Liberties." I sincerely hope this statement captures the attention it deserves. It is very convenient for Obama that the term "negative liberties" is an accurate one. But his choice of words, taken in the entire context, is very telling.
For most people, including those listening to that broadcast, the word NEGATIVE is synonymous with BAD. Obama knows this. If Obama knows anything, he knows how to choose words carefully. Furthermore, Obama is a constitutional scholar; if he wanted to make the Constitution and its "negative liberties" sound like the best thing since chicken noodle soup he would have chosen different words.
For some important insights, take a look (online) at the book "Negative Liberties" by Cyrus R. K. Patell. (This book, perhaps coincidentally, was released three months before Obama made his comments.) Here's a synopsis:
Patell unmasks the ways in which contemporary U.S. culture has not fully shed the oppressive patterns of reasoning handed down by the slaveholding culture from which American individualism emerged.
Do you think Patell admires the negative liberties of the U.S. Constitution? Do Patell and Obama have similar viewpoints? Wouldn't it be nice if someone had the courage to ask Obama about this and insist on a straight answer? Wouldn't it be nice if more voters actually cared?
More stuff on this topic:
Negative Liberties and Obama Newspeak (fresh: 10.29.08)
A President Who Won't Uphold the Constitution? (fresh: 10.29.08)
"Negative Liberties" Review: Patell unmasks the ways in which contemporary U.S. culture has not fully shed the oppressive patterns of reasoning handed down by the slaveholding culture from which American individualism emerged.
Unfortunately, Obama did not prove us wrong.