Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who has covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

April 28, 2009


On his 100th day in office, Obama gets a 30% rating from our Obama meter, a figure that has been pretty consistent from the start.

His most successful areas are foreign policy outside of the war zones and the environment. His worst are freedom & justice, education, Afghanistan & Iraq and drug policy.

Among the major concerns that have arisen are these:

- An excess of troops in Iraq and minimal sign they are leaving soon.

- Plans for a level of involvement in Afghanistan equal to that of the U.S. in Vietnam in 1965.

- A vigorously pro-Wall Street economic policy and a stunning indifference to the problems of, and lack of programs for, its victims.

- A surprisingly vigorous anti-civil liberties bias and a refusal to face such issues as Bush war crimes, rampant illegal wiretapping and three decades of a failed drug war.

- A strong tendency towards technocratic authoritarianism as exemplified by the dangerous medical records act and proposed growing federal interference in local public education.

Obama is at present our most conservative Democratic president since Woodrow Wilson and there is, at present, no constituency putting sufficient pressure on him to be other than that.

Here are his ratings by topic:

76% Environment
60% Foreign policy (not including war zones)
49% General government
28% Fiscal policy
27% Health
0% Economic policy
0% Afghanistan & Iraq
0% Education
0% Freedom & Justice



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