Obama addresses UN; we watch "Save the Green Planet"


spotted as I left MoMA yesterday afternoon: the Presidential truck speeding east on 53rd Street with the Obama party securely ensconced, heading back to the Waldorf from the David Letterman taping

At the UN climate summit today, Obama told the General Assembly that the U.S. is "determined to act" on climate change. Last night at home, in an unplanned salute to the summit, Barry and I watched "Save the Green Planet".

Right now I'm thinking that while we were enjoying that film we probably contributed as much toward toward averting the worst fate of the earth as anything promised by our President.

That just doesn't make me feel so good, so I hope I'm wrong.

We've been on a Korean film binge lately, all knockouts, and most by the director Bong Joon-ho. Although we were unprepared for the violence in Joon-Hwan Jang's hybrid comedy/drama/horror/sci-fi/thriller, we ended up watching most of the DVD's long list of extra features and I still have "Jigureul jikyeora!" rolling around inside my head.

Try "Old Boy" by Chan-wook Park. A film that had me wondering "what did I just see, that was crazy."
I will look up Bong Jooh-ho.
Obama is trying, look what he is up against, Channey is still rearing his head and preaching intolerance...

Thanks, Brian, for the film tip.

On your second comment, let me say that I believe Obama is a deeply conservative man; that does not necessarily describe his political posture, only his nature. Obama is a Centrist, and he would be properly described as such anywhere else in the modern world (where, unlike here, there actually are Leftists).

Unfortunately in the U.S. the adjective "Liberal" has become the equivalent of "Leftist". It is now an epithet, used mostly when the stronger language of "Socialist" or "Communist" might seem too inflammatory. And lately we've seen that the gentler designation, "Liberal", is fast disappearing.

Obama is hardly a Liberal. But for him to be a Centrist in a system where the Right, empowered and directed by the wealth of the giant corporations, dominates all political discourse and government, is to function as a reactionary, obstructing the freedom and the welfare of the people. But Obama is not even able to perform in this role as a Centrist, because his nature is fundamentally conservative. He's not about change.

We can have no hope in Obama.

Brian, I don't agree that Obama is trying. I don't see any signs of life in the man we had hoped would change things. He doesn't want change, and I've lost hope.

The first thing on Obama's agenda should have been the restoration of the Constitution which was violently put aside by the previous occupants of the White House. Instead it remains in ruins today, and he shows no sign of giving back the powers seized by Bush over the past eight years.

Remember Habeas Corpus? Magna Carta?

In fact, our new President tells us that we shouldn't look back, only go forward. Did we really expect him to give up the executive powers appropriated by his predecessor?

For me the surprise was that Obama doesn't even want to use the traditional and legitimate competence of his office to accomplish anything needed, good and constructive. I'm left wondering what he's expecting to do with his arsenal of unconstitutional powers.