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Thread: How President Obama Can Keep His Campaign Promises: From JFK, with Hope

  1. #1

    Default How President Obama Can Keep His Campaign Promises: From JFK, with Hope

    In the immediate post-election period, journalist, bloggers, politicians,and pundits have offered speculations on how -- and even if -- President Barack Obama will keep his campaign promises.

    None, to my knowledge, have referenced the manner in which John F. Kennedy set out to acknowledge and keep the promises he made during the presidential campaign of 1960.

    In his essay The 81 Promises: Contexts of the Crime, George Michael Evica chronicled how President-elect Kennedy " ... almost immediately [ordered his campaign staff] to [check] every statement and speech he had made during his run for the office. By December, 1960, the staff established that [JFK] had made a total of 81 specific promises."

    A reading of Professor Evica's analysis may be of significant value to President-elect Obama. I am pleased to post a portion of its introduction on the Deep Politics Forum.

    Richard Goodwin, a member of the [Kennedy] transition team given the job of making sense of Kennedy's 81 promises, received his assignment: " ... to help set up a series of task forces, committees of experts on a wide range of issues ... to make policy recommendations to the new president."

    The 81 promises ... were included in the task force agenda. No fewer than twelve, possibly as many as fourteen, policy groups were established to examine the 81 promises, to distill their essence, and to report to the president-elect.

    The task forces (apparently one of the groups was made up of a single member, but the others had memberships ranging from six to twenty-four) deliberated, then drafted and completed their reports. Those task force documents were then presented to John F. Kennedy (and subsequently published in 1961).

    I [Evica] have found the printed versions of eleven of the reports of the task forces; if at least one other report was developed, as I believe it was, it so far is missing. Ironically, the description of that task force's job to recommend the Latin American policy of the future JFK administration (its importance underscored during JFK's one thousand days by the birth of the Alliance for Progress, developments in Cuba, the Bay of Pigs failure, and the Cuban Missile Crisis) was recollected by the key person who helped organize the task forces, and in particular, to organize and implement the Latin American task force to which he finally attached himself: Richard Goodwin.

    He wrote that " ... members of the [Latin American] task force ... [for example] went on to serve in responsible positions as ambassadors, administrators, even assistant secretaries ... "

    The recommendations and goals set by the task force reports can only be briefly summarized here, but the impact, first of the 81 promises during JFK's successful campaign, followed by the dozen task force reports in 1961, was stunning. Not since FDR did a president promise so much with so much determination and the support of so much impressive expertise. The structure of power and profit: banking, covert intelligence, the mega-corporations, the military, the arch-conservative Congress, and theh power structure's facilitators in corrupt labor, organized crime, and corrupt law enforcement, could only register grumbling complaint.


    Shortly before his passing, Professor Evica promised to expand his essay into a more detailed and significantly lengthier document, Beyond the 81 Promises. I have located his research materials and notes, and I shall endeavor to complete the project for publication.

    For a comprehensive list of Obama's promises see:

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/campa...ises_obama.htm


    For a representative sampling of speculations on how Obama might -- or might not -- keep his promises, see:

    "Obama has promises to keep, but which ones first?"
    Ohio.com
    http://www.ohio.com/news/nation/34162789.html


    "Obama's Campaign Promises Could Become a Burden in His Presidency"
    http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/11...bama-promises/


    "Can Obama Keep His Campaign Promises?"
    http://video.aol.com/video-detail/ca...id=VIDLRVNWS05

  2. #2
    Mark Stapleton Guest

    Default

    Thanks for that, Charles. GME was certainly a tireless researcher.

    That's an incredible list of undertakings made by Barack Obama. Some could be considered a trifle conflicting, like his pledge to increase regulation of the financial industry on the one hand, and to advocate the free market on the other.

    What Aussie politicians tend to do in order to justify junking their pre-election promises is feign shock and dismay at the state of the economy after their first briefings with Treasury. "We never knew it was this bad". "I'm shocked. This changes everything".

    It's become a highly amusing ritual here.

    In Obama's case, however, it may actually be a legitimate excuse.

  3. #3

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    I believe Obama will deepen the horrendous debt immediately, but for a pure purpose: to create jobs that will rebuild our infrastructure. I hope he has the good sense to go after the lying bankers who threatened martial law if the bailout did not happen. As they are STILL not making loans. This is tantamount to fraud.
    Also on MY wish list is an Attorney General who will have the guts to follow-up on the mandate of HSCA. Investigate and solve the JFK assassination. Actually it IS "solved"; the media just needs to report this. So a CIA director who reverses the 1947 theft of our press and instead encourages Truthful reporting on Deep political events would....be wonderful, but could easily be a JFK re-run. So, in terms of what promises he made and what he can actually keep, he will walk a very frightening tightrope.
    Dawn

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    Attorney General contender carries 9/11 related baggage*
    Peter Lance
    Published: Tuesday November 11, 2008

    /
    Monday’s New York Times reported that former Deputy A.G. and 9/11
    Commissioner Jamie Gorelick was a candidate for Attorney General in
    the new Obama Administration. Five-time Emmy winning investigative
    reporter Peter Lance details a shocking, but little known story
    about Gorelick involving the loss of a key al Qaeda operative. This
    is an excerpt from his 2006 HarperCollins book TRIPLE CROSS soon to
    be published in trade paperback./


    http://rawstory.com/news/2008/A_poss..._911_1111.html

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack White View Post
    Attorney General contender carries 9/11 related baggage*
    Peter Lance
    Published: Tuesday November 11, 2008

    /
    Monday’s New York Times reported that former Deputy A.G. and 9/11
    Commissioner Jamie Gorelick was a candidate for Attorney General in
    the new Obama Administration. Five-time Emmy winning investigative
    reporter Peter Lance details a shocking, but little known story
    about Gorelick involving the loss of a key al Qaeda operative. This
    is an excerpt from his 2006 HarperCollins book TRIPLE CROSS soon to
    be published in trade paperback./


    http://rawstory.com/news/2008/A_poss..._911_1111.html
    Important piece and piece of information. Unless 'they' [the Administration officials] start to see the light, it seems we'll get the more progressive [sic] bunch of the usual criminals and co-conspirators within the Beltway. So much for Election Night eurphoria - all gone.

    As an aside, I'd suggest persons interested in 911 read Lance's books. He does good research - even if he sometimes reaches less Deep Political conspiratorial notions than I'd advocate - his research stands up despite this and can be used by us all.
    Last edited by Peter Lemkin; 11-12-2008 at 09:47 AM.

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