Saturday, September 04, 2010


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Reader's feedback published on 04/09/2010
The Daily Star is pleased to provide a forum for debate on a range of subjects, from local cultural activities to international politics.
Dozens, sometimes even hundreds, of letters fall into the editor’s mailbox daily. In order to keep the letters timely, The Daily Star generally produces a special letters section. When the influx of letters is particularly large, extra space is made available accordingly.
If you would like to submit a letter for publication, please remember to include your full name (first and last) and address, including city. The Daily Star typically only publishes letters under 400 words, and these are subject to editing. The Daily Star will not acknowledge unsolicited submissions.

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Jamil K. Mroue
“Obama is facing grave risks”
August 28, 2010

US President Barack Obama is no exception. He knows God, although he does not place a high priority on his relationship with Him. It’s not that he considers it unimportant; it’s just that he considers politics one thing and his religious life quite another and he is often more motivated by practical considerations and influenced by his counselors than he is by God.
He is an idealist, and he has what many people consider worthy ideals and goals, but he is willing to compromise his principles to achieve them, and to abandon some if that will help him to reach others. He clearly sees that the American system has failed in some ways, and has fallen far short of where it should be in others, and he wants to shake things up and change things. Yet he has not fully realized how difficult it is to change the course in which the US is going, and how time-consuming it will be.
The US is a nation of 300 million and has gone far astray in many ways spiritually, morally, economically, socially, politically and cannot be changed as quickly. It is like a huge tanker that has tremendous momentum as it sails on, and is not easily swayed, even by one like Obama who considers himself the captain.
Also, Obama has many constraints that he is just beginning to realize. He is constrained by government bureaucracy and the way things are done. He is constrained by his parties’ policies and the fact that unpopular moves on his part affect tens of thousands of other Democrats. He is constrained by public opinion and what Americans will stand for.
Obama is constrained by what past US presidents have done and the ways they have acted, which have set the precedent for his own actions, whether he likes it or not. He is constrained by past actions by the American military and the military’s present position; even though he may not agree with these actions or positions, he cannot alienate the military. Obama faces numerous constraints, many things that weigh him down and that hinder his bringing about change, especially positive change.
Obama finds himself in a situation similar to that of former President Jimmy Carter, who also came into office an idealist promising real change, but in the end the constraints he faced as president made him both feeble and ineffective, and when these weights were lifted from him, he was able to fly and make great progress, as he has in the years since. It remains to be seen how Obama will do, and what choices and decisions he will make. He can accomplish much good and politicians do accomplish good.

Ted Rudow III, MA
Menlo Park, California, United States

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