Friedersdorf on Lessig on Obama

I just finished, and enjoyed, Lawrence Lessig’s Republic, Lost. Conor Friedersdorf writes about one of Lessig’s most-compelling arguments: That Obama betrayed his, and other supporters’, trust, not by being too conservative, or being too liberal, but by being too conventional: The Liberal Critique of Obama: Judging the President by His Own Standards.

22 Responses to “Friedersdorf on Lessig on Obama”

  1. knarlyknight Says:

    So if Obama remained true to his rhetoric about changing how Washington works, he’d be in front of the OWS movement, growing his base and enjoying enormous popularity.

    Instead, he urges calm in the OWS movement while entertaining lobbyists and banging war drums against oil endowed countries that do not kowtow to America, and his following splinters.

    No surprises there.

  2. shcb Says:

    I’m shocked that you guys thought it would be any different. What else had Obama done? He worked the Chicago system as it had been done for generations, he was nondescript in the Senate, what made you think he was going to be different? Even if he really, really wanted to change the system (provided that is a good idea) he isn’t king, only president.

  3. NorthernLite Says:

    shcb, I would contend that there would be no requirement for environmental protection lobbyists. They only exist to counter the environmental destruction lobbyists. My municipality doesn’t provide me with clean and safe drinking water because someone lobbied them to – they do it because that’s the right and smart thing to do.

    As for NORML, I could care less. I only support the legalization of cannibas if it remains unrelgulated and treated like every other herb – i.e. I can grow it myself.

    I do not want corporations or the “market” to determine the price of weed. It’s been the same price for at least 20 years, actually the price has gone down a little. Imagine if Wall St and the market determined the price…

    No thanks.

  4. shcb Says:

    But if there were no environmental destruction lobbyists what would balance the economic destruction lobbyists?

    Your municipality was probably forced to upgrade it’s water treatment system because a lobbyists for an evil water treatment equipment mega corporation convinced the state or federal representatives that there was a dire need to stiffen the water standards because a study done by a university that was represented by the same lobbyist. Now this study showed that without a doubt the water contains ___ and ___. It is almost certain that children under the age of ___ are at increased risk of contracting ___. And if it’s for the children…

    Now the city had to buy better equipment so the lobbyist for the teacher’s union had to make a deal with the congressmen so they cold get more money leaving the lobbyist for the new earth friendly eco park (a non profit) without enough money. Damn, hate I when that happens.

    I have a friend that has made a great career teaching kids at the university level how to make great career running nonprofits! And guess what, they have lobbyists. He wrote a great article a while back discussing what to call non profits? not for profits? charity? I’m guessing 899 words. He didn’t see the humor when I chided him for trying to find a word that made begging more palatable.

  5. Smith Says:

    “I only support the legalization of cannibas if it remains unrelgulated” “I do not want corporations or the “market” to determine the price of weed.”

    Are these supposed to correlated? Lack of government regulation is not sufficient to prevent the corporatization of marijuana in a legal environment. There will be plenty of people who have no interest in growing their own weed. Those individual will instead choose to purchase their supply. Inevitably, the will be so company that will perfect methods to produce a low quality product on a large scale at a low price. Assuming legal weed is consumed in a manner similar to alcohol, there will be a large body of consumers who do not care about quality and just want to consume. There are plenty of good microbrews on the market, and if you are willing to put forth the effort, you can brew your own. This hasn’t stopped pisswater from large distributors from dominating the market. I am betting the average consumer is not going to want to seek out the guy with a fancy grow lab in his basement. Most people will probably just buy whatever prepackaged joints are available at the gas station on the way home.

    I do not smoke, so perhaps I am underestimating people’s enthusiasm for top notch weed. I am basing this I my experiences as someone who gives a shit about the quality of beer I consume. I suspect there will be weed snobs, just like their are beer, wine, etc. snobs. But the average consumer is just going to buy “Bud”weiser.

    Oh, and shcb has clearly given up on making real arguments and is just dealing in semantic poisoning. It is sad when the most interesting thing to discuss in a comment thread is some anti-corporate utopian vision of a deregulated (free) weed market that is somehow not driven by free market principles.

  6. shcb Says:

    That is the purpose of the little smiley face

  7. knarlyknight Says:

    So THAT was the purpose of the smiley face! I just thought a perma-grin fit the subject matter…
    I’d argue that the price of weed is almost purely determined by the market now. Black market, but all the same… it’s completely unregulated so there is little restriction on who can suppply (except for “rules” imposed by large production gangs, according to what the police say / the violence and threat of incarceration are just part of the costs of doing business; although I’ve never seen any evidince of interference by gangs.) And suppliers can charge whatever they want up to whatever the customer will pay. Can’t get much more market based than that. Note that the conservatives in Canada are dramatically raising the “costs” by implementing heavy incarceration penalties even for small home growers.

  8. knarlyknight Says:

    so they say… ;-)

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