Well-known leftists Oliver Stone and author Jeremy Scahill went against type Saturday, sharply criticizing President Obama for backtracking on civil liberties and foreign policy.
They also took MSNBC and host Bill Maher to task for acting as Obama’s champions.
While appearing on a panel discussing “Imperial Overreach and the National Security State” at the International Students for Liberty Conference in Washington, D.C., Stone castigated Obama for continuing the policies of his predecessor, according to videographer Ford Fischer’s You Tube video.
“The man stunned us with a lack of spine,” the director/filmmaker said. “He is a weak man.”
Obama sold out early on in his first campaign when he “took the private option over the public option,” according to Stone.
“Something happened because none of the things he promised . . . transparency, a government that would reconsider the war on terror and these programs . . . none of that happened, none of it.”
Stone sensed more trouble when the president starting choosing advisers.
Calling Robert Gates a criminal, he said, “It was very clear right away, when he picked Hillary Clinton and Robert Gates . . .”
“On everything he backed down,” Stone said. “I was stunned.”
Scahill, national security correspondent for The Nation magazine and author of “Blackwater” and “Dirty Wars,” agreed, taking apart the president’s apologists in the liberal media.
“MSNBC is like a DNC meet-up, while Fox News is just filled with conspiracies about this Muslim Manchurian candidate,” Scahill said, referring to Obama’s approval of the targeted assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki. “If you watch MSNBC, they have figured out every possible excuse for why al-Awlaki was killed. Perhaps it’s because Obama has convinced liberals he is fighting a clean war, or that Democrats have checked their conscience at the door of the Obama presidency.”
The international conference billed itself as “the premiere event for students dedicated to advancing liberty on campus” and cheered when Scahill explained his new media venture with National Security Agency leader Edward Snowden’s cohort, Glenn Greenwald.
“As journalists, we should have an adversarial stance towards the state,” Scahill said.
When an audience member asked Stone how he could condemn governmental overreach and support the abusive leftist regime of Hugo Chavez, the director of “JFK,” “Platoon” and “Wall Street” said the American press does not cover the Venezuelan administration with a balanced approach, and he’s comfortable with legal political opposition. He said he still believes the United States secretly and illegally undermines Latin American leaders.
The entire panel discussion from Ford Fischer’s You Tube channel:
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