Obama, a great man

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  • fretmeisterfretmeister Frets: 7373
    mellowsun said:
    The sad fact is that people vote against their interests and to make themselves poorer.  We've seen that with the Brexit referendum and now the US election.

    For example, a large chunk of America for unfathomable reasons do not want affordable universal healthcare.
    They want the Affordable Care Act. They don't want Obamacare. (Yes, I know)




    The govt is running like a well oiled Charlie Sheen.

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  • ChalkyChalky Frets: 3922
    p90fool said:
    Obama has his critics, and so does the system which prevented him being a great president by getting his own way.

    We now have cause to thank that system though, it'll rein in Trump's worst excesses.

    You can't have it both ways unfortunately.
    Nice bit of wisdom - you can't have a dictator as President, even if you like him and his ideas.

    @heartfeltdawn - you know as well as I do that the one man who is President has the job of working with the hundreds of men and women who have been elected representatives for their patch of the US.  Saying those elected hundreds are wrong and one man is right is exactly what the American system is intended to prevent - that is why even some Democrats have been critical of his second term of resorting to the 'pen' without consultation.

    @mellowsun said "For example, a large chunk of America for unfathomable reasons do not want affordable universal healthcare.". Unfathomable? Because a couple of hundred Americans think different to you their reasoning is unfathomable?!


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  • EvilmagsEvilmags Frets: 3784
    Lagely a failure. A peace  nobel who dropped more bombs than his four previous processor. Hype and image over substance. And he handed all that power he grabbed to Trump...
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  • mgawmgaw Frets: 1758
    Evilmags said:
    Lagely a failure. A peace  nobel who dropped more bombs than his four previous processor. Hype and image over substance. And he handed all that power he grabbed to Trump...
    couldn't agree more,
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  • BidleyBidley Frets: 1436
    I like him, and I could listen to him speak. I think what failings he's had will be obscured by Trump's reign, particularly as people seem to be overjoyed at how terrible he's doing so far.
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  • MotorhateMotorhate Frets: 221
    Evilmags said:
    Lagely a failure. A peace  nobel who dropped more bombs than his four previous processor. Hype and image over substance. And he handed all that power he grabbed to Trump...
    I tend to agree. He's not very popular in the USA for various reasons among large swathes of the population and is partly the reason that Trump got into power. His office handled the Syria and Libya debacles terribly and managed to strain relations with Russia to a new low in the process. Was advocating the overthrow of democratically elected governments and cried foul when reports came in of supposed "Russian hacking". Interfered in the EU referendum in this country too, because of course he knows what's best for all of us, and almost blackmailed the population to vote "Remain" with the threat we'd be at the back of the queue for any trade deals, like we'd be punished if we didn't do what he said.
    Charismatic and an elequant speaker yes but a good statesman and president? Not by a long chalk IMO.
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  • FretwiredFretwired Frets: 8595
    ICBM said:
    Not another birth certificate argument, please... Trump has only just admitted he was wrong in the first one!
    It's not - the idiots in the US were trying to block him from becoming president. UK rules are totally different - in any case you don't have to be British to be PM.
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  • Chalky said:

    @heartfeltdawn - you know as well as I do that the one man who is President has the job of working with the hundreds of men and women who have been elected representatives for their patch of the US.  Saying those elected hundreds are wrong and one man is right is exactly what the American system is intended to prevent - that is why even some Democrats have been critical of his second term of resorting to the 'pen' without consultation.
    That is what the system is meant to prevent. But that system also chronically hamstrung a man who won the election and popular vote. It's also the same system that ended up shutting down the federal government in 2013 thanks to Republican intransigence, a fact so undeniable that even Fox News polls blamed Republicans more than Obama. 

    And yes, hundreds can be wrong. Some of those elected hundreds are wrong in exactly the same way that I would say that MPs who voted for war in Iraq based on subservient bowing to party Whips rather than moral decision making were wrong. Allegiance to party policy above moral and ethical consideration can be dreadfully wrong.

    I don't consider Obama to be a great leader but that is true of the majority of leaders out there right now. We don't have great leaders about and the idea of a solitary individual being able to revitalise everything is bunkum. Obama came in at an incredibly difficult time: terrorism and financial collapse and a lot of internal pressures societally. It is unlikely that McCain or Romney would have done any better. 
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  • Motorhate said:
    Evilmags said:
    Lagely a failure. A peace  nobel who dropped more bombs than his four previous processor. Hype and image over substance. And he handed all that power he grabbed to Trump...
    I tend to agree. He's not very popular in the USA for various reasons among large swathes of the population and is partly the reason that Trump got into power. His office handled the Syria and Libya debacles terribly and managed to strain relations with Russia to a new low in the process. Was advocating the overthrow of democratically elected governments and cried foul when reports came in of supposed "Russian hacking". Interfered in the EU referendum in this country too, because of course he knows what's best for all of us, and almost blackmailed the population to vote "Remain" with the threat we'd be at the back of the queue for any trade deals, like we'd be punished if we didn't do what he said.
    Charismatic and an elequant speaker yes but a good statesman and president? Not by a long chalk IMO.

     I presume that you dislike foreign bodies getting involved in foreign elections and therefore damn Nigel Farage for his regular appearances with Donald Trump then. 
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 21004
    Fretwired said:
    ICBM said:
    Not another birth certificate argument, please... Trump has only just admitted he was wrong in the first one!
    It's not - the idiots in the US were trying to block him from becoming president. UK rules are totally different - in any case you don't have to be British to be PM.
    Sorry, I missed off the joke smiley ;).

    I agree that Obama has been a mixed success. His ideals ran ahead of the realities of what he ended up doing, both because he promised too much, and because others actively tried to frustrate him for no good reason. He also left some of the key foreign policy decisions to those who may not have been the right choices (yes, I do mean Hillary among others) and failed to take really decisive action when he could have on others.

    On balance I'd give him a positive report, but not quite as good a President as he should and possibly could have been.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • MotorhateMotorhate Frets: 221

     I presume that you dislike foreign bodies getting involved in foreign elections and therefore damn Nigel Farage for his regular appearances with Donald Trump then. 
    I couldn’t care less either way to be perfectly honest. I do find it funny when the leader of the free world who has been instrumental in destabilising the Middle-East and allowing ISIS to gain a foothold in the region too claims other people are interfering in elections.
    I don’t recall Farage dictating to the population of the USA how they should vote and giving thinly veiled threats if they voted otherwise. Personally I don’t know why Farage was over there anyway and couldn't give a monkey's. He holds no UK parliamentary seat and wasn’t even leading UKIP at the time of the referendum. Trump must have had his reasons, whatever they were. I doubt it was to influence the US population though.


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  • Motorhate said:
    I don’t recall Farage dictating to the population of the USA how they should vote and giving thinly veiled threats if they voted otherwise. Personally I don’t know why Farage was over there anyway and couldn't give a monkey's. He holds no UK parliamentary seat and wasn’t even leading UKIP at the time of the referendum. Trump must have had his reasons, whatever they were. I doubt it was to influence the US population though.

    Farage did indeed give his opinion several times and his history with the like of the Heritage Foundation is easily searchable. He was leader of UKIP during the referendum and didn't stand down until July 4th. 
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  • stickyfiddlestickyfiddle Frets: 5961
    Motorhate said:

     I presume that you dislike foreign bodies getting involved in foreign elections and therefore damn Nigel Farage for his regular appearances with Donald Trump then. 
    I couldn’t care less either way to be perfectly honest. I do find it funny when the leader of the free world who has been instrumental in destabilising the Middle-East and allowing ISIS to gain a foothold in the region too claims other people are interfering in elections.
    I don’t recall Farage dictating to the population of the USA how they should vote and giving thinly veiled threats if they voted otherwise. Personally I don’t know why Farage was over there anyway and couldn't give a monkey's. He holds no UK parliamentary seat and wasn’t even leading UKIP at the time of the referendum. Trump must have had his reasons, whatever they were. I doubt it was to influence the US population though.


    Cos the Middle East was just peachy up until 2007... :rolleyes:
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  • MotorhateMotorhate Frets: 221

    Farage did indeed give his opinion several times and his history with the like of the Heritage Foundation is easily searchable. He was leader of UKIP during the referendum and didn't stand down until July 4th. 
    He gave an opinion yes, which is pretty much what every media starlet did during the election. As I said in my earlier post, Obama basically tried blackmailing the British public to vote a certain way ...

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/apr/22/barack-obama-brexit-uk-back-of-queue-for-trade-talks

    Then he talks about interfering in elections.

    Cos the Middle East was just peachy up until 2007... :rolleyes:
    I never implied it wasn't. Under his watch though Libya went belly up, with the endorsement of mob rule disposing of Gaddaffi. Hardly an endorsement for the leader of the free world. The insistence of arming rebels allied to al-Qeda in Syria was an insult to every US serviceman and woman who lost their lives in Afghanistan and Iraq.

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  • HeartfeltdawnHeartfeltdawn Frets: 7221
    edited January 12
    Motorhate said:

    Farage did indeed give his opinion several times and his history with the like of the Heritage Foundation is easily searchable. He was leader of UKIP during the referendum and didn't stand down until July 4th. 
    He gave an opinion yes, which is pretty much what every media starlet did during the election. As I said in my earlier post, Obama basically tried blackmailing the British public to vote a certain way ...

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/apr/22/barack-obama-brexit-uk-back-of-queue-for-trade-talks

    Then he talks about interfering in elections. 


    Media starlet gave an opinion. But Farage is an MEP, not a member of fucking Steps. 

     Obama as elected leader on a state visit came and gave his opinion. Something elected leaders do. 

    Farage didn't like that and said he was interfering in a foreign election. 

    Post-Brexit, Farage went and spoke at the Heritage Foundation and then spoke at a Trump rally. Not as an elected leader representing his party, not as an MEP. As himself. Involved in a foreign election. 

    Quite simple really. 
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 21004
    stickyfiddle said:

    Cos the Middle East was just peachy up until 2007... :rolleyes:
    It certainly wasn't - but it was worse after the bungled half-hearted attempt to remove Gaddafi, the failed experiment of imposing democracy on Egypt, and supporting a rebellion against Assad despite Russian warnings that it would lead to civil war. Obama and Hillary had a direct role in all this, without which it's likely that there would be no Daesh.

    The very last thing the region needs is any more interference from the US trying to achieve regime change. If there is anything useful the outside world can do it's to keep out and put pressure on the various regional powers to *stop* the wars, not encourage new ones. I'm sure you can see that just as well from where you are!
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • JezWyndJezWynd Frets: 899
    ICBM said:
    stickyfiddle said:

    Cos the Middle East was just peachy up until 2007... :rolleyes:

    The very last thing the region needs is any more interference from the US trying to achieve regime change. If there is anything useful the outside world can do it's to keep out and put pressure on the various regional powers to *stop* the wars, not encourage new ones. I'm sure you can see that just as well from where you are!
    Agree. If there's any silver lining to Trump, it's his resolve to stay out of foreign affairs that don't concern him (though his willingness to bait the Chinese is a bit worrying).
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  • FretwiredFretwired Frets: 8595
    Motorhate said:
    He gave an opinion yes, which is pretty much what every media starlet did during the election. As I said in my earlier post, Obama basically tried blackmailing the British public to vote a certain way ...

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/apr/22/barack-obama-brexit-uk-back-of-queue-for-trade-talks


    No he didn't. David Cameron called in a favour to keep project fear on track. Had Cameron not asked (or begged) Obama would have said nothing.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/eu-referendum-iain-duncan-smith-claims-david-cameron-begged-barack-obama-to-help-him-bully-britain-a6990711.html

    With great power comes a large electricity bill
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  • MotorhateMotorhate Frets: 221

    Media starlet gave an opinion. But Farage is an MEP, not a member of fucking Steps. 

    As you've already claimed Farage wasn't UKIP leader during the referendum, I'm just going to smirk at you. 

    No. I will explain. Obama as elected leader on a state visit came and gave his opinion. Something elected leaders do. 

    Farage didn't like that and said he was interfering in a foreign election. 

    Post-Brexit, Farage went and spoke at the Heritage Foundation and then spoke at a Trump rally. Not as an elected leader representing his party, not as an MEP. As himself. Involved in a foreign election. 

    Quite simple really. 
    Gold star for pointing out that Farage resigned as leader of UKIP (who weren't involved in the "Leave" campaign) four days after the referendum. Smirk all you like. I feel totally humiliated and stupid now.

    Farage is an MEP yes. Well done for spotting that. I’d wager nobody in the USA had ever heard of him before Trump brought him over so he’s hardly in a position to influence the US electorate. Obama did not simply "give an opinion". He stated that the FACT that “UK would be at the back of the queue if they voted for Brexit”. Basically blackmailing the UK electorate. If that isn’t influencing a vote then I don’t know what is.
    Aside from the above, for his interference in Middle-Eastern politics and the mess his cabinet left behind, for him to cry foul about Russia hacking emails (whether they did or didn’t is up for debate) on a system that was mis-used by one of the candidates smacks of hypocrisy IMO.

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  • CirrusCirrus Frets: 2491
    I think it's interesting that deciding how good or bad Obama is can't be rationalised without somehow judging him, rightly or wrongly, for the state of the middle east.

    Trying to take in his impact on the world as a whole turns into a massively complicated discussion full of ifs, buts, theories and conjecture about massive geopolitical issues... seems to me it becomes impossible, and it's not fair on anyone to say middle east = bad means Obama = bad.

    My take on it is that when I have seen him speak, and from the issues he campaigned on and seemed passionate about in office, he seems like a fundamentally decent person, with clear and eloquently expressed views that strike me as intelligent and balanced.

    So, on a personal level, I like him.

    That the middle east is in turmoil is terrible, and there's plenty of blame to go around. However I don't think it's fair to put too much of the burden on Obama's shoulders, because the factors that lead to today's problems are centuries in the making. I'm not sure what Obama could have done differently that would have resulted in appreciable less suffering.

    I don't think he could have stopped the rise of ISIS, and I don't think he should be blamed that idiots in the middle east are killing each other and innocent people. That's on them. The middle east is the way it is because of the combined choices of millions of people. I don't think he could have stopped civil war in Libya or Syria, and all we can do is speculate what alternate, delicate courses might have been tried. Don't get me wrong, I don't think he can be free of all blame. I think he has underestimated Putin for example with regard to the Ukraine crisis, but I believe that the decisions he's made on the whole have been the ones he thought were the best at the time given the available information, even if the choice was between the lesser of evils.

    It's all very well and good to commentate from the safety of not having to make these choices, but I would love to see how I and everyone else in this thread would do if we could magically transport ourselves into Obama's shoes just after he was sworn into office (of course, with our knowledge of subsequent events erased so we had a level playing field). Which of us would leave a better world? Which of us would try to do good and inadvertently cause a global crisis? Which of us would go mad with power and become a force of evil? Which of us would be so incompetent we were impeached?

    Of course, we'll never know. To me, it's an interesting thought experiment.

    Is Obama a great man? I think he's a great mind who couldn't overcome the obstacles placed in his way by the government he led, and found himself in an impossible geopolitical situation not of his own making.
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  • MotorhateMotorhate Frets: 221
    Cirrus said:
    I think it's interesting that deciding how good or bad Obama is can't be rationalised without somehow judging him, rightly or wrongly, for the state of the middle east.

    Trying to take in his impact on the world as a whole turns into a massively complicated discussion full of ifs, buts, theories and conjecture about massive geopolitical issues... seems to me it becomes impossible, and it's not fair on anyone to say middle east = bad means Obama = bad.

    I think repeating the same mistakes the Bush administration made on the perils of advocating regime change are damning. He could have refused to call for the Arab Spring in Egypt and Libya and then stupidly (and I mean massively stupid) advocating the overthrow of an elected government in the Ukraine (which was bound to rile Russia)

    https://www.rt.com/op-edge/228379-obama-power-transition-ukraine/

    There was no need to get involved in any of the above and I struggle with the outpouring of the "he was a principled man with a good heart" claptrap that's being spouted.

    I'm no advocate of Trump by any means and no doubt he'll make the same mistakes too which I will call him out on too, but this love affair with Obama as a man of peace etc. Please!
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 3425
    You guys totally come across like this:



    Now all due respect Obama was a class act Frank, a class act, excellent leader of the free world who brought affordable healthcare to millions in dire need. ...but if he were to come down my local and start making thinly veiled threats about how long it would take to establish trade deal should the UK trigger article 50 and leave the European Union then I'd say OI, OBAMA!  NOOOOOOO!
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 21004
    edited January 12
    Cirrus said:

    That the middle east is in turmoil is terrible, and there's plenty of blame to go around. However I don't think it's fair to put too much of the burden on Obama's shoulders, because the factors that lead to today's problems are centuries in the making. I'm not sure what Obama could have done differently that would have resulted in appreciable less suffering.
    Not interfered in Libya.
    Not supported regime change in Egypt - twice, when their imposed democracy didn't give the result they wanted the first time.
    Not encouraged the rebellion in Syria.
    Withdrawn more completely and quickly from Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Put pressure on Saudi Arabia to stop indiscriminate bombing in Yemen.
    Put pressure on Israel to stop building settlements in the West Bank.

    Certainly it's not *only* his fault, but those are things the Obama administration could and should have done differently which would at worst have not made things as bad as they are now.


    Cirrus said:

    I think it's interesting that deciding how good or bad Obama is can't be rationalised without somehow judging him, rightly or wrongly, for the state of the middle east.
    Because that is where American interference has done the most harm, and they seem to have a blind spot about why. And the underlying reason is oil (and gas), as we all know.

    The other bad thing he did globally was to increase tension in Eastern Europe, leading to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. That also caused completely unnecessary suffering.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • MotorhateMotorhate Frets: 221
    ICBM said:
    Not interfered in Libya.
    Not supported regime change in Egypt - twice, when their imposed democracy didn't give the result they wanted the first time.
    Not encouraged the rebellion in Syria.
    Withdrawn more completely and quickly from Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Put pressure on Saudi Arabia to stop indiscriminate bombing in Yemen.
    Put pressure on Israel to stop building settlements in the West Bank.

    Certainly it's not *only* his fault, but those are things the Obama administration could and should have done differently which would at worst have not made things as bad as they are now.
    ... and would have cemented his legacy as a true advocate of peace and perhaps the greatest US president in living memory at least.
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  • FretwiredFretwired Frets: 8595
    ICBM said:
    Cirrus said:

    That the middle east is in turmoil is terrible, and there's plenty of blame to go around. However I don't think it's fair to put too much of the burden on Obama's shoulders, because the factors that lead to today's problems are centuries in the making. I'm not sure what Obama could have done differently that would have resulted in appreciable less suffering.
    Not interfered in Libya.
    Not supported regime change in Egypt - twice, when their imposed democracy didn't give the result they wanted the first time.
    Not encouraged the rebellion in Syria.
    Withdrawn more completely and quickly from Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Put pressure on Saudi Arabia to stop indiscriminate bombing in Yemen.
    Put pressure on Israel to stop building settlements in the West Bank.

    Certainly it's not *only* his fault, but those are things the Obama administration could and should have done differently which would at worst have not made things as bad as they are now.
    Hindsight is a wonderful thing .. ;-)
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  • FretwiredFretwired Frets: 8595
    ICBM said:
    Cirrus said:

    That the middle east is in turmoil is terrible, and there's plenty of blame to go around. However I don't think it's fair to put too much of the burden on Obama's shoulders, because the factors that lead to today's problems are centuries in the making. I'm not sure what Obama could have done differently that would have resulted in appreciable less suffering.
    Not interfered in Libya.
    Not supported regime change in Egypt - twice, when their imposed democracy didn't give the result they wanted the first time.
    Not encouraged the rebellion in Syria.
    Withdrawn more completely and quickly from Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Put pressure on Saudi Arabia to stop indiscriminate bombing in Yemen.
    Put pressure on Israel to stop building settlements in the West Bank.

    Certainly it's not *only* his fault, but those are things the Obama administration could and should have done differently which would at worst have not made things as bad as they are now.
    Hindsight is a wonderful thing .. ;-)
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 21004
    Fretwired said:

    Hindsight is a wonderful thing .. ;-)
    Hindsight? Many of us spoke against all those mistakes at the time - I'm quite sure I'm on record here at least, and I'm certainly not alone.

    You don't need any kind of hindsight to know that those things were going to cause trouble. The West has a track record of it, going back centuries - even in modern times, at least to the 1950s. There isn't one single Western intervention in the Middle East which has ever done anything other than make existing problems worse or cause new ones - the only partial success was the liberation of Kuwait, but even that was bungled because it wasn't followed through properly.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • MotorhateMotorhate Frets: 221
    He only had to look at how Iraq had ended up to think that interfering in Syria was a bad idea and that regime change has to come from within the country at the will of the people.
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  • HeartfeltdawnHeartfeltdawn Frets: 7221
    edited January 12
    Motorhate said:
    Gold star for pointing out that Farage resigned as leader of UKIP (who weren't involved in the "Leave" campaign) four days after the referendum. Smirk all you like. I feel totally humiliated and stupid now.

    Farage is an MEP yes. Well done for spotting that. I’d wager nobody in the USA had ever heard of him before Trump brought him over so he’s hardly in a position to influence the US electorate. Obama did not simply "give an opinion". He stated that the FACT that “UK would be at the back of the queue if they voted for Brexit”. Basically blackmailing the UK electorate. If that isn’t influencing a vote then I don’t know what is.



    You originally claimed that Farage was not leader of UKIP during the referendum. 

    "I’d wager nobody in the USA had ever heard of him before Trump brought him over so he’s hardly in a position to influence the US electorate."

    You then make a bizarre wager. The simplest way is through the medium of video. We can have a two year old video from Fox News...



    ...or a two year old video from MSNBC...



    or going back to 2010. 



    So the assertion that nobody had heard of Farage in the US is clearly erroneous and I will take the wager from you.

    Regarding Obama... let us analyse what he actually said

    "“They are voicing an opinion about what the United States is going to do, I figured you might want to hear from the president of the United States what I think the United States is going to do.

    “And on that matter, for example, I think it’s fair to say that maybe some point down the line there might be a UK-US trade agreement, but it’s not going to happen any time soon because our focus is in negotiating with a big bloc, the European Union, to get a trade agreement done”.

    He added: “The UK is going to be in the back of the queue.”

    He made it clear what his focus was on. A big bloc. The EU. Not the UK. That his focus was on a big bloc is his right and that any US-UK agreement would be at the back of the queue and wouldn't be pushed to the front as certain Brexiters claimed. That you believe this to be blackmail is whimsical.

    So Obama comes out and makes a statement as President as is his right. That you don't see any difference between that and Farage endorsing Trump at a political rally in the US after complaining about foreigners involved in a British referendum is even more whimsical. But I'll settle at accepting the wager payout and request you donate it to Battersea Dogs and Cats Home BECAUSE I LIKE PUPPIES. 


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  • HeartfeltdawnHeartfeltdawn Frets: 7221
    edited January 12
    And yes the caps were intentional. Who doesn't like puppies? 
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