Obama, We Hardly Knew Ye

President-elect Barack Obama's cabinet appointments are winning praise from conservatives such as Karl Rove, Mitch McConnell and John McCain, and most of the people who actually voted for Obama aren't complaining just yet. Opinion polls show that most people approve of Obama's picks, while two-thirds of Americans approve of Obama personally. One the left, however, people like Chris Bowers are asking, "Why isn't there a single member of Obama’s cabinet who will be advising him from the left?" Bowers thinks Obama is "avoiding the tough fights" for now and hopes he'll be "more willing to take on some larger battles" further down the road. "Leading opponents of the war have mostly been silent," writes Jonathan Martin, while Obama, "who first built his national image on the foundation of his early opposition to the Iraq war, assembles a group of national security hands that is anything but a team of doves." Some anti-war activists say they trust Obama to do the right thing, regardless of his appointees. Others cite "a reluctance to carp before Obama is even sworn in." Marilyn Katz, a veteran of the peace movement and a well-connected Chicago public-relations executive, says some liberals have not been listening closely to Obama's positions all along. "A lot of people took his position on Iraq and projected our politics onto him," she said. "And that was never him. It was never true."