This week’s Shameful Human is none other than President of the United States, Barack Obama. Recently speaking at the annual Export-Import Bank’s conference, the American president made it clear that when it comes to issues of copyright, he stands behind the plodding, dinosaur-esque titans of the entertainment industry.
Obama even went so far as to declare his administration’s support of ACTA, saying “the (U.S. Trade Representative) is using the full arsenal of tools available to crack down on practices that blatantly harm our businesses… including the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).”
ACTA is a controversial trade agreement that has been negotiated in secret among countries, and its critics (including me) believe it places corporate greed over individual rights. Because ACTA is a trade agreement, it can be signed onto and made enforceable in countries that would not have been able to pass such unpopular, restrictive laws through the usual channels. As an example of its dangerous power, ACTA will force ISPs to reveal the identities of suspected internet pirates by removing safeguards against their liability.
Taking this latest disappointment into consideration, in addition to his general weakness when it comes to combating his crazed opponents, as well as his obvious disinterest in passing strong, progressive health care legislation, I have no qualms with labeling Barack Obama a Shameful Human. His presidency is only an improvement over that of his predecessor’s in that it is not a total disaster.