Matt Damon Drops Support for Obama over Drone Strikes, NSA

August 9th, 2013

The non-partisan liberty movement often finds itself frustrated with Hollywood celebrities who railed against injustices under former President George W Bush, but who remain silent when similar abuses are carried out by a Democratic administration. The red team versus blue team mentality in America tends to make it difficult for issue-oriented activists to move the ball on efforts to restore civil liberties and a sensible foreign policy to the nation. This is exacerbated when pop culture icons unflinchingly back Democrats no matter how offensive their policies become.

Politically progressive movie star Matt Damon was once an ardent supporter of President Obama. However, whether or not one might agree with his stances on all the issues, he can no longer be counted among the hypocrites who apply double standards based on party affiliation. Matt Damon recently told BET that the President “broke up” with him over issues like drone strikes and the National Security Agency’s spying scandal. Let’s dish on Damon’s concerns, TMZ-style.

Obama Has “Some Explaining to Do”

Politico transcribed this quote by Matt Damon, which effectively summarizes his issues with the current President, “There are a lot of things that I really question – the legality of the drone strikes, these NSA revelations. Jimmy Carter came out and said we don’t live in a democracy. That’s a little intense when an ex-president says that. So you know, he’s got some explaining to do, particularly for a constitutional law professor.”

Matt Damon’s support for President Obama had been waning over the past couple of years, as some of Damon’s comments to the media questioned the sensibility of the administration’s policies, but this marks a dramatic shift for the politically-engaged Hollywood superstar. In an interview with The Guardian, Damon suggested why Obama might have flip-flopped on his stances on privacy and foreign policy, “I think it’s tough for guys who weren’t in the military. One: Their manhood is kind of challenged on some level, I imagine, and they allow themselves to get bullied. And Two: They’re just politically afraid of either looking soft or looking incompetent, so they overcompensate.”

Damon on Obama’s “Weird, Orwellian Turn”

Talking about the nation’s descent into tyranny, Damon told The Guardian in the above-linked interview, “It just seems to have taken this weird, Orwellian turn. It’s surreal. I don’t know where we are now.” In the BET interview, he characterized his relationship with the President as “he broke up with me.”

As a progressive, Matt Damon has complicated beliefs that themselves challenge fundamental rights to property, health care freedom, self-defense, and free speech for business owners, but, say what you will about his views, he is principled when it comes to civil liberties and foreign policy in a way that many other left-leaning celebrity politicos aren’t. President Obama has ramped up all the policies that offended progressives under Bush, and Matt Damon deserves credit for having the courage to admit that when others will not.

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About the Author: Barry Donegan

Barry Donegan is a singer for the experimental mathcore band Look What I Did, a writer, a self-described "veteran lifer in the counterculture", a political activist/consultant, and a believer in the non-aggression principle.