'Saying we should keep the two-party system simply because it is working is like saying the Titanic voyage was a success because a few people survived on life-rafts.'- Eugene McCarthy.
Wonder where Obama got his healthcare ideas from? Perhaps he dusted down some old ideas from the Republicans.
After praising him a blogpost or two back, I'm not very happy with Dennis Kucinich going along with Obama's healthcare plans, after saying he would not support the Bill if there was no public option. There is some cynicism out there about his actions, especially as prior to that he suffered a fair bit of criticism from the 'My Obama, Right or Wrong' Brigade. However, there definitely seems to be a strategic gameplan by Obama and those around him to rally support on this and other issues by arguing that, however bad things get, it would be worse if the Republicans win. Anyone over here who has experienced the argument that 'support Labour or the Tories win' will be familiar with this tactic/emotional blackmail. David Sirota discusses it at length, with the comment that most resonates with me being:
Democrats tell their base that any bill is better than no bill, even one making things worse, and that if this particular legislation doesn’t pass, Republicans will win the upcoming election -- as if signing a blank check to insurance and drug companies couldn’t seal that fate.
Replace 'Democrats' with 'Labour' and 'Republicans' with 'Conservatives' and you have got the gist of most 'debate' on 'the Left' in Britain for more years than I care to remember.
'Do you know what would happen if we pigs failed in our duty? Jones would come back! Surely, comrades', cried Squealer almost pleadingly, skipping from side to side and whisking his tail, 'surely there is no one among you who wants to see Jones come back.' (George Orwell, Animal Farm)
It appears that Obama's Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel has written off the Democrats' chances in this Autumn's Congressional Elections, in a clear echo of his attitude to the 1994 ones. Then it will be a return by Obama towards 'triangulation' and 'the centre', which would surely be euphemisms to oversee letting off the banks from more regulation and giving over the social security system to corporate interests. There might also be a revival of Sarah Palin's 2008 policy/slogan 'Drill, Baby, Drill' when it comes to offshore gas and oil drilling. The Republicans say they may oppose such plans. So It Goes...
One wonders what all this will do to all those people, particularly young/first-time voters, who gave an Obama a chance in November 2008. I guess a lot will stay at home in 2012 and in even greater numbers this November, with extra added cynicism towards politics to boot. As a goddam Limey it is not my business to tell people in the US what to do, but if I was a US Citizen (ie if I lived in a political Brodingnag as opposed to a Lilliput) and basically had the same political outlook as I have now here on Airstrip One, I think I would try and seek out decent people on the US Right. Not the idiots obsessed with Obama's skin colour, his supposed foreign origins, Muslimness and Marxist tendencies (Marxist AND Muslim? So which side would he have been on during the war in Afghanistan in the 1980s? Asking that may confuse the average Tea Party type), but those opposed to the wars (whether ongoing ie Afghanistan, the ones that might flare up again ie Iraq? and those yet to come ie Iran? North Korea? Etc, etc...?), the curtailing of civil liberties, the bail-outs helping big business and the banks etc etc.
Wear this T-shirt and I'll buy you a drink! Which Lefty cannot agree with this Ron Paul-endorsed slogan? Why didn't 'our' side think of it first?
It seems pretty clear Obama and his cronies sees no place in the Democrat Party for those who consider themselves 'progressive', but they still want your support in Congress and at election time. Why not call their bluff? Do something else politically. It will be better and more rewarding for you in terms of your time, intellectual education, personal integrity and bank balance! Do you want to spend the next two years and seven months, more or less, repeating whatever updates to 'Yes We Can' and 'Change We Can We Believe in' the White House comes out with to your friends, neighbours and peers?
'Goldman Sachs Bankers, Join The Queue...'
If you've had enough of a slogan ripped off from 'Bob the Builder' and all that entails politically you may want to peruse these:
If you wonder how on earth the likes of Bill O'Reilly, Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh stay so popular, this is for you; and...
Naomi Wolf talks US politics here.
Who would be for a Greenwald/Wolf versus Ventura/Paul contest for the 2012 US Presidential Election?