Look: I am eager to learn stuff I don't know--which requires actively courting and posting smart disagreement.

But as you will understand, I don't like to post things that mischaracterize and are aimed to mislead.

-- Brad Delong

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Friday, December 3, 2010

Quote of the Day (I Am In Despair)

Obama has completely capitulated to the incoherent babblings of the Repugnicants.  We wonder what happened to the hopey-changey guy, the confident, bold new leader who has somehow morphed into a whipped puppy.

I never considered B. Hoover Obama to be any kind of seriously committed progressive, with his connections to big finance and reverence for St Ronnie of Senility. What I didn't realize is that he isn't simply a luke-warm liberal. He's a paleoconservative.  In a world that made sense, where the Rethugs weren't bat-shit crazy, he'd actually be a Republican - probably a damned good one, since he's smart. Could it be that he isn't giving in as much as he's gravitating to the positions he actually believes in – not the ones we want him to believe in.

Here's Krugman:

It’s hard to escape the impression that Republicans have taken Mr. Obama’s measure — that they’re calling his bluff in the belief that he can be counted on to fold. And it’s also hard to escape the impression that they’re right. 

The real question is what Mr. Obama and his inner circle are thinking. Do they really believe, after all this time, that gestures of appeasement to the G.O.P. will elicit a good-faith response? 

What’s even more puzzling is the apparent indifference of the Obama team to the effect of such gestures on their supporters. One would have expected a candidate who rode the enthusiasm of activists to an upset victory in the Democratic primary to realize that this enthusiasm was an important asset. Instead, however, Mr. Obama almost seems as if he’s trying, systematically, to disappoint his once-fervent supporters, to convince the people who put him where he is that they made an embarrassing mistake. 

Whatever is going on inside the White House, from the outside it looks like moral collapse — a complete failure of purpose and loss of direction. 

So what are Democrats to do? The answer, increasingly, seems to be that they’ll have to strike out on their own. In particular, Democrats in Congress still have the ability to put their opponents on the spot — as they did on Thursday when they forced a vote on extending middle-class tax cuts, putting Republicans in the awkward position of voting against the middle class to safeguard tax cuts for the rich. 

It would be much easier, of course, for Democrats to draw a line if Mr. Obama would do his part. But all indications are that the party will have to look elsewhere for the leadership it needs.

Read Krugman's entire Op-ed for context and the economic background.

Meanwhile, we're screwed.
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5 comments:

nanute said...

I read it. And on the very same page we get this from Bo Bo Brooks: I have a vision. Whenever I hear words like this from the likes of him, I expect to be struck by lightening and blinded by the experience.

As Krugman points out freezing federal wages will result in "savings" of 5 billion over two years. If Obama would have proposed using the savings to cover extending unemployment benefits with the money he'd of had a good argument for how to pay for extension that the opposition insists must be paid for. I'm not arguing that I favor the freezing of federal employee wages. Just noting that if you are going to give something up, it's always a good idea to get something in return. As smart as the President is supposed to be, it appears he has never played poker. If he has, I think he feels a pair of deuces beats a full house. As you like to say, WASF.

Jazzbumpa said...

I actually don't like saying it. Just happens to be the god damned truth.

Alas,
JzB

BadTux said...

Mr. Obama almost seems as if he’s trying, systematically, to disappoint his once-fervent supporters, to convince the people who put him where he is that they made an embarrassing mistake.

An embarrassing mistake indeed.

I tried telling people. I tried telling people during the primaries, look, forget all that hopey changey stuff, look at the policies posted on his web site -- the man is a conservative. But people just pooh-poohed me, "oh, he's a black man, just like Jesse Jackson, he couldn't be conservative." Reverse racism (attributing goodness to someone just because of their race) is just as wrong as the other kind, because it leads to things like, err, electing Barack Obama rather than one of his competitors.

Sigh. As you're so fond of saying... WASF.

- Badtux the Waddling Penguin

nanute said...

@BadTux: What, you expected people to take a penguin seriously? Now, if you wore a tri cornered hat, well then you might get some street cred. Time to update your image? BTW. Loved the rat recipe.

And JzB: It was Rep. Alan Grayson.

Southern Beale said...

The great irony is that, while those of us with a brain never considered Obama a screaming liberal or even a progressive (he was always a Mainstream Democrat to me), the right is actually getting away with calling him a Socialist.

How the fuck did that happen?

Seriously? Are you people actually SERIOUS? Where is the media? Yeah alright we have Krugman, but the standard-issue bobblehead reading the headlines on CNN -- your Kiran Chit-Chat (Chetry) -- why aren't these people speaking out and saying, in light of how Obama folds like a lawn chair whenever the GOP says Boo, how can he be a Socialist?

I don't get it. We live in a crazy, fucked up world. You're right, if this were 20 years ago Obama would be a Republican. But something happened between Bush I and Clinton's first term, something changed back in the 80s-90s that tilted this country's narrative to the far right.

Mind you, I don't think the country itself has changed. And for a great discussion of that particular issue I hope people will give this Bill Maher interview on CNN a look-see.