Tuesday, August 09, 2011

‘You’ve got to get mad!’

No longer the beacon...

Opinion: Once Upon a Time in the West - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News - International:
"The word 'West' used to have a meaning. It described common goals and values, the dignity of democracy and justice over tyranny and despotism. Now it seems to be a thing of the past. There is no longer a West, and those who would like to use the word -- along with Europe and the United States in the same sentence -- should just hold their breath. By any definition, America is no longer a Western nation."

Entirely reposting , Fair Use be damned. Needs to be read.

AMERICAblog News: Hope takes a holiday

I'm starting to align myself more and more with Woody Allen (and Hillary Clinton) on this whole "hope" thing. People don't just turn out, and vocally turn on, their members of Congress because you give a blind quote to the Wall Street Journal. And it takes more than hope to make it happen. Not to mention, a lot of us aren't feeling much other than despair at the moment. If past is prologue, why should the effort on jobs be any different than the stimulus, health care reform, or the deficit? Big promises, small effort, and a so-so, or in the case of the deficit, a horrific finish.

The White House thinks it can dispirit millions of people who voted for the President, who believed in him, who truly thought he was different, who believed that he would actually, finally, bring change to this city, to our dysfunctional government, only to find out that he was as bad, if not worse, than the rest of them. The White House thinks we can go through all of that, time and time again, and then they can just pivot and say "never mind about that man behind the curtain, now go sic em," and we're all, like happy little lemmings, going to start terrorizing members of Congress on their behalf?

Uh uh.

I just heard from a young gay Obama supporter, who works in DC politics, who told me he's not even voting for the President next time. Not that he wants him to lose. He just isn't very interested in him winning. And he doesn't think his vote will make the difference anyway, so it's a matter of principle for him. The problem for the President is that if you add up enough dispirited principled voters, suddenly you find yourself losing a close state. (You also lose a lot of volunteers, and donations, along with the lost enthusiasm - I've had more than one person tell me they're not going to volunteer, or donate, or raise money this time around like they did last time.)

It's a larger problem for the President, and one his team has never fully acknowledged going back to the days of the campaign, when it first reared its head. The Obama people - and let's face it, the President himself - have/has a way of alienating people who really want to like them/him. You don't just do that to people, get their hopes up, then dash them repeatedly, and then think you're going to flick some switch and everything's going to be all back to normal.

Not to mention, it takes a lot of organizing to get people to swarm their members of Congress. And it's something that's likely far beyond the capabilities of the demoralized masses, and the emasculated sorry excuse for non-profit advocacy groups, that we now have in the wake of three years of hope takes a holiday.

As negative as this presidency has made me, I'm someone who almost always thinks you can win in politics so long as you have the right people and the right plan. But like that young gay kid I mentioned earlier, and like so many other people I work with every day, I'm just not sure how much I care anymore. Or rather, I still care a lot - but I know this President, I know this Congress, I know these pitiful progressive non-profits who do little more than genuflect in the White House's shadow, and I know that regardless of what any of us do, the powers that be are going to sell us out and make a mess of things. And the Republicans know it too, as evidenced by their spectacular victory over the President and the Democrats in Congress on the deficit deal.

Olbermann on debt deal: ‘You’ve got to get mad!’�|�Raw Replay:
"“We have superceded Congress to facilitate 750 billion dollars in domestic cuts including Medicare in order to end an artificially-induced political hostage crisis over debt, originating from the bills run up by a Republican president who funneled billions of taxpayer dollars to the military-industrial complex by unfunded, unnecessary, and unproductive wars, enabled in doing so by the very same Republican leaders who now cry for balanced budgets – and we have called it compromise.”"

Still not mad?

Obama Sides With Panetta On Need To Cut Medicare Over Defense | TPMDC


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