We’re approaching the anniversary of Obama’s first year in Office. Some of us, real Progressives who understand that the path of government is slow and torturous, think he’s accomplished a great deal. We’re on the threshold of having a national healthcare program – not ideal, but a start, and something – like Social Security – upon which we can build into the Third Rail that Social Security became in time. Most reasonable politicians in the Progressive mold, like Jay Rockefeller, Chuck Schumer and James Webb, understand this. Killing the bill, as Howard Dean, a Democratic grandee with as much of an axe to grind as Joe Lieberman, will play right into the hands of the Republicans and show our party as being weak, divided and unfit to govern.
The economy is healing, although job growth is slow; but jobs are usually the last piece of the puzzle that goes into helping an ailing economy,
Obama’s recently announced a tax on those banks who’ve taken the most of the TARP funds, in order that Americans be reimbursed … ‘every last dime’ were the President’s exact words.
Yes, he’s escalated Afghanistan, and no one’s easy about that, nor was it an easy decision for the President to make. And, no, Bill Maher, he didn’t sound like Bush at all in that instance. That he took six weeks to deliberate what action to take makes him more unlike Bush than not. So enough of that posturing, Bill. You know better than that. We see you and your show’s back on air soon. Take it for granted and use that common sense I so admire to rationalise the fact that Obama’s got an exit strategy all lined up. That he’s probably told Karzai in no uncertain terms that if the t’s aren’t crossed and the i’s aren’t dotted to Obama’s specifications by such-and-such a date, we are out of there. Wham, bam and thank you, ma’am … gone.
Use your common sense again, Bill, and you’ll come to know that sometimes, ‘we the people’ aren’t supposed to know everything that goes on behind closed doors in our own government. Sometimes, it’s better that way. In summoning up the World War II spirits of our respective fathers, remember
Or to put it in words you and I would better comprehend:-
We could all do with a bit of that!
But what I wanted to know, precisely, is who exactly these sheeple of the Left are? Because that’s exactly what they are: sheeple – as incapable of rational or critical thinking as their counterparts on the extreme Right. They watch opinionator programs which cherry-pick news items and give them a slant, and they think they’re watching a news and information program whose talking head is marginally more entertaining than either Brian Williams or Katie Couric. Williams and Couric deal in fact – a great deal of the sort that doesn’t merit network news’ attention, but fact, nonetheless. Olbermann and Co deal in infotainment.
These sheeple read The Huffington Post and reckon it’s an online newspaper. It’s an aggregate, filled with cribbed news items from reputable sources, along with pithy, anonymously-sourced bylines by their own cub reporters, steeped in suppostion and innuendo. It’s a tabloid. End of.
And whilst we’re on the subject of stupidity, I want to go on record to say, as a New Year’s resolution, that let’s have a little less ad nauseam ad hominem attacks on American stupidity. I’m as guilty of saying this as a certain, well-known celebrity fundit:-
Bill, I know you mean well, when you say that Americans are stupid. You’re using reverse psychology, trying to gee us all up into actually proving we’re not stupid. But it’s not working, because those to whom you’re directing your rant, are simply agreeing in tandem, and living with the fact that we, as a nation, are stupid, are hopelessly inferior to any and all of our European, Canadian and Antepodean cousins (mostly, because we don’t have healthcare), and we’re hopelessly doomed.
In short, the sheeple of the Progressive base seem to have given up.
And they’re thanking you for that, Bill. Really. Now, when you or I say that, do we ever stop to think that we, too, are Americans? I don’t consider myself stupid,and I know you don’t; yet when we say ‘Americans are stupid,’ do we ever stop to think that we still carry American passports?
When you say that America is a stupid country, do you ever stop to think that … you live there? Do I ever stop to think that, after 28 years of living in the UK, I still want to be American?
If we haven’t, we should. And I admonish you with love, William. In fact, stupidity isn’t a concept which limits itself to one nationality. In fact, stupidity knows no geographical boundaries; and I deal with it on a daily basis in four different languages.
We’re coming up to the first anniversary of the Obama Presidency, and there are people still whining that this man hasn’t done or accomplished anything in one year. People are judging him harshly, Bill, because he hasn’t righted the economy, given us single-payer health insurance, ended both wars, quelled Al Qaeda, found everyone jobs with six-figure salaries and built new homes for all those repossessed. Even you, Bill, have been harsh on this man, and I know you know, far better than the legions of your fans, how slow and cumbersome government can be. You know about democracy comprising debate and compromise
Yet you propagate the rumour that in the first 100 days, all Obama achieved was the purchase of a puppy.
What about the closing of Gitmo? (Not Obama’s fault if that’s proving difficult).
What about the Lily Ledbetter Act, ensuring that women are paid equally to men for doing the same job?
What about putting a date to withdrawal for the troops in Iraq? That’s supposed to be this May.
All accomplished during the first 100 days.
On the eve of Obama’s first anniversary, it’s ironic to think that on Tuesday night, we’ll all be focused on the special election in Massachusetts to determine the successor to Teddy Kennedy’s legacy. At this point in time, the Democrat Martha Coakley is fighting for her political life. And pundits, Right and Left are using this election as a litmus test for the Obama Presidency.
Sometimes, I have a hard time figuring out exactly who it is in this country who wants Obama to fail.
Coakley’s Republican opponent, Scott Brown, is a rabid Rightwinger in the Tea Partier tradition, running on a ticket of morality and family values. He boasts that if he wins the election, he’ll be the ‘number 41’ necessary to defeat healthcare reform.
And if he wins, it’s clear that his eyes are really on the big prize of the Big Chair in 2012.
Scott Brown has also been a nude centrefold for Cosmopolitan magazine. So, when you think of the dignity of the office of POTUS, who would better grace it? This man …
That’s a no-brainer, much less a no-boner.
I happened to be speaking online with a noted political voice recently, when I bemoaned the lack of critical thinking ability amongst the Progressive base. I was worried to the point that I thought they would be the key that would unlock the door of the Oval Office to the Republicans.
My source opined that these sheeple were really mostly young first-time voters, aged between 18 and 24, with no sense of immediate history, and no recollection of the Clinton era, except of material wealth. Their only experience of government was the quasi-dictatorship of the Bush regime. They perceive America as weak at the moment, as failing and as falling behind. Rather than shoulder a burden, it’s all too easy to sit back on the sofa, plug in the Ipod, and plug out the world, or rant and rail at Obama as the source of blame for not giving everyone everything that they want and now.
For that, they reckon, he deserves to fail.
So … maybe it’s time we channelled a little bit of JFK attitude, in asking not what one’s country can do for one, but what one can do for one’s country:-
Bill paraphrased this best, when he admonished his viewing audiences not to sit back and expect President Obama to do everything for YOU; rather buck up, tighten your belt and work with the man and for him to better our situation as a whole.
I hope Bill remembers that. If he doesn’t, I’ll keep reminding him of that.
Otherwise, the sheeple of the Left have another option … and that’s to come out of the political closet and admit their true identity. A couple of weeks ago, I happened to catch an interview with John Le Boutillier, an ex-GOP congressman, on The Lionel Show on Air America. Le Boutillier stated (and I learned something here), that the neocon movement was really comprised of lapsed and disaffected liberals. So, Sheeple of the Progressive Base, if you’re that disaffected, take a hike to the Right, because remaining static, will only result in the said circular firing squad:-
That’s reminded me, in closing, of another of my father’s most fervent political philosophies:-
If you move too far to the Left, you’ll always come out on the Right.