Date: Sat, 1 Jan 2011 08:41:20 -0800
I have to begin with praise for this article, for it is the best rebuttal to those who defend Obama's sorry performance that I have yet seen. I do not, however, place all of the blame for his disaster upon him.
As the nominal leader of his party, Obama certainly deserves denunciation. But there was another -Harry Reid- who could have done much to alter the present outcome of the 111th Congress. Many times he telegraphed the strategy of the Democratic caucus, as if to provide early warning to their opponents on how to prepare a counterattack. He also didn't enforce party discipline as well as the Republicans did, or the Blue Dogs like Ben Nelson and Mary Landrieu and Blanche Lincoln couldn't have held so much control in their corporatist hands. I'm glad we don't have Sharron Angle to deal with, but I sure wish Reid had gone down to defeat. I feel he should be challenged for the Majority Leader spot in the 112th Congress.
In contrast, Nancy Pelosi -who received far more abuse from the right-wingers than Reid did- managed to keep a fractious House under control and produced 400 bills that never saw the light of the Senatorial day. She is the exception to the inept Democratic leadership of the 111th Congress period. Had Obama and Reid done their jobs, life would be so much better in America today.
In your comment thread on Dissident Voice, you are attacked for promoting Hillary as being no different from Bill. Frankly, I have to agree, but not for the reasons presented. I expect that Hillary -having served as a corporate lawyer as Bill did not- is even more in tune with the corporatist coup going on today. She shares its roots in her own life, only becoming liberalized in college. I believe that she would have been worse than Bill or Obama. Her Senate record supporting the Iraq War when her constituents opposed it is alone a sufficient difference to promote in your defense. It certainly convinced me that she was not the horse to back in the race.
Moving back to Obama, once he had defeated Hillary for the nomination, his dramatic rightward shift should have been a siren in the night for Democrats. As your Dissident Voice commenter Max Shields said on December 14th, 2010 at 5:16pm, "I could not bare (sic) to vote for the man; he was just far too transparent." I have to agree with this assessment (I could not bring myself to vote for him either), and yet too many Democrats did not seem to notice.
The simple conclusion is that collectively we were fooled. The next issue we face is how to avoid being fooled again.
As I see it, somehow we have to convince the Democratic Party leadership that Obama cannot run again in 2012. One would think that the midterm avalanche would awaken them, but I see no sign of any awareness. I don't see that we are going to have much time to alter the nation's course if the next election goes corporatist. 2012 could be our last chance. So we have to make the best of what we have and look ahead to plan what to do, and to stop looking back for things to happen that might never have happened anyway. It's down to our own welfare. We have to look out for ourselves now. If somehow we win, then we can take care of our friends. we can help no one if we don't help ourselves. and the first thing we need to do is change the Democratic Party if we can. Otherwise, we might as well get used to corporate rule.
PS: Best wishes to Joe Speer for a speedy recovery.