So let’s say Obama’s people have correctly deduced that there’s no chance in hell of getting anything through Congress. They have two basic options. First, they could get on the teevee every day and say, “This is my plan to help. Republicans in Congress won’t pass it.” They could hold rallies in Maine. Allies could run ads. At least people would know who is for and who is against…and just what it was that people are for or against.

Option two is back off proposals you’ve previously made and have Axelrod get on the teevee and say, “there is some argument for additional spending in the short-run to continue to generate economic activity.”

There are still people who are defending Obama with that favored catch-all phrase, “What would you have him do?”

What I’d have him do is act like a goddamned leader for a change. Pick a side, our side, and STICK WITH IT. Stop splitting the difference on every goddamned thing, because SOME THINGS ARE JUST WRONG.

15 thoughts on “Yep

  1. The actions of Obama and the Democrats make perfect sense if you assume they want to lose.

    In boxing it’s called “taking a dive.”

  2. What myiq said.

    At this late date, Duncan still persists the myth that Obama wants any outcome better than what his every action evinces. What’s up that?

  3. I think far too much is attributed to design that is more accurately explained by incompetence, inexperience and lack of vision.

    Not to say that Obama isn’t a corporatist (because he is) but I think a more accurate explanation is that his entire adult life has been spent as a protege to the influential and powerful and his real skill is in making his mentors happy. I don’t think he has enough strong convictions of his very own to betray them.

  4. Susie — that is a good observation. And it explains his love of bipartisanship.

  5. Much as Lebron James left Cleveland out of fear that he would never win a championship, Obama fears offending his wealthy donors…. neither appears to really want or know how to lead.

  6. No doubt there’s an absence of leadership in the Obama White House. But I wonder what can be done about it? No way I’d vote for, say, a Palin-like character in ’12. Seriously, how do we force Obama to grow a set of testicles???

  7. dandy@6: No doubt there’s an absence of leadership in the Obama White House. But I wonder what can be done about it?

    Nothing at all.

    And bravo Vastleft! It appears some cannot face reality. Those comment by Duncan were almost laughable.

  8. I call it bad. Not incompetence, but a rotten agenda.

    That governing like Bush doesn’t ultimately burnish Obama’s reputation doesn’t mean it’s an accident. His entire platform was to seize a change year and repurpose it as a bipartisanship year.

    Calling it incompetence allows the fantasy to persist that he stands for something different than his nearly every action proves him to be: a neo-con in a pretty package.

  9. Point taken. His agenda sucks and he’s a lot closer to their side than ours, especially on bread and butter issues.

  10. Thanks, Susie.

    His statements about his agenda have generally been so vague, it brought home what he said in “Audacity”: “I serve as a blank screen on which people of vastly different political stripes project their own views.”

    To this day, the good will afforded him allows even his critics to make category errors that perpetuate belief in his vaporous virtues.

    Over time, Obama’s agenda has been revealed by his actions, and it is little different from Bush’s Third Term (though, to be fair, Bush lacked the imagination to force American citizens to buy junk insurance and to authorize their assassinations, and he lacked the finesse to make an anti-abortion executive order and the trashing of Social Security into trendy agendas).

    Yet, we are constantly told to hope he’ll be able to accomplish his agenda after the mid-terms or in a second term.

  11. Oh, I have no hope at all that he’ll initiate anything progressive — at least, not voluntarily. We’re going to have to fight him every inch of the way.

  12. Good to hear, Susie.

    I think Duncan chose the wrong frame with “So let’s say Obama’s people have correctly deduced that there’s no chance in hell of getting anything through Congress.” The fundamental problem is that Obama demonstrably doesn’t want to get the right (liberal, humane, sensible, etc.) things through Congress.

    To view the problem in terms of methodology rather than goals is what Shystee long ago termed, “The Process Dodge.” He wrote (and I admit I was something of an apologist for the Dems at the time):

    …it’s only natural to question a person when what they do does not match what they say. Over and over again.

    It’s even worse with Obama, because so much of his rhetoric is as anti-liberal as his policies. Yet, he’s somehow supposed to be so admirable at heart.

    He wins the Nobel Peace prize by waging war. And when he wages it, he “manifestly does not believe” in it.

    When he announces drill, baby, drill policies and mocks environmentalists (and their “tired debates”), “he deserved to be more skeptical.”

    As I’ve said before, “the journey of a thousand miles starts with facing in the right goddamn direction.” Until the fact that Obama doesn’t want to take us into a worthwhile direction is fully accepted, I have little hope for progressive activism and advocacy.

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