Wednesday, January 13, 2010
I am a liberal (in most respects, especially social) and I doubt at this point I am ever going to change. I would not have been terribly upset if McCain had won, but I think Palin was a major mistake. If anything, I think Obama has been a moderate in policy and deportment. He is well spoken, appears to be very smart, and hasn't shown any proclivity for rash decisions. He isn't a laughingstock in the eyes of most of the world (who at best, considered Bush either dangerous or a buffoon). I can think of no decisions of his that have in any way endangered the status of America, and in fact, he probably has steadied it, and like the Republican (or wealthy) anger during the Roosevelt years, all I can say is they protested too much while he basically saved the country's ass. And you simply cannot blow up the rest of the world because you don't like them (that would make us terrorists). I challenge people to provide ONE example of anything Obama has done that is outside the parameters set by our Constitution or legal system. One may not like all of his stands on political and social issues, but he reflects changes occurring in this country (which is what democracy is supposed to be about). If anything, he has disheartened the more liberal wing by failing to make good on some of his promises, which in my mind shows that like every incoming president, once in office he had to take a bit of a reality pill. I submit that the country is actually in better shape than when he came into office (just look at the stock market), and furthermore argue that we would be in much worse shape, perhaps even in a full-blown depression, had not something been done to stem the tide of rampant greed and deregulation of business. Although unemployment is a serious problem, his only option would be to employ some CCC and WPA type programs (I'd be all for that). He has made no executive order that contravenes any established laws that I can think of. He has broken no laws or sacred trusts (as did Bush and Cheney), and as far as I know he hasn't blatantly lied to the American people about any personal or political doings (no girlfriends or affairs, for instance). He seems to have repaired some of the international distrust sown by his predecessors, and almost everyone (even her detractors) have remarked that Hilary Clinton has been a pretty good Secretary of State. Obama has been in office one year, and the country has not fallen apart. Most average people say they feel a little better about things in the country. He definitely supports change, but they largely remain in the realm of Congress. He does not make laws, they do. It is sad that the Republicans and the radical right cannot come to grips with a new America, and cannot get over the fact that a non-white man won the office, and by a decent margin. Much of the ramped-up (and truly false and hypocritical) anger has been stoked and channeled by Tea Partiers (run by and funded by such groups as FOX and led by cheerleaders such as Beck). They are doing a disservice to the country. In fact, the Republicans have been tearing themselves apart internally, often pushing their moderate wing clean out of the party. . .which is good for Democrats. Independents right now determine most elections. Although I believe strongly in the sacred right of loyal opposition, many on the Right are rabid, so blinded by their irrational anger that they simply accept and pass on whatever new conspiracy or criticism that strikes their fancy without really finding out the truth (I think we can go back to Rush for that). And each time their newest complaint is shot down or debunked, they shamelessly reach for another fabricated issue. I do not want the US to turn into a theocracy like they have in Iran (and that is what the radical right religious wingnuts want) or into a fascist state (like Spain, or many South American countries in the 70s). I don't care who lives with whom, what people do behind closed doors, or any of that, as long as they respect others' rights. In fact, I am amazed that Obama has not, for the most part, taken the bait thrown at him, and has remained pretty much above the ugliness. Why. . . he's been positively presidential. Even the radical left never went after Bush's wife and immediate family like they have. Odd that military men supposedly hate him for his stand on "socialized medicine," when of all Americans it is they who have benefitted from the most socialized of medicines in this country. . .the VA and military hospitals. As of today, the political polls seem to indicate that O's approval rating hovers at about 55-57%. Considering the closeness of the election, the heat of opposition, and sensitivity of many issues to be addressed, that is not bad. Bush had an approval rating of less that 30% and Cheney less than 10%. Obama has not been sterling so far, but he has benefitted a great deal for NOT being Bush. If there was an election today (along the lines, say, of the British system), I suspect that Obama would win again.