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August 10, 2011 8:16 AM   Subscribe


 
Nice of those friendly Brits to tell our President how to run our country so we will re-elect him.

As one of the people who will be voting for him, I have a better suggestion. Mr. Obama can do whatever he thinks best on policy, wait to see exactly which batshit insane whakadoodle the Teapublicans nominate, then point and laugh his ass off during the campaign.
posted by localroger at 8:21 AM on August 10, 2011 [34 favorites]


What localroger said.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 8:22 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


"Once dismissed by liberals as 'an amiable dunce,' Mr. Reagan finishes ahead of John Kennedy"

There are two extra words in this sentence.

Anyway, so, basically, Obama has to rattle his saber through a major geopolitical event that was in the works when he was still being paid to play with a monkey, and then be retroactively lauded by gun-toting psychotics for orchestrating it.
posted by griphus at 8:23 AM on August 10, 2011 [8 favorites]


It's a trap!
posted by Mike Mongo at 8:23 AM on August 10, 2011


wait to see exactly which batshit insane whakadoodle the Teapublicans nominate, then point and laugh his ass off during the campaign

Seems to have worked in Wisconsin, why not the general?
posted by valkyryn at 8:23 AM on August 10, 2011 [8 favorites]


Closest I can come to finding a "Reagan from the Globe and Mail" is a profile of CTV "Canada AM" co-host Seamus O'Regan. And for the life of me, I can't imagine what acting like him is going to do for Obama's re-election hopes. Unless there's a huge "Begorrah, eh?" voting block in your country that can help swing a return to the White House.
posted by Mike D at 8:25 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Nice of those friendly Brits to tell our President how to run our country so we will re-elect him.

The Globe and Mail is Canadian. (But your point stands.)
posted by cider at 8:25 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


No offense to the OP, who probably knows better, but Neil Reynolds is the GM's token "right wing" columnist. If he's not being a total idiot, he's being a troll. So take your pick.
posted by KokuRyu at 8:25 AM on August 10, 2011 [9 favorites]


Nice of those friendly Brits to tell our President how to run our country so we will re-elect him.

Canadians.

Did the maple leaf not tip you off?
posted by randomination at 8:26 AM on August 10, 2011 [11 favorites]


Oh, I'm sorry, I don't have my facts straight: it was a chimpanzee.
posted by griphus at 8:26 AM on August 10, 2011


Brits, Canucks, We all share the same Queen, and she's not likely to lose any upcoming elections.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:27 AM on August 10, 2011 [9 favorites]


Sell guns to Iran and give the money to terrorists to buy more guns?
posted by EarBucket at 8:27 AM on August 10, 2011 [19 favorites]




Nice of those friendly Brits to tell our President how to run our country so we will re-elect him.

Where does anything mention "Brits"?
posted by ComfySofa at 8:29 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


I would love to see obama in a monkey movie (or maybe a Western).

Bedtime for Obama!
posted by cjorgensen at 8:29 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


How Obama can get re-elected: Act like Reagan

That might get him re-elected, but I think we've seen that having a half-senile, half-simple-minded president in the White House isn't exactly conducive to the long-term greatest good.
posted by orange swan at 8:29 AM on August 10, 2011 [5 favorites]


And people wonder why privileged upper-middle-class Canadian kids feel compelled to sew a maple leaf on their backpacks when touring Europe or Southeast Asia.
posted by KokuRyu at 8:30 AM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


So they're not compared to Ronald Reagan?
posted by nebulawindphone at 8:32 AM on August 10, 2011 [5 favorites]


i really see this going one of two ways -

the GOP floods the market with the crazies, one gets the nom, and the base is strengthened for the general election after obama's second term (and for the mid term).

or, the GOP floods the market with the crazies, nominates a boring white guy with preacher hair and nice smile, and trades on the apathy of the left who just spent all this energy expecting a bachmann or whatever.

the second one i guess has a chance of getting them the election, but all the brouhaha aside, i just don't see obama losing this election.
posted by nadawi at 8:32 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


...(or maybe a Western).

I would pay good money to see Obama and Biden re-enact scenes from Blazing Saddles.
posted by griphus at 8:32 AM on August 10, 2011 [25 favorites]


Oh, thank God it wasn't Wente, because that would have heaped snide on top of stupid.
posted by maudlin at 8:34 AM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


Neil fucking Reynolds? Seriously? On metafilter? This is the person who claimed Tommy Douglas, father of Canadian medicare, wanted a user pay health care system. His staggeringly disingenuous writing to back up his libertarian views is for me the single most appalling example of the Globe's rapid slide into far right magical thinking. All this in a Canadian context mind you where our collective mainstream media has lurched, fumbled, and staggered increasingly to the right over the years.

but Neil Reynolds is the GM's token "right wing" columnist.

Yes, because proto-prehensile mouth breathers like Margeret Wente, Konrad Yakabuski, etc aren't far right enough. Thanks Globe and Mail, thank you very much for coming out tonight.
posted by Phlegmco(tm) at 8:35 AM on August 10, 2011 [11 favorites]


I'm still amazed at the weight people give to the polling on "are you a liberal/conservative".

After multiple decades of conservative/Republican efforts to demonize liberals, to turn the word "liberal" into an insult, and no pushback from liberals whatsoever, it is utterly unsurprising that most Americans reject the term.

The real question is not "do these people self ID as liberals or conservatives", but rather "what policies do those people support" and "what politician and/or political party do you most often vote for".

We've got a lot of people IDing as "independents" because Americans have a bit cultural investment in imagining themselves as bold, independent, loaners. Again, it isn't a surprise, or even particularly worth noting, that a lot of Americans self ID as "independent". It isn't a measure of how they'll actually vote (study after study indicates that self described independents almost universally support one party to the near total exclusion of the other, and therefore are not really independent but merely Republicans or Democrats who want to pretend that they aren't).

Further, describing Reagan as a conservative president in a liberal decade is stupid. The liberal/conservative/independent self identification in polls has been relatively stable for the past few decades. During the Reagan years there were a few more Americans identifying as liberal, but not a majority, or even as many as self identified as conservative.

As for Obama, I'd recommend that if he wants reelection he'd better start seriously looking at how to create jobs. It's probably already too late, but if unemployment hasn't dropped significantly by 2012 his chances of reelection are vastly lower than they otherwise might be.

I also tend to think that the American voter is turned off by waffling loserism, and turned on by someone who can project the image of a strong leader. Bush was a twit, but he convinced his conservative base that he was a strong decisive leader, and that helped convince enough true independents (ie: morons) to get him elected for the first time back in 2004.

I think that Obama, by constantly trying to paint losses as wins, by appearing weak and ineffective (regardless of what you consider the truth of the matter to be) is harming his chances for reelection.

Mind, I also think that working deliberately to alienate the left isn't a good strategy for him either, but I'd rather not get into that argument with Ironmouth etc again.
posted by sotonohito at 8:37 AM on August 10, 2011 [12 favorites]


Mr. Obama can do whatever he thinks best on policy, wait to see exactly which batshit insane whakadoodle the Teapublicans nominate, then point and laugh his ass off during the campaign.

I thought that this would work for Gore in 2000 and Kerry in 2004. It did not.

Don't get cocky. Liberals need to take the Republican candidates seriously so that we can seriously crush them in 2012.
posted by Aizkolari at 8:39 AM on August 10, 2011 [7 favorites]


Wait, isn't he already acting like Reagan? This man is a visionary!
posted by Fister Roboto at 8:39 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


"It is remarkably poor timing by U.S. President Barack Obama to inhabit the White House as an ideological liberal in a conservative American decade."

They lost me in the first sentence. There is nothing ideologically liberal about Obama unless you believe GOP talking points. Health care reform was a series of tax cuts. The stimulus package was filled with tax cuts. The Bush/Obama tax cuts were renewed and will be again. The war on terror has been expanded. Human rights abuses have worsened. And hey, hope you all enjoyed Medicare while it lasted.

In America the word "liberal" now simply means "that guy over there I don't care for".
posted by munchingzombie at 8:40 AM on August 10, 2011 [23 favorites]


Nice of those friendly Brits to tell our President how to run our country so we will re-elect him.

Argh. Another example of of geography-deficiency from a fellow American.
posted by Kitteh at 8:40 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


It is remarkably poor timing by U.S. President Barack Obama to inhabit the White House as an ideological liberal in a conservative American decade.

Stopped reading at "ideological liberal". Someone is not paying attention.
posted by The Bellman at 8:41 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Pledgmco, I agree completely. I used to pick up the G&M to read Rick Salutin but they saw fit to get rid of him. For a great Canadian mainstream newspaper it's best to stick to the Toronto Star.
posted by beau jackson at 8:42 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]




can people stop beating on the brit/canadian mistake? they get it. they fucked up. how many people have to push their nose in it?
posted by nadawi at 8:43 AM on August 10, 2011 [6 favorites]


And people wonder why privileged upper-middle-class Canadian kids feel compelled to sew a maple leaf on their backpacks when touring Europe or Southeast Asia.

Reminds me of that episode of South Park where the boys accidentally get sent to Afghanistan trying to return a goat...

[The boys are confronted by Afghan soldiers]
Kyle: Uh, greetings from Canada. Well, boys, it's aboot time we get back to our hoose in Canada, isn't it?
Cartman: Hey, what the hell are you talking about? I'm not a goddamn Canadian and neither are you.
Stan: Cartman, you stupid asshole.

posted by Talez at 8:45 AM on August 10, 2011 [5 favorites]


Reagan is counted as the greatest president? Yes, I agree, so long as you are talking about Greatest at Raising the Deficit (without a world war or other good excuse other than ideology and stupidity).
posted by jb at 8:47 AM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


Remembering Regan.
posted by Talez at 8:49 AM on August 10, 2011 [13 favorites]


still waiting on my Reagan-promised trickle of warm piss to float me up to the balcony where all the richies are relieving themselves of their extra money. on my head.
posted by radiosilents at 8:50 AM on August 10, 2011 [8 favorites]


Yes, because proto-prehensile mouth breathers like Margeret Wente, Konrad Yakabuski, etc aren't far right enough

Not to derail, but lumping Yakabuski in with Wente seems way off base to me. He openly mocks the Tea Party and GOP in general on a regular basis. Calling him 'far right' does not seem accurate.
posted by Adam_S at 8:50 AM on August 10, 2011


Yes, because proto-prehensile mouth breathers like Margeret Wente, Konrad Yakabuski, etc aren't far right enough. Thanks Globe and Mail, thank you very much for coming out tonight.

Jeffrey Simpson and Lawrence Martin more than make up for those goons. And Jim Stanford's idiocy basically adds an equivalent counterweight to Neil Reynolds.
posted by KokuRyu at 8:52 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Nice of those friendly Brits to tell our President how to run our country so we will re-elect him.

No offense or anything but the last 12 years or so suggest the US might stand to benefit from a bit of friendly advice. Lesson 1: never, ever listen to someone employed by the Globe and Mail.

can people stop beating on the brit/canadian mistake? they get it. they fucked up. how many people have to push their nose in it?

Asking Canadians to miss a chance to identify something/someone as Canadian is like asking water not to be wet. Would you like me to make a list of Canadian celebrities for you, nadawi? I carry it with me in my wallet.
posted by Hoopo at 8:54 AM on August 10, 2011 [16 favorites]




I thought that Rick Perry already has dibs on acting like Reagan.
posted by carter at 8:56 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


So.

The reason Reagan is popular is because he's the only leader the Republicans have that they can hold up and aggrandize. What other Presidents do they have? Bush II left us in our current mess. Bush I let Clinton happen. Ford lost his only election. Nixon almost got impeached. Eisenhower? No one even really remembers who that guy was. Besides, he's pre-Nixon so he doesn't really count as a Republican in the current sense.

So, like seemingly everything else the Republicans do, Reagan has been chosen as The Saint cynically -- his actions, his politics, his personal history have all been refit into this fake mold of greatness. And what doesn't fit is lied about.

So. There's nothing Obama can do to be "like Reagan." "Reagan" as presented by the Republicans is a fictional figure.
posted by chasing at 8:57 AM on August 10, 2011 [29 favorites]


Another possible tactic would be to do something that earns him the right to be re-elected, instead of just being allegedly less bad than the right-wing goblin of the week.
posted by Legomancer at 8:57 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Americans have a bit cultural investment in imagining themselves as bold, independent, loaners

All that bold independent loaning is what got us into the housing bubble.
posted by grouse at 8:59 AM on August 10, 2011 [7 favorites]


For a great Canadian mainstream newspaper it's best to stick to the Toronto Star.


Agreed, but the last time I checked they don't have a mobile version. I read the G & M on my blackberry, sitting on the can at either Canadian Tire or Tim Hortons, but I'm getting increasingly constipated by the increasing prevalence of subtle conservative ass licking in their articles.
posted by CynicalKnight at 9:01 AM on August 10, 2011


well, at least Ron had two terms.
obama will be defeated so says my tea leaves, today.
posted by clavdivs at 9:02 AM on August 10, 2011


Glad to see someone's already enlightened our American cousins as to the particular species of douchebag we're dealing with here. To add a little more shading to the portrait, Americans should think of Neil Reynolds as a sort of hybrid of Steve Forbes and David Brooks, somehow libertarian and authoritarian at the same time.

Basically Reynolds is for whatever defending whichever status quo will pay him more and make him seem more heroic, even if he can't actually seem to figure out which "ideals" and "values" he needs to "hold dear" to get his bigger piece of the pie.

This, though?

Gallup’s determination that Americans now rate Mr. Reagan as the greatest president in U.S. history

How's the saying go? This made me throw up in my mouth, a little? Like that. I harbour some dim hope that Reagan will re-emerge from this fog of reverence he's been posthumously shrouded in and people will remember that everything wrong right now - plutocracy, Wall Street triumphalism, cynical image politics, unconscionable character assassination, the cleavage between a word and its meaning and between rhetoric and reality, bloated defense contracts, unnecessary wars, the presidency as a sort of PR office for corporate agendas, all of it - was testbedded by the Reagan administration.

Reagan's influence was indeed huge: he forged the template for twenty-first-century political dysfunction. Or rather his inner circle did, because the Great Communicator himself was so deep into dementia he nearly handed away most of America's nuclear arsenal in exchange for support for Star Wars missile defense at what was supposed to be a window-dressing summit for a spy exchange in '86. (See Garry Wills, Reagan's America. Read it twice.)

Fuck Ronald Reagan, now and forever. I'd pay good money just to piss on his grave.
posted by gompa at 9:02 AM on August 10, 2011 [22 favorites]


And people wonder why privileged upper-middle-class Canadian kids feel compelled to sew a maple leaf on their backpacks when touring Europe or Southeast Asia.


Stephen Harper is well on his way to taking care of this. And beau jackson? The Globe getting rid of Rick Salutin and essentially replacing him with party favours like Neil Reynolds is disgusting. I live in Vancouver so the Star is not within easy reach(I do like my physical copy). it's the only major paper that didn't support Harper in the last election I believe.

Not to derail, but lumping Yakabuski in with Wente seems way off base to me. He openly mocks the Tea Party and GOP in general on a regular basis. Calling him 'far right' does not seem accurate.

I may have been a bit hasty there. I don't actually recall him mocking the tea party that much, or the GOP for that matter. What annoys me is that too often he presents the Republicans as rational actors in the political process. And, while there are many things one can criticize Obama for, Yabuski goes out of his way to distort, such as his claim that no president ever won re-election with unemployment figures as high as the current ones. I actually wrote him about that, pointing out FDR and received a somewhat smarmy reply with pseudo points explaining why I was wrong.
posted by Phlegmco(tm) at 9:04 AM on August 10, 2011


IMNSHO, Obama can win if he does what Democrats did in '06 and '08. He needs to fight a total-war 50-state campaign based on building coalitions that translated into more campaign workers on the ground and more campaign dollars donated. This is, in effect, what the Religious Right has done for Republican candidates.

My fear of the Tea Party is based on the fact that they are an extremely effective astroturfing campaign with the ability to influence swing moderates and conservatives who can make or break an election.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 9:08 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


So, apparently Obama needs to start cracking jokes about US enemies?
posted by Horselover Phattie at 9:12 AM on August 10, 2011


The Globe getting rid of Rick Salutin and essentially replacing him with party favours like Neil Reynolds is disgusting.

That's not quite it. Reynolds is appalling in his own right, but he's the pinch hitter for the wholly contemptible Rex Murphy, who makes Reynolds look like Mencken. Doug Saunders was who they brought in basically to replace Salutin (who frankly had been phoning it in most of the time for several years). Now, Doug's well to the right of Salutin but he did used to be a This Magazine boy, so that's not so appalling. And they deserve praise for hanging onto Tabatha Southey (who's far and away the best pure writer of any columnist in their stable right now).

The real problem with the Globe is that it is trying to keep its brokedown old cart on a middle road that no longer exists. Much of what they're doing in terms of editorial choice isn't ideological - it's a desperate grab at market share in the midst of a churning chaotic media shitstorm. The paper version seems to be determined to die with its core readership, and they still don't understand the web, though they're getting marginally better than the decade of contemptuous neglect that preceded Stackhouse's arrival.

Still, as a somewhat frequent contributor, I can tell you I am not expecting Globe paycheques to put my daughter through university.
posted by gompa at 9:12 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Canada should worry about Stephen Harper and his slowly growing Conservative government, eh?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:13 AM on August 10, 2011


i just don't see obama losing this election

And that's why he just might.

The base isn't gonna be rushing out for this one, but the teabaggers will, in direct proportion to the batshitinsaness of the GOP nominee.
posted by bashos_frog at 9:16 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Or, maybe Obama should start firing snappy, wiseass cracks back at White House reporters?
posted by Horselover Phattie at 9:16 AM on August 10, 2011


"[Mr Chairman of the Federal Reserve], if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the [United States] and Europe, if you seek liberalization, come here to this [debate]. Mr. Bernanke, open this [debate]. Mr. [Bernanke], Mr. [Bernanke], tear down this wall [street]!" - Ronald H. Obama
posted by blue_beetle at 9:18 AM on August 10, 2011


I voted for Obama. But I will not do it again. His rhetoric sounds good, but I can't recall a President whose rhetoric is so frequently exactly the opposite of his actions. He has proven himself to be a very weak leader. He was handed huge problems, no doubt, when he was elected in 2008. But with those problems came huge opportunities....low hanging fruit if you will. And he squandered all of it. Moreover, based on rhetoric, he may indeed be an ideological liberal, but he is a pragmatic neoconservative. And I don't vote for neocons.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 9:18 AM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


OK, sorry about the Canada thing. I really skimmed the article and didn't pay close attention to the source once I realized what it was saying, and the attitude really did sound more Brit than Canadian.

Re: it not working in Wisconsin, that was an effort to recall six Republican senators from heavily Republican districts. Just as I know Louisiana's electoral votes will probably go to the teabagger, the smart money was for that recall to be an uphill battle. The next Presidential election will be much different.
posted by localroger at 9:20 AM on August 10, 2011


bashos_frog: The base isn't gonna be rushing out for this one, but the teabaggers will, in direct proportion to the batshitinsaness of the GOP nominee.

No, 90% of liberals will vote for a ham sandwich if it had a Democratic name tag. But we're only 14% of the voting population.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 9:20 AM on August 10, 2011


Canada should worry about Stephen Harper and his slowly growing Conservative government, eh?

Again, it's the Globe and Mail. They're not worried, they wanted a Harper majority.
posted by Hoopo at 9:21 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


the attitude really did sound more Brit than Canadian

I'm pretty sure Neil Reynolds would take this as a high compliment. Only thing nicer you could say about him is that he sounded like he belonged on the Wall St. Journal op-ed page.
posted by gompa at 9:23 AM on August 10, 2011


I voted for Obama. But I will not do it again.

Enjoy Romney, Perry or Bachmann! Criticizing Obama is reasonable, but encouraging people not to vote for him is nihilist. Liberals have a duty to vote for the least bad option so they don't get the most bad option.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:24 AM on August 10, 2011 [13 favorites]


And that's why he just might.

uh-huh, that's why i spent the two lines above the bit you quoted saying exactly that.
posted by nadawi at 9:24 AM on August 10, 2011


My prediction: 2012 sees a record low turnout at the polls, and the batshit-insane tea party candidate gets a razor thin majority amidst multiple reports of 'irregularities' in vote-counting.

Shortly thereafter, I move either back to Japan or forward to Brazil.
posted by bashos_frog at 9:26 AM on August 10, 2011


How Obama can get re-elected - just keep letting the Tea Party run the GOP into the ground, and keep candidate like Backmann etc making crazy eyes on national magazines.
posted by Old'n'Busted at 9:27 AM on August 10, 2011


Moreover, based on rhetoric, he may indeed be an ideological liberal, but he is a pragmatic neoconservative. And I don't vote for neocons.

Words mean things.
posted by joe lisboa at 9:30 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Andrew Sullivan: How Obama Can Win The Fall
posted by homunculus at 9:32 AM on August 10, 2011


What Obama supporters need to do is start spinning everything Obama does in the best possible light. That is how Regan became OMG REAGAN!!!! Anyone who challenges the party line, that OMG OBAMA!!!!11!! is not the greatest human being to ever walk the face of the earth should be shouted down and silenced at all costs. We also need to get a jump on the next generation, start introducing new editions of textbooks with a couple chapters added on ZOBAMAAa@!@@

This is SOP and I'm not sure why dems are not doing it, everyone knew Bush was terrible, but they acted like the guy was sent by god and could do no wrong. We can maybe consider doing what they did with Bush, send him somewhere out of the way, say a ranch, where he can still look strong. We can also carefully mangle all his speaches so they contain no actual meaning, but project strong! decider! man of action!

These are just a couple thoughts, of course we need to start crafting Romney's narative as well, we have to figure out his greatest strength, whatever the hell it might be , say his great head of hair. and turn it into a millstone to hang around his neck, After all, what kind of man has hair that nice? I think he may be going to hair salons instead of a good old fasioned barber! He probably uses "product". In contrast, lets send Obama to a barber shop, one in middle america with an 80 year old coot cutting hair. This is how we are going to win!
posted by Ad hominem at 9:33 AM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


the attitude really did sound more Brit than Canadian

I'm pretty sure Neil Reynolds would take this as a high compliment.


Having spent some time in both countries I can assure everyone that it isn't.
posted by localroger at 9:33 AM on August 10, 2011




Asking Canadians to miss a chance to identify something/someone as Canadian is like asking water not to be wet. Would you like me to make a list of Canadian celebrities for you, nadawi? I carry it with me in my wallet.

A REAL Canadian would have this memorized.
posted by me & my monkey at 9:39 AM on August 10, 2011 [14 favorites]


I voted for Obama. But I will not do it again.

Enjoy Romney, Perry or Bachmann! Criticizing Obama is reasonable, but encouraging people not to vote for him is nihilist. Liberals have a duty to vote for the least bad option so they don't get the most bad option.


That's what I worry about when I hear someone say they won't vote for Obama again. Presumably they won't vote for whomever the Republicans come up with either, and so either they'll vote for a third candidate who hasn't a hope in hell of winning, or just stay home on election day. Meanwhile all the Republican party base will all vote for the Republicans, and then they'll win.

Vote for the lesser of the two evils, people. Hold your nose if you have to, but do it. This isn't a game you get to just not play at all because you don't like the way it's done.
posted by orange swan at 9:43 AM on August 10, 2011 [11 favorites]


Frankly, I'm not sure the TeaPublicans care about winning the White House. They've been busy proving they can get most of what they want simply by holding the House and intimidating the R's in the Senate. Sure, things would go a lot smoother for them with a Republican in the White House, but I'm not sure it's necessary, given that Obama seems to be a capitulator. Having a Dem in the White House gives the TeaPublicans a bit of cover.
posted by Thorzdad at 9:48 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


How Obama can get re-elected

Don't get caught with a dead stripper.

I voted for Obama. But I will not do it again.

Enjoy Romney, Perry or Bachmann! Criticizing Obama is reasonable, but encouraging people not to vote for him is nihilist


I see it as a sign of sanity.

This isn't a game you get to just not play at all because you don't like the way it's done.

This isn't a game at all. People are dying because of Barack Obama's decisions. Get him out.
posted by mrgrimm at 9:50 AM on August 10, 2011


No, thanks. Reagan was bad enough--I don't need a repeat of that.
posted by yellowcandy at 9:51 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure it's necessary, given that Obama seems to be a capitulator. Having a Dem in the White House gives the TeaPublicans a bit of cover.

Exactly. They are getting everything they want right now, outside of a constitutional amendment banning abortion. Why on Earth would they care about winning the presidency.

They already have it locked up, regardless of whether the jackass or the other jackass wins.
posted by mrgrimm at 9:52 AM on August 10, 2011


Enjoy Romney, Perry or Bachmann! Criticizing Obama is reasonable, but encouraging people not to vote for him is nihilist. Liberals have a duty to vote for the least bad option so they don't get the most bad option.

This assumes that Obama is different. When he was elected, neocons like Condaleeza Rice and leftists like Chomsky predicted that Obama will follow and extend the policies of GW Bush. And history has proven them correct on all the major issues. He did give us a health care bill, but what we got was not what most of us had in mind. Romney created the same plan in Mass, so again, what is the difference? And I am not encouraging anybody to not vote for him. I am just stating my thoughts on the matter. And my duty is not to liberals or conservatives (why do you assume I am liberal?). My duty is to vote for somebody that I think will make a difference. I did that in 2008 by voting for Obama, and I was wrong. If there are no candidates that I can support in 2012 (which is the way it looks now), then I won't vote for POTUS for the first time in my life (I will go to the polls and vote for other positions, but not for POTUS).
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 9:52 AM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


> (See Garry Wills, Reagan's America. Read it twice.)

See also: The Clothes Have No Emperor, by Paul Slansky.
posted by The Card Cheat at 9:52 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


No, thanks. Reagan was bad enough--I don't need a repeat of that.

Seriously. "Here's how you can win: ruin our country for the next 50 years."

The damage Reagan did to this country is immeasurable.
posted by mrgrimm at 9:53 AM on August 10, 2011 [5 favorites]


Not to worry, President Obama is leading from behind on this. Regardless of your opinion on his policies, President Obama has been ineffective at getting them passed, implementing them and at directing the economy. If you believe in Keynes, then we should be increasing government spending (check) and lowering taxes ( ), but the market is telling you that the associated deficits are economy crushing.

George Herbert Walker Bush was not reelected because he chose to do the right thing and raise taxes even after his famous pledge to all lip readers. William Jefferson Clinton was reelected because he realized AND acted upon the belief that it is all about the stupid economy.

Forget the ideological views on social programs. That is at the margin. Barrack Hussein Obama needs to find jobs for working Joes and Janes, and he needs to build confidence that better days are ahead. The Gipper (or was it Bonzo) sold hope and we bought it.

Obama should not be reelected nor do I think he will. He will go down in the history books as James Earl Carter is/will. As an incredibly smart guy with a big heart who is an ineffective leader and President. After 3 years, it is time to stop blaming your predecessor and start taking responsibility on your own for your own actions or lack thereof.
posted by AugustWest at 9:57 AM on August 10, 2011


People are dying because of Barack Obama's decisions. Get him out.

I won't shed any tears if Obama loses in 2012. What does bother me is, who's going to sit in the White House in his stead? Remember how the U.S. invaded Iraq and got rid of Saddam Hussein in short order? That was great, wasn't it? But what happened after that? It's not enough to work to get rid of Obama. You also have to have a viable plan for whom you're going to elect instead. If the options are Michelle Bachmann, or Mitt Romney, then you're cutting off your nose to spite your face.
posted by orange swan at 9:57 AM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


Enjoy Romney, Perry or Bachmann

Oh for chrissakes, not this again.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 10:25 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


If he's going to lose, it won't be because liberals look for a legitimate alternative, but because he was given a great deal of political capital, which he subsequently squandered on endless compromises that emboldened his opponents and alienated supporters.

Let's face it: saying you need to vote for him or else is fomenting the same regime of fear we had under Bush II. Personally, I'm tired of politicians and lackeys who can't get anything done without scaring people whose worst crime is simply to have the audacity to express their views.

Anyway, Obama is a right-of-center leader, so its not like the saner alternatives would be that different. Romney and Obama even share the same health plan.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:27 AM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


Well, with Obama's call for $4 trillion in spending cuts during a persistent economic downturn, his helping to bail out the banksters, his refusal to create an FDR style jobs program, his increase in the number of US wars, and his putting Social Security & Medicare on the cutting board, he seems to have the call me crazy aspect of Reaganism down pat. Me? I'd rather he go down fighting for jobs, cutting the defense budget 50%, leading on global warming, and doing whatever he can to reduce the disastrous income inequality in the US. The current cast of Republican possibilities gives him plenty of room to run a fighting for the people, not the powers government. So far, unfortunately, he doesn't seem to want to do that.
posted by Karmadillo at 10:30 AM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Romney of a couple years ago may not have been much different from what Obama is now, but I would encourage people to note that Romney now is not Romney of a couple years ago. He can see the Overton window shifting, and he's shifting along with it.
posted by Jpfed at 10:31 AM on August 10, 2011


Fuck Obama! I'm writing in Ralph Nader.
posted by buggzzee23 at 10:32 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Can we please keep on topic and talk about Globe and Mail columnists?
posted by KokuRyu at 10:33 AM on August 10, 2011


What does it take for people to stop voting against their own interest? Why is it Obama hasn't taken that question directly to voters? The Tea Party really seems to know its constituency and the rah-rah speeches that worked for Bush still do, especially because there is not a whit of effective counter-dialog. Meanwhile the latest shell game being played is so cynical I want to weep: it started with "homeowners are in trouble, so let's drop money from helicopters onto banks". Now there's a huge debt and the dialog has conveniently switched focus from what went wrong in the first place. It's now "how do we pay", not "how do we fix the country". The dialog is about money and not about having a society that is worth the name. There are continuing sleight-of-hand distractions being played out by both parties while the country is looted and the worst off get less and less of what meager crumbs of the pie they ever had.

I will vote for anybody but Republicans and Democrats in 2012. The lies, the chicanery and the cynicism have become too much.
posted by jet_silver at 10:36 AM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


wait to see exactly which batshit insane whakadoodle the Teapublicans nominate, then point and laugh his ass off during the campaign
Seems to have worked in Wisconsin, why not the general?
I don't really understand the rush to declare Wisconsin a meaningless, futile, failure. I don't mean to single you out nor to imply that you're saying exactly that, but I've seen a lot of people on the left really react not just with disappointment, but with sort of a bitterness against Democrats for even having tried. A bitterness not evident until the results came in. It seems strange to me.

All of those seats were held by Republicans. Some of them are in absurdly strong Republican districts - Democrats didn't even bother putting up a challenger for two of them in 2008. One of the incumbents has never faced a Democratic challenger before last night. One of them defeated his last Democratic challenger with over 89% of the vote. Getting three out of those six particular seats was never a likely result.

Moreover, getting two out of those six is not futile. The only reason that those six, and only those six, were up for recall is because they're the ones that were allowed by law to go up for recall. More will be able to be recalled in 2012, as will Walker. And many of those that will be able to be recalled will be easier to recall than these six. We need one of them. One.

I only hope that this strange self-hating bitterness doesn't stop the (generally) pro-Democratic voters of the other two districts that are up for recall next week from coming out to vote, thus erasing the gains of this week.
posted by Flunkie at 10:36 AM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


Yeah, I'm tired of people telling me who I need to vote for and why Republicans in Democrat costumes are "the lesser of two evils." I'll be 50 in two months, and I've been voting for the ostensible lesser of two evils all my life, and it hasn't done much for the people of this country or the world either way. I went out and canvassed my fucking ass off in 2008 for the express purpose of keeping Sarah Palin the hell away from anywhere near the White House, so I guess I accomplished that, woohoo, and I suppose if she were to end up on the ticket again, I might have to do the same.

But you know, if the voters of this country really honestly would elect Michelle Bachmann or some other right-wing nut, maybe that's what it would take to stir people out of their complacency. All I know is I'll vote or not vote for whoever the hell I choose, and unless things change a LOT, it is not going to be Barack Obama.
posted by FelliniBlank at 10:40 AM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


Well, Reagan did manage to raise taxes.
posted by benzenedream at 10:41 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


[A few comments removed, cut it out.]
posted by cortex at 10:41 AM on August 10, 2011


Vote for the lesser of the two evils, people. Hold your nose if you have to, but do it. This isn't a game you get to just not play at all because you don't like the way it's done.

My, my, how things have changed on the blue. Here's my prayer.
posted by Vibrissae at 10:43 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Ya'll sure do have a lot energy.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:45 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


there was a broken link up there
posted by Vibrissae at 10:46 AM on August 10, 2011


Can we please keep on topic and talk about Globe and Mail columnists?

Yeah, when are we gonna get started on Leah McLaren?
posted by beau jackson at 10:47 AM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


What kinda Globe and Mail columnist would Obama be?!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:50 AM on August 10, 2011


What kinda Globe and Mail columnist would Obama be?!

Richard Florida. In blackface. Not understanding why that's offensive, with an elaborate historical justification for it that turns out, on closer examination, to be mostly conjecture and nifty wordplay.
posted by gompa at 11:19 AM on August 10, 2011


This assumes that Obama is different. When he was elected, neocons like Condaleeza Rice and leftists like Chomsky predicted that Obama will follow and extend the policies of GW Bush. And history has proven them correct on all the major issues.

And history will be proven once again. You guys tune out, take your ball off the field and say you won't play anymore. But everyone knows that you're going to come back the next time, when US troops are getting dragged through the streets Tripoli, when inflation hits 15%, when another one of your neighbor gets their home repossessed because they can't pay their medical bills, when NPR gets bought off by Xinhua.

So let's just save everyone the trouble.
posted by FJT at 11:22 AM on August 10, 2011


We live in a culture of artificial fear, and whether that fear is manufactured by Reaganites who promised the Reds would take over if we didn't vote for him, or Bush II supporters who promised that we'd have Sharia Law by now if it wasn't for him, or by Obama supporters, some of whom who seem hellbent on now making liberals the enemy, makes that machine of fear no less fake and manipulative. Destroy that machine before it ultimately kills our democracy.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:22 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I don't really understand the rush to declare Wisconsin a meaningless, futile, failure.

What I was trying to get at is the fact that the Democrats had to fight as hard as they knew how to win those seats they did in Wisconsin. It's waiting for the Tea Party to shoot itself in the foot which strikes me as futile.
posted by valkyryn at 11:26 AM on August 10, 2011


Obama's troubles show just how weak the Presidency actually is, and how the Democrats utterly capitulated to Bush and the Republicans during the last decade, and facilitated the continuing deconstruction of the American state.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:26 AM on August 10, 2011 [8 favorites]


Obama's troubles show just how weak the Presidency actually is

Pretty much, yeah, that's why a Republican being elected again doesn't scare me. If the Democrats want to stop the President from doing something, they can.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 11:28 AM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Do you know why Reagan wins? Because he and colossal failure George W. Bush are the only acceptable choices for a specific somewhat popular political ideology. But say you aren't a dip-shit, or aren't that specific type of dip-shit, then you have a tough choice. The 80% of americans who aren't conservative starve the beast morons are going to be split between Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, FDR, Kennedy, Clinton, and Obama. It's like when people vote on the best novel of the 20th century and it is invariably something by Ayn Rand. Because objectivist nuts can all converge on Atlas Shrugged and the vast majority of people who have they great taste or no taste, are fractured across hundreds of excellent books. So the twaddle rises to the top.
posted by I Foody at 11:28 AM on August 10, 2011 [5 favorites]


The 80% of americans who aren't conservative starve the beast morons

It's this kind of back-patting, self-congratulating condescension which, while popular on Internet echo chambers, plays badly with the actual electorate.

"Conservative" is the single largest ideological lable Americans use to describe themselves, beating out "liberal" by a margin of almost 2:1.
posted by valkyryn at 11:34 AM on August 10, 2011


Only if you don't offer "moderate" as a choice, I believe.
posted by spitbull at 11:40 AM on August 10, 2011


Romney created the same plan in Mass, so again, what is the difference?

Romney will repeal Obama's healthcare law, while Obama would not repeal Obama's healthcare law. This is not rocket science.

Republicans want to destroy the social safety net; crush the unions; cut taxes for the rich, then use the deficit it as an excuse to slash environmental and social programs; turn the Constitution into an evangelical pamphlet. I don't know how people can look at what Republican governors and legislatures are doing around the country, and the behavior of congressional Republicans, and think that a Republican president is an equally acceptable option to Obama. It's surreal. It's like the 9/11 truthers. You start with a premise and ignore all the evidence against it.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 11:43 AM on August 10, 2011 [9 favorites]


It's surreal. It's like the 9/11 truthers.

Don't forget to throw in Holocaust deniers, too.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:44 AM on August 10, 2011


It's this kind of back-patting, self-congratulating condescension which, while popular on Internet echo chambers, plays badly with the actual electorate.

"Conservative" is the single largest ideological lable Americans use to describe themselves, beating out "liberal" by a margin of almost 2:1.


If you actually think Reagan was the best president in history you are a fucking dumby. I don't give a fuck. You can be conservative and think Washington or Jefferson was the greatest president and not be a fucking idiot. If you actually think Kennedy was the greatest president you are also a stupid idiot.

And who says that condescension plays badly with the actual electorate. Making the word liberal a slur has been an effective strategy for the republicans. I'm not going to cowed into being a pussy who respects people for being dumber, wronger, and morally worse than I am.
posted by I Foody at 11:47 AM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


Romney will repeal Obama's healthcare law, while Obama would not repeal Obama's healthcare law. This is not rocket science.

Republicans want to destroy the social safety net; crush the unions; cut taxes for the rich, then use the deficit it as an excuse to slash environmental and social programs; turn the Constitution into an evangelical pamphlet.


They don't have the votes.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 11:49 AM on August 10, 2011


Republicans don't need votes. They have rhetoric.
posted by Talez at 11:53 AM on August 10, 2011


Yeah, when are we gonna get started on Leah McLaren?

Fish in a barrel, beau jackson, fish in a barrel.
posted by Phlegmco(tm) at 11:53 AM on August 10, 2011


> Barrack Hussein Obama needs to find jobs for working Joes and Janes, and he needs to build confidence that better days are ahead.

I don't know if this can be done by executive order or not, but in order to fuel a firestorm of innovation and job-creation:

1 - Ban all software patents

2 - Limit all other patents to seven years, retroactively

3 - Limit all copyright to twenty years, retroactively

The resulting deluge of new products, services and devices will be revolutionary.

Artists, inventors and entreprenuers are increasingly under attack from large corporations and patent/copyright trolls abusing the (antiquated and inefficient) IP laws to stifle innovation and suppress competition.
posted by mmrtnt at 12:21 PM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm emotionally exhausted from the ObamaGRAR Festival. Even a SLOE dance is too much. Obama isn't Reagan. Republicans have bought the entire media machine with unlimited corporate money after the court overturned campaign finance reform. During the default debate they basically bought all the air time on all the cable networks.

I don't see this ending well.
posted by humanfont at 12:26 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I've been favoriting almost half the posts on this thread - but whoa, it's also a good reminder that even Americans don't really understand American democracy. I'm not blaming you; I can see how we would have exactly the same problem if the EU was "The United States of Europe". Now instead we have confusion, bankrupcy and riots. So it's not like we are smarter than you guys. But...
Please be smarter than us. You have been hijacked by an ignorant and roudy minority. The majority of Americans know better. Please punish the tea party, not the President.

Reagan introduced the politics of ignorance into the world. He got away with knowing nothing and achieving nothing. Our most corrupted leaders copy him daily. Obama's praise of Reagan is despicable. Still, Obama is the anti-Reagan. Not the chosen one, and in no way perfect. And from a European view, about as far right as one can get. But he is a hell of a lot more capable than any of the Republicans on the list. It is endlessly sad your choices are so bad. But look at the rest of us. No one has good choices in politics.
posted by mumimor at 12:30 PM on August 10, 2011


So how much damage, serious damage, could a Teaparty president, congress and house do in 1 term?

Seems like a lot.
posted by Lord_Pall at 12:36 PM on August 10, 2011


Destroy that machine before it ultimately kills our democracy.

My sincere fear is that it already has.
posted by aught at 12:45 PM on August 10, 2011


No one has good choices in politics.

Who said we have choice? Choice in American politics is made by those who have the means purchase their preference. Everyone else is nothing more than a bystander; that's you and me and millions of other American suckers.

So, over and over those with the means get to push our fear buttons every election cycle; we hear rhetoric; we dehumanize good candidates; we get all up in arms; we get catharsis as we pull the voting lever. Nothing (or very little) changes. Rinse. Wash. Repeat.

We are stuck in a game that is taken as real; we (collectively) have been kept ignorant of true options, and real choice.

We're still pretty well off, so we can absorb a lot of the inefficiencies that come from a closed process - like the one described above. However, as true diversity - optimized through real choice - continues to be constrained, we become weaker.

Now we see real fraying around the edges. I think we have enough well integrated social fabric to prevent complete dissolution, but we are going to see a lot worse fraying until we find a way to prevent the sale of government, and the limitation of real choice. This is the primary (pun intended) long-term challenge that America faces - everything else stems from our failure, or success, to change the process of buying policy. That's the only change I can believe in, because that's the only thing that will give us real choice. Obama and Perry/Romney/Bachmann is not a choice; it's a setup.
posted by Vibrissae at 12:46 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Exactly. They are getting everything they want right now, outside of a constitutional amendment banning abortion. Why on Earth would they care about winning the presidency.

Supreme Court appointees.
posted by Room 641-A at 12:47 PM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


> Supreme Court appointees.

Those are nice plums to be able to pick, but it's more about the bread and butter Federal court judges.
posted by Horselover Phattie at 12:52 PM on August 10, 2011


I'm not going to cowed into being a pussy who respects people for being dumber, wronger, and morally worse than I am.

I hope that you find righteous indignation to be an effective substitute for electoral success.

Because I don't.
posted by valkyryn at 12:53 PM on August 10, 2011


Moreover, based on rhetoric, he may indeed be an ideological liberal, but he is a pragmatic neoconservative.

I'm not even so sure any more that Obama's an ideological liberal.

My feeling about Obama has evolved to now seeing him as chiefly interested in getting deals done, with little or no regard for the content of the deal, being the most reasonable and flexible party in the deal. He's kind of the polar opposite of the Tea Partiers in this way: they're consumed with their own ideology, their own passions, their own anger, at the expense of any hope of compromise or reasoning or bipartisanship. For Obama, it's the structure of the deal that matters, not the substance.
posted by aught at 1:01 PM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


Those are nice plums to be able to pick, but it's more about the bread and butter Federal court judges.

It's just that after these next couple of plums get picked it could take a long time for the next crop to ripen.
posted by Room 641-A at 1:01 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I never had many illusions that he was my kind of liberal at all. But I voted for him anyway because my politics doesn't begin or end at the voting booth. I can walk and chew gum at the same time. I can also compromise at the voting booth and spend my political dollars where my heart is.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 1:04 PM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


But I voted for him anyway because my politics doesn't begin or end at the voting booth. I can walk and chew gum at the same time. I can also compromise at the voting booth and spend my political dollars where my heart is.

Sure. And most of us who are hand-wringing about Obama will of course vote for him next year, because there will be no better alternative.
posted by aught at 1:10 PM on August 10, 2011


I think it would improve the tone of this thread if y'all go back to reminding me that the Globe and Mail is Canadian.
posted by localroger at 1:14 PM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Well, there's a pretty good chance that, like Reagan, Obama could face a Minnesotan. That comparison ends about there.
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:19 PM on August 10, 2011


Please be Al Franken. Please be Al Franken.
posted by Room 641-A at 1:22 PM on August 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


I love the critique that Obama is a Community Organizer. Because in my view, that is exactly what the current anger on both sides is about. There is a method to this madness, which may or may not be applicable on a large scale.
What Obama has been doing, in every instance except national security, has followed the methods of direct democracy. As an academic observer, this isn't the first time I've seen how the proces could be taken over by radical activists or cynical stakeholders.
A bad outcome is Venezuela. A good one is Brazil. Both of these countries have simpler democratic systems than the US.
On national security, Powell had the key: the Pottery Barn Rule. If you break it you own it. Unfortunately, America now owns Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq. Really stupid, but not exactly Obama's fault. Sorry.
posted by mumimor at 1:30 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oh, and you guys should do some travelling in your own great country (no irony here); huge parts of the US look exactly like the third World. You are not safe and Standard and Poors are not way off the mark.
posted by mumimor at 1:35 PM on August 10, 2011


I love the critique that Obama is a Community Organizer.

that doesn't scale well
posted by pyramid termite at 1:38 PM on August 10, 2011


Maybe not.
I'm not religious. But I'm still convinced Obama is far better than Romney.
posted by mumimor at 1:41 PM on August 10, 2011


I love the critique that Obama is a Community Organizer

The only difference between a Community Organizer and a Communism Organizer is s+m.
posted by philip-random at 2:41 PM on August 10, 2011


Sell guns to Iran and give the money to terrorists to buy more guns?

Wait, I have an even better idea: how about allowing guns to be sold to Mexico, leading to the murder of two U.S. agents and numerous Mexicans?
posted by John Cohen at 2:44 PM on August 10, 2011


I feel like I'm reading comments from the gun control thread and the Standard and Poor thread and both have wound up in here somehow and now I feel dizzy.
posted by Hoopo at 2:56 PM on August 10, 2011


huge parts of the US look exactly like the third World

Huh? Which third world would that be?

If it's the third world of urban border Mexico, where hordes of merchants see dollar signs superimposed on anyone from the other side, I can think of very few places within the US that look like that. Some big cities have bad areas, but not to the level of a place like Tijuana, where you risk being kidnapped by random strangers simply because you might be thought ransomable. And I have been to Tijuana.

If it's the third world of rural Mexico, I'd like to know where in the US you have the many villages with everything arranged in walking distance around the town square so that the many people who can't even afford a VW Beetle can still get what they need to live, where most of the meat and produce are grown locally, and where construction practices are followed which would not be permitted by the code in the US so that people who can't afford a US style house don't have to live in a cardboard box.

If it's Trinidad, would you please point out to me where the major cities with open ditch sewers are in the US?

If it's Kenya, well my wife says Kenya makes rural Mexico look like the First World. You could take most of those people and plant them in Cardel (pop. 5000, about an hour's drive from Veracruz City), and they would think they were in the US by comparison with home. Electricity, TV's, and paved roads are common in rural Mexico; in Kenya, not so much.

If it's Madagascar, well my wife says Madagascar makes Kenya look like the First World. Most areas don't have electricity at all, roads are sparse and poor, and even the major cities might only have electricity four hours a day. Which part of the US looks like this again?

So, to sum up, while things are certainly in a downward spiral in parts of the US and we should address this, the only way I think you can say any part of the US looks like any part of the Third World (and exactly!) is if you do not in fact know what the actual Third World looks like.
posted by localroger at 3:33 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


huge parts of the US look exactly like the third World

Yeah, there's plenty of places in the US where no one lives. What's your point?
posted by valkyryn at 4:10 PM on August 10, 2011


I fear that disillusionment caused by outsized expectations of what is possible are driving a lot of voters and liberals away. The challenge Obama faces is nearly impossible. The Bush administration stuffed the civil service with people who are opposed to even the modest Obama agenda. The EPA, Mineral Management Service, DHS, DoJ, DoD, OMB, had a lot of turnover under Bush because of demographics and the big expansion in security spending. It goes way beyond the Courts. The Bush people hired thousands of Michael Brown's and you see them everywhere in government. When you combine this with the denial of service attack underway by the Senate to block political appointments; Obama is really blocked in what he can do. If liberals want to make progress against this leviathan, they will need to win more than one election.
posted by humanfont at 4:13 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I will vote for anybody but Republicans and Democrats in 2012.

You might as well stay home if you're not going to vote for a candidate who can actually win. Fixation on voting for, or not voting for, a particular party, rather than concentrating on the two (or in extremely rare cases, three) candidates who actually have any chance at winning the election, is the only reason Canada will have had a Conservative government for at least nine years by the time it's done.

Don't make that same mistake.
posted by one more dead town's last parade at 4:37 PM on August 10, 2011


I see and feel all this left wing frustration, but what I don't see is the movement that is ready to put legitimate left-wing candidates on the primary ballots to challenge and change the discussion.

Bottom line is that the right wing actors know that their winning strategy is to keep folks other than their devoted adherents from voting, and, barring that, to at least have them not vote in such a way that it will cost Republicans elections. The mess in congress over the debt limit wasn't just because a certain number of Republicans are Tea Party, it was also because the Tea Party made a legitimate threat that other Republicans who didn't stick to their line would face a legitimate primary challenge. That is the key.

So, organize this frustration. Go out and put a legitimate primary challenger on the ballot to the left of all those representatives you think are selling you out.
posted by meinvt at 4:45 PM on August 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Raise taxes?
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:46 PM on August 10, 2011


I have a sneaking suspicion there are astroturfers in our midst...
posted by wierdo at 4:47 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Go out and put a legitimate primary challenger on the ballot to the left of all those representatives you think are selling you out.

I've been called a moron here for supporting a Democrat in a primary over a carpetbagging career Republican. Electability over-motivates the Democrats at the moment. At a certain point you have to start trying to make your policies electable instead of trying to find electable candidates.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 4:50 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have a sneaking suspicion there are astroturfers in our midst...

From Firedoglake, maybe.
posted by joe lisboa at 5:11 PM on August 10, 2011


Problem is that if you focus on good policy, the other side will do everything in their power to lie their way into making your candidates seem unelectable.
posted by wierdo at 5:11 PM on August 10, 2011


"His best shot now is to get back up and let gravity prevail with radical tax reform that slashes rates and closes loopholes"

Speaking of loopholes: Panama Trade Deal Would Undercut Efforts To Get Rich Americans To Pay Taxes
posted by homunculus at 5:29 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


They lie anyway.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 5:29 PM on August 10, 2011


Yeah, and you'll be too focused on policy to counter the inter-racial baby smear.
posted by wierdo at 6:44 PM on August 10, 2011


I don't like Obama's chances as much as I did six months ago. Perception is everything, and I think he looks like a loser to too many people. Progressives are pissed at him for legitimate reasons, and his hands off approach looks like "no vision" to the people in the middle looking for someone to address our pressing issues.

He's gotten things accomplished, but the results-don't-match-rhetoric schtick is getting very old.

I am a die-hard liberal Democrat; always have been. But the Obama sticker came off my car today, and if I vote for him next year I will be holding my nose. It's very sad, IMO.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 6:49 PM on August 10, 2011


I fear that disillusionment caused by outsized expectations of what is possible are driving a lot of voters and liberals away.

I find this fear to be mostly irrational. Which wouldn't be a problem except that you insist on blaming a political group that consistently shows up and votes for Democrats.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 6:51 PM on August 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah, and you'll be too focused on policy to counter the inter-racial baby smear.

And when you focus on the man...like John Edwards...
posted by furiousxgeorge at 7:25 PM on August 10, 2011


Obama's best shot would be to go to town on these corporate warlords and use the full power of his office to mercilessly lock these guys up in Gitmo for eternity under the pretext of national security. Murdoch has been spying on our state secrets and executive privileges and running terrorist propaganda with corporate cash. That seems like a pretext. He bring the millions of unemployed to DC and set them on a permanent protest against congress from an encampment on the mall. This would put an end to the republic though, so I prefer his drive me mad consensus based go slow governance. I am reconciled to President Bachman and will be blaming the far left for giving up on him. I'm not punching the hippies, just mixing guilt into the acid trip.
posted by humanfont at 8:33 PM on August 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


Gallup’s determination that Americans now rate Mr. Reagan as the greatest president in U.S. history.

Actually, that's not at all what Gallup determined. What Gallup actually showed in their Feb. 2-5, 2011 poll was that 19% of those polled placed Reagan at the top; the next 56% are divided between Lincoln, Clinton, Kennedy, Washington, and FDR.

The really odd thing is that Obama came in next.
posted by carping demon at 10:37 PM on August 10, 2011


huge parts of the US look exactly like the third World

More like Airstrip One - in the Third World there are happy children playing in the streets and you can bribe the police.
posted by Meatbomb at 4:03 AM on August 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have a sneaking suspicion there are astroturfers in our midst...

Who is the astroturfer in this thread? I'm curious who the GOP operatives are, so please share. We always get Karl Rove staffers in here when Obama's numbers go down, it seems.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:57 AM on August 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Obama's best shot would be to go to town on these corporate warlords and use the full power of his office to mercilessly lock these guys up in Gitmo for eternity under the pretext of national security. Murdoch has been spying on our state secrets and executive privileges and running terrorist propaganda with corporate cash. That seems like a pretext. He bring the millions of unemployed to DC and set them on a permanent protest against congress from an encampment on the mall. This would put an end to the republic though, so I prefer his drive me mad consensus based go slow governance. I am reconciled to President Bachman and will be blaming the far left for giving up on him. I'm not punching the hippies, just mixing guilt into the acid trip.

I dunno, sounds like you're hippy punching.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 6:29 AM on August 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


chasing: "Nixon almost got impeached."

Also, don't forget that Nixon would be too liberal to be a Democrat today.
posted by schmod at 6:42 AM on August 11, 2011


Also, don't forget that Nixon would be too liberal to be a Democrat today.

Man, I'm tired of this line. Richard M Nixon was a complex man and a master politician. The fact that some of his policies (from 40+ years back) seem liberal now is far more a reflection of how times (and overall thinking) have changed, not the man's personal politics. He was the definition of machiavellian, a man who made his initial name by riding the coat-tails of Joseph McCarthy, a political animal who would have flourished in any culture ... which probably explains how he managed to connect so well with Mao.
posted by philip-random at 11:24 AM on August 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


Here's another Globe columnist's take on America's problems: What America needs is shock therapy

In a sense, the Tea Party and the Republican Party have won the intellectual argument, since cowed Democrats now seem to agree that cutting spending rather than raising revenue is the only way out of the fiscal impasse.

The trouble is, without tax increases, the cuts in discretionary spending alone will still leave the U.S. a hobbled debtor nation, to say nothing of being unable to address the other challenges.

posted by KokuRyu at 12:44 PM on August 11, 2011


So, weirdo, who are the astroturfers?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:37 PM on August 11, 2011


I'm a Canadian. We can only play on astroturf because it is so cold up here.
posted by KokuRyu at 3:38 PM on August 11, 2011


We can only play on astroturf because it is so cold up here.

What a conspiracy: The CFL is in it with the aliens! Free landing strips and healthcare for gay Martians, I guess.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:33 PM on August 11, 2011


Free landing strips

explains the larger field
posted by philip-random at 6:12 PM on August 11, 2011


The real frozen tundra.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 9:33 PM on August 11, 2011


So I guess we don't have astroturfers in our midst, huh.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:26 AM on August 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


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