Good Luck With That

So President Obama is racing up to Boston to rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic, having belatedly discovered that governing like a Republican when you ran as a Democrat has made fellow Democrats as popular as crabs in a whorehouse.  Smooth move.  Watch Republicans crow when she loses, and declare his Presidency over.  I’ve got news… it’s been over for quite some time; really before it started.  From the FISA cave to a health care bill that might have been written by Bush himself, Obama hasn’t undone anything Bush did that matters, nor does he appear to plan to.  I used to think he would be like Clinton, a moderate Republican with good political instincts, but he’s not.  The only mystery to me is what, pray tell, the teabaggers can find to dislike at this point.

The wars have not only not stopped but escalated.  Torture has become as American as apple pie.  Secrecy is being defended just as fanatically in court, and illegal imprisonment, warrantless spying, and absurd invasions of privacy continue.  The Bush tax cuts remain holy writ, the deficits blossom, and the military budget grows like topsy.  Gay Americans still can neither serve openly in the military nor look forward to any movement on the federal level toward marriage equality.  The “too big to fail” banks are larger and even more arrogant, and gutting “entitlements” like Social Security and Medicare is more likely than Bush could have ever hoped.  Why, In Heaven’s name, would Democrats reward such behavior with their votes?

As Obama’s approval ratings continue to plummet, deservedly so, he thinks his magic presence will save a lackluster candidate from defeat at the hands of a teabagger  centerfold.  Good luck with that.  If I were Coakley, I’d say, “Stay home.”  She’d probably win if she did.

Republicans will naturally declare the loss of Teddy Kennedy’s seat to be a harbinger of  things to come, and they’re probably right.  They understand, as Democrats don’t, that once in office you actually have to DO SOMETHING if you want to stay there.  Obama and Coakley seem to think this is some kind of myth.  I guess Bush wasn’t bad enough for Democrats to clue in to the idea that Republicans have to be defeated because of the damage their policies inflict on all but the richest Americans, and reversing that dysfunction, utterly, is the only way Americans will see beyond the bleatings of the right-loving mainstream media to relegate them to the irrelevancy they have so richly earned.

And you don’t do that by being just like them.  The 60 seat majority that supposedly makes Coakley’s seat meaningful is nothing but a pile of garbage with Joe Lieberman sitting on top.  You know, the guy Obama campaigned for back in 2006……

I am as disheartened as any other liberal would be by this revolting development, but Obama has done it to himself, his own party, and America, and this loss, should it occur, is probably his last wakeup call before he becomes the irrelevant one-termer  he seems determined to be.  Hell, if I weren’t so cheap, I’d give some money to the Brown campaign.


  1. dirigo says:

    I fear Tom is getting to you.

    As I indicated in the previous post, we may have to call her Squeaky, but I think Coakley will win.

  2. retzilian says:

    Both parties missed their opportunity to run a really good candidate who had no ties to the RW nuts or the entrenched corporatist Dems.

    But noooooo.

    It would have been the perfect opportunity for an independent of any strip to run against the Ds and Rs. But noooo. Nobody had the guts to buck the system.

    Meanwhile, a 60 seat majority in the Senate (a breathtaking majority in any other era), is still not good enough, what with Lieberman voting with the Rs. No, we need a 61 seat majority to get anything done today.

    I wish that more independents would take this as a sign to run in the mid-terms and capitalize on the general antipathy on both sides of the political spectrum. Everybody is pissed.

  3. just a poor guy says:

    Nobody wants a health care bill that was crafted in the offices of the health insurers and then sent down to our own Sveriges riksdag. The Democrats don’t really want to have to defend that thing and if the whole project fails, they’ll be off the hook, blaming the genocidal Republicans for children dying on the sidewalks. And life, pretty much better than it was just a few years ago, continues to drudge on.

    • cocktailhag says:

      It is surprising to me, or I wish it were, that anyone thought health care that didn’t cut the insurers out entirely would be politically advantageous, much less work in the real world. Everyone knew what Bush was doing with Medicare Part D, because he was, well, Bush, and the corporations would always come first for him. Why a purported Democrat would do that is beyond me, and they deserve what they get.

      • sysprog says:

        Who is, now, campaigning against Medicare Part D?

        Nobody is.

        Seniors like it and corporations like it.

        So why would it be politically crazy to emulate that?

        Unethical, wasteful, bad policy – - yeah, sure.

        But not crazy.

  4. sysprog says:

    Brown is a teabagger?

    He seems to be a typical Massachusetts Republican – - the kind of Republican that frequently gets elected there.

    From 1965 through 1991, Massachusetts had four different governors, of whom two were Democrats and two were Republicans.

    All four governors from 1991 through 2007 were Republicans.

    The current governor, Deval Patrick, is a Democrat, elected in 2006, which was a very bad year for Republicans, but even so, Patrick got only 55% of the vote.

    Obviously, if Coakley loses, that would be and probably should be interpreted as a vote of no confidence in Obama and the Dems, but the current polls are showing a lot of potential voters who say they support both Obama and Brown, so it’s obviously not only a vote about Obama, but also (hold on, here’s my radical theory) a vote about Brown and Coakley.

    • cocktailhag says:

      Not a teabagger, per se, but more than willing to woo their support, when it behooves him; i.e., railing against the health care bill for the wrong reasons. But you’re right, Massachusetts was never as “liberal,” particularly economically, as the FOX types make it out to be. Coakley muffed it by not giving anybody any reason to vote for her.

    • dirigo says:

      Brown appears to be basing his entire campaign on the pledge to defeat the health care bill, which for me, as a Massachusetts guy, doesn’t ring up as “liberal Republican,” notwithstanding his state legislative voting record.

      Previous Republican governors in the state worked with Democratic presidents fairly well, and that is more or less the norm in Massachusetts. GOP governors there are not ravers, as is the case in the South and West. Even Romney was half-hearted about drinking the GOP firewater when he was governor. Of course when Mitt went national, that changed.

      I would not assume that Brown would “work” with Obama.

      Up to now, his image and rhetoric are jarring to my eyes and ears.

      • cocktailhag says:

        Unfortunately, “working” with Obama means working with Big Health, Big Banking, Big Miltary, and Big Rich, against unions, gays, liberals, and libertarians. He and Brown could end up best friends.

        • dirigo says:

          Along with Connecticut Joe, who will be bounced next time.

          By the way, you might like Dick Blumenthal, who is the smart money favorite to replace Chris Dodd.

          Interestingly, Blumenthal, like Lieberman, has been the attorney general for a really long time, and the Connecticut AG’s office has a progressive pedigree as an institution.

          But golly, what happened to Joe?

          What may happen to Blumenthal?

  5. sysprog says:

    Digby recommends this item by Chris Hayes.

    This article appeared in the February 1, 2010 edition of The Nation.
    [...] Those arguing that the bill will be a massive step forward in reducing the misery of the uninsured are for the most part right. And those arguing that the Senate version of the bill is a grotesque sellout to Big Pharma and, to a lesser extent, Big Insurance, are more or less correct as well. When the White House used its muscle to kill a bipartisan amendment that would have allowed reimportation of drugs, it was as if our fictional social worker or priest took to shaking down shopkeepers to stay in the good graces of the local thugs. For what it’s worth, I’m generally in the pay-off-the-thugs camp, because of the concrete benefits it would provide (Medicaid expansion for 15 million) but also because by enshrining the notion that the government is responsible for managing the healthcare system, the crimes of the insurance racket can now be laid at the feet of our politicians. In the short run, that accountability may spell political trouble; in the long run, I’m hopeful that it will force the government to crack down.

    That said, the whole system that produced this legislative approach sucks, and recalls nothing so much as the Bush/GOP passage of Medicare Part D. [...]


  6. retzilian says:

    Thanks for that “Nation” link, sysprog. I have a big crush on Chris Hayes — from afar, of course.

    Speaking of popular blobbers, I read “The Daily Dish” pretty much every day, have read Andrew Sullivan for years, since long before his Atlantic days and even before he was a bit Iraq war supporter (and then had buyer’s remorse). He’s a Catholic gay from England, which makes him a total misfit, which is likely why I was drawn to him…anyhoo….

    Today he has an entry called “Obama’s Tora Bora?” where his hyperbolic and offensive (to me) headline likens Obama’s potential loss of the health care reform bill (should Brown be elected in MA), to Bush’s loss of the mysterious OBL.

    He doesn’t flesh out how these two events are analogous; it’s more a rant about how the Ds wasted time on the bill, how it came down to one vote, blah blah. He’s off to the races.

    But, I don’t see how he can compare these two events: first of all, I don’t recall Bush suffering any political setbacks, whatsoever, when OBL escaped from Tora Bora. In fact, I don’t recall the majority of people even being AWARE of it until years later. There was no political capital lost at all.

    Secondly, how can you compare the alleged negligent behavior of the military in Afghanistan that let a so-called terrist mastermind dance off into the mountains to a health care bill possibly failing or being passed in a watered-down version?

    He’s such an ass sometimes.

    I’d write to him, but he doesn’t much like girrrrls.

    • cocktailhag says:

      Oh, I don’t know, Retzilian. Maybe you could change your screen name to BarebackBruiser and Sully might take a shine to you….

      • retzilian says:

        Oh, I have sent Andrew many a “dissent” and some other thoughtful notes about Sarah Palin and her pregnancy story (one of my areas of expertise, haha), and also some gorgeous “views” from my various windows overlooking Lake Erie, or from work when I worked downtown, etc.

        He never responds to anything, never publishes anything I send him. I am almost certain it’s because I’m a girl. Maybe if I send something to him from a male-sounding email address? I should.

        • cocktailhag says:

          Couldn’t hurt. But it could well be that he disdains any dissenting comments. As a controlled experiment, maybe you should write to him when you agree with him, and see what happens. After that, it’s time to pull out the strap-on.

  7. retzilian says:

    Talk about false equivalencies – I’d bet 8 out of 10 random people I asked right now (just walked down the street and knocked on doors) wouldn’t even know what the reference “Obama’s Tora Bora” even meant.


    Ok, I need to hit some tennis balls.