Tuesday, November 9, 2010

They Refuse to Be Blessed, Throat, Eye and Knucklebone

Politico's big two, Mike Allen and Jim VanderHei, jubilantly jig on the beaten body of Obama's presidency:
President Obama has performed his act of contrition. Now comes the hard part, according to Democrats around the country: reckoning with the simple fact that he’s isolated himself from virtually every group that matters in American politics.

Congressional Democrats consider him distant and blame him for their historic defeat on Tuesday. Democratic state party leaders scoff at what they see as an inattentive and hapless political operation. Democratic lobbyists feel maligned by his holier-than-thou take on their profession. His own Cabinet — with only a few exceptions — has been marginalized.

His relations with business leaders could hardly be worse. Obama has suggested it’s a PR problem, but several Democratic officials said CEOs friendly with the president walk away feeling he’s indifferent at best to their concerns. Add in his icy relations with Republicans, the media and, most important, most voters, and it’s easy to understand why his own staff leaked word to POLITICO that it wants Obama to shake up his staff and change his political approach.
Think, whom didn't Obama piss off except for his loyalest advocates? It's a remarkable achievement. Maybe he's playing this Clinton 1994, and lordy knows the GOP House is going to over-cracker hysterically, but I don't remember the Left being as angry at Clinton in 1994 as at Obama in 2010. Might work. Bet a pint it does.

Play with me: what if Obama genuinely believed he could expand the mythological American moderate base with seepage into both Left and Right, acted on that belief, and managed to piss-off everyone but his loyalest advocates? What if Corporate believed it, or at least green-lighted a pilot-program w/a WTF shrug?

(?revoc rof srekcarc eht desu dna yrt ot detnaw reven amabo ro rekcarc ot si yrtnuoc eht tub yrt ot detnaw amabo fi rettam ti seoD)

Overwhelming odds say Obama's fucking inept at following orders and a dick when confronted on it. But play with me: what if Obama honestly believed in and earnestly strove for compromise and bipartisanship and America consciously told him to fuck off? It's hard to believe that was Obama's plan; it's easy to believe that would have been America's reaction had it been.


    Anne Sexton

    Gone, I say and walk from church,   
    refusing the stiff procession to the grave,   
    letting the dead tide alone in the hearse.   
    It is June. I am tired of being brave.

    We drive to the Cape. I cultivate
    myself where the sun gutters from the sky,   
    where the sea swings in like an iron gate
    and we touch. In another country people die.

    My darling, the wind falls in like stones
    from the whitehearted water and when we touch   
    we enter touch entirely. No one’s alone.
    Men kill for this, or for as much.

    And what of the dead? They lie without shoes   
    in their stone boats. They are more like stone
    than the sea would be if it stopped. They refuse   
    to be blessed, throat, eye and knucklebone.


    1. Klaatu barada nikto!

      Revolution? Only if tri-corner hats come back into vogue. If you're gonna continue to be on the losing side, be so in style.

    2. I really want to make a movie out of your vision of how "Corporate" conspires to run Uhmuhrikuh. But I stopped taking acid so long ago that I have trouble framing it in my head. Do they have donuts in their underground K Street bunker? Maybe their very own Starbucks? Korean massage parlor? Is it like a mall, busy policymen done with their hard day's plotting your downtrending mediocrity strolling along and contentedly plucking the debauched fruits of their schemes as suits their hedonistic whims?

      Cause if not, then I'm just spinning my wheels at work. And if so, I sure hope the fuckers let me in.

      I vote for him being hopelessly bland and stupid. If he (and "Corporate") were as smart as you seem to like to think, you wouldn't even be capable of assembling your theory from observable evidence. Which wouldn't exist anyway.

    3. Well, as I said, odds are Obama's inept and dickish.

      So is Corporate. Incompetence isn't a bug, it's a feature. And a whip.

    4. Oi, thanks for the potato! Glad you didn't pick one of the other nasty entries yesterday!

      Big Q: Why entertain what Obama "wanted"? Isn't the truest indicator of his wants divined by examining his acts? Of course, a trajectory like that of his life really does demonstrate what he wants, as he's spent a lifetime on his knees with his mouth in the zipper area of various corporate bagmen, head moving like a person bobbing for apples. Seems like he wants a full belly, if you ask me.

    5. Yes,you were in a blistering mood yesterday. Enjoyed myself! though we do disagree by degrees about Greenwald. He pisses people off who need to be pissed off (besides you) and he gets points from me for that.

      Well, I tried to present this as the thought experiment I meant it to be. All the post-election autopsies on what Obama *wanted* and *failed* to do got me thinking, what if he *was* the (naive) idealist re: united the country he presented himself to be. Would the status quo be any different?

    6. Dog,

      Here's the paradigm: Rs love power and know how to wield it to preserve their own and do; Ds love the institutions and know how to wield them to preserve them and do.

      Obama is a D. He's about preserving institutions of democracy. Bush was an R. He was about throwing his weight around.

      Obama is not a strongman. Never will be. He might be viewed one day as a great Reformer, but it's too early to say. Bush didn't care about democracy; it was all political calculation for him.

      That's not really an opinion from me. It's an observation. That's the analytical lens that makes sense without postulating nebulous, shady powers (a la "Corporate"). That's not to say Corporate isn't out there trying to take every advantage its ungodly, unprecedented historical wealth allows. It is. That's why Corporate allies easiest with the deregulating/less gov't/Libertarian crowd: open-field running.

      Sure, C wants to press its advantages with O and the Ds on the one hand, and wants to get him and his regulating-for-the-good-of-the-people's-institutions out of town STAT on the other. He's standing b/w it and unfettered profit-accrual.

      Trying to see O through the lens of the strongman Bush/Cheney is to completely miss the point, IMHO. It's not what does O want; it's what the institutions of gov't demand of him in his role.

      This is a point I've been trying to articulate for some time @ you know where.

    7. Yes, I've read them and meant to post a link but oops. Will do tomorrow.

      Corporate (I'd change the metonymy to Triscallions if I thought enough people got the allusion) doesn't want more or less gov't, it wants gov't to do what the fuck Corporate wants gov't to do which is to enact regulations that protect private property from Democracy and to dismantle regulation that impedes their amassing capital at such a greedy pace the machine would crash of itself and/or spark a revolution. Call the first the GOP, the second the Democratic Party, in either case the motives are the same.

    8. Hell, I didn't get the Triscallions ref til I googled it.

      But it sounds like we're singing out the same song book.

      Jim H.