Saturday, December 11, 2010

Progressives, Your Approval Waiting is Low

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Stewart puts it nicely. He makes us laugh. Or at least, he makes me laugh. Fair warning: after the jump, I stop laughing.

I have had it with the whining from the left. "Obama betrayed us!" they cry. This recent deal he cut with the Republicans really got'em all pissy and whiny.

Now let us be perfectly clear: I don't agree with everything Obama has done since he's been in office. I think the tax policy as currently constructed is atrocious. He's the commander in chief of the US military - can't he just order people to leave gays and lesbians in the military alone. Me, I don't understand why anyone would fight for this country, including people in my family. But if somebody's willing to do it, I say let'em fight. I know I got no intentions of doing it myself. So if that's what they wanna do, who am I to stop'em?

I'm sorry. I'm rambling. The point I'm trying to make is that just because I'm defend Obama doesn't mean I think he's been perfect. Okay? Okay. But for the record, we got a lot of this deal, including extending unemployment benefits.

Now back to our scheduled programming: progressives, will you shut the f*ck up! You're complain that Obama's mad at the wrong people; what about you? What do you want him to do? Just ignore the whole rest of the country and push through everything we want?

Okay. Let's play pretend for a minute. Let's pretend Obama was the progressive W and hadn't made this deal or compromised healthcare reform.

Where do you think we'd be right now? I guess you think Max Baucus would've stood up for a single-payer system? Or maybe you think the blue dogs in the House would been on your side in this current uproar. What about Kent Conrad or Evan Bayh? What do you think they would've done?

I don't understand what the problem is. Perhaps you've forgotten the basics of government, that the president of the US government can't introduce policy. Perhaps you've forgotten that in addition to the president, there're another 535 people, the majority of whom you have to get on your side.

Or perhaps you've forgotten that "we're the people we've been looking for." Or perhaps you just forgot, that "two years ago, activists on the Left agreed about one thing: any real gains to be made under an Obama presidency would depend on pressure from the grassroots after the voting was over. Unfortunately this consensus did not actually lead to such a mobilization."

No! I know what it is! You left the country after Obama's inauguration and missed "death panel" summer and the recent midterm elections. Everything's making sense now! No wonder Dems took such a beating: you weren't here to vote. Yeah, it's all coming together for me.

Now, let me be as plain and clear as I can. I don't know if you're holding this first nonwhite president to higher standards than say, Gore or Clinton. I mean, I think you are, but you'd probably disagree. I don't quite understand why you're so upset about the things you didn't get as opposed to all the things Obama has accomplished in less than two years as president. Healthcare reform. Financial regulation reform. Ending combat in Iraq. Yes, I could go on. You're complaining that he's not more like LBJ or FDR as though you're just as ignorant of history as are the tea pots. FDR wasn't some master of the "fireside" bully pulpit from day one. In fact, he was actually more conservative initially than he's remembered. I mean, initially social security wasn't just only for widows and children, it was only for white widows and children. Medicare wasn't always what it is now. And as disillusioned as you are, Obama's not the problem.

You are. Yeah! I said it! You're the problem. As in, "It's not me. It is you." How much time have you spent discussing politics with your family and friends? Have you tried to explain basic economic theory to the asshats claiming to defend the Constitution? Have you even tried to tell them what really happened and how the bailout really came about?

See, I know as fact that people wearing three-cornered hats are bugging out over race. This nigger show, as they call it, can't end soon enough. But what's your problem? Did you really think he was "chocolate Jesus?" What's the matter with you? Did you think all you had to do was get him elected? Even though he said if you thought you could just vote for him and then be done, that he'd rather you not vote for him?

Listen. Elections matter. But they're not all that matters. We all know that the tea pots are subsidized by people who care very little for them or the Constitution; but there're millions of tea pots nonetheless. Where have you been? Signing internet petitions while they rally at this place or the other? Sure, signing internet petitions and making phone calls to me Congresspeople are all I've been doing. But my health is the pits. What's your excuse?

So stop complaining like Obama's the problem. You sound just like the tea idiots when you do that. Focus your attention on doing the work of making phone calls, showing up at rallies, shouting in a loud voice against the politics and politicians you so hate. Don't let the Republicans off the hook. Don't like Mitch McConnell or Ben Nelson or John Salazer get away with impunity like just a couple of months ago, they weren't in favor of extend all the Bush tax cuts. Don't do that.

Cause when you do, you're no better than the ones you're trying to defeat. Obama's not their problem. And he's not yours either.

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This isn't too complicated. If you disagree with me, I'm more than happy to have an honest discussion. I'm quite open to learning new facts and ideas. I'm dying for a conservative to explain their ideas in a sensible way.

But, I do have rules, and they also apply to those who agree with me. They just get the benefit of my already knowing the fact they'll be referring to.

So, here're the comment thread rules:

1 - Use facts.
2 - Refer to policy.
3 - Don't rely on theories and conjectures. Show me how, for example, a public health insurance option will lead to "rationing" of health care.
4 - No unfounded attacks on any entity.

If you break those rules, I will edit your comment to my own whimsical satisfaction.

Lastly, perhaps most importantly, I'm not going to entertain too much pro-white/racism-denying discussion. I want this to be a space to discuss strategies to fight racism, not space where I have to fight racism. I want anti-racists to be able to come here for a mental respite. If what you're interested in doing is attempting to demonstrate the fallacy of anti-racism by repeating the same ole comments and questions and accusations we hear all the time, please do that somewhere else.

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