Hope and Change my ass, right?
  With the most recent news on Obama's concession to republican demands [its political terrorism if you ask me] I ask you this; Is it time to simply stop hoping?  The Right[wrong] are only emboldened, and I can't stand to listen to the idiocy of their reasoning when perpetrating their agenda.  I'm getting sick of it, and it seems like Obama's losing his balls~ don't get me wrong, I understand he's in a tough spot, but shit, there's got to be a better way to go about this.  Your thoughts?

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>I'm getting to the point where I want the USA to fail. Just let it all crash and hope that the EU and the East manage things better

This is understable, but things don't magically get better in crisis. Indeed Naomi Wolf's book "Shock Doctrine" discusses how invested interests are often prepared to take advantage of disaster. One reaction to 9-11 was described a conservative theft of disaster to advance its own agenda.
In times of crisis many are prepared to look out for self interest and think poorly of others needs and interests.
So I would suggest that is important to actually have a large-scale plan for changing things for the better in case of diaster. This would have served us well, for example, if the economists who predicted the recent financial meltdown were close enough to power in 07-08 to effect change.
borowitzreport: Obama Agrees to Extend Republicans’ Custody of his Balls


borowitzreport: In Latest Compromise with GOP, Obama Agrees He is a Muslim

So which Republican has photos on his hard drive, of the president in bed with a nubile young man? Is it Karl Rove?
I understand that change is slow, but the problem is that a lot of the problems we're seeing now we've been seeing ever since this country was established. Think all the whoring to private contractors in Iraq is new? Nope, that's been going on at least since the Spanish-American War. Same with wars of conquest - if you think that started in Vietnam, well, you need to look back further. The history of the USA is a consistent story of capitalist interests subverting the good of the people at large for personal profit.

And yeah, I know that other countries have the same problem - my issue is that we seem to have it (and have always had it) much worse. We've made some progress in a few areas that didn't impact rich people's wealth, but we as a country have never done anything much to curb our oligarchic tendencies. Europe has either gotten rid of or rendered merely symbolic its monarchies, but we're still saddled with the same moneyed interests manipulating our politic system for themselves.

And if we haven't managed to make any progress on that yet, why should we expect things to change in the foreseeable future?
I think that we should distinguish hope from optimism.

We have reason not be optimistic, but one should not give up on hoping for better things. That said, we don't have to believe in the particular brand of 'hope" that was campaigned on. I heard many say things that amounted to one man changing things dramatially and this side of Caesar that doesn't happen, if it ever did.

Further there is a real mismatch between speechs on change and the supposedly reality-based political efforts that were actually attempted. Trying more is often considered unrealistic although it often is a choice that rates higher than others in polling. What the power elites and the people want on a simple level often seem at odds and so, yes we need a more stategic way of proceeding. Ralph Nader has some ideas in his sort of a speculative novel on mitigated improvment"Only the Suer-Rich can Save us." There are seveal interviews online including:

"In the cozy den of the large but modest house in Omaha where he has lived since he started on his first billion, Warren Buffett watched the horrors of Hurricane Katrina unfold on television in early September 2005. . . . On the fourth day, he beheld in disbelief the paralysis of local, state, and federal authorities unable to commence basic operations of rescue and sustenance, not just in New Orleans, but in towns and villages all along the Gulf Coast. . . He knew exactly what he had to do. . ."
So begins the vivid fictional account by political activist and bestselling author Ralph Nader that answers the question, "What if?" What if a cadre of superrich individuals tried to become a driving force in America to organize and institutionalize the interests of the citizens of this troubled nation? What if some of America's most powerful individuals decided it was time to fix our government and return the power to the people? What if they focused their power on unionizing Wal-Mart? What if a national political party were formed with the sole purpose of advancing clean elections? What if these seventeen superrich individuals decided to galvanize a movement for alternative forms of energy that will effectively clean up the environment? What if together they took on corporate goliaths and Congress to provide the necessities of life and advance the solutions so long left on the shelf by an avaricious oligarchy? What could happen?"
like i said, like the idea, but... just doesn't seem like it would work. looks like the only thing that would is a true grassroots uprising, a monumental movement of tens of millions of americans. thats not going to happen any time soon. Park

Sorry, but the grass roots is too stupid to effect necessary change on its own. I give you Sarah Palin. They need to be led (conned) by someone. We need an educated, progressive and humanitarian person to direct their idiocy in a constructive direction. Obama doesn't seem willing or able to be demagogic enough to do the job.
I heard Ralph talk at the Green Festival in DC and he had practial suggestions, beyond the book's plot, on how to save the country with $2 Billion to build an independent liberal movement analagous to what the right did with the Tea party.

So one idea is to move to multiparty systems, for "

a competitive democracy, instead of a two-party tyranny that works overtime in enacting state laws to exclude independent and third party candidates and ballots. We’ve done our bit on that. To give the voters more choices beyond just the increasingly corporatized Republican and Democratic party choices."

He argues that this would motivate people — to think they can make a difference in their neighborhoods, communities, state and nation and the $$ could be spent to build more and more democratic institutions. in government, higher education etc.

See http://www.onlythesuperrich.org/blog/ for more discussion of this.
It's a pipe dream. Ralph's pipe dreams gave us George W. Bush, Iraq, a huge debt, a tyranny of the rich/corporate and an economic collapse. Good work, Ralph!
Hmm. What would a parliamentary or quasi-parliamentary system in the US look like? Parties might include the Family Values Party (real 'Jesus-lovin' patriots), the Libertarian Party, the Rainbow Party (with a lopsided spectrum), the Republican Party (the rich, corporate), the Green Party and the Democratic Party (the second to smallest [the Progressive Party]). Various coalitions on the Right, funded by corporations, would dominate government for decades.
>It's a pipe dream

I don't agree that it need be that type of dream, but I do think that there is an invested interest in blaming Ralph for "pipe dreams gave us George W. Bush, Iraq, a huge debt, a tyranny of the rich/corporate and an economic collapse." Some of the people with this view are talking about his presidential run rather than building a movement on the left. And some people just want to splinter any real discussion of movements on the left. Right wing groups like to belittle efforts on the left and whose interest does that narrow view serve?

This may also be more of blaming the message that the Democratic party as it exists is splintered itself and thus compromised. Perhaps an outside effort can build enough of a nugget to be effective. It would at least counter blue dogs.

What one might consider is having a well funded group on the left that is not splintered and determined not to be distracted and compromised.
i don't think I can add anything someone else hasn't said already. Obama has been a big disappointment. I really wanted Hilary, but she wasn't selected by the party to run for president. I sure hope I'm in for some big surprises in the next two years, but I doubt I will be. I keep reminding myself he's better than McCain and Palin. From my stand point, his VA Secretary has done a lot for vets and that's something. I wish we could have Gen. Shinseki as Secretary of the VA forever. He, at least, is doing a fantastic job. I am very pleased with him even though Obama himself seems lack luster. Why surround himself with some of the greatest minds in the Democratic party then totally blow them off?
INteresting editorial on Obama in The Root. "Why Obama Is Breaking Up With Democrats. Obama's not a progressive, Democrats are all talk and 2012 is right around the corner" The theme is basically, "Get over it progressives, I'm just not that into you. And I never was"

"Obama Is Not Progressive

Call him a big-government conservative or call him America's City Manager. Liberals have to disabuse themselves of the idea that Obama is caving in on his core principles, because his core principle is being reasonable.

Sometimes it works and sometimes not, but as long as progressives keep thinking that he'll "fight back" or "draw a line in the sand," they're doing themselves a disservice and, ironically, clinging to the same belief held by the right: that a Hawaiian with an extra consonant at the end of his name must be a progressive. He's not, and he never really was.

(Not sure why the author chose "Hawaiian" as a descriptive - almost no one thinks of Obama as Hawaiian, and he and the rest of us view him as Black. And his name ends in a vowel.)

The entire article is an interesting read. I think a lot of people projected, who they wanted Obama to be, onto him. Including me. Or they "hoped" he would be that projection. Including me. Maybe he wasn't that person, but it was a useful concept for him to harness the enthusiasm to help win his election. I think that might be how it works for a lot of polititicians. The "Hope and Change" brand was really just that, a brand.
It's a little more than just projecting ourselves onto him, which still probably makes up a good amount of why he got so much support, it's the promises he made to us that he has thus far been totally inept at acting upon -- then again expecting a politician to come through on a promise is another mistake we all made.
It's just these god damned lazy first responders begging for another hand-out at the government trough.

"Oh, look at me, I went in to save peoples' lives while thousands of others fled for life and limb. Oh, I didn't do the responsible thing and check if my insurance policy covered inhalation of pulverized stone and people. Oh, I didn't consider the long term effects of rescuing people in collapsed buildings made when asbestos was put into everything. Now give me money, Big Government!"

Boo-hoo. Fucking communists.


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