Friday, October 18, 2013

Obama the "Winner"!

Obama the “Winner”!
P. Schultz
October 18, 2013

            Here is a quote from today’s NY Times, in a piece analyzing the results of the latest “crisis” – anyone know what happened to the “crisis” in Syria? – or at least pretending to.

“By nearly all accounts, Mr. Obama emerged the winner of the showdown, having stared down attempts to undercut his health care program or force other concessions, but it is not clear what he actually won. Did he change the dynamic of his tumultuous presidency and break the cycle of Washington gridlock, opening the way to more meaningful legislation in months to come? Or did he merely kick the can down the road three months so he and Congress will be in the same place again, repeating a pattern that will define his remaining three years in office?”  From the NY Times, today, October 18, 2013.

            There is one assumption, among many possible ones, that I like to make when it comes to analyzing the actions of our politicians and that is: I assume that most often they get what they want to get, they get pretty much what they intended to get. So, if Obama did not “change the dynamic of his tumultuous presidency and break the cycle of Washington gridlock,” then that is because he did not want to do that. Why would he not want to do that? Well, because he is essentially a status quo politician and president, whose main agenda is to preserve the prevailing alignment of forces in the D.C., those very same forces that the American people despise. Once one entertains this notion for even a little while, it becomes clear that Obama, like Boehner, would not want to “win” much as a result of the latest “crisis.” Nor would he or Boehner want to use that “crisis” and the resulting popular anger to do anything really significant by way of changing the prevailing dynamic of our politics. Obama has shown himself to be a status quo president over and over and over again, making me wonder why the Times’ analyst calls his presidency “tumultuous.” Perhaps it is merely part of an attempt, quite common in the mainstream press, to perpetuate the myth that Obama is an “activist” president, is concerned with the common good, or is concerned with the health of our political and social order. If one measures Obama by his actions, then it is quite delusional to think of him in these terms – just as it quite delusional to think of Boehner in similar terms. But any way, here the link to the article.

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