OBAMA CRIES

. . . addressing his campaign workers. I’d like to see him cry over the destruction of the Constitution, at Arlington National Cemetery in front of the graves of the soldiers who died to preserve it.  Don’t hold your breath for that.

2 thoughts on “OBAMA CRIES

  1. For what it’s worth I am pretty damn left wing. But I am also a realist. I don’t have blinkers on about what America has been and will be responsible for. I get my daily quota of Chomsky. And much like Noam I think Obama is the lesser evil, though not preferable choice. That preferable choice just does not exist, yet anyway. Some Liberals have naively said Ron Paul, because he embodies many Liberal ideas, but he should be seen for what he is to most Liberals – a contradiction of their core beliefs. For where he would bring troops home and fix the crumbling American infrastructure and remove or reform the Fed, he is no socialist, he is hard-faced Libertarian. It’s every person for themselves, no help from the state, you’re on your own. Obama might be the closest we can get right now and may even be the beginning of moving towards something better if the momentum towards something better exists.

    Gore Vidal was right when he said there are two wings of the business party, Republican and Democrat. So we know Obama is trapped within that structure. It is also true that an institution that starts off with best intentions becomes mired by its own corruption. It is also true that individuals who start off with best intentions and who become part of such institutions and aim to affect change themselves become deformed by such institutions and mired in all the corruption and abhorrence, or otherwise they are marginalised within the system. Sometimes you must bring down the institution, but you have to be careful about what it’s replaced by. I think I have just described the congress and its ‘noble’ occupants.

    Now someone like Dennis Kucinich (and now hopefully Elizabeth Warren) is the perfect example of a great and sincere politician and of a marginalised figure, but he never played the game of politics, he played the game of honesty. What we have to hope is that some of those playing the game of politics, are honest beneath the façade. That they are playing the game of politics with good intentions, that the words they don’t say or cover up in metaphor suggests something greater and bolder. Of course that is half the problem, because we should be able to keep our politicians honest enough so they don’t have to go covert – this is assuming there are any who are covert and fighting for our interests. Perhaps history will show that the honest politicians blow it, which could be known as ‘telling the big Other’, once the big Other knows, then it’s over, it’s out in the open, because they’re part of a system which regurgitates and boots out sincerity and that those who play under cover may be the true heroes, the ones who truly affect change.

    Robert Caro said that ‘power reveals’ and ironically he was talking about LBJ, a man who sent the American youth to the slaughter, but of course Caro was referring to some of the social policies enacted during LBJ’s tenure and referring to the social beliefs LBJ had held to in the many years before and this is aside from the fact that we know LBJ was corrupt, that he bought and paid people, that he stole his way into the Senate and as some ‘alternative theories’ would suggest, into the Presidency itself. I hope that in Obama’s second term, with whatever power he can realistically embody he can prove Caro’s thesis possible in the best possible sense.

    Can we change the system from within? Perhaps.. Again, this could mean the difference between the honest Politician and the one who plays politics. Hilary Clinton strikes me as one who plays politics, for some reason people I admire and respect, like Gore Vidal (initially a supporter of Kucinich in 2008) seemed to hold her in high-esteem. History has taught us that revolutions violent or not create a vacuum, and that every time this is filled by another powerful and organised force. Egypt/the Arab Spring/Muslim Brotherhood is a perfect recent example of this. Revolution or no revolution, good intentions can lead to as much barbarism as any band intentions realised in actions of opposition and revolution.

    Therefore what can we hope for? America is not at a revolutionary tipping point, and even if it was there is no evidence that it would be to the benefit of those like ourselves who wish to abolish poverty, improve social conditions and social mobility, end wars of attrition and wars seen and unseen abroad and within the borders. Under Obama there has certainly been much covert military action, through the CIA and other guises and the policies of Bush have essentially remained. But Mr Obama has much to contend with. The structures of power do not clearly lead to him. There are many power interests at play of which Obama is a symbolic head, with some form of influence.

    What he has unquestionably built is a highly organised social power-base among a population of community organisers. Let us hope they are not only mobilised to re-elect someone who has no other intention other than to maintain the status-quo. What we must hope is not that he will change things, if he even intends to, but that this organising should continue at base level with the voters themselves. He said so in his victory speech, and he was correct, that the power is with the voting public and that voting is not enough, people should be organising and pushing their leaders to positions where even the powered interests can do nothing but stand and what the waves of change approach. Until this happens, Obama is just another blank cypher roaming the expanses of Capitalist decay. I tend to believe Obama wants to make changes, but the power comes from without. The American people must keep pushing and not sit back for another four years. I’d much rather that the one being pushed was Obama than Mitt Romney.

    The tears shed in that video as he gave a thank you speech to his staff were not crocodile tears. Although they were for himself as much as his staff. Obama is the hero in his narrative. We can get Freudian and suggest no act is selfless, but there was a clear identification that his staff had achieved something for him and in doing so would achieve something for themselves also as they go onward as community organisers and activists. Now I sound like I’m spouting the same type of propaganda he does. But there is truth in it. As I’m sure Obama knows, if that power can be sustained and expanded and used for good purpose then there is without a doubt a chance to affect great change. But the American people must not sit back and expect their politicians to do it all for them, certainly not with a political system in the decaying mess, corruption and deadlock with which it is currently composed.

    • An interesting thought, Trev — that Obama’s organization COULD be used at some time in the future for a genuinely progressive candidate, like Warren for example. I just don’t see how we can get good candidates within the current system as long as we keep rewarding bad candidates because they’re less bad than other candidates. It seems like a perpetual mandate to be bad. At some point you have to draw a line and say, “No more.” I drew the line at Obama — others may draw it elsewhere, but I can’t help wondering if there will be anything left of American democracy by the time they get around to it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>