Welcome to the new version of European Tribune. It's just a new layout, so everything should work as before - please report bugs here.
Display:
What libertarians? They're an actually existing species? Other than that I see three sorts of demoralized supporters:

a) Politically engaged people who for various reasons hated him from the start, but some of whom voted for him anyways e.g. the hard core Hilary types.  

b) Politically engaged progressives who were a bit cynical, but genuinely expected him to be better than he was.

c)Non-engaged voters turned off by the enduring godawful mess that is the American economy.

The first two groups are numerically small and I don't think he could have done anything about a and most of b turned out for him anyways, at least judging by my anecdata.  The same highly scientific evidence does suggest a significantly lower rate of volunteering and donating among the second group.

The third group is the big one. Some of it is in the nature of turnout differences between presidential and midterm elections, some would have deserted due to the lack of an economic miracle, and some he lost through his own lacklustre performance.  That was decisive in the PA and IL Senate races and a handful of other statehouse and House ones. Feingold and a bunch of non Senate candidates would have been tossups, some of which would have fallen the right way.  

On NYC, maybe.  All progressives here with a higher education know people who work in the financial industry. They can be nice people, strongly progressive ones have actually been sighted.  There's also probably a corner of our mind that thinks that the amounts of cash Wall St rakes in sucks for the country, but is so huge that it's enough for a genuine trickle down effect on a local level.

by MarekNYC on Fri Nov 5th, 2010 at 01:31:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
... in that set of categories, since its easy to lump progressives who voted for him as a better opponent to reform to have in the White House than McCain as "hated him from the beginning", even if they don't harbor any animus toward Obama.

He never gave any indication of being any more progressive than absolutely necessary to establish his brand image, and whenever moving to match the bids of his main pre-primary rivals, consistently picked a spot on the right hand side of the scrum. It was obvious that he would govern from well right of his primary positions.

I mean, good lord, if I saw it, and said so before the 2008 election, it had to be pretty damn clear to anyone who focused on the actual tinkering little policy positions rather than the soaring rhetoric about the magnitude of the challenges we face.


I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sat Nov 6th, 2010 at 12:30:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Nah. You just thought the Executive branch was the monarchy.

A blisteringly common mistake.

The flaw is in democracy itself. It demands too much of the average citizen.

Align culture with our nature.

by ormondotvos (ormond no spam lmi net no spam) on Sat Nov 6th, 2010 at 09:12:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's what it was designed to be, a 18th century elector selected Constitutional monarchy. And the Senate was supposed to be an 18th century selected House of Lords. Only the House of Representatives was supposed to be directly elected, with two year terms to keep it weak, and without the powers that the House of Commons accumulated during the Napoleonic Wars, aka World War Number One.

Its an awfully old governmental system we have in the US. Yurpeans tend to have more modern 19th century institutions, either by evolution or tearing down and reconstruction of Republics.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sun Nov 7th, 2010 at 11:26:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
if I saw it, and said so before the 2008 election,

Exactly! He was my least preferred of all of the Democratic primary challengers and Hillary was down there a ways also. The reason was that I was disturbed by the artful way in which he and his campaign dodged specifics that were the essence of my real concerns. And, rightly or wrongly, I thought that, in part due to personal history, Hilary would get a better Health Care bill through Congress. But I certainly was not going to support McCain and I could at least hope that Obama would have the wisdom to see the necessity of serious financial reform and the political skills to do so.

As the Dutch said while fighting the Spanish: "It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Nov 7th, 2010 at 10:39:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
... in the pockets of Wall Street, its just that so would McCain and he would be shared with the Oil Industry, which would be even worse.

Since I never hoped that a Hedge Fund Democrat would be anything else, while unhappy with his economic decisions, I was never really disappointed in them.

It is the moderate authoritarianism of the Justice Department that is disappointing to me, since the Democratic supporting Hedge Fund managers tend to be socially liberal. The Obama administration talks a moderate socially liberal game plan, but regularly delivers moderate authoritarian plays.

Since those are things that can not be blocked by Senate Filibuster, all of the "Senate did not let me" excuses fall away for those. If it was a political calculation to avoid sparking culture ways, it was a foolish one: culture wars are not caused by the talking points, they are caused by something else and the talking points are to mobilize the ground troops.

But since the Health Care debate and efforts to protect Wall Street from destroying itself were always bound to attract massive money to mobilize those ground troops, there was nothing to be lost in doing things to make socially liberal types happy.

So that is the disappointment. I knew he was a economic neoliberal, but its been disappointing to see that he was not a socially liberal economic neoliberal

Its like keeping the large number of bad bits of a European Liberal Party platform and tossing the smaller number of good bits to the side.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sun Nov 7th, 2010 at 11:35:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Doing what needed to be done would have been heroic and, possibly, politically suicidal. But such leadership is not without precedent in our country, vis. Lincoln and FDR. So a guarded hope that he could rise to the occasion didn't seem too laughable at the time. I strongly suspect that, in two more years, his failure to have dealt with the financial sector will be widely seen as his and the country's undoing. Widely, but not too widely. There will still be a large segment of the country that will think it was all part of his black muslim socialist plan all along. But it appears that, along with the poor, the delusional we shall always have with us.

As the Dutch said while fighting the Spanish: "It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Nov 7th, 2010 at 12:33:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series

24 July 2014
by dvx - Jul 23
59 comments