Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Surprise Surprise.

Parts of the "Progressive Blogosphere" are getting all pissed off at the multiplicity of Obama-Betrayals of "Progressive Values".


Yeah, he's moving with all deliberate speed to put in place a Serious Adult Administration, staffed with people who are considered by the Netroots to be traitors to the Nation and the Cause. People like the reviled and despised Hillary. People like the reviled and despised Rahm. People now like the reviled and despised basically unknown Eric Holder. Etc. Etc.

And yeah, he's been doing plenty of flipping and flopping and offering support for the corporatist/imperialist line about this and that issue, whether it be support for retroactive immunity for telecoms or NAFTA or the Paulson Extortion Program or even supporting keeping Holy Joe in the Dem Caucus and letting him run the Heimat committee.

He ain't no Liberal. Ain't no Progressive, either.

Yes? So? You voted for him anyway, didn't have any choice. Your purple passion hatred for Hillary blinded you to some of the flaws in Barack, and now that he's doing pretty much what he said he was going to, surprise, surprise.

No. Come on. Barack did not run as a Liberal or a Progressive. He ran as a "centrist" -- read, rightist -- Democrat, slightly to the Left of the lunatics in the Republican Party. So many people projected so many expectations on him, believed so strongly that HE was what the nation wanted and needed, and that HE would set to rights all that the Busheviks had done wrong.

Well, no. He didn't run on that premise. He made plenty of rhetorical stabs at accepting some Progressive Agenda items, but most of the time, he was just happy to have Progressive support (and money) and leave the matter of a Progressive Agenda for some other time. That people thought he was some kind of Big Progressive or Liberal is just bizarre. He never ran as one.

In some ways the situation now illuminates what might have happened if Howard Dean had got the nomination and then went on to win the Presidency back in the day. Howard was -- and is -- very much in the mold of a Progressive Republican (like his parents, surprise, surprise) not really a Liberal Democrat at all. And he ran as what he was. Anyone who followed his campaign and its rhetoric understood he was really all about being a responsible Progressive on the Republican model of the early 20th century. But lots and lots of people saw him otherwise and were convinced he was some Big Liberal Savior. No. He never was. He was basically a Republican in Democratic garb and with some Democratic cachet.

Obama is not that much different.

It's not a bad thing to be.

What is bad, though, are all the expectations that he'd be different. And all the disappointment. Turning to anger at betrayal.

He didn't betray anyone who was paying attention. But it's clear that a lot of people were too wrapped up in the fantasy image of who and what they wanted him to be to understand who and what he really is.

Surprise. Surprise.

1 comment:

  1. yup.

    I just don't have any more I-told-you-so energy left.

    another day, another failed war.

    I give up.

    thanks for pointing out the obvious. They'll hate you for it, you know.

    morning in America. again.