05 November 2008

'Where The President Is Never Black, Female Or Gay...

...And until that day, you have nothing to say to me' - sang Morrissey in 2004 on his song 'America, you are not the world'.

Even then, it seemed inconceivable that a black man could...
be president in our lifetimes yet alone in 4 years time.

In practical terms, Barack Obama is to the right of Tony Blair - so hardly a revolution, but in symbolic terms this election says a lot.

The fact the margin of victory was so small, tells us the left still have a long way to go to start setting the agenda. Even amongst financial meltdown, the left could not set the agenda against a corporate media and funding of parties. It is going to be hard for Barack to make any impact on universal healthcare and other measures with a filibustering Republican rump blocking it - but at least we now have HOPE.

5 comments:

  1. carry bag man5/11/08 6:49 pm

    Whilst broadly agreeing with your comments only time will tell whether Obama offers a new progressive vision of America and its role in the world.
    However, today that is not really the point. Obama's election is and of itself transformative and a positive indication that for the first time politics transcends race.
    Of course the media and conservatives will start to talk down any chance of real change those on the left should be promoting this opportunity rather than retreating into skepticism.

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  2. Scunnered, O'Aberdein6/11/08 11:57 pm

    'In practical terms, Barack Obama is to the right of Tony Blair'

    But it will be interesting watching himself distance himself from a UK Prime Minister who is further to the right than he is, won't it?

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  3. scunnered: You could be right there. Brown is a disaster for the Labour party - sadly the Glenrothes result will probably mean he stays as leader and leads us to anihilation at the next election.

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  4. carry bag man: I am skeptical of what Obama brings - vague rhetoric and mild redistribution, but you are right, the goodwill and inclusion his victory has brought is an enormous opportunity for the left, so maybe I should shut up.

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  5. Hi Neil, this is Katrina Anon...

    I never thought Blair was that far to the left. Obama is very much to the left through most of his life, though I am surprised he seems less to the left then he was.

    The much more significant thing about this election cycle, is the size of the Obama win. It was well in excess of predictions and should, but won't quell the black victim industry that has served the Democrat Party so very well.

    Obama did well mostly on the strength of urban America and not rural. However, this was less a left vs right election and an election based on a dismal economy and high energy prices. Had either of those been lacking, and someone other than McCain been running, Obama might have lost.

    Obama cabinet and officers are mostly leftists or are left leaning. Most of us conservatives believe that Obama is not going to pass legislation that will allow conservatives to rebuild their base. Rather Obama will use the regulatory process to effect change. That is a weak way to create change since it can be undone by succesor administrations.

    Many of Obama staffers were working in the Clinton administration. When the Clintons went straight to the heart of conservative (as opposed to Republican)ideals, conservatives, through the Republican Party took over the House and Senate. Obama wants to avoid that.

    What surprises me, is just how weak Obama appears to me. It may just be that he is new and unsure how to use the reins of power. Despite this, one pundit speaking of the Presidency in general, said it is amazing how incompetitent a President can be and still be successful. I do not regard Obama as incompetitent, but I am mystified by the weakness of his actions.

    One of the important things to remember about Obama, is that he got to the Presidency by not making decisions. This he did as part of his plan to become President. The question now is whether he can or has the staff with him to make decisions over the next 4 years.

    Obama I think is looking for something that will get his Presidency started off on the right foot. This trillion dollar bailout is a huge gamble for him. If he suceeds he may do well in 2010. If not, Congress will quickly abandon him just to save their own jobs.

    The good news for Obama is that the Republicans want to be just like the Democrats. That will be a disaster for the Republican Party.

    Start watching about 6 months from now or when the stimulus package's money starts to run out. If the economy starts to slide I would expect the conservatives to start pushing in the Republican Party again. McCain leads the left, but that's just like herding cats and the conservatives do not like him.

    Its hard to say who might take the leadership. Palin is not out of the question, but I suspect she will late until much later. Jindahl from my neck of the woods is possible, but no one can say for now.

    One thing to note, is that when conservative issues were on the ballots they won. Also Obama avoided conservative issues as did McCain.

    and that will He will have about 6 months to make it pay off

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