Wednesday, July 14, 2010

It's A Progressive Condition, It Won't Get Better...

For some time now, I’ve been pointing out that the left is not happy with Obama. This weekend gave us another huge bit of proof. What proof you ask? An article in the Politico full of the illogical whiny ramblings of various “progressives” who are dismayed at how paradise turned out.

The article starts by summing up the problem the left is facing: “For many liberals, this is the summer of their discontent. Already disappointed with Obama’s ability to deliver on campaign promises, they now contemplate a slowing economic recovery and a good chance of Republican gains in November.”

Of course, I would argue that it was Obama’s attempts to deliver on campaign promises that was the real problem, both for the economy and for the new found popularity of the Republicans, but let’s not let facts get in the way of a good whine.

According to the article, this last week saw a sort of dueling banjos thing going on in progressive ranks, with a 17,000 word piece published in The Nation by Eric Alterman and a counterpiece published by Michael Tomasky in Democracy: A Journal of [Lousy] Ideas.

Said wordy Eric, Obama’s presidency is “a big disappointment” for progressives. He blames the system. . . and the boogeyman: “Face it, the system is rigged, and it’s rigged against us.” He even titles this little missive, “Why a progressive presidency is impossible for now.” Aw, poor dear. Apparently, young Eric has realized part of the truth, he just can’t bring himself to understand the real reasons. The system is rigged against them because Americans aren't stupid enough to believe what he believes.

Tomasky takes a different approach than young Eric. He says that it’s too early for progressive to quit: “The changes we want to see won’t happen in 18 months, or in two years, or four, or probably even eight,” and he suggests that the progressive community is still throwing a bit of a tantrum, and nothing will change until they stop.

Katrina vanden Heuvel, the editor of The Nation, tries to blame the existential: “It’s not just really about Obama; it’s about the state of our country. Every day, you have a sense that people are wondering where this country is headed.” And no doubt they crave socialism, right? Delusion is a powerful drug, isn’t it Comradina?

Some blame the stimulus bill which contained “too many compromises in a futile attempt to garner Republican support.” Yep. Of course, those of us who haven’t been snorting liberal pixy dust will remember that the Democrats controlled the House and a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, so this “evil Republicans stabbed us in the back” thing won’t wash.

Comrade Les Leopold of Firedoglake provides us with the most interesting quote. Let’s take it apart piece by piece:

• “It’s open season on Obama, whom so many hoped would lead us out of the neoliberal wilderness.” Yeah, I’ve been there, that place sucks, the WhinyCommieBears are really annoying!

• “He once was a community organizer and ought to know how working people have suffered through a generation of tax breaks for the rich.” Huh? How does a tax break for someone else cause me to suffer? Oh that’s right, you live on spite. Sorry, my bad. Please continue. . .

• “When the economy crashed, he was in the perfect position to limit the unjustified pay levels on Wall Street.” So a moron blogger knows what is justified in pay? Dare I suggest that if Comrade Les gets a penny, then his pay is unjustified.

• “Instead, we got a multitrillion-dollar bailout for Wall Street, no health care reform, no serious financial reforms whatsoever, record unemployment and political gridlock that will be with us for years to come.” Hello! You're talking about Democrats! What else did you expect?
E.J. Dionne Jr., who is named after a mustard, whines that ObamaCare should have been a victory but turned into a failure. Why? Because it took too long! “It simply took too long to pass health care.” Which I guess tells us that E.J., which stands for Extreme Jerk, has a short, short, short attention span. Because there is no other way to make sense of that quote.

But enough about the preliminaries. These are progressives after all, which means they will eventually get around to blaming a cartoon villain. . .

“Whatever the motivation, it has become easier and easier for a determined minority to throw sand in the gears of the legislative process,” says our friend Eric. “It is therefore no coincidence that the 40 Republican senators with the ability to bottle up almost anything in the Senate represent barely a third of the U.S. population.”

Oh Eric, you wrote this just for me didn’t you? For it has not become easier and easier to throw sand in the legislative gears; the rules haven’t changed in decades. Nor, my idiotic young friend, did the Republicans have 40 Senators during Obama’s first year of total failure. And I hate to tell you this, but the 40 Republicans represent about half the population of the country. Nice try though. Finally, that word "coincidence," it doesn't mean what you think it means. Look it up sometime.

So what have progressives learned? Says Michael Kazin a “history professor” from Georgetown University: “It was always naive to expect a president to start a movement. It’s a little bit like expecting a chief executive to start a union.” Huh? What a horrible analogy. Also, I thought progressives were already a movement? And I thought Obama was one of you, not some random corporate type who you hoped would form a progressive movement? Sounds like Michael could use him some skoolin?

In any event, Bob Borosage of some liberal institute says that progressives need to form a movement like the Tea Party people to “challenge conservative Democrats and Republicans and challenge the White House.” Only then might you see a “bolder agenda.” Why does this sound like sour grapes: “we never really tried yet,” and “Obama wasn’t really a progressive.”

So what do progressives do now to recapture the initiative they never had because they never tried and because Obama was never a true progressive who had to face all those Republicans from little states with so much damn power? According to our friend Eric, they just need to wait for the public to turn against Republicans just in time for Obama’s second term:
“This would be consistent with FDR’s strategy during his second term and makes a kind of sense when one considers the nature of the opposition he faces today and the likelihood that it will discredit itself following a takeover of one or both houses in 2010.”
Yes, let’s wait for the public to hate the other guys and then they’ll love us! Now that’s solid advice, because we all know that hating one person translates into loving another. Heck, Eric should write a dating column!

Of course, there is one minor problem with this. If those evil small states can be bought, then how do we “uncorrupt” those states in 2012? And, even worse, if Obama is nothing but a non-progressive CEO, why would he suddenly become one in 2012?

Oh the agony. . .


Tennessee Jed said...

nice article, Andrew. Another piece I was reading was interesting in that The Democrats are definitely aware of what is going on, but can't agree on strategy. Apparently, the playbook was to not even acknowledge the House was in play. Out of sppech, out of mind so to speak. Now, Carville is repositioning. Yes, admit, so maybe it will serve as a wake up call. They want it to be Democrarts vs. Bush/Cheney and not a referendum on Obama's failures. Nice try.

I am glad the circular firing squad is already in gear.

StanH said...

Actually Barry hid in plain sight. The only time we got any truth from his campaign in ’08 was his slip to Joe the Plummer, about spreading the wealth. The voting public was kept in the dark, and I blame the RNC/McCain campaign with their willing sycophants in the press. As you’ve pointed out there is beginning to be gnashing of teeth on the hard left, they wont be happy until we’re goose-stepping in the town square. We must not squander this opportunity while the left is in disarray, and the anecdotes that you’ve put forth, are further proof of the real opportunity to right this nation.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, I saw that as well. There seems to be total confusion in their ranks. Their plans have included:

1. Trumpet the stimulus. Failed.
2. Trumpet ObamaCare. Failed.
3. Trumpet Financial Regulation. Failed.
4. Ignore the problem. Failed.
5. Avoid the public. Failed.
6. Call the Republicans the party who wants to repeal what they've done. Mega-Fail.
7. Talk up the economy. Failed.
8. Talk about how the Republicans want to make the economy worse. Failed.
9. Make racism appeals. Failed.
10. Make every election local. Failed.
11. Blame Bush. Failed.

Now they don't know what to do.

AndrewPrice said...

Stan, I agree. I think that Obama hid his actual intents behind generic rhetoric that sounded rather conservative. That made people think he might be the second term, more conservative Bill Clinton without the baggage.

The McCain people had no idea how to expose that, and the media wasn't looking. In fact, anything that came out, they attacked the person who brought it out. Said differently, they basically became Obama's PR people.

Now that he's acted on his actual beliefs rather than his faux-conservatism, the public is truly upset. And the liberals are shell shocked at the public's response and the response of the economy, of our budgets, of our taxpayers, and of our foreign friends and enemies -- but they still don't understand what their policies cause.

Joel Farnham said...


Progressivism, liberalism, statism, communism, and the Democrat Party are dying from a thousand self-inflicted cuts as well as attacks from the outside. Their trump card has been played yesterday and that signals the beginning of their collectivist end.

From here on out, it will continue to be discredited even for it's successes. It is only a matter of time.

This cancer of the body politic has been isolated and concentrated. Anti-bodies have been created and are seeking it out to destroy it. And none too soon.

Good article.

MegaTroll said...

I laughed and laughed at this. Is it wrong to enjoy the agony of people who want to ruin your country?

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, Thanks. I take it you mean the NAACP calling the Tea Party racist? That does seem to be their trump card, and it's become a worthless one because the left has become the boy who cried racism.

I think, taking a historical perspective, what has helped the left was that they were out of power for so long (and they spoke like conservatives for so long) that the public genuinely forgot what kind of messes they create when they get into power. So the public was willing to given them a chance when faced with a corrupted Republican Party and an erratic candidate like McCain.

But now the public knows exactly what the Democrats stand for and I suspect it will take another couple decades before their brand can recover. And that will rely on our side losing it's way first.

AndrewPrice said...

Mega, There is nothing wrong with laughing at the pain of "progressives." They are a nasty little group who thrive on spite, and anything that upsets them is a good thing for humanity.

Joel Farnham said...


Exactly. I do mean NAACP condemning the Tea Parties. That is traditionally the last card the left has to play during an argument. Usually it works, but not this time.

Over at Big Government, I counted no less that 10 distinctly different articles starting with the words, "I condemn the NAACP."

It will take about a week for the left to realize that their bomb has fizzled. It is more than being tired of the race baiting for the American people. We will NOT tolerate being impugned by the left anymore.

Unknown said...

Andrew: Progressives are like cockroaches--drugs don't affect them, and logic won't make them go away. So we just have to encourage them to eat each other.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, I think you're right. Whenever the left has gotten into trouble, they've cried racism. And people are sick of it. For a while now people have simply ignored it, but I think people have finally realized that they need to respond to the claims with contempt. It's about time.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I don't think they need any encouragement from us -- they seem quite capable of eating each other. In fact, it seems to be one of their greatest passions.

Ed said...

Ok, now that is great. I've been reading your article for a month or so and you've been saying the left is pissed, and I believe you, but it's great to see proof of this! Let's hope their uncivil war keeps getting worse!

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, If history is any guide, then I assure you that this is just the beginning.

Read this article I wrote some time ago. It explains why liberals get so nasty. Basically, they put all their faith in their leaders, rather than their ideas, and when their ideas blow up in their faces, they turn on their leaders rather than re-evaluating their ideas.

It's a defense mechanism that keeps them from facing reality.

BevfromNYC said...

Ho-hum, yet another insightful article, Andrew (don't you get tired of all the praise?) ;-)

The progressives are still playing they old MSM rules that Clinton used brilliantly pre-computer age. They keep repeating the same untruths over and over trying to make it appear to be the truth. 15 years ago this worked well because we relied on the MSM to ask the questions to unmask the truths which they didn't really do, but we thought they did. Now, anybody can access the technologies to ask the question directly and to expect direct answers. We no longer take anything at face value (at least not Commentarama-ians) and won't let untruths go unchallenged

I think this at the very heart of the progressives playbook problem and I actually think conservatives got the electronic message during 2008 campaign and have begun to shift their playbook (with the help of the Tea Party movement).

Frankly I predicted in Jan of 2009 that the progressives who so enthusiastically swept Obama in would turn on him with the same level of disapointment. Many of them were first time voters and/or new to the process - mostly young people - so they just didn't understand that politicians can never live up to their campaign promises, ever. And that is a good thing otherwise we would all have our state-issued unicorns.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, Nope, never get tired of the praise! :-)

I agree entirely, and I remember your prediction. There was no way Obama couldn't disappoint them, and leftists aren't the type to take even the slightest disappointment well. The problem was that Obama was so vague in what he said that everyone was able to put conflicting policies in his mouth. The left thought he was the ultimate socialist and would remake America as a leftist utopia. The moderates thought Obama was a middle-of-the-road "new kind of politician." Even some on the right bought into the idea that he was post racial and a new kind of Democrat who wasn't weak-kneed in foreign policy or a big spender. And all the new voters thought he was "different" and "transformative," that he would remake our politics to some undefined utopian state.

But each of those ideas conflicts, and no matter what he did, he was going to disppoint most people. Then he made it worse by trying to appease the left while pandering to middle -- an unworkable combination that scared the middle and infuriated the left.

Also, his policies have been (predictably) a total disaster. So now the left needs to disassociate itself from him to maintain their view of reality.

I also agree that they are playing with an out of date playbook. They are relying on the MSM to cover up their mistakes and play everything in their favor. But the entire right and most of the middle has given up on the MSM because they know it's biased and unreliable. What that means is that they needed to learn to be more truthful and more direct, but that's anathema to them.

And their attacks on the Tea Party proved a real disaster.

Doc Whoa said...

I love seeing liberals fight. They should do this on pay per view!

rlaWTX said...

I work for a mainline church that recently had their denominational shindig. The progs are trying all of the (not) so very successful tactics their friends in politics try. But for some disturbing reason, it works better in "church" politics (see Anglican, Lutheran, etc). But from what I hear at the church level, the exodus that has begun may intensify. I'm not sure what they'll do when there is only hierarchy and no congregants.

But it's easier to change churches than it is to change countries. Which is one of the reasons, I think, that the progs have more problems on the governmental stage with their high-falutin' plans.

Just a thought that you provoked...

AndrewPrice said...

DocWhoa, Pay per view is an excellent idea! We can use the money to pay down the debt!

AndrewPrice said...

rlaWTX, I have seen liberals use the same tactics in all fields, from politics to law to sports to religion to office politics. It seems to be innate within their make up.

I would suspect that the reason churches are more susceptible to this is that most people don't see churches as political organizations. So they aren't expecting to need to defend their values against an assault from people who want to politicize the church. Thus, they aren't really ready to defend themselves against people who show up with political intent until it's too late. By comparison, in politics, we know what the other side is about and we know to be cautious.

And then when it starts, churches tend to me more hierarchical, so it's harder to fight once they've infiltrated the top.

Also, as you note, it's a lot easier to simply leave a church than a country if you don't like what it's become.

DUQ said...

I just want to know when they will finally give it up for good! They keep saying, "Oh we just haven't done enough" and "If only we had the right person doing it!"

But as you make so very clear, it's their very ideas that are WRONG. How long do we have to keep putting up with the idiots?

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, I fear that they will always be with us because the way they think keeps them from ever having to face the truth. In other words, from now until the planet finally explodes, they will continue to wonder why they can't ever find the right leader to put their ideas into place in a way they will work.

We just need to make sure that the vast majority understands that this is who the left is, so that they aren't tempted to stick with them ever again.

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