The centrists get it. This political fight is between the “centrists” and the people. They want it all, they want it all, and they want it now. Liberals have to get bupkis before Obama gets a single Republican vote. If liberals were smart, they would draw the line here and tell President Obama that if he makes more concessions, they walk, and he gets nothing from them and will have to govern as a Republican from here on in. Last time that happened was NAFTA, and the Democrats are still smarting over how long they were out of power. So it won’t happen now. So America, bend over and lube up, because you are about to feel the Unity Pony.
Let’s be honest, because right now the blogosphere is packed wall to wall with people who want something, a job, a program passed, influence. I’m not looking for these things, and would not get them even if I was. Instead, since burning down to the numbers, important or small, is what I do, let me do the numbers.
Number of Republican Votes for the Stimulus Bill: 0
Number of Depression Dog defectors: 11
Obama isn’t a Democrat giving things up to get Republican votes, he’s a conservative mugging liberals for a conservative agenda that includes:
1. War in Afghanistan
2. Paulson’s version of TARP where taxpayers buy all bad assets.
3. Slash social security and Medicare
4. Tax Cuts
5. No Comprehensive Health Care, but huge subsidies for Health Insurance companies instead.
Taken as a whole, Obama is offering small concessions to the left, in return for trillions of dollars that are coming directly out of the pockets and veins, of ordinary people. He couldn’t even come up with a bit of money to help poor women pay for birth control pills. But he could cave on Pay-Go. Pennies for the people, pounds for the powerful.
Right now, your liberal leadership is selling the country out for little things. Game theory has something to say about this, it is called the stag hunt.
A stag hunt is when there are two choices, cooperate for a large objective, or go for a smaller objective you can get yourself. People will chase rabbits unless there is something that makes chasing the stag really worth while. Absent messaging, the best strategy devolves down to hunting rabbits until the other side hunts stag, then you get the rabbits, and the half the stag pay out. Of course, this doesn’t happen absent some other pressure. So everyone lives on rabbit while the stag is out there.
That’s what Obama is offering: the chance for liberal groups to sell out for 2 billion here, a million there, a minor concession here. In return, Obama gets all the big things. All of them. It isn’t the Republicans who are stopping this – their votes are irrelevant. It is the Unity Ponies and the Blue Dogs who are the problem. But the Liberal Blogosphere, wants to hunt the rabbit of bashing Republicans. Now bashing Republicans is fun and easy. They say the stupidest things, they break their word, they break the law, they undercut their own principles. Remember how the Republicans screamed that even thinking that Bush might fail was treason? Well there’s Rush “cheerleader for failure.”
However the right wing isn’t going to provide any votes. None. Obama said he wanted 13 Republican votes in the Senate. He could barely get that many blue dogs in the House.
Until the left wakes up and realizes that their brand is on the line, and that Obama needs to move well to the left on major issues, both for the pragmatic reason of liberal policies work, and right wing policies don’t – and for the political reason that liberals are going to supply his votes, things are not going to get much better, and long term they will be much worse. Because after Obama is finished doing the Unity thing all over your Social Security, and has sucked up all the losses of the elites, they won’t have a use for him, and all the Wall Street money will slush back over to the Republicans, who will win an election. And then the real damage starts.
Time is running out, it is probably too late already. However, clearly the American left is too busy hunting Rabbits. Maybe the progressive blogosphere needs to change it’s mascot to Elmer Fudd, because that’s how they are acting.
Shhh be vewwy quiet….
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