October 08, 2008
Putting on Ayers
Posted by scott at October 08, 2008 04:19 PM
Yeah, ok, I get it. Lots of people were radical in the 60s. A few of them even blew up the occasional mail box. You may have known some of either type. But when's the last time you talked to any of them:
"He [Obama] said they have not spoken by phone or exchanged e-mail messages since Mr. Obama began serving in the United States Senate in January 2005" (New York Times, 10/3)
Why in the world was Barack Obama still communicating on the phone or via email with Bill Ayers up until 2005 — when in 2001 Ayers gave widely publicized interviews claiming he had no regrets about the bombing, indeed regretted that he had not done enough, and did not necessarily have any remorse either about his Weathermen career?
I take this all so seriously not because Ayers was a bomb-throwing nutjob in the 60s, but because to this day he supports radical progressive experimentation in public schools. The only place progressives really got to implement their agendas in the '60s and '70s was in the public schools systems. The results were disastrous, igniting riots and consigning who knows how many children to unemployability all in the name of their intellectually pure agendas. The echoes of that failure ring across school systems to this day.
Progressives had their shot and it failed. Now they've picked a candidate who pals around with one of the remaining relics who refuses to admit that anything ever went wrong. It is my opinion Obama is vulnerable here because of the education angle, not because of the terrorist angle. I can only hope the McCain camp starts running with this ball, because we're already past the two minute warning and we only have one more time-out left.
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I have always said people don't really know Obama. Thanks for looking that up and letting me know. Now if you could just change McCain's mind about Iraq, of course it is too late to change his mind about Palin. Sorry, Ellen. I have to vote but it is really scary that I agree with both my sons at the same time on politics. Of course I am still not sure. McCain is too old to really run but standing by Palin he looks even older.
So hindsight bias is a virtue, now?
Pat - Obama will absolutely not do any different than McCain regarding Iraq. He's already changed his stance from "the surge will never work, troops out now" to "the surge worked just fine, so we'll set a timetable". That timetable will be no different than McCain's.
On top of that, Obama will actively bankrupt the economy, make best attempts to weaken our military, appoint judges to the SCOTUS (if he gets a chance) that will likely try to remove 2A rights, and work to screw up healthcare even worse than it is now.
Well, he would if the Democrats had a bigger margin in the Senate. As it stands now, the same thing that stymied the Republican return to power in '95 will stop the (currently hypothetical) Democratic return in '09. Every time they try to do something really spectacularly dumb... i.e. when they try to do, well, anything, the Republicans will mire it in endless procedure and filibuster. Twenty years of bitter acrimony and payback in the judicial confirmation process will effectively freeze any real change in the judiciary branch, so not much to worry about there either.
If, as with the first two years of the Clinton administration, the Democrats greet their return to power with chaos, incompetence, and a glaring disconnect with all but their farthest left grass roots, the Republicans will come roaring back in 2010. Even if they don't, the loss an incumbent party always takes in the legislative branch when they hold the executive will slowly erode the narrow margins they have today.
Holding on to the executive branch for a second term must be predicated on Obama being at least as masterful a politician Clinton was, and Bill Clinton, for whatever his faults and mistakes, is to this day widely regarded as perhaps the most astute politician ever to hold the office. Obama certainly has the charisma, but I'm not at all sure he has the skill. I'm not sure anyone else does. Or should.
So, assume the Democrats step on their crank (a safe bet... Pelosi et. al. have already done it a few times) and Obama turns out to be just as brittle and grasping as the people who are paying attention claim he is, we'll have at least four years of government paralysis to look forward to. Four years later the Republicans will return with a majority just large enough to get some things done. If it takes eight years to pry Obama from the office the next Republican president will have a majority large enough to get anything done.
So, it won't be the best choice, but it won't be the end of the world either. Well, it won't seem that way to us, at any rate. I do expect a whole lot of wailing, shirt-tearing, and a run on sack cloth and ashes when the nutroots realize the greatest strength of the US government is the near-impossibility of any one party to truly screw things up.
There's something to be said for that. Your analysis of Clinton v Obama is dead on - I doubt Obama will be able to get anything real done, but I do worry that he'll do everything within his power to actively screw up our economy and, assuming Congress puts forward something stupid, he'll rubber stamp it like no one's business. That's also very worrisome.