( – promoted by buhdydharma )
In Why We Can’t Have Change Buhdy argued that there is just not much Obama can do to bring Change about . . .
There is plain and simple, just not much he can do to bring Change about. There is not…yet…much he can do to bring Change about for one basic reason. One basic reason, which then blooms into a thousand flowers all smelling like DC bullshit in the spring.
The one card Obama has to play in the DC Realpolitik Poker Game is….us. The Power of the People. A steady 65% approval rating, and that is a HARD 65%. The People who support him REALLY support him. And his many and varied opponents know it. He has that, and the limited (even post-Bush) power of the Executive Branch.
He brings that to the table. But sitting across from him, arrayed around the table far outnumbering him….is the entire structure of the United States Government.
The entire structure of the United States government is broken, and everyone knows it. That’s why Obama got elected. Americans elected him President to fix that broken government. He has far more than one card to play, he’s sitting at that poker table in Washington with a Royal Flush, but he won’t lay it down on the table.
In 2004, no one had ever heard of Obama. Yet somehow, he won the Presidency of the United States only four years later. Why? Because he promised Change. Because 65 million Americans believed him when he said we have to put the politics of the past behind us, and voted for him. But he’s not putting the politics of the past behind us, he’s letting the politics of the past, the politics of bullshit posturing in Congress, prevent him from doing what needs to be done.
I’m not buying any arguments that Obama can’t bring Change. The problem we have here is that he won’t bring Change. Not real change. He knows, and said so many times on the campaign trail, that the overwhelming challenges we face require new solutions. Yet the only solutions he talks about involve playing the same old politics of the past with a broken Congress that’s about as popular as syphilis.
Buhdy argued . . .
The Ruling Class owns the economy. They own the banks, they own the insurance/health care companies, they own the energy/pollution industries, they own the Military Industrial Complex. They have lobbyists that have intimate access to the Legislators and Regulators, hell in many case they used to BE the Legislators and Regulators. But most importantly, they have The Money. The Money that the Legislators and Regulators absolutely need to keep their jobs.
Buhdy tells us that “what is stopping them is money. Period.” His view is that Congress won’t let Obama bring real Change because the Ruling Class controls them with money. They need that money, so if Obama pressures them to bring real Change against the wishes of their corporate masters, Congress will turn on him.
Obama should invite Congress to give that a try.
He should make major campaign finance reform THE issue next year, he should make speeches across America demanding that Congress pass campaign finance reform legislation mandating that corporate contributions to congressional candidates cannot exceed contributions from individual citizens.
That’s more than one card to play. That’s a Royal Flush. Obama’s sitting at that poker table in Washington with a Royal Flush in his hands. He could lay it down on the table any time. But he won’t. He could make the 2010 midterms a national referendum on campaign finance reform. He could force every incumbent in Congress and everyone running for Congress to make a choice–are they going to be hacks for the corporate establishment, or are they going to represent the people in their states and districts?
Can Obama force them to make that choice?
Yes he can.
He’s the President of the United States. He’s the best political speaker of the modern era. He’s immensely popular. He can make any issue the top priority if he chooses to. He can make it the top priority and keep it the top priority, his speeches command media attention, he could confront Congress with the issue of major campaign finance reform, he could tell America in a series of major speeches that every member of Congress who votes against major campaign finance reform should be thrown out of Congress in November 2010.
Can Obama do that?
Yes he can.
But he won’t.
Like every American, Obama knows our government is broken. Like every American, he knows why it’s broken–MONEY. CORPORATE MONEY IN POLITICS. But is Obama saying anything about that? No. Is he doing anything about that? No. He’s not doing ANYTHING about that fundamental obstacle standing in the way of EVERY form of change this country so desperately needs.
Corporate money in politics is blocking single-payer health care reform, it’s blocking reform of the corrupt banking system, it’s blocking investigations of massive fraud on Wall Street, it’s blocking investigations of BushCo’s eight-year crime spree, it’s blocking media reform and perpetuating that propaganda spectacle we’re subjected to every day whenever we watch the “news” on the corporate networks or listen to the “news” on corporate radio.
It’s getting really tedious to keep hearing progressives defend Obama and to keep seeing them trot out one excuse after another that he can’t do this and he can’t do that, when it should be glaringly obvious that if he was serious about real change, he would have a strategy to achieve that, based upon equalizing corporate campaign contributions with individual citizen contributions, and upon implementing related major campaign finance reforms, because this would eliminate most of the obstacles to Real Change.
Are we seeing that strategy implemented? No. It’s not even being talked about, we haven’t heard even a whisper about it from a staff drone. They’re all busy dancing that kabuki dance of theirs, they know all the moves by heart, they’re dancing with a little more energy this time because they’ve seen some pitchforks in the audience. That’s gotten their bought-and-paid-for-corporate-hack-hearts beating a little faster, they know damn well they’d better fucking dance like they’ve never danced before. And Obama is dancing along with them.
We’re seeing a kabuki dance on the grave of American democracy.
Wall Street bankers killed it with that 10 trillion dollar gun
Obama let Bernanke and Geithner load for them.
Government of the people, by the people, and for the people is dead.
This is a Ghost Democracy.