Baratunde Speaks For Me

September 7th, 2009at 03:04pm Posted by Eli

In asking, what the hell is wrong with Obama?  Is he willing to fight for anything or anyone that doesn’t suck?  And how can he not see that caving and cowering every time the right wing starts screaming is only going to embolden them to escalate?

Too often, this White House has sent the signal that it seeks common ground and conciliation with parties interested in its total destruction. From my point of view, negotiating with ignorance, fear, hate and irrationality is insane. For example, when a major Republican figure in the health care negotiations spreads the death panel lie (Grassley), you see him for what he is, realize you’re dealing with a group of psychopaths, and reset the objectives. “Oh, so that’s how it’s gonna be? Cool. Good to know what we’re dealing with. Thanks for your time. We won’t be needing your services anymore. We’re taking our ball and playing somewhere else.” Negotiations require trust and trust assumes that all parties are not completely batshit crazy.

I realize I’m lumping a variety of “opposition” camps together: birthers, deathers, those who accuse the president of racism and those who accuse him of socialism. I’m grouping them because to me they all come from the same place. They’re engaging in a form of terrorism. They are using psychological violence (and occasionally the threat of real violence) to pursue a political objective, and in so doing, inflicting harm upon non-combatants.

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from the movies, it’s that “The United States of America does not negotiate with terrorists.” Yet this White House is willing to let these psychological terrorists set the terms of the debate and negotiate from their insane positions. One group of people is trying to talk about co-pays. The other thinks the president is a secret Kenyan. One group of people sees the creation of domestic, sustainable jobs as a cornerstone of the 21st century economy. The other thinks the president is going to murder your grandmother. This is not legitimate political discourse and to make decisions acknowledging terms so far apart in their reality is just plain stupid.

(…)

I’m heartbroken over Van’s departure because it’s these little meaningless concessions that undermine people’s faith in the system. You get folks all riled up about change. You empower a man who embodies that change. And they you let him be run out of office by fucking Glenn Beck? So Glenn Beck is running the White House now? Is that how it’s gonna be? Just tell me that I knocked on all those doors for nothing, and I can start the grieving process, but don’t pretend this will solve anything.

(…)

How do you expect folks to continue to go to the mat for your agenda, when you so easily sacrifice our best and brightest at the whim of an illegitimate lynch mob? How do you expect the next generation to invest themselves in the political process when they see that despite their good works, they can be taken out over nonsense, especially when the double standard is so abundantly clear? How can you ask from us what you won’t do for us? And when will you realize that you cannot negotiate with terrorists?

If Obama doesn’t figure this out, and fast, he’s going to spend the last three years of his one-term presidency huddled in a fetal position, afraid to do anything because Glenn Beck will disapprove.  Or else he will simply turn farther and farther to the right, repudiating the people who supported and elected him, in a doomed and desperate attempt to curry the right’s favor.  Either outcome would be a disaster for both the Democratic Party and the country as a whole.

As an aside, Dave Neiwert and Tim Wise both do an excellent job of pointing out the hypocrisy and dishonesty of Glenn Beck and other conservatives accusing Van Jones of precisely the character flaws (uncouthness, extremism, love of outlandish conspiracy theories) that they themselves embody.

Entry Filed under: Media,Obama,Politics,Racism,Republicans,Wankers


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