Tuesday, January 19, 2010
In case you haven't heard, there's a huge election in Massachusetts today where Martha Coakley (D) is in a Senate race for her life and the life of the Democratic majority in the Senate against Scott Brown (R). Coakley's run a lackluster, obtuse campaign and Democrats are having a collective freak out because Ted Kennedy's seat may go to a tea party candidate whose convictions run as deep as friendships on Jersey Shore. Oy. This is not good. A Coakley loss could mean the 'death of healthcare.'
Throughout the entire lead up to this election, Obama and the White House have made many miscalculations that are probably going to cost them. As a proud member of 'Obama's base,' I offer where I think Obama and the greater 'Obama machine' went wrong.
1. The vibrant base that elected Obama would somehow become tone-deaf once he got into office and behave as sheep pining for a shepherd.
WRONG. Why? Who do you think Obama's base is? Folks who have no access to technology? Folks who ran off into the hills after the election, waiting for smoke signals about the 2012 race? No. The base who elected Obama...their lives are filled with nuance. We aren't ignorant. We understand the difference between a public option and an exchange. We understand what it really means to allow insurance companies to compete across state lines. We're sickened by vote buying and lame-ass elected Democrats. We despise bail outs and pointless wars. This is 2010, dude. We tweet all damn day. We practically know what you ate for lunch.
2. Any attempt at bi-partisanship is better than none. Oh, and it's noble, too.
WRONG: And WRONG. We have a -0 respect for Republicans in general, and quite frankly, we don't understand why Obama has any at all. Why campaign effectively against Republicans and then throw all of that momentum in the crapper the second you enter the White House? Have the Republicans done anything to help you or the country? No. They blew the 2008 election by thinking that running an empty vessel for Vice President was even more fabulous than the empty vessel who ran this country for 8 years. (They called you a terrorist, remember?) They risked the basic security of our country for their own political gain FOR 12 YEARS IN A ROW. Can we please not aim for a baker's dozen here?
This isn't a Montessori school exercise in social graces. This is the United States of America. The Republicans presided over a corrupt war; they drained our economy to fund it with mercenaries from Blackwater and cost-plus contracts to Haliburton and KBR; they tortured and imprisoned people for nothing; they took their eye off the real terrorism ball; they presided over a gargantuan theft of wealth by bailing out Wall Street, and they called anyone who questioned their actions in this regard un-American and un-patriotic. Today, they show up at mis-named rallies with goofy ass hats, tea bags, and absolutely sick posters.
At this point, striving for bi-partisanship in this climate is the actual unpatriotic thing to do.
3. The perfect can never be the enemy of the good.
WRONG. Why not? Sometimes the distance between good and perfect is a country mile on a foggy day. The perfect is always the enemy of the good. They're supposed to be enemies. If they weren't, how would we know what we're fighting for? Where are the standards, the goals, the benchmarks, the platform shoes of our platform? There's a difference between the good (a dirt road) and the perfect (a paved road) when that dirt road runs backwards at no lawful speed limit (dirt road and all that) and crashes into the same trees that it was trying to get away from. Who's going to fix that car? The perfect mechanic who was overlooked for the good one? Turns out 'the good one' doesn't even work on cars. He works on motorcycles. Whoops, our bad. (Come on, he looked so 'good' on his resume.)
4. The best time to expose your backbone is after you've had the crap beaten out of you in a Democratic state.
WRONG. Granted, I'd like to see that backbone again because I'm starting to think it was a temporary medical procedure or something, but mirages aside, if this is what it takes to get Obama riled up, then someone in the White House has let the perfect be the enemy of the good for waaaay to long.
Mr. President, your base was so fired up after your election that we would've moved to the moon to outsmart Al-Qaeda. Now, we can't even outsmart a tea bagger in Massachusetts. We don't want to look that stupid. We're the liberal elite, remember?
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