Political Indigestion

By Jeffrey Page

A friend of mine says President Obama could arrange for the Second Coming and he’d still be dismissed by a certain racist element that can never forgive or forget his blackness. She’s probably right, and I’m reminded of a column by Maureen Dowd last September when the president appeared before Congress to talk about health care. It was the night Rep. Joe Wilson of South Carolina shouted “You lie” at Obama, and Dowd observed that she heard one more word that went unspoken: “Boy.”

I recall seeing a picture of a roadside sign – “Zoo has an African lion, White House has a lyin’ African” – and was angered by the coded message. I listen to the idiotic rants about Obama’s birth and wonder what planet these people live on. Surely it is not earth.

Reasonable people want this good and decent man to succeed – in the wake of the eight dark years of Bush. We elected him; he is our president. But I suspect that in addition to that Second Coming, he could come up with a cure for cancer and a plan for world disarmament and some people would still regard him as the black guy in the White House.

The right wing has done a number on him and just 13 months into the Obama administration, there must be a gnawing in the Democratic stomach, something hinting that the political makeup of the nation could change in November, and that the change could be painful and long lasting. Obama is the target of course, but truth be told, with some of his moves this past year, he has contributed to what could be the undoing this year of the Democratic majorities in Congress.

Questions.

Was there a good reason why Obama had to have a health care bill in his first year? Couldn’t he have waited 18 months? Maybe two years? Shouldn’t he have known that dramatic changes would scare a lot of honest people without axes to grind and that maybe they might have needed more time to understand what the changes were all about?

Remember how John Kerry frittered away the summer of 2004 before responding to the Swift Boat lies about him? Shouldn’t Obama have known that you don’t wait for slander to go away. You strike it and kill it in its tracks. Why didn’t he move quicker and more forcefully during the summer of 2009 to take on the Tea Partiers and their lies about health care?

Remember the guy who said he didn’t want government getting involved in his Medicare? Liberals snickered at his ignorance. But why didn’t the White House understand that that one man represented millions more with legitimate worries about medical care? Obama could have – should have – seized the moment, convened a Town Hall meeting, invited only older, more conservative people to ask questions and let them get answers from the president himself.

Why didn’t Obama make mincemeat out of Limbaugh when Limbaugh said he hoped Obama would fail? Doesn’t the nation fail when the president fails?

Why did Obama delight the political right by appointing a treasury secretary who hadn’t paid his taxes? Did he think this would go unnoticed?

Why did Rahm Emanuel use the expression “fucking retarded” to describe a plan he didn’t like? “Stupid” wasn’t good enough? Emanuel played right into Palin’s hands. Surely I wasn’t the only person to remember that her son Trig is one of 400,000 Americans with Down Syndrome. Their families, neighbors and friends constitute an awful lot of people to piss off.

Aside from the fact that Robert Gates is far more appealing than Donald Rumsfeld, could someone explain the difference between the wars with Bush as commander-in-chief and the wars with Obama as commander-in-chief?

How did the Obama Administration manage to schedule the trial of Khalid Sheik Mohammed for downtown New York without first conferring with the mayor, the police commissioner, the governor?

Fallout.

Scott Brown gets elected in Massachusetts and some Democrats are relieved because they still have 59 votes. So they need to get just one Republican senator to vote with them. Good luck to that. And, uh, fellows, among that group of 59 are such great Democratic stalwarts as Joe Lieberman and Arlen Specter, plus several Blue Dogs. Enjoy your majority.

Kennedy of course is gone. His son Patrick is quitting the House.

Some polls suggest Barbara Boxer may have a rough re-election this year. I don’t recall the last time she had to struggle.

Republicans, sensing blood, are falling all over one another for the right to challenge Rep. John Hall.

Dodd, Bayh and Byron Dorgan are leaving the Senate. And Beau Biden, Joe’s son, decided not to run for his dad’s Delaware Senate seat, which once he could have had just by yelling “Gimme.”

Is anyone willing to bet on the future career of Harry Reid?

Who would have thought that one year after the Bush nightmare ended, there would appear in Minneapolis a huge billboard showing a picture of a smiling George W. Bush and the words “Miss me yet?” Miss Bush? That’s impossible, right?

Jeffrey can be reached at jeffrey@zestoforange.com

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One Response to “Political Indigestion”

  1. DGREENE Says:

    I love reading this stuff from Democrats. Warms my heart. You’re totally delusional about what is going on in this country. You take the 1960s playbook and replay it over and over and over again. This is a center-right country whether you like it or not. It wouldn’t have made a bit of difference when Obama tries his version of healthcare, it would be soundly rejected by a majority of the country. I particularly love it when you play the race card, painting every conservative – particularly those in the Tea Party movement as raging Jim Crow bigots. It is simply not the case. In fact, you should really look inside your own party. Harry Reid – your standard-bearer in the Senate referred to the president as a light-skinned well-spoken Negro. Bill Clinton remarked to Ted Kennedy during the primaries that a few years ago Obama would be serving them tea. The fact is, individuals are bigoted and racist, not parties.

    Moreover, the backlash you are seeing is coming from a significant contingent of Obama voters. Just do the numbers. A super majority of the country has rejected Obama-care, obscene “stimulous spending” and cap and tax proposals all coming from the Whitehouse and Democratic congressional majorities – well over 70%. McCain only got about 46% of the popular vote.

    I love it, though. Keep it up. Tell your liberal friends to trumpet ridiculous notions of what America should be like and harken back to the 60s. It’ll just cause more of your supporters in Congress to lose their seats this November and 2012.

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