That strange sound you hear if you listen closely is Senator Ted Kennedy spinning in his grave. Could he have possibly imagined a worse consequence of his departure from the Senate when health care reform was so close? Absolutely not. When he was alive he probably was not even aware of Massachusetts state senator Scott Brown. Though Kennedy deserved a better outcome, Democrats richly deserved the Republican win in Massachusetts .
The main reason is that Democrats in Congress and President Obama have shown nothing but disdain for the overwhelming national desire for an end to the self-serving corruption that is revealed through never-ending sweetheart deals for corporate interests, even as a large fraction of Americans suffer in this Great Recession caused by corporate greed, incompetence and criminality that go unpunnished.
One of the very few truths coming from Obama’s lips was that the forces that swept Brown to victory were the same as those that propelled Obama into the presidency. What so-very-smart Obama apparently did not fully appreciate when he acknowledged this was that the truth of that statement was evidence of Obama’s failures as president. Obama sold himself as an independent-minded, trustworthy Democrat committed to change and better government, and that same approach was used by Republican Brown. If the scam worked for Obama, why not make it work for a Republican? Obviously it worked.
So two days after Brown’s victory Obama announces a new Wall Street and banking reform effort. Coincidentally, 53 percent of Democrats that voted for Brown said they would vote for Democrats if they would actually fix Wall Street.
In other words, the national desire for true change and reform that convinced so many independents and others to vote for Obama has been made a mockery by a White House and Congress that has continued to behave as conventional, corrupt and lying politicians. How else to punish Democrats then to make someone like Brown a winner that could derail health care reform and other legislation in the Senate?
I say bravo! Nice work. Thanks for all the Obama voters who either did not vote or voted for Brown. Nice message.
All that Obama and the congressional Democrats have shown is that Americans can never believe that politicians who work their way up through the two-party plutocracy can ever be trusted as true change agents. In a system where money dictates public policy corporate and other special interests will continue to win over true public interests.
As long as third parties do not stand any chance of competing against the two-party plutocracy because the system has been so rigged against them, what else can voters do other than to punish one corrupt political party at critical times by shifting power to the other corrupt political party? So much for American electoral democracy.
Obama was a little known state senator who had accomplished very little before becoming a US senator. Ditto for Brown. If Obama could become president with good looks and a winning personality, why not Brown? Now we should all root for Brown becoming the Republican’s best bet for preventing Obama from winning a second term. At least that’s what I hope Obama obsesses about and loses sleep over. Maybe then he will stop showing such disdain for democracy, stop making deals with corporate interests and start producing the changes in the political and government system that Americans want and need. And, most of all, get rid of many of your top advisors that are nothing more than status quo establishment figures with terrible political and economic ideas. And also get your Justice Department to prosecute a large number of criminals in the financial sector that created the Great Recession.
Do these things or millions of angry Americans will surely vote out Democrats in the coming mid-term congressional elections and keep you from getting a second term. Not that Republicans, of course, will ever perform any better. But in our delusional democracy about the best voters can do is shift power between the two useless major political parties. Populist anger demands more than empty populist rhetoric from lying politicians of both major parties.
Joel S. Hirschhorn can be reached through delusionaldemocracy.com