Every Man/Woman in the Beltway/Media Village is a Liar!
I caught a few minutes of the beginning of Chris Matthews' Hardball tonight on MSNBC. In that oh-so-familiar "I'm okay and everyone else is an idiot" way of his, he was coughing out his contempt at Americans too dim-witted to grasp how the Obama administration has brought our country 70% back to recovery.
At least I think that was the respectably high percentage he quoted, uncited, and I found myself wondering bitterly what unmentionable orifice that statistic had originated from.
Or maybe it actually had been computed somewhere by one with an esteemed degree and a six plus figure salary. Or better yet, presented by a government agency. Which ever way, I'm not buying.
I also wonder how many of us, disenfranchised from the media's political discussions, are out here. According to the media it would seem only the right, the crazy tea partiers, have irrational issues with the Obama administration, as well as the expected grid-locking, gamesmen Republicans. And, okay, on the left, maybe a few stray, maniacal old hippies and some misinformed or simply indolent Democratic voters.
I had sat through the Newshour earlier, listening to accounts of Obama in earnest campaign mode, now attempting to re-seduce the college youth vote. His in-person titillating celebrity was rounding up big crowds apparently. I wondered if Oprah will soon be materializing with him on the horizon. So, he is willing to play Lucy and the football with the youth. Hmmmm.
Obama with that radiant, amiable, election-mode smile. As well as the feistiness of indignation of the martyr and the wronged. A feistiness directed at those progressives daring to question his governance. Against those whom I consider people of conscience. Whom he and his partners in snarky talking points apparently consider whining, perfectionistic, troublemaking fringers. Whom the media hardly ever acknowledges let alone takes seriously until they ... we ... are deliberately assigned a talking point. Then the media obligingly echoes and re-echoes and re-echoes and re-echoes (you get the idea) the hypnotic, propaganda sound bites. Both the administration and the media are without any sense of responsibility in seriously exploring and presenting the other perspective (okay, corporate-unfriendly perspective, funny how that works) of the people of conscience. They persecute us as if THEY are OUR victims. How ironic.
Mid-term election kabuki. How unsatisfying for us disenfranchised ones. How manipulative and craven of the legacy Democratic party and corporate media.
I read once in a psychology book that there are two intentions, two options, humans resort to in relating to one another. The intention to protect and the intention to explore. Exploring is the healthier one. It leads to intimacy and understanding, communication and partnership. Reconciliation of differences. Protection causes contraction and separation. Breeds more fear, distrust, paranoia.
The Obama administration executes knee-jerk responses for protection. For cover-ups. Pounce on the whistleblowers. Punish them. Denigrate critics. Don't address and seriously explore the criticisms. Spin, baby, spin.
The people of conscience are looking for a paradigm shift. They, we, want evidence of a sensibility of justice, morality, and empathy coming from our government. From either party. We do not see it.
With the Beltway Bubble people the metaphor of the boiled frogs comes to mind. The incremental or not so incremental regressions into corruption, opportunism, narcissism, cronyism have left a moral dead zone where our government should be.
Obamaco challenges that we expect magic wands. No. We want only evidence of conscience. Of responsibility. The "ability to respond." Do Obama and his defenders in the politial or media elite EVER dare to address any specifics their detractors are articulating? No, they make only petulant generalizations about not being appreciated for their self-defined "historic" efforts on our (HAH!) behalfs.
Two columnists call out the Obama administration and media hypocrisy very well:
... They think they're going to lose and they're setting up a scapegoat. It wasn't that they ran a bad campaign or that they didn't deliver on their promises - it was their ungrateful voters and the damned professional left. Actually, Washington reporters will love this. There is nothing they enjoy more than beating up on progressive activists and the Democratic base. This strategy is tailored made for the DC elite. They're going to eat it up!
... Obama is so immersed in the DC bubble that he has forgotten the end goal. He is under the delusion that if he can just get the Washington media and politicians to like him everything will be fine. But that wasn't supposed to be the end goal. As a politician, you're supposed to get the voters to like you, not some DC media jerk.
In a recent AP poll about the healthcare bill, people - by a 2-to-1 margin - said that it should have done more not less in reforming the system. That isn't the professional left, that's America. The progressive base is so much larger than the Tea Party clowns running around in Koch brother funded protests. Remember, those are the same progressives who got you elected in the first place.
So, you can shoot the messenger all you like but it isn't going to change the message. You didn't do too much government intervention as Fox News claims, you did too little. Too little to protect the average American, too little to help him or her get a job, too little to change the same old games in Washington.
Almost everyone in Washington is there because they succeeded in this broken, corrupt system. If you make them happy, you've probably done the exact opposite of what you were supposed to do.
What got you elected was the promise to throw those bums out on their asses not to cater to them. But if you like, you can take another cheap shot at the people trying to help you and see if that changes the polls. My guess is it won't. And then when you blame us again, the only people happy will be the ones in DC who hate change.
Recently Vice President Biden ( with obviously the full support of Obama) told Democrats that they should "buck up" and "stop whining" over their complaints about Obama's failures as the most dishonest, disingenuous, ineffective, politically deceitful, inept,unqualified convictionless and wasteful president the Democrats have ever had.
But leaders dont hope, they lead. And Obama is not a leader. As for wanting to work with Republicans to solve problemsm the question is why? Obama had the biggest congressional majority any president has had in 100 years. He didnt need Republicans. That he allowed them to block his agenda because they didnt want to play ball with him is his own fault, his own lack of convictions and his own political ineptness.
After Obama and Biden's latest salvo against Democrats ( most are sure to wonder why they havent been able to be as tough with Republicans) they may very well stop whining and feel even more motivated to join the 61% of independents who say they are so disgusted with Obama over what he's failed to deliver they will vote against Democratic congressional candidates or stay home as retribution. The number of rank and file Democrats ready to give Obama and Biden a "teachable moment" is growing which is putting Democratic congressional candidates in a real bind.
Rather than admit his failures, admitting he hasnt been all that he hoped to be and asking for forgiveness and promise that with a Democratic congress he will do better, he and Biden whine about the lack of enthusiasm over the tepid "better than nothing" bills they passed when it was possible to do so much more.And they whine about Republicans standing in their way.
There will be real irony if Republicans gain the majority. From the beginning Obama has blown the biggest congressional majority any president has had in 100 years by kowtowing, bowing and capitulating to Republicans. Every tepid ineffectual watered down bill passed by the Democratic congress from healthcare to financial reform, was watered down and made toothless by Obama in order to try and curry favor with Republicans.
The other thing they need to do is send a message to the White House and tell them to just shut up. The more they talk the worse they make it, like Biden deciding this was a good time to thank George W. Bush for supporting the troops and giving him credit for the war that caused the bulk of the deficit. Then they turn around and accuse Democrats of "whining and complaining" simply because they are fed up with Obama's lack of character , his political disengenousness, his ineptitude and his well documented lying ( like the auto bailout saving GM from "liquidation" when "liquidation" was never even remotely a possibility or threat). And they just cant understand why Democrats are angry.
Democratic candidates need to acknowledge what is obvious to Democrats -- that Obama has been a catastrophic failure in executing his office, in not delivering on his promises, by always trying to play both ends against the middle with half way measures, and creating a long and documented record of lying and reneging. But then they have to promise that a Democratic congress now chastened by Obama's lack of convictions and failures will take the reins and get it done.
One last thing. The title of my blog is a take-off from an awesome book by Megan K. Stack entitled Every Man In This Village is a Liar, subtitled an education in war. It is the riveting account of Ms. Stack's 7 years in the Middle East post 9/11 as a national reporter for the Los Angeles Times. This from the book jacket:
"Stack writes in ravishing detail and with growing sorrow and anger as the ideals that American politicians and diplomats speak of -- freedom for Afghan women, free elections in the Arab world, security in Iraq and Lebanon -- fail to materialize and as war and violence damage another generation of souls."
One more voice of a person of conscience worth listening to.