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Obama's missed opportunity
by Eric Alterman


Obama has scored more early-term victories than anyone since LBJ. But it's because
he declared war on his base while doing so that he'll still face a drubbing this fall...

I've written earlier here that Obama's strategy had the potential for genius, both in terms of
his running to "bring us together" - which was clearly what a majority of voters wanted after
eight years of the divisiveness of Bush and Cheney - but also as a theme of governance.
All he had to do was demonstrate sincerity in pursuit of bipartisanship, and when the
Republicans refused to play ball, more in sorrow than in anger, shove the Democratic
agenda down their throat. Surely the country would understand that we have terrible
problems that needed to be addressed. And if conservatives were content merely to
mouth ideological slogans while Obama and company rolled up their sleeves to do
what needed to be done, then surely the administration would be rewarded for it at the polls.

Boy was I wrong.

It turns out that Obama, advised primarily by Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod,
was so committed to his strategy of bipartisan governance that he insisted on pursuing it,
not only at the expense of his campaign promises, but also of his own (and his party's)
popularity. Holding his own ideologically disparate party together was difficult enough.
But bringing along enough Republicans to demonstrate a good-faith effort - whether they
ended up supporting him in the end or not - resulted in legislation that however historic,
was so watered down by compromise with corporate lobbyists that it pissed off almost
everyone and satisfied pretty much nobody.

One might guess that Obvama, persoanlly, screwed this up. I can't imagine Rahm
and Axelrod begging Obama to bend more to please the Bitch and the Boner.

Maybe it's his inexperience, but Obama seems to want to win in just one way:
He wants the Bitch and the Boner to agree with him and that's never going to happen,
so what's blocking Obama's brain that he can't let that fact seep in?

And why bend over backwards to please the sons of bitches
and then tell your base to fuck off?

Why can't a man as smart as Obama learn?


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