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Premature Capitulation
  by Michael Winship, t r u t h o u t


There's this old joke about the French Revolution. A group of prisoners
is lined up before the guillotine. One by one, their heads are lopped
off. Then, the next man is put in place. The lever is pulled, but the
blade stops just inches above his neck. This must be a sign of divine
intervention, the judge in charge declares, and the man is freed.

The same thing happens to the next prisoner and the next and the next.
Finally, as the very last man is prepared for execution, he looks up at
the mechanism and exclaims, "Wait! I think I see your problem!"

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you President Barack Obama, (that's cold)
providing needless aid and comfort to those who would do him wrong,
handing over his own head without a fight, afflicted with a curious
syndrome we have decided to call Premature Capitulation.

Backing away from myriad campaign promises, giving in to health care,
economic stimulus and financial reform compromises - in some ways, these
were par for the course, the unfortunate price of governing and politics
in a polarized America. But in the few weeks since the midterm elections,
the affliction of Premature Capitulation has become more and more endemic.

And now this deal to extend the Bush tax cuts for two years...

So - what can Obama do to turn things around?

How can he get his base back?
How can he get independents back?
How can he get young people back?
How can he get white people back?
How can he get the elderly back?

I think he needs to get some ideas from outside his Chicago Circle.

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