Wednesday, August 11, 2010

On Robert Gibbs's remarks regarding the "professional left"

With all of the calls for him to resign or to even be fired (the latter coming from Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson), you have to wonder if Shakespeare ever imagined political theater so hollow, so empty that it's not even entertaining anymore, just pathetic. Why bother? Indeed. Gibbs's remarks were to the Moonie-owned The Hill, a staunchly conservative paper, meaning a cargo cult-within-a-cargo-cult, and apparently the outgoing press secretary felt quite at home in making the statements that he did. Why wouldn't he? He's the same kind of cretin. Yet, why? Why make such stupid remarks?

The answer is simple. He and the administration that he represents aren't especially different from--say--the GOP itself and hate their base at least as much. What choice are we left with here in a roundly rightist political culture that doesn't reflect or even acknowledge the views of the majority of Americans on social issues? That's what's known as a political crisis since there really is no opposition party in American politics, only two branches of one pro-business one; one that represents an oligarchy but not the public. Yes, now the president is worried that his agenda will be endangered (a good thing in the end) and is engaging in some last minute social spending such as a paltry $3 billion for those who have or will lose their homes. Then, there's the diehard municipal/teacher/police vote that was paid for with much more and will likely ensure more Democratic votes--the primary motive for doing it at all. This kind of a mess is nothing new to American history, but it is a regression, back to the bad old days of the 1880s-90s when the "robber barons" (now we simply call them the "rich," "CEOs," and "Wall Street"). Once again, thanks Ronald Reagan, and Richard Nixon, but you couldn't have done it without those wily Democrats.

Like an atomic clock going off exactly on time, a slack-jawed denizen on Facebook hit me with: "In the real world, what better candidate that can actually be elected would you suggest?" Besides being the usual straw man argument one gets from the unfortunate few middle-class whites who bother to vote (which is why registering poor and minorities is always a good idea), this kind of a comment ignores how rigged the electoral process is and that they keep voting for people who wish to impair it over and over again once they're in office, and that's for starters. There's a point where you're just another battered wife, a dupe, a mark, a moron. There was a better candidate than Barack Obama and Gibbs worked to take him down in 2004, for the the DNC and the Kerry campaign: Howard Dean. Yes, they've beaten Dean down into submission and made him parrot their absurd talking points, but there was a time, not so long ago...

But it was the Foghorn Leghorn-like Gibbs that worked overtime putting out attack ads against Dean and his reasonably progressive agenda--too reasonable for the DNC and its biggest backers. Dean's also from Alabama and has been advising on a Southern strategy for the Obama campaign/administration for some time. These are the same people that wanted Barack Obama in office and not someone like Dean since he might actually come through for the public and not Wall Street. In addition, when Team Clinton came onboard, we got more of the same cronies from that sordid, pro-business administration, making for a curious form of non-nostalgia. Why am I one of the only people in America who knows that Hillary Clinton has served on the board of Wal-Mart and is a major shareholder, for example? Thanks to a compliant media, never mind all the high talk of the Obama administration having to confront a "combative media," most Americans don't know this. One wishes they were combative, at least for the right reasons, which would be a very real change.

Gibbs is right(ist): I'd trade the Pentagon for a Canadian-style health care system in a heartbeat. For those who think we need defense spending that's 600 times greater than the next highest spender, you're the ones who are "crazy," and if you don't live to see the tyranny you're constructing, your children certainly will. With luck, it's all going to collapse before then anway. You've been lulled into a Pavlovian call-and-response--you feel fear when the political and economic establishment rings 'dem bells. What does that make you?

Would I be satisfied with "Kucinich as president"? Damned straight I would. Fire all of them. Fire the next ones if they're the same. Fire them all, and shut them out of the political process forever, and anyone like them that doesn't serve the public interest, let alone won't listen to them. Eventually, the public will stop speaking and start acting. At that point, Mr. Gibbs will have a lot of explaining to do. Will it be too late? Who knows, but he's going to own a part of the social chaos if it does in fact unfold, and as much as any Bush II operative. That's not a stretch since the Obama administration has kept most of them onboard.


  1. --Love the "running jump at yourselves" crack! We still seem to be singing in the same choir most of the time. I looked at your profile and realized how many of the same books we both prize.

    You might, however, be annoyed with me when I say I think Reagan and even Tricky did have a couple of major accomplishments, which of course they managed to obfuscate and detract from with subsequent ruinously illegal bone-head moves.
    I'll probably always think Bush II
    makes all our other bad actors look like altar boys by comparison.

    Such is life and politics, but we who care must plod on, do our best research, do whatever we can to alert and convert others to awareness, action with alacrity.

    The weather here in Chicagoland is fine, hope things are in your neck of the woods too. Best, A.

  2. Why are you one of the few people who know H. Clinton served on Walmart's board? --Because the rest
    of us don't check out the New York Times often enough, for just one
    reason. After I read your plaintive
    complaint, I looked her up there, an
    article fro May 20, 2007. Interesting and troubling, to be sure! Be well, Amber

  3. I looked up Howard Dean but couldn't
    find any connection between him and
    Alabama except for his supporting
    progressive Alabamans for office.
    He seems to have been born and raised on the upper East Coast. (But this is just a relatively trivial kvech; your comment about there been no true opposition party in America is absolutely right on (I have voted Green now and again in Illinois, however). Best, A.