Sunday, January 31, 2010

Obama as Albatross?

Jonathan Martin reports that the GOP has a grand strategy to tie Obama to their mid-term Democratic Party opponents.

Some Democrats are hoping that, after the GOP Q&A last week, Obama will be an asset to Democratic candidates. I think that remains to be seen. Republicans have been able to covertly and overtly mobilize Teabaggers (revealing the lie in the TBs' claims that they are "independent" --their ultimate destination remains the GOP) and crush Dems so far. All the Obama-haters will keep coming out of the woodwork, while disenchanted progressives will stay home (or better yet, vote Green). Disinformation and disenfranchisement will take a chunk out of Democratic numbers, including Obama loyalists. The Democrats haven't developed a plan to win back those progressives (and don't seem terribly interested in doing so). And they have never been able to deal with disinfo/disenfranchisement.

There's still a lot of anger (much of it, yes, unconsciously racist) that Obama even won the presidency, and this is configurally, metaphorically, symbolically, and ultimately psychologically transposed into a hatred of the centrist Democratic agenda.

And all of that is in addition to those who concluded the first time around, or are coming around to a fresh conclusion, that conservatism deserves another chance. Progressive Democrats ignore all these facts at their peril. Independent progressives (including those who stare uncomfortably at their Democratic Party membership cards*) and those struggling to build third parties are already aware of these things, and should continue to debate conservatives on their own terms, taking the long view of political history whenever possible.

*I'm speaking allegorically of course, I know nobody actually carried Democratic Party membership they?

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