Friday, October 2, 2015

Playing Out Obama's String

When an NFL team at the end of the season has no chance left to get into the playoffs, sportswriters write about "playing out the string." There's no death or glory in it, but the team is still expected to come out on game day ready to play.

That's the situation the US is in with nearly sixteen months to go in the Obama Era. There is almost nothing to be done until President Obama leaves office on January 20, 2017.

So perhaps we just have to sit by while the president makes a mess of the Middle East and the economy continues to sputter.

For many it is too frustrating, and that's why the Republicans in the House just showed Speaker John Boehner the door. And that's probably why three people without experience of elected office are leading the Republican race for the president.

The problem is not that Obama is unteachable, as the Wall Street Journal recently opined. The problem, as I've written, is that liberals are unteachable.

There is not necessarily anything shameful in that. We all have our world views, our belief systems, and we stick to them no matter what. The liberal world view is that foreign wars and carrying the big stick solves nothing. In fact it is worse than nothing; it is imperialism and colonialism. We should concentrate instead on solving problems at home, fighting racism and inequality and homelessness.

So that's why the Democrats determined to retreat from the US world empire built up since World War II. We can't solve the world's problems; in fact we often make them worse. For instance we took Iraq and broke it. Every culture is different; we should let people determine their own political arrangements rather than impose our own.

Domestically, of course, Democrats believe in fundamental transformation. They believe in detailed political and administrative supervision of race relations; they believe in political and economic interventions to correct historical inequality. And they believe in detailed political and administrative supervision of the workplace and the market economy. Even left-wing writers like J├╝rgen Habermas have admitted that such a politics amounts to "internal colonization."

My world view says that all politics and government is colonization. Because government is force. And my world view says that, if you are going to choose, it's better for the US government to carry a big stick outside the US rather than inside. In other words the job of the United States government to protect our external trade from tin-pot dictators and pirates, and force and projection of force are the only ways to do that. Within the US the efficacy of force is more limited, and morally questionable. Because what is the government doing when it puts the hammer down on, e.g., Uber drivers?

Over the years liberals have convinced themselves that their world view for external retreat and internal conquest is the right and proper thing to do. My judgement is that they are wrong, and the Obama experiment is a pedal-to-the-metal effort that will prove it.

Remember back in the 2000s? Judis and Teixeira prophesied that Democrats would own the future with The Emerging Democratic Majority of minorities, women, educated and young people. Well, minorities got to be hardest hit by the real-estate crash, young people are living in their parents' basement. So how's that emerging majority doing, Barack?

Back in 2008 I voted for Barack Obama because I wanted Democrats to own foreign policy and show what they really believed in beyond attacking President Bush and everything to do with him.

But I can see now that I only saw half the picture. We needed Democrats to take the bull by the horns and implement their entire world view and prove to the world that it was all rubbish and delusion.

So that's where we are today. Americans instinctively understand that something is wrong with the way the government works. They understand that it is Time for a Change. Hey maybe we could have Hope and Change. For a change.

The only question, after we play out the string, is what change?

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