The Cult of Hope
It appears Barack Obama has won the
Obama’s message of “hope” has resonated among independents, and even women (Obama beat Hillary among women overall). The Democrats in
I don’t want a candidate who “hopes” that change will occur. Many “independents” seem to have made a last minute decision to vote for Obama in hopes that he will “bring the country together” and transcend “old politics.” Obama’s Reaganesque tone of American pride and idealism uncomfortably smacks of a Reaganism that leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Obama believes that hope can defeat all—or at least win elections. As
Right, just about the time that the wolves lie down with the sheep and Lee Scott has an overnight epiphany and sees the value of unions. It is indeed true that
This is precisely why I want the most cynical bastard in the race. Let me explain: If my arm gets chopped off, I could sit in a room with some pain relievers and Miracle Grow and “hope” it grows back. Chances are that’s not going to happen. I don’t want a candidate to react to the aforementioned issues by saying “With a little hard work and hope, we can bring in every party and come to a consensus.” I want a candidate that will say, “Holy shit! We better do something about this or we’re toast!”
For example, take climate change. The Bush Administration’s policy has been one of “hope.” We have hoped that humans don’t contribute, and that it is not as big of a deal as the scientists say. We should bring in every party, include Exxon-Mobil and the think tank they fund to stall the issue long enough to prevent action.
This is Obama’s attitude problem. He speaks of optimism, but I’d rather have someone with a pessimistic view of climate change. In the latter case, the president would be more compelled to action. Maybe the president would stop pretending that there isn’t a real economic crisis looming, or that health insurance companies have the best interests of their clients at heart. Obama can hope that health insurance companies will accept everyone and provide adequate care without a mandate, but seeing as they have a profit-motive in denying care, that is no more than a crazy delusion.
Take the economy. Sure, one can be optimistic that the
Let us not forget what rose-colored glasses did in our excursion in the
Obama is willing to save a seat at the table for the large corporate interests and fellow Republicans for the issues he will hope to address. Edwards recognizes that if it were that simple, it would have been done by now. Let’s not forget how many times I have heard Bush claim that he listened to the other side.
I want somebody who recognizes that organizations have different interests. In some cases, that means one will have to fight to get what is better for the other 80% of us. Edwards spent his life as a lawyer fighting corporations who would not pay victims of their crimes. He knows they won’t be constructive. I don’t want a candidate that will tell me that he will sit down with other Republicans; I want a candidate that will tell me which group of Republicans he can work with on which issues to split the party to his advantage.
This is why I refuse to drink the Kool Aid that solutions are as simple as hope and optimism. Barack Obama speaks in terms of broad feelings of hope and uniting the country, but he has yet to step up with specific policy proposals. This is why I want the crazy son of a bitch ready to box it out for the other 80%; this is why I want John Edwards to get the nomination.