I’ve been thinking about Obama. Actually I’ve been thinking about 100 days, the November elections, the US Economy, unemployment, the equity markets, America’s wars, and scapegoats. It is now just over 100 days until the November elections. We have already gone well beyond what I consider our “normal” pre-pre-pre-election phase. We are at least into the pre-election stage with many candidates already out there “shaking babies and kissing (ahem)...” I mean the public servant wanabees are already out there shaking hands and kissing babies --- FINE “upstanding” traditions in American politics. The only thing more central to a political campaign is to trash the opposing candidate, or the opposing political party, or the current President. We are so good at doing that!
You see President Obama has become the scapegoat poster child for the Republicans as soon as he said the words: “... So help me GOD!” --- a year ago on last January 20th. Some voted for Obama because he was black (or a person of color), some voted for him because he was the Democratic Candidate, some voted for him because they couldn't stomach McCain/ Palin (like me), a lot voted for him because he was NOT George W. Bush, and some just wanted to throw their vote away just to stir up the political pot. Anyone following "W" into the Oval Office was pretty much doomed to fail because of the build up of problems and commitments to disastrous policies and wars that became their inheritance from Bushie Boy, Bubba, and Papa Bush. No one could institute the changes needed to get US/ us out of the Bush/ Clinton/ Bush rut quickly enough to appease the malaise and depression that is now upon us. We have seen my prediction(s) unfold in spades!
BO would be given a honeymoon, now a year and a half later with little if any progress, that honeymoon is over --- I mean literally dead in the oily waters of the dual Gulf(s). Most of the reasons I gave for why people voted for him would not carry their support for the real long haul. And "we" are in these messes for the really long haul, trust me. The Democratic controlled House and Senate have performed as dismally as I knew they would, problem is the Repubes don't have a solid foundation for the needed changes either. Each of the Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum(b) parties aren't going to change. They just love themselves the way they are...
I can see the pendulum swinging back and forth and back and forth until it gets so bad that we actually get a third/ new party formed. I don't see the T-baggers being much more than a flash in a pan, or a fart in a hurricane. They happened, but nobody really will have noticed, or cared. I was hopeful for H. Ross Perot and for Dr. Ron Paul, but they came up way, way short --- being perceived as too extreme and not following thru on their campaigns. The country cannot be run as corporation/ business, or “do-no-harm hospital.” I don't see any William Gladstone (a well meaning, but still a pompous ass) nor Benjamin Disraeli (arrogant dandy who had his very own self-perceived destiny) making it to the top of "the greasy pole" and turning the country’s bad situation(s) around.
In times like these, America tends to rally around the devil they don't know. Carter and Obama really fit this "out of nowhere" to the "White House" mold of candidate. Carter has proved a model EX-President, as did Nixon after his resignation. I actually liked/ like both of them very much and can say I voted for each, but for highly different reasons. Barry Goldwater was right that Nixon should have been Secretary of State and NOT the President. He was probably the most brilliant foreign policy mind this country produced in the entire 20th century. The successes (yes successes) of the Nixon Presidency were almost all diplomatic --- Vietnam, China, and the Soviet Union. These successes were really Nixon's (not Kissenger's). It is only now that we are learning how much Clinton, and Gorbachov used Nixon to engineer a peaceful break up of the former Soviet Union. That is another story. Now we are dealing with the legacy building of Barack Obama. That legacy could have a very long life (gag). A long life, indeed!
Despite all the spin, hype, and brouhaha behind the bailout legislation, the healthcare legislation, the financial reform legislation, and the “controlling the debt” legislation (big laugh here). Just what has really changed, or is even GOING to change? --- NOT much I can assure you. The US economy is in tatters, our unemployment numbers are abominable and growing, foreclosures are at a record pace, our equity markets are obscenely overpriced and will continue downward, and we are bogged down in the quagmires of two costly wars with no end(s) in sight. We look to our candidates and our government(s) for the quickest of solutions – “for change we can believe in.” (I still LAUGH over that campaign ditty.)
When solutions don’t materialize “yesterday,” we can always blame the President. Right now Uncle $ugar is “paying” his bills (but only with freshly printed money, I might add). We are way too dependent on the regular checks from the government. When the “money” stops, there is total chaos. If you don’t believe me, just ask ANY school administrator in Illinois!!!
I’m Fred Cederholm and I’ve been thinking. You should be thinking, too.
Copyright 2009 Questions, Inc. All rights reserved. Fred Cederholm is a CPA/CFE, a forensic accountant, and writer. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois (B.A., M.A. and M.A.S.). He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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This story was published on July 19, 2010.