Monday, July 11, 2011
Can Obama REALLY be THIS Clueless?
At this morning's news conference, Obama continued his bumble-headed and confused efforts to appease Repukes by trying to show he's willing to take on Dem "sacred cows". Trouble is, he's destroying whatever electoral capital he has left in the process, fueling an increasingly disenchanted left base that may well sit next year's election out if he keeps on the way he is. That is, like a scared kid who pre-emptively opts to give his lunch money away to the bullies before even asked!
Why doesn't this guy get it? Can he be this yellow...or callow? Some are wondering. Others, much more cynical than I am, have him pegged as a Repuke in drag. A closet Reaganite or Bushie. A "regressive" as opposed to any kind of progressive (seen on a wide array of issues and events, from extending the mess in Afghanistan, to preserving the archaic and ghastly Bush era civil rights assaults, including on Bradley Manning - to his pusillanimous LGBT stand). But I digress and fortunately I am not with the total cynics yet! The solution is certainly NOT to appease the repukes no matter how desperately you want the debt ceiling raised. Certainly it's dumb to expend your political capital so wastefully! Assuming again that capital is tied to a genuine DEM, not a poseur or oligarch-owned poppet!
Earlier, two days ago, he floated the horrific idea of paring Social Security via the back door by changing the COLA to a cruel and odious "chained CPI" formula, which will see the average fixed income senior losing $10,500 in cumulative monies the first ten years...thanks to the compounding effects of taking 1.4% out of every successive paycheck! NOW, in today's conference, he's proposed the equally horrific idea of raising the Medicare age to 67. As I noted in a number of previous blogs this will only drive UP medical costs, since any care sought by those 64-67 will be through the roof - assuming they can get care at all!
Medicare is more cost effective precisely because it entails one payer (federal government) so the administrative costs are low, compared to private insurers for which 32% is typically consumed by paper pushing. Worse, any 64-67 year old with any pre-existing conditions, or even suspicious conditions..will be out of luck. With their emphasis on pooled risk and medical loss ratio, any up and coming 64-67 yr. olds would be rejected for any and everything. This means we can expect medically -caused bankruptcies to soar even as visits to the ER do - with attendant high costs. Must we always spell these issues out to a guy who's aupposed to be smart and a constitutional scholar? And btw, Mr. Obama, don't diss the invocation of that Sec. 4 of that 14th amendment solution yet! E.g. raising the debt ceiling by presidential fiat. In the end that may be your only open play! The "Kobayashi Maru" test of presidential leadership! USE it and dare the other side to trigger a constitutional crisis - don't run from it! (Hell, as the recent 'TIME' said, we have a constitutional crisis about every 10 years anyway!)
Worse in all this, it effectively castrates all the Dem Senate & House political campaign strategies for next year! These had a choice plum in focusing on Ryan's "Death" plan for Medicare recipients - forcing them to buy vouchers and seek out insurers on their own at enormous added costs, estimated to be nearly 50% more than Medicare demands. How can these pols go now to their constituents and belabor RYAN'S cruel plan to reduce their benefits when their own prez has stabbed them in the back with this nonsense? It totally undermines the Democratic effort!
But maybe this is what repukes want. Like bullies, they've already tasted "blood" and have seen how far Obama is ready to go to throw oldsters and his own base under the bus to garner some slim patina of "bipartisanship" - which more and more has the ordeur of "date rape" (to use Grover Norquist's parlance).
This is all also very puzzling, given how staunchly Obama defended these very programs barely ten days ago! He gave a spirited defense of Medicare and Social security and demanded tax concessions from the Republicans - with fire in his eyes and belly. I admired the man I saw then, willing to speak truth to opposing power thwarting his efforts. He told it like it was, didn't hold back. WHAT happened to that guy? Where did he go and WHO is this timid puppet that's taken his place?
Now he's a wuss, a wimp and a Caspar Milquetoast. So what the hell happened? Was it that dork-ass Mark Halperin calling him a "dick" on MSNBC the next day after his talk? Could that really be the cause? Or is it that some jackass in his WH clique, some inner "advisor" warning him to "seize this moment" to capitulate to the repuglicans, like he did on the Bush tax cuts.
Here's a piece of advice, Mr. Obama: Stop listening to any clueless dorks in your inner circle and start paying attention to your own inner voice! Namely the one that provided the spunk and courage you actually displayed for us all to see 10 days ago, rather than the limp-wimp we behold now. The wuss trying so desperately to look "adult" and cool, so desperate to make a "deal" with his unyielding opposition - he's willing to destroy his political future and the democratic brand in the process.
Wake up and smell the freaking coffee, Mr. Prez! If it's a game of chicken these shit wads want played, then do so! Like Clinton did some 15 years ago! Be a MAN, not a professorial, weak-kneed MOUSE!