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      Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – August 7, 2022 by Tony Wikrent   Restoring balance to the economy Becoming the Workers’ Party Again Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH), August 5, 2022 [The American Prospect] …A toxic combination of shareholder capitalism and pliant politicians gutted our middle class, hollowed out our towns, and dried up opportunity for people […]
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Unsavory Savior

While I was writing a couple recent posts about Obama’s money troubles and his undersized career package, I was struck by an interesting thought. Obamanation seems to have stopped growing. I don’t mean it’s growth rate has slowed, I mean it stopped cold.

Just a few months ago the blogosphere was filled with conversion diaries, where born-again Obots described in nauseating detail their personal journey of “coming to Obama.” Those were heady days for Obamanation. Virtually every Obama rally featured a nubile former virgin swooning in the front row just like an Elvis concert. Viral videos appeared on YouTube like magic, each one “unauthorized” but professionally made. Not only Democrats but Republicans and Independents were joining the movement in such numbers that the price of Kool-aid skyrocketed.

Then people began noticing the cult-like behavior of Obamanation. From Jake Tapper:

Inspiration is nice. But some folks seem to be getting out of hand.

It’s as if Tom Daschle descended from on high saying, “Be not afraid; for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all the people: for there is born to you this day in the city of Chicago a Savior, who is Barack the Democrat.”  Obama supporter Kathleen Geier writes that she’s “getting increasingly weirded out by some of Obama’s supporters. On listservs I’m on, some people who should know better – hard-bitten, not-so-young cynics, even – are gushing about Barack…

Describing various encounters with Obama supporters, she writes, “Excuse me, but this sounds more like a cult than a political campaign. The language used here is the language of evangelical Christianity – the Obama volunteers speak of ‘coming to Obama’ in the same way born-again Christians talk about ‘coming to Jesus.’…So I say, we should all get a grip, stop all this unseemly mooning over Barack, see him and the political landscape he is a part of in a cooler, clearer, and more realistic light, and get to work.”

Joe Klein, writing at Time, notes “something just a wee bit creepy about the mass messianism” he sees in Obama’s Super Tuesday speech.

“We are the ones we’ve been waiting for,” Obama said. “This time can be different because this campaign for the presidency of the United States of America is different. It’s different not because of me. It’s different because of you.”

Says Klein: “That is not just maddeningly vague but also disingenuous: the campaign is entirely about Obama and his ability to inspire. Rather than focusing on any specific issue or cause — other than an amorphous desire for change — the message is becoming dangerously self-referential. The Obama campaign all too often is about how wonderful the Obama campaign is.”


It wasn’t a “wee bit creepy,” it was the kind of creepy that would give Stephen King nightmares.

But that wasn’t all. Suddenly, in March, the media briefly roused itself from its months-long sycophantic haze and did some actual reporting. They told America about the Reverend Jeremiah Wright. They played clips of some of his sermons. And they told us that this was Obama’s spiritual advisor of twenty years.

Now personally, I wasn’t offended by what Rev. Wright had to say. Some of what he said I even agree with. But I instantly recognized that he was politically toxic. No one (especially a Democrat) who is running for high office in this nation can afford to be closely associated with radicals or nut-jobs, and Rev. Wright is a little of both. Obama should have distanced himself from Rev. Wright years ago. But he didn’t, and we were treated to a minor fiasco, where Obama affirmed his relationship with Rev. Wright (while claiming ignorance of his statements) and then subsequently denounced Wright and his statements. The controversy is the reason the phrase “under the bus” is now associated with the Obama campaign.

But between the realization that Obama supporters were a cult and the piercing of the veil of perfection caused by Rev. Wright, the growth of Obamanation ground to a halt. Other than Taylor Marsh, I can think of no new converts to the faith since March. Fundraising has dropped precipitously, and Obama has faired poorly in the primaries since then, including several blow-outs.

Obama supporters seem unenthusiastic about their candidate these days. The only argument they seem able to offer with a somewhat straight face is that he is “better than McCain.” It’s like a karaoke machine that only plays one song (Roe, Roe, Roe Your Boat) Even little Lord Cheeto himself has been critical of The Precious.

I’m shocked. It’s like the Pope announcing that there are enough Christians so the Catholic church will no longer be trying to save any new souls. (I’m disappointed too, because I was hoping Obama Girl would drop by and try to convert me in person. I was really looking forward to her showing me the Gates of Heaven.)

Of course the current malaise of Obamanation was predictable. The primary driving force behind his campaign was Clinton Derangement Syndrome, personified by Andrew (Raw Muscle Glutes) Sullivan. Without Hillary to hate, the Oborg are lost and confused. Obama’s recent flip-flops, back-flips and reversals only exacerbates their problem.

It is also significant that Obama and Obamanation have become the target of satire and ridicule. Obamamania is as much a fad as it is a cult, and when a new craze quits being cool it is history. Fads die from the sound of laughter, and ridicule is kryptonite to “cool.” The very-junior Senator from Illinois is the political equivalent of the “Achy-Breaky Heart” or the “Macarena,” and just like people hide those Billy Ray Cyrus and Bayside Boys CD’s (and pictures of themselves sporting mullets) they will soon be ashamed to admit they once had a crush on Obama.

Europeans love Barack??? Good thing they CAN’T VOTE!

Ok, I’m going to take a stab at this crap that’s been floating around about how much the Europeans love Barack.

First, he laid the foundations for this adulation(or so he thinks) when he made that statement that Americans can’t say more than Merci Beaucoups and are really the fricking idiots of the known world. (BTW, if you only have time to learn one phrase in a foreign language, Thank You Very Much is highly recommended.) Well, as it turns out, I work with Europeans.  In fact my whole department is international.  Out of 25 of us, there are only *three* Americans.  And we have LOTS of international teleconferences.  Our business is conducted in two languages, English and French.  I am just as likely to receive email in French as English and when I call a colleague in Europe, I am likely to get the voicemail prompts in French, German or Italian. We deal with it, teach ourselves, learn to read French (not that hard actually) or get a tutor.

But it doesn’t much matter anyway because all verbal transactions are done in English.  And there is a very good reason for this that just points to Obama’s elitist stupidity in the most glaring fashion- half of my department is CHINESE.  They speak Mandarin or Shanghaiese.  None of our European colleagues speak those languages but we all speak English.  So, English it is.  And Europeans know better than anyone that Americans are no longer number one in the world.  It is the Chinese that hold that title.  They are very happy to point that out to me whenever my American superiorty makes a reappearance.

Secondly, The Europeans are “in love” with Obama for one reason and one reason only- He’s not Bush.  In fact, they hate Republicans as much as we do.  They blame the neocons for the disasters of the last eight years and if it weren’t Obama, they’d be GENUINELY happy for Hillary.

Yeah, really.  Most of my European colleagues were pulling for Hillary.  They’ll settle for Obama and they are apalled that anyone would vote for McCain but they really *liked* Hillary.  My boss applied for her citizenship earlier this year in anticipation of voting for Hillary and is disappointed that she may not be able to.  The Eurpoeans blanch when I tell them I am not voting for Obama but once I explain what the DNC was up to, they completely understand.

So, there you have it.  They are in love with the anti-Republican.  You could replace him with Alfred E. Newman and as long as “What me worry?” was a Democrat, they’d be ecstatic.  There is nothing intrinsically special about Obama that makes them happy.

Friday: Geezers

Who is this man?

He is OLD, dude.  He’s 88.  And he is one of the only things that stands between you and the loss of your constitutional rights at the present time.  This man is John Paul Stevens, appointed to the US Supreme Court by Gerald Ford and, ironically, one of its more “liberal” members.  (Think about that.)

For some reason, no one is refering to John Paul Stevens as old.  Nope.  We keep hearing about how he still plays tennis a couple times a week.  No one is suggesting that JP Stevens is too old to sit on the Supreme Court.  In fact, I’m guessing that many of us would be perfectly happy if he stays on when he turns 100.  Heck, if he dies, what would be the harm of having his law clerks taxiderm him and roll him into chamber on a dolly?  Maybe they can wire him so they can make it look like he’s asking questions, sort of like Disney animatronics.  That would be fine with me.  One of the senior clerks can write a suitable Stevens-esque opinion.  Can I get a show of hands to see who would be cool with this?

Jeez, John McCain’s practically a young whippersnapper. *

In other news:

  • The Clinton’s are busily upstaging The Chosen One.  I can almost hear the Obamaphiles now. “They’re only defending equal pay, reproductive choice and malarial drugs because they know that Obama won’t and they want to make him look bad.  Damn, Hillary Clinton!”  Bill Clinton is getting some major global pharmas to bring down the cost of anti-malarial drugs and provide mosquito netting.  Wait for it… {{Clutch pearls}} “He’s grandstanding!  He still thinks he’s president!”  Well, he *could* stop doing all of those things and campaign with Obama.  He said he is just waiting for the call, no doubt sitting beside the phone between global conferences and conferring with his wife about the nasty machinations of the Bush executive branch.  Ahh, yes, I can see him nervously tapping his fingers as he waits for that phone to ring, “Ring, Dammit! I need to feel relevent again.  Obama has to know that I would do anything, *anything* to bask in his reflected glory.”  That magical day will someday soon come when the last successful two term Democratic president of the United States will stand cheek by skinny jowl with the Dauphin to whom he will pass the torch of responsibility for the mightiest nation of the world.  The Big Dawg will drape his powerful arm around Obama’s fragile shoulders and grin at the assembled throng and say, “You will be lucky to get Barack Obama to work for you.”  Any day now, I know he’ll call any day now.
  • I found this history lesson on LadyBoomerNYC.   It seems that this year is not the first that the Democratic party has endeavored to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.  Like, where would the country be if Al Smith or Nance Garner had been nominated.  Holy Hemiola!  Did you see how many delegates Smith had compared to Roosevelt?  I’m amazed they let him be nominated at all.  And here’s Hillary Clinton who is virtually tied in pledged delegates (if you strip Obama of his ill gotten gains in Michigan, Texas and many of the other caucus states where the mysterious Hillary caucus goers whose intentions we can fairly estimate were not counted) and she’s having problems getting the evil triumvirate to even put her name in nomination.  Let’s think about that for a sec: an African-American male is all but anointed because his candidacy is historic but the female who came in second in a squeaker can’t get nominated at all because she came in second in a squeaker?  This after frickin’ Al Smith who had a lousy 201 delegates to Roosevelt’s 666.5 (that half delegate just barely saves him from accusations of backing by demonic forces) puts FDR through *FOUR* ballots.  PLEASE.  This is just fucking nuts.  Put the lady’s name up for nomination and quit embarrassing yourselves, DNC.
  • Alegre has this fascinating post on Choosing Girls in math and science.  I have some recent first hand experience with this subject.  Brook is in the top 2% nationally in math according to her recent NJASK and SSAT scores (perfect score or 24/24 in Algebra and Geometry facts for the lower school test).  But headed into seventh grade, she couldn’t get her teacher to recommend her for enriched algebra.  In fact, her teacher wouldn’t recommend her for Algebra at all next year.  She has to repeat pre-algebra in spite of the fact that she cosnsitently scored in the 90’s on her quizes and tests.  It gets worse.  The only students recommended for the enriched algebra course were… wait for it… boys.  Yep.  Don’t tell me what avenues to pursue.  I’ve done everything I can short of throwing a fit at the next board meeting (scheduled for July 21, 2008.  I have my alarm set.)  I’m trying to get her in a private school that won’t wait list her for lack of space (already happened at two of the best in the Princeton area).  So, if anyone out there has any connections and wants to help a gifted but mouthy 12 year old who hates homework but has a wicked sense of humor and is really a very nice girl, please let me know.  Other than that, if this is something Hillary Clinton would like to take on in the Senate before Brook becomes a classic underachiever, I would be forever grateful.  If anyone reading this can pass the message on to her, that would be very helpful.
  • Friday FAST is back. Here’s the deal: give up breakfast, lunch and dinner, send your savings to Hillary.  Click on the lunch bag in the side panel to participate.  If you can only skip one meal, that’s OK too.  If you can give a little more, consider sending it to America’s Second Harvest to help poor families feed their kids.  You’ll feel full all day.  I promise.

*I’m not voting for John McCain.  I just think the “old” argument is lame.  It’s like, “He’s  ollllld”, that’s all you’ve got Barack?  He’s old?  {{sigh}}


Hubris is a Greek word for overweening pride or arrogance.  In Greek tragedy, hubris invariably resulted in destruction due to angering the gods.  While Americans admire self-confidence, they also cheer the underdog, and love to see the conceited get humbled.  Super Bowl XLII will be remembered as one of the greatest ever, because Eli Manning and the NY Giants beat the “perfect” New England Patriots.

Barack Obama is the epitome of hubris.  He even had his own fake Presidential seal made.  From Charles Krauthammer:

Americans are beginning to notice Obama’s elevated opinion of himself. There’s nothing new about narcissism in politics. Every senator looks in the mirror and sees a president. Nonetheless, has there ever been a presidential nominee with a wider gap between his estimation of himself and the sum total of his lifetime achievements?

Obama is a three-year senator without a single important legislative achievement to his name, a former Illinois state senator who voted “present” nearly 130 times. As president of the Harvard Law Review, as law professor and as legislator, has he ever produced a single notable piece of scholarship? Written a single memorable article? His most memorable work is a biography of his favorite subject: himself.

It is a subject upon which he can dilate effortlessly. In his victory speech upon winning the nomination, Obama declared it a great turning point in history — “generations from now we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment” — when, among other wonders, “the rise of the oceans began to slow.” As Hudson Institute economist Irwin Stelzer noted in his London Daily Telegraph column, “Moses made the waters recede, but he had help.” Obama apparently works alone.


For the first few months of the campaign, the question about Obama was: Who is he? The question now is: Who does he think he is?

We are getting to know. Redeemer of our uninvolved, uninformed lives. Lord of the seas. And more. As he said on victory night, his rise marks the moment when “our planet began to heal.” As I recall — I’m no expert on this — Jesus practiced his healing just on the sick. Obama operates on a larger canvas.

Despite the bogus accusations of racism by Obama and his supporters, for many PUMAs it was Obama’s arrogance that that they first found unacceptable.  They were turned off by the idea of someone with his skimpy resume even running for President. (I’m looking at you, katiebird)  This was long before the rampant sexism and the obnoxious behavior of his supporters. 

Hubris isn’t just a Greek concept.  Proverbs 16:18 says: “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” 

Maybe it’s a sign that November comes during the season we call “Fall”

(Cross-posted at Klownhaus)