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Learning the wrong lessons


Violet Socks:

There’s a remarkable piece in the Times this morning: Young Voters Say They Feel Abandoned. It’s about the enthusiasm gap heading into the mid-terms, which will likely see the formerly pro-Obama college crowd staying away from the polls in droves. The remarkable thing about the article is that the reporters cannot figure out why this might be happening. There is not a single reference to the Obama Administration’s stunning failure to deliver on its campaign promises (both implicit and explicit). Instead, the reporters chalk up the youngsters’ malaise to their feeling “left out” in some vague way. Probably just typical immaturity. Maybe if Obama had gone on The Daily Show more often, the kids would still be with him.

Oh, yeah, that’s it. If only he’d gone on The Daily Show more often.

The article is the soul-twin of another article that appeared in the Times 10 days ago: Democrats Try to Revive Female Voters’ Enthusiasm. The reporters (a different set, though obviously working from the same playbook) note that women seem to have lost their mojo for Obama and the Democratic Party. But the reason for this phenomenon is bafflingly mysterious. What could it be? Perhaps, the reporters say, it has something to do with the economy. Women seem depressed about the economy—yeah, that’s it!—and so they don’t feel like voting.

Next we have a CDS infected double-dip from Michael Medved:

No wonder news reports suggest that Bill Clinton, not Barack Obama, is the most popular campaigner for Democrats in this election cycle. Embattled candidates who want the current president to stay away because they fear close association with his unpopular record welcome President Clinton with enthusiasm and gratitude.

But those candidates fail to acknowledge that the turning point that saved Clinton’s presidency came in November 1994, with the Republican sweep of the midterm elections.

Newt Gingrich and the “Contract with America” GOP captured 53 Democratic House seats and eight Democratic seats in the Senate.

Almost immediately, Clinton reoriented his presidency toward a strategy of “triangulation”: positioning himself as the sensible centrist who stood midway between the aggressive conservatives who controlled Congress and his own stridently liberal Democratic allies on Capitol Hill. Abandoning the activism and sweeping goals that characterized the first two years of his presidency, Clinton rediscovered his identity as a New Democrat and governed successfully for the next six years as a pragmatic centrist.

I’ve said repeatedly that the mainstream media is a tool of corporatist propaganda. An oligarchy of big corporations and wealthy individuals own almost all of the newspapers, magazines and radio stations in this country. They own ALL the major television networks.

When the media isn’t busy trying to distract you with tabloid gossip they are running a scam designed to convince you that you are hearing both sides of the story.

On one side there is FOX News and all the other parts of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire presenting you with the conservative/Republican version of events. On the other side there is MSNBC and the New York Times presenting what is allegedly the progressive/Democrat version.

Both sides are lying to you.

The media will never “get it” because they don’t want to get it. They will say what their corporate masters tell them to say. The will do that because they want to keep their jobs.

Tomorrow and in the days that follow the right-wing media will solemnly declare that the Democrats lost because they were too liberal. Meanwhile the left-wing media will blame the Tea Partiers, the Chamber of Commerce, stupid voters and just about anything and everything except the failure of Obama and the Democrats to keep their promises to the voters.

The problem isn’t that Obama and the Democrats were too liberal. The problem is they weren’t liberal enough. And don’t buy that horseshit about “timid and weak” Democrats. They aren’t cowards and weaklings, they are corrupt crooks.

Failure was the plan.



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Monday: Hey, Republicans, wanna know a secret?

We know why you’re angry.  You probably haven’t figured it out yet.  To be honest, we’ve always felt you were a little clueless about what was going on.  We’re not being elite.

Oh, Hell, yes we were.  We thought we were smarter than you.  Actually, some of us *are* smarter than you.  Some of us are smarter than our Democratic brether, er, siblings.  Well, maybe smarter isn’t exactly the word.  Let’s just say we know when people are trying to sell us something.  We’re not impluse buyers.  We listen to the pitch and can actually be quite entertained by it but at the end, we recognize the script and the elements and decide we really don’t need the combination dessert topping/floor wax after all.

So, here’s the thing.  You know something’s wrong with the election this year but you can’t quite put your finger on what it is.  We wish you had been this skeptical back in 2000 and 2004 but no use crying over spilled milk now.  What’s done is done.  George Bush was your president for eight of the longest years of our lives.  Many of us have been marking down the days in anticipation of his leaving the White House to be replaced with one of our guys.  That was before the primary season heated up and Barack Obama turned out to be one of the most corrupt politicians since Richard Nixon and George Bush.

And we sense that you guys are really angry.  But you’re angry for the wrong reasons.  You’re angry at some lower income people getting in over their heads with bad mortgages.  You’re angry because they weren’t responsible.  You’re angry because you think Barack Obama cares for “those people”.  Jeez, this has been the problem all along.  You’re always looking in the wrong direction.  While your propaganda unit was getting you all stirred up over resentment towards the people who were worse off than you, the rich bad boys were stealing your wallet.  We knew you were easy marks and tried to warn you but did you listen?  {{sigh}}

So, anyway, where was I?  Oh, yeah.  We just wanted you to know that even if Obama had any intention of helping “those people”, which he doesn’t, there’s no money in the Treasury.  So, you can stop worrying about it.  No, no, don’t let it trouble your beautiful minds.  We’ll take care of it like we always do.  Obama is not really one of us bleeding heart liberal types.  He’s a political opportunist.  Obama does what is good for Obama.  There’s no *there* there where his conscience should be.  That is what makes corruption so easy for him.  He might look tired but I guarantee you that he doesn’t stay awake nights worrying about your well being.  Hillary does that.  Obama thinks Hillary types are suckers.

Anyway, here’s the secret.  The real enemy is not Obama.  No, if you didn’t want Obama, all you would have to do is not vote for him.  Poof!  He would go back to being one of the most ineffectual senators in the Senate, right after Liddy Dole.  The REAL enemy is relentless media fueled peer pressure.  Yep, that media who brought us 8 years of George Bush and the Iraq War.  See, if you had listened to us back then, we would have told you to avoid Bush like the plague and it was obvious that there were no Weapons of Mass Destruction.  (45 minutes from Iraq to North American with a missile?  Are you kidding me?  And don’t even go there with “WMD’s were trucked off to Syria” stuff.  The Army would have made a newsreel out of the satellite images if that were true.  Have you been to Google maps lately?)

Look, if you don’t want Obama as your president, and believe me, we are right there with you, you’ve got to listen to us for a change.  It’s time to put aside the fact that we are from the opposite side of the aisle and that you guys are wrong on just about everything.  Yeah, I know my elite slip is showing but I’m telling you that we’re not like the Obamaphile Democrats.  We’re the FDR type.  Oh, nevermind, we know you don’t like him either.  Well, we never cared for Reagan, so there, we’re even.

Here’s the thing: the media is engaging in a haka against you.  A haka is the word for a Maori war dance.  It is big, brash, ugly, noisy and aggressive.  It is intended to make the enemy feel like they have lost the battle before the first spear is thrown.  It’s like Muhammad Ali trash talking Joe Frasier.  It’s designed to make you despair and give up.  And that’s what’s making you mad.  You think that Obama is going to win and there’s nothing you can do about it.

Bullhockeys.

All you have to do is turn the damn TV off.  Watch the last debate on C-Span.  Read only the sports sections and the stuff about the economy in the paper.  I’m pretty sure that if a haka happens in a forest and no one is around to hear it, it doesn’t bloody well work.  Just put the media on mute and go about your business.  They’ll try to get louder of course.  And we know that the Obama campaign is about to launch a new initiative to get people to vote for him.  It will be based on the same nasty techniques that were used in high school to make you vote for that girl for the Homecoming Queen that you didn’t really like but for some reason everyone around you did.  Take it from us, the geeky Clintonistas who have been sitting this out since August, we’ve seen it all before.  We’re happy sitting together at our own lunchtable.  There’s plenty of room here.  And if we all stick together, we can bring that popular clique in the media down.

‘Cos, I don’t know about you, but I’m sick and tired of the media picking my president.

Oh, and one other thing.  Sarah Palin isn’t stupid.  They just make her look that way on TV.

Other observations from my fevered (literally) imagination:

  • Don Draper on Mad Men is Peer Gynt.  Sorry, Matt Weiner.  I’ve given it all away.  “A man is whatever room he’s in.”?  Ayn Rand?  Pretty Clever.  I hope I’m right because Peer Gynt is one of the only Ibsen plays I never actually read.  Discuss.
  • For the BFF, the name of the song you thought you heard at the Buddhist wedding was After the Gold Rush.  There are two well known versions.  One was by Neil Young with his high twangy falsetto and one by a group called Prelude.  Here’s a video I found of Prelude’s acapella version.  It’s too early in the morning for Young.  The pictures in the video are a just as fantastical and a bit Arthur C. Clarke.

Ok, I’m going to take some cold medicine and make some hot tea.