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In today's political world, a degree of skepticism, even cynicism, is a useful tool, along with rational analysis. I think Greenwald delivers both in this article, quoting Richard Trumka for instance:

Listening to Obama talk about jobs and shared prosperity yesterday reminded me that we are back in campaign mode and Barack Obama has started doing again what he does best -- play the part of a progressive. He's good at it.

Yea, it's cynical, and coming from Trumka....well, maybe he's channeling his electorate. Then Greenwald delivers this zinger from his own mouth:

That's why -- after 2 1/2 years -- we suddenly see an outburst of "fighting for jobs" and, now, a call to raise taxes on the rich.  He does that precisely because everyone -- especially the rich -- knows it will not and cannot happen.  We're now formally in (re-)election season, so it's time again to haul out the progressive music.  Some Democrats are honest and cynical enough to acknowledge that Obama is doing all these things purely for political gain and -- because his re-election is their top priority -- to celebrate it even while acknowledging it will never become reality (see here and here as examples).  From that perspective, I suppose having him give speeches where he advocates for jobs and taxes on the rich is preferable to his endorsing austerity and Reaganomics as he had been doing for months  But whatever else is true, none of this presages an actual change in how the government functions or, especially, on whose behalf it labors.

The here and here links in the above paragraph link to none other than Daily Kos's Armando, and Digby, both of whom essentially acknowledge that ain't nothin gonna change under the current Congress, but that doesn't matter, because the Pres is back to talking about progressive policies, like he did when he was running for the um, first presidential election.  

The reality is, as Greenwald points out, there is absolutely no indication that anything of substance is going to change for the average American, except for the degree of progressive rhetoric that we are going to hear from now until the election, just as we heard from Obama leading up to his election as president. If any real change were going to happen, Obama would have cleaned house by now, getting rid of the those who helped perpetrate the financial meltdown, that are serving in his administration. Keeping Geithner in place, for example, is the other side of the coin of the lack of prosecutions of Wall Street criminals. Read Greenwald's column to determine for yourself the accuracy of his analysis. We'll see how well this rhetoric fairs after the carving up of our budget, and Medicare and Medicaid, by the, in my opinion, unconstitutional Super Congress.

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Comment Preferences

  •  And so people should do what? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    leftist vegetarian patriot

    I think rhetoric does matter.  I also think we have at least a chance of better outcomes if Obama does not have to run for re-election.  And I am certain we have zero chance of progressive outcomes if Perry or Romney win.

    I suspect Trumka is being quoted out of context, for yesterday he said this:

    President Obama understands the severity of America’s jobs crisis. This morning, he called on Congress to get moving on solutions—and to pay for his American Jobs Act by restoring tax fairness. He hit the nail on the head when he said, “Warren Buffett’s secretary shouldn’t pay a higher tax rate than Warren Buffett.”

    Thanks to President Obama, our national conversation is moving in the right direction. With the release of the American Jobs Act—and today’s speech—he has come forward with important steps to start addressing our jobs crisis. Now, it’s our job to demand action.


    This morning, President Obama outlined the choices our country faces:

    “Either we ask the wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share in taxes or we ask seniors to pay more for Medicare. We can’t afford to do both. Either we gut education and medical research or we’ve got to reform the tax code so that most profitable corporations have to give up tax loopholes that other companies don’t get. We can’t afford to do both. This is not class warfare; it’s math.”

    With your help, we can create jobs in a fair way. And we can pay for it—as President Obama proposed—by requiring millionaires, billionaires and profitable corporations to pay their fair share to get America back on track.

    Thank you for standing with us.

    In Solidarity,

    Richard L. Trumka
    President, AFL-CIO

    MoveOn also is supporting the President's plan.  Kos is impressed.  

    So Greenwald is entitled to his opnion, but I disagree.

    The American people must wise up and rise up!

    by TomP on Tue Sep 20, 2011 at 08:06:51 AM PDT

  •  Ahhh... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    scorpiorising, Johnny Q

    campaign season. I love the smell of bullshit in the morning.

    Excellent post scorpiorising.

  •  A chicken in every pot and a car in every garage. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    scorpiorising, prfb, Johnny Q

    I guess we've been here before but it would be nice to have a forward button.

    S.A.W. 2011 STOP ALL WARS "The Global War on Terror is a fabrication to justify imperialism."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Tue Sep 20, 2011 at 08:14:06 AM PDT

  •  He's not perfect, he gets trashed. He does (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    leftist vegetarian patriot

    something right, he gets trashed.

    Honestly, why bother sometimes?

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Tue Sep 20, 2011 at 08:21:03 AM PDT

  •  This is BS (0+ / 0-)

    A cynic could honestly make most of the same points, but Barack Obama wasn't running that progressive a campaign in 2008. John Edwards was running as the progressive Democrat in that race (real or not). Barack Obama ran as a centrist perhaps a hair to the left of Hillary Clinton. So this isn't more of the same, because we haven't gotten this before.

    By your logic, nothing he could do or say would be worth taking notice of. It does matter upon what battle lines a campaign is fought.

    My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
    --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

    by leftist vegetarian patriot on Tue Sep 20, 2011 at 01:07:42 PM PDT

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