If you are a progressive, perhaps you got a “First, fill in your name” email requesting money from Barack Obama back during the ’08 campaign? That artful first person oh-so-friendly email, adroitly and effectively designed to make you feel that, hey, you could walk right into campaign headquarters and get a big fat hug from the candidate himself?
Well, the campaign is at it again but some progressives are rebelling. As one site noted [Nation of Change, Oct. 2] disillusion runs as deep in this group as polls indicate.
Wrote Richard (R.J.) Eskow: “Progressives may sometimes feel like they’re in a backdoor high-school affair with the President. You know the kind: The popular kid will make out with someone from the wrong side of the tracks. But he’ll only take a rich kid from ‘the right kind of family’ to the school dance. The President often courts the left when he needs it, only to pitch his actions to the right at clinch time.” This is particularly confusing these days when “right-wing ideology is often mistakenly called the ’center.’”
Eskow says The President appointed “two right-wingers to run his Deficit Commission” — one of them Democrat Erskine Bowles, a director of Morgan Stanley, and the other Alan Simpson, who recently ripped into the President about “an abrogation of leadership, a vacancy of leadership.” Simpson fiercely opposes tax increases for millionaires or corporations while pushing Social Security benefit cuts for some seniors.
But now comes a flurry of Obama/Biden emails, all addressed to “Dear First Name,” urging the left to get on board. The guy named “Joe” asks, rather accusatorily: “If you know you’re going to donate to this campaign eventually, what’s stopping you from doing it right now?
“You were one of the people who got this movement off the ground. In fact, you were a part of all this before I was.” (Along with big donors, always contributing, as well as the “little guy.”)
“If you’re going to be a part of history in 2012, it’s time to get off the sidelines.”
It’s all about you, writes the p.r. gnome who sat in some office somewhere composing this in Biden’s name: “Never about Barack and me. We’re just two guys.”
Well, just two guys whose salaries are the highest in the government and paid for by you know whom. As has been pointed out by the media, the Tea-Party-hostage-Republicans are not about to adopt across-the-board budget measures and Obama seems powerless to deal with them. His campaign also will take all the corporate checks it can — making it more and more beholden to such interests — in this gazillion dollar fight for the White House.
Obama is now giving speeches to progressives but it seems clear, from the tone of such campaign appeals, that the two guys named Barack and Joe are worried about getting support from former enthusiasts. They are bargaining on what is heard among many progressives; that they will hold their noses and vote, and probably donate along the way, in order to defeat the bizarro collection running on the Republican side.
As “Joe” so pointedly pushes: “If you know you’re going to donate to this campaign eventually, what’s stopping you from doing it right now?”
From progressive tirades in publications and blogs, the answer seems to be “a lot.”