Saturday, June 21, 2008

Preemptive compromise

"I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!"
Captain Renault, Casablanca

Barack Obama is supporting the FISA wiretap compromise bill with telecom immunity. It's a bill Bush is willing to sign, which says enough about it. Yeah, I know Obama was against it in February, but that was then & this is now. Sen. Chris Dodd is still against it. So is Sen. Russ Feingold. So is Sen. Arlen Spector, the last I read. Why don't I feel more betrayed?

I was shocked, shocked very early in the presidential primary season to watch so many hard liberals skipping past John Edwards & going right to Barack Obama. His style, & the governing style he promised, had preemptive compromise all over it. Barack came across as the kind of politician who would negotiate before he'd even staked out a strong position he could negotiate from. That's what I didn't like about him. That's why the John Edwards banner stayed on my blog until the nomination was wrapped up.

C'mon you Kossacks, you people who embraced Jim Webb, Bob Casey, & Jon Tester athough you knew they were essentially moderates, you spent the whole damned campaign trying squeeze Barack into a leftist box even as Hillary was staking out more liberal positions on a number of domestic issues including health care & beating up on Obama in places where they still use post offices & parks built during Roosevelt's New Deal. Your problem with Hillary was always about the war & not much else. I voted for Barack with my eyes open, & a distaste for having 4 or 8 more years of Bill Clinton had something to do with it. People project all kinds of hopes on to Obama. I have mine, too. But if you wanted a real liberal with an agenda, he wasn't the #1 go-to candidate when there were still lots of choices.

By the way, the "Yes we can!" chant always reminds me of Sammy Davis Jr.'s autobiography, Yes I Can, wherein The Candyman writes about converting to Judaism & later marrying Swedish blonde bombshell May Britt. A black Jew with a super-goy in 1960. Talk about chutzpah. Sammy was always alright with me.

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