FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

The Political Capital is Gone, Now What About Political Will?

It’s not surprising that people are fed up with politics.

When money determines who gets elected, when campaign promises are as easily tossed out as garbage and when most elected officials knowingly support policy that puts the special interests ahead of the people’s interests, why bother with a rigged game?

The Senate is firmly under the control of a Republican minority of 41, the House is stalled and thinking about re-election, the Supreme Court has decided that political office should be for sale to the special interest that is willing to spend the most on behalf of their chosen candidate and the President continues to “play nice” instead of pushing a progressive agenda.

Just a year ago there was a great sense of hope, not seen since the end of WWII.

A president whose idea of peace might not mean more “boots on the ground”.

A President who supported health care for all.

A President who believed in fair trade, not free trade.

A President who felt banks should help people better their lives, not gamble away their money.

Boy did we take the bait, the drift to the right continues with President Obama still thinking he can work with a Republican party whose game plan is blocking legislation.

Just as people used to hide those they were ashamed of away from public view, the Republicans have successfully hidden George Bush and the failures of his administration away.

The ills of the nation are now Obama’s problem, Obama’s fault and still he panders to those who vilify him; to those who want less oversight, more war, more for the rich and less for everyone else.

The militarism, the Wall Street free for all, the bankruptcies, the mortgage foreclosures, the top down bail out at the expense of the bottom; all the legacies of the Bush Administration are dumped on Obama and for solutions he turns to those who created the problems and offer more of the same as a solution.

In his State of the Union Address the President stated that “jobs must be our number one focus in 2010”, yet he intends to push for more free trade agreements, policies Presidents Clinton and Bush championed, policies that shipped jobs overseas and crushed the workers, the farmers, the labor unions and the families of America. Policies that have caused pain, policies that Obama seems reluctant to stop.

He barely mentioned Afghanistan and the nearly one hundred thousand American troops there, what could he say? It’s good? It’s working? How about the truth, that it’s bad policy with no end in sight.

The President said he was open to better ideas on how to remake the nation’s health care system, but he offered no ideas of his own, nothing he was willing to push forward.

What might the late Howard Zinn have said about President Obama’s speech? I doubt he would have criticized the President as a failure, but I do think he would have criticized him because he was afraid to try, because he was afraid to formulate his own policy and to push it relentlessly.

JIM GOODMAN is a dairy farmer from Wonewoc WI and a 2008-2009 IATP Food and Society Policy Fellow.

 

More articles by:

Jim Goodman is a dairy farmer from Wonewoc, Wisconsin.

December 11, 2018
Eric Draitser
AFRICOM: A Neocolonial Occupation Force?
Sheldon Richman
War Over Ukraine?
Louis Proyect
Why World War II, Not the New Deal, Ended the Great Depression
Howard Lisnoff
Police Violence and Mass Policing in the U.S.
Mark Ashwill
A “Patriotic” Education Study Abroad Program in Viet Nam: God Bless America, Right or Wrong!
Laura Flanders
HUD Official to Move into Public Housing?
Nino Pagliccia
Resistance is Not Terrorism
Matthew Johnson
See No Evil, See No Good: The Truth Is Not Black and White
Maria Paez Victor
How Reuters Slandered Venezuela’s Social Benefits Card
December 10, 2018
Jacques R. Pauwels
Foreign Interventions in Revolutionary Russia
Richard Klin
The Disasters of War
Katie Fite
Rebranding Bundy
Gary Olson
A Few Thoughts on Politics and Personal Identity
Patrick Cockburn
Brexit Britain’s Crisis of Self-Confidence Will Only End in Tears and Rising Nationalism
Andrew Moss
Undocumented Citizen
Dean Baker
Trump and China: Going With Patent Holders Against Workers
Lawrence Wittner
Reviving the Nuclear Disarmament Movement: a Practical Proposal
Dan Siegel
Thoughts on the 2018 Elections and Beyond
Thomas Knapp
Election 2020: I Can Smell the Dumpster Fires Already
Weekend Edition
December 07, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Steve Hendricks
What If We Just Buy Off Big Fossil Fuel? A Novel Plan to Mitigate the Climate Calamity
Jeffrey St. Clair
Cancer as Weapon: Poppy Bush’s Radioactive War on Iraq
Paul Street
The McCain and Bush Death Tours: Establishment Rituals in How to be a Proper Ruler
Jason Hirthler
Laws of the Jungle: The Free Market and the Continuity of Change
Ajamu Baraka
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70: Time to De-Colonize Human Rights!
Andrew Levine
Thoughts on Strategy for a Left Opposition
Jennifer Matsui
Dead of Night Redux: A Zombie Rises, A Spook Falls
Rob Urie
Degrowth: Toward a Green Revolution
Binoy Kampmark
The Bomb that Did Not Detonate: Julian Assange, Manafort and The Guardian
Robert Hunziker
The Deathly Insect Dilemma
Robert Fisk
Spare Me the American Tears for the Murder of Jamal Khashoggi
Joseph Natoli
Tribal Justice
Ron Jacobs
Getting Pushed Off the Capitalist Cliff
Macdonald Stainsby
Unist’ot’en Camp is Under Threat in Northern Canada
Senator Tom Harkin
Questions for Vice-President Bush on Posada Carriles
W. T. Whitney
Two Years and Colombia’s Peace Agreement is in Shreds
Ron Jacobs
Getting Pushed Off the Capitalist Cliff
Ramzy Baroud
The Conspiracy Against Refugees
David Rosen
The Swamp Stinks: Trump & Washington’s Rot
Raouf Halaby
Wall-to-Wall Whitewashing
Daniel Falcone
Noam Chomsky Turns 90
Dean Baker
An Inverted Bond Yield Curve: Is a Recession Coming?
Nick Pemberton
The Case For Chuck Mertz (Not Noam Chomsky) as America’s Leading Intellectual
Ralph Nader
New Book about Ethics and Whistleblowing for Engineers Affects Us All!
Dan Kovalik
The Return of the Nicaraguan Contras, and the Rise of the Pro-Contra Left
Jeremy Kuzmarov
Exposing the Crimes of the CIAs Fair-Haired Boy, Paul Kagame, and the Rwandan Patriotic Front
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail