Audacity, more audacity and always audacity
In these recent elections we may have finally come to realize that political America resembles more the state of Wisconsin than it does the state of Vermont; and that the political left will have absolutely no place in American politics until the country turns to ashes, after being set ablaze by a Tweedledee-Tweedledum political system run amuck by corrupt leadership bent on maintaining the all-powerful capitalist-militarist elite in power. By then, there will be little anyone can do to resurrect the American nation, or even impose justice on the arsonists who incinerated it.
I don’t believe to have come across the word “audacity,” whether written or spoken, as often as I have in the last few days, at the aftermath of the Midterm Elections. And all voices do seem to come from the not-so-numerous progressives in America; in every instance referring to President Barack Obama… and his lack of spine: audacity, that is!
Could it be that invertebrate Obama was warned when he was elected as America’s torch-bearer for change in 2008 of that other “man for change” during that long ago forgotten French Revolution, one by the name of Georges Jacques Danton?
Danton, who is considered to be by many historians the key individual in the overthrow of the monarchy and the establishment of the First French Republic, in a speech before the French National Assembly in 1792 proclaimed his revolutionary stance: “Audacity, more audacity and always audacity.” But, to America’s misfortune, the learned and curious American president also quickly found out that this Monsieur Danton was guillotined two years later! Hum… it probably occurred to our president that audacity might be overrated; so why not follow a middle-of-the-road course, be conciliatory in tone while pursuing his agenda… and, in turn, try to be liked by everyone in America.
Obama was, and seemingly continues to be, incredibly naïve to think that the capitalist-militarist-racist axis in America would just stand idly by and listen to his persistent pitch for compromise. And, as progressives were quick to find… although a vast array of legislation was passed [contrary to public belief] by this last Democratic congress, in the two most critical issues – Healthcare and Financial Reform – this congress was only able to enact watered down versions of what was/is needed.
As it turned out, Obama, too, was de-facto politically guillotined two years later, but unlike Danton, he was politically decapitated simply because he lacked political smarts, compounded by capitulating to pressure, showing a complete lack of courage when trying to defend his presumed progressive convictions… exhibiting what we might call a total lack of audacity. Small wonder that many, if not most, progressives are up in arms, accusing him of venality and leniency to the enemies of Progressive Change – a GOP totally in the hands of the military-industrial complex and other special interest groups. [The accusation with Danton had been venality and leniency to the enemies of the Revolution.] Both lawyers and politicians, Obama and Danton received the same fate: physical decapitation for the latter and symbolic decapitation for the first.
Obama really had it made, politically, when he first took the reins of the nation. There was economic chaos all pointing the blame to miss-governing by the leadership of the Republican Party in both the White House and Congress. All Obama had to do, and was so informally advised by many progressives in the nation, including this humble writer, was to tell Americans the unvarnished truth, the dire straits the nation was under and the long haul of pain and suffering that would be needed to come out of it. And to have that overture played, over and over again, non-stop, by officials of the Democratic Party, from the district-county level politicians all the way up to the White House.
Instead, Obama surrounded himself with Republican-lite Clintonians who with their advice might as well have served as fifth-columnists for the Republican Party. So Obama, on their advice, promised the unrealistic and gave the American people high expectations he shouldn’t have… first of all, because they were idiotically optimistic; second, because doing so is a political taboo in the short term. You rally the nation by showing determination, character, conviction and truth; not by articulating a false sense of confidence and optimism, a spectacle more appropriate to the bulls of Wall Street.
So people were angry as they went to the polls… perhaps, rightly so; and in their anger they might have put in Congress and state legislatures scoundrels far even worse than the Tweedledee-Tweedledum scoundrels that were already there.
Perhaps the saddest note in these elections was played by the electorate in Wisconsin when perpetrating political magnicide by ousting the most progressive voice [jointly with Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont] in American politics: Russ Feingold. Senator Feingold has been the voice of reason, peace, privacy issues and election campaign reform, advocating restrictions on both the amount and method of funding federal political campaigns. He was the only senator (of 100!) to vote in 2001 against George W. Bush’s Patriot Act, which ended up being the self imposed castration of privacy in America.
© 2010 Ben Tanosborn
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