After a 2 week hiatus, it’s time to ease back into regular posting and I thought I’d start with publishing an interesting email I received yesterday. A gentleman named Neil, wrote me to both praise my work (thank you, Neil) and to express his complete disappointment in President Obama and the Democratic Party.
In a letter titled I Found you on Bartcop, Neil wrote:
I find your work brilliant, the best slamming of the Rethugs on the Internet.Unfortunately you, like Bartcop, believe that the Dems are the solution, and not, truthfully, part of the problem.
I voted for Obama once, but now I consider him a war criminal, and a fraud. I live in Mass, so I can vote for one of the few Dems with integrity, Elizabeth Warren, but I would have preferred that she had run as an Independent (like Bernie Sanders, Angus King) so that she doesn’t end up corrupted like most of the rest of the Dems.
Bartcop is the most partisan of Dems, even as every other paragraph of a posting is usually expressing frustration about the Dems.
Anyway, as I said, love your work. If you ever take a critical look at the Dems also, I’d contribute. But personally I have written the Dems off. I’m on SS and some of them, like Obama, are trying to do the “grand bargain” and cut what little I have and deserve for a life time of hard work. He’s a fraud. good luck, nice kids, work for their future.
I hear you, Neil, and I’m sure you’re not alone among liberals and progressives in feeling disappointment and a sense of betrayal by some of the actions of the President and Dems in Congress. In a more perfect world, I suppose, there would be no American troops in either Iraq or Afghanistan, Guantanamo would be closed, tax rates for the top 2 percent would be higher, implementation of a true universal health care system with a single payer system would be in place, comprehensive immigration reform legislation would be enacted, marriage equality in all 50 states would be a reality, the country’s infrastructure woes would be addressed as would the undeniable dangers imposed by climate change. These and every other item on progressive’s wish list would either have been dealt with in the last five years or be in the process of being dealt with, except that…
we don’t live in a perfect world, and…
democracy tends to get a little messy most of the time and…
getting everything you want is not a realistic goal even when you’ve won the White House and half of Congress in consecutive national elections, and…
Democrats are dealing with the most reckless, hostile opposition in the history of the United States.
That’s the reality, Neil. While criticism and frustration has been expressed by liberals and progressives toward some of President Obama’s policies, there’s not a hell of a lot of room to criticize a man who is trying to govern in what has to be described as the most obstructionist environment a president has ever found himself in. When forced to deal with an opposition who has made ‘compromise’ a 4-letter word and Republican policy is being dictated by a couple of billionaire brothers, Fox News, conservative hate radio and a small group of crazy, delusional baggers operating in an 18th century mindset, what did you expect?
Here’s the question I ask: If not the Democratic Party, then who? Imagine what the last five years would have been like if John McCain had won back in 2008. Troops would still be firmly entrenched in Iraq and Afghanistan and Americans would most likely be fighting a war in Iran. Or imagine a country with a President Mitt Romney and the type of “compassion” and “understanding” he’s shown for the poor and middle class. Imagine that, Neil, and tell me who you’d rather have in the White House.
I love Bernie Sanders and most of the principles he stands for and American politics needs all the Bernie Sanders they can get…but, here’s the thing; Bernie Sanders will never be president of the United States. Never, and that’s because as much as you believe in the thoughts and principles that guide your thinking, at least one half of the country disagrees with you and Bernie Sanders. And while that same half would possibly be willing to cast a vote for a more moderate liberal, they would never vote for someone as far to the left of the political spectrum as Bernie Sanders.
That said, I’m not suggesting that you and other progressives don’t hold Dems feet to the fire and demand that they do the best they can in pushing for a liberal agenda – after all, that’s what elections are for. But let’s not forget what’s happening out there. For every good intention that Barack Obama might have, he can’t do it alone. He needs the support of Congress to get things done and sometimes, reality dictates that you take what you can and live to fight another day.
Finally, Neil, what you interpret as fraudulent behavior on the part of President Obama is, I believe, pragmatism coming from a president who is forced to operate in a world of complexity and nuance we can only begin to imagine.