Elections & Voting
American politics: Is Obama progressive-fools� gold?
By Ben Tanosborn
Online Journal Contributing Writer

Jul 16, 2008, 00:19

It happens time and again as America�s quadrennial campaigns to gain residency at the imperial White House gather momentum. Although our forever-cloned candidates, one for each of the two indistinct political parties, are asked to address each and every issue of the day, soft-hearted -- or perhaps civically-ignorant -- Americans that we are, we usually give candidates a free pass, not forcing them to commit to any specific color in their answers, true chameleons they are. And the press, with its own corporate mission, self-preservation, plays the usual economic game in its key role of a pleasing whore.

Progressives as well as many other change-clamoring Americans, particularly legions of young college students -- many, first-time presidential would-be voters -- volunteered to give this new political face of great hope, a man articulating change with a great amount of credulity, the reins of that sempiternal �lesser evil� party of peace-makers and lowly economy�s downcasts. Of course, having reached that all important milestone which assured him the backing of the Democratic Party, Barack Obama had few options but to accept being placed in the waiting �golden stable� where he gets new handlers claiming to have magical knowledge with which to plot how the presidential race must be run, not to place . . . or to show, but to win.

So now that face of great hope has been lifted, not to remove any wrinkles, young man that he is, but �to add� the necessary patriotic wrinkles required to be acceptable to what the new handlers consider to be the candidate�s initiation of trust from Middle-America, not a geographical location but a state of mind: that non-existing, totally equivocated middle of the road of an economically and morally decrepit, fading nation where the imperialism-cancer is already hovering around stage IV having spread to many, if not most, aspects of American life. This while flags wave high in glory, and flag pins adorn the lapels of politicians and their brethren, our corps of elite corporate crooks. Could it be that it isn�t change that Americans want . . . only a return, by whatever means, to easy credit, low oil prices and continuance of that fantasy dream of wealth as a birthright, or one created by motivational charlatanry, rather than the product of one�s labor?

Obama�s hundred-eighty-degree turn from progressivism and change should come as no surprise to those of us oft-scalded by American fraudulent politics; although we cannot help but feel deep pain for our idealist young people getting their initiation of fire. Obama is in the hands of the handlers (visible and invisible) who require his adherence to flip-flop ambidexterity about Iraq, NAFTA (North America Free Trade Association), separation of church and state; and, recently, his unnecessary and obscene vote in the Senate favoring more federal surveillance on the citizenry. One wonders how Obama might have voted in 2002 on the Iraq resolution had he been then a member of the Senate and not just an Illinois state politician. 

If we add to all the above his recent, ceremoniously recorded adhesion to AIPAC (Israel�s lobby) and his of-late windmill attitude to just about anything and everything, one must ask, is there really much of a difference between Barack Obama and John McCain? Well, age for one thing; and, most definitely, brains. But as for everything else, including critical foreign policy change, the two senators might have been birthed by the same mother as non-identical twins.

Some people, who have followed Obama�s political evolution since Hillary Clinton�s abdication of what she claimed to be her Democratic Party throne, are quick to give him the benefit of the doubt, saying that once he gets to the White House he�ll be his own man and his deeply imbedded progressive ideas will take root. Fools we are . . . has that ever happened before . . . well, in recent memory? Not a chance!

Even President Carter, as honorable a president as this nation has ever had, found it necessary to bend later on in his administration to the influence that the Miami Mafia (exiled Cubans) had on Florida politics. Castro�s Cuba, or rather the apolitical Cubans on the Island, had to suffer the consequences of America�s WIR (Weapons of Ill Resort): embargoes, economic sanctions and other destructive, anti-people dirty tricks which are constantly being performed secretly.

There are three key issues for Americans which overrule everything else, issues that have been addressed with ignorance and/or triviality by both Obama and McCain. They are: the complete overhaul of an economy in shambles; the imperialistic treatment we give to our presence in both the Middle East and Southwest Asia (Afghanistan, Iraq and the military-infested waters of the Persian Gulf, for which a more apropos name would be the Pentagulf); and our irreverent, imperialistic position towards Russia. The latter, an issue which is not being played much by the American media . . . but an issue that will come back for sure to haunt us . . . and hurt us. Unlike Germany and Japan, Russia is not a defeated country . . . and to treat her with triumphal disdain and bullyism could ultimately exact too high a price for the United States.

Arsonist Bush may be lighting up more destructive fires around the world, but no one hears either McCain or Obama speaking of putting them out.

� 2008 Ben Tanosborn

Ben Tanosborn, columnist, poet and writer, resides in Vancouver, Washington (USA), where he is principal of a business consulting firm. Contact him at ben@tanosborn.com.

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