November 3rd, 2008

Wasted in the wilderness

Only thing that I did wrong
Was staying in the wilderness too long
Keep your eyes on the prize
Hold on

The great questions in the air — about how much lasting constitutional and foreign-affairs damage Bush-Cheney have done, about the ways and means of turning things around, and the capacity of the american people to be citizens rather than consumers — leave me for the moment speechless.

I do think the turn in the works is a major turn.

A premise there, however, is that the forces behind the Fascist Shift of the new century are not deeply rooted and are exhausted for now — leaving the new administration a horrible mess, yes, but also a durable mandate and some elbow room.

But — if the premise is false, then four years from now we may see Romney on the verge of victory, and the young Obama already a has-been.

This was one reason why, this past winter, I thought Hillary the better candidate for the Donkeys to nominate — to allow her to absorb the worst of the blast, while holding Obama in reserve.

But …  The hour of doom is at hand.  Let the sun shine

The mandate will not be large.  LBJ in 1964, riding a wave of sympathy re Kennedy’s murder the year before, gathered 486 EC votes and carried 44 states.

Nothing near that is in the cards for Obama.  Rather, somewhere between 289 and 364 votes, with 22 to 27 states, plus D.C.

Clinton got 370 votes and 31 states in ’92. And 379 and 30 in ’96. Plus D.C. in each.

Reagan has the all-time high, against hapless Mondale in ’84, with 525 votes and 49 states.  Then FDR in 1936, against Landon, with 523 and 46 (of 48 total) states. And then Richard Nixon in ’72, contra hapless McGovern.  520 votes and 49 states.

Then again … Even the greatest EC landslides were, roughly speaking, five people voting chocolate and five vanilla.  Fifty-three Pistachio, forty-seven Rocky Road.

Wasted Years

No matter what happens on Tuesday and across the next four years, there is no escaping or re-writing the fact that the failures to apply Due Process in the 2000 election, and to depose Bush-Cheney in 2004, were costly beyond measure and plain evidence that, on the national level, we are not a functioning democracy.

Only thing that we did right
Was the day we began to fight
Keep your eyes on the prize
Hold on

It’s an open question — whether WE can fight at all.

But … Team Obama has. They’ve run an amazing campaign — principled and potent.

Can the example revive an increasingly impoverished and brain-dead citizenry?

Too Long in Exile

Seems all my NY friends are holing up Tuesday night. Me, I think it’s the first thing in the public sphere worth celebrating since …  Can’t recall.

Let’s have a General Strike on Wednesday. And then, to the business of rebuilding.

Til We Get the Healing Done

Where’s my blue suede shoes?

Aha — a final pre-election postscript:  Great overview from a waning & weeping Laissez Faire fellow in the London Daily Telegraph.

You can leave a comment, or trackback from your own site. RSS 2.0


  1. bernthal says:

    bring back grimaldi!

    November 3rd, 2008 at 7:42 pm

  2. bernthal says:

    actually, thanks – to the whole staff – for your judicious, informative and heartfelt blogging.

    oh, and i hope you come out and visit us at vox pop on election night. it won’t be all sander.

    November 3rd, 2008 at 7:50 pm

  3. ed says:

    Karl Rove‘s outfit has issued their final EC estimate: 338 votes for BHO.

    On that map, the One takes Pensy, Ohio, Virginia and Florida, but drops North Carolina and Missouri.

    My own guess was much less — 291 — i.e., Pennsy and Virginia to BHO but OH, NC, FL and MO to McCain — because polls seem to suggest an eleventh hour rebound for the GOPhers.

    Evidence of the dreaded Bradley effect?

    Then again — also this evening there’s this poignant news that Barack’s grandmother has died.

    Maybe Rove’s numbers will be right on the money. His lips to dog’s ears.

    November 3rd, 2008 at 8:10 pm

  4. ed says:

    Grimaldi got picked up on waivers by Wonkette.

    November 3rd, 2008 at 9:21 pm

  5. Surfwalker says:

    Obama’s mandate is huge, and the numbers don’t tell half the story. He’s done an astounding job and transformed the political landscape.

    There will of course be negative ramifications, as there always are. If Obama represents the first candidate of the new mold, then Palin represents the second.

    But let’s not worry about 2012 today. Let’s celebrate!

    November 4th, 2008 at 10:53 am

  6. ed says:

    I do agree the mandate is huge spiritually. And maybe spirit, for once, will matter.

    As for “transforming the political landscape” …  I’ll wait and see.

    Certainly the internet has transformed campaign technique.  That’s a revolution. Beginning in 2004 with the Dean campaign.   But politics per se …   Reason to think things haven’t changed much since the democracy of Athens collapsed after a misadventurous war into a series of incompetent tyrannies.
    It’s just this darn deja vu … Harking back to 1992. When it seemed, finally, Reaganism had been banished.

    This time it may be different, but thanks not to Barack so much as to the collapse of the finance system.

    I hope, that is, for a double whammy that will stick: The death of Reaganism/Thatcherism/Neo-liberalism, on its own terms, while whatever precisely Team Obama will cook up has a chance to simmer.

    I’ve been studying (again) the latest 60s Assassinations evidence and lore to come to light.
    What happened to Clinton, right out of the gate — a right-wing conspiracy if less than vast — was assasination of a spiritual sort. The monsters have grown subtle.

    I wish BHO had taken Hillary along as VP — to serve as effective (physical) assassination insurance.  If he succeeds in making effective policy and making it stick, two or three years hence V.P. Biden (whom I admire) may seem an invitation to the murderous unpatriotic crackpots and militarists among us.

    Dog bless and speed President Obama through his trial.

    November 4th, 2008 at 5:33 pm

Leave a comment