NY Times editors should not let Maureen Dowd pen columns while this effing smashed.
Republicans who are worried about being political props have a point. The president is using the power of the incumbency and a sacred occasion for a political speech.
Obama is still suffering from the Speech Illusion, the idea that he can come down from the mountain, read from a Teleprompter, cast a magic spell with his words and climb back up the mountain, while we scurry around and do what he proclaimed.
The days of spinning illusions in a Greek temple in a football stadium are done. The One is dancing on the edge of one term.
The White House team is flailing — reacting, regrouping, retrenching. It’s repugnant.
After pushing and shoving and caving to get on TV, the president’s advisers immediately began warning that the long-yearned-for jobs speech wasn’t going to be that awe-inspiring.
“The issue isn’t the size or the newness of the ideas,” one said. “It’s less the substance than how he says it, whether he seizes the moment.”
The arc of justice is stuck at the top of a mountain. Maybe Obama was not even the person he was waiting for.
He never really loved you, Maureen. He has an entire country to govern, and despite all the times you watched The Legend of Bagger Vance or The Wiz or hell, even Eddie Murphy in The Distiguished Gentleman, the entry of Barack Obama to the Oval Office didn't grant magical powers to the office of President of the United States.
There are constraints of the system that President Obama has to operate under, and with the Republicans working as hard as possible to trap him within those constraints and the Village working as hard as possible to create new ones, it's an absolute goddamn miracle that he's managed to accomplish the things he has done. It's akin to loading a metric ton of Lego bricks into a giant cannon and shooting them straight up into the air with Republicans swooping by on their brooms to melt the bricks with flamethrowers and the Village scatter them with tornado machines only to have the efforts to destroy them be precisely the thing needed to make them all land in a perfect scale replica of Albert Einstein's brain or something.
Then MoDo comes along and kicks the thing apart because she really wanted a model of Shakespeare's Globe theater. Hence, the breakup as she screeches to declare the end of the Failed Obama Presidency because moving his speech was the Intolerable Mortal Sin of our age.
Jesus wept, we actually do deserve President Bachmann or Perry or Romney, just to finish the country off. They'll find a way to blame that on Obama too. "If only he hadn't made me stay home with the crushing ennui of moving his jobs speech to one day later, we'd still have an America..." Oh, but MoDo is far, far from being alone, just ask Matt Stoller.
No one, not even the president's defenders, expect his coming jobs speech to mean anything. When the president spoke during a recent market swoon, the market dropped another 100 points. Democrats may soon have to confront an uncomfortable truth, and ask whether Obama is a suitable choice at the top of the ticket in 2012. They may then have to ask themselves if there's any way they can push him off the top of the ticket.
That these questions have not yet been asked in any serious way shows how weak the Democratic Party is as a political organization. Yet this political weakness is not inevitable, it can be changed through courage and collective action by a few party insiders smart and principled enough to understand the value of a public debate, and by activists who are courageous enough to face the real legacy of the Obama years.
Obama has ruined the Democratic Party. The 2010 wipeout was an electoral catastrophe so bad you'd have to go back to 1894 to find comparable losses. From 2008 to 2010, according to Gallup, the fastest growing demographic party label was former Democrat. Obama took over the party in 2008 with 36 percent of Americans considering themselves Democrats. Within just two years, that number had dropped to 31 percent, which tied a 22-year low.
It would be amusingly tragic if Kafka were sill around to write this play. And we're about to get exactly what we deserve.