Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Hopeful Cynic

My friends are sometimes surprised to learn that gylangirl did not vote for Obama [nor for McCain]. Instead she “protest-voted" third party. The Democratic Party’s Hope candidate was all about betraying the base, which, after all, is what the Democratic Party is famous for [see Clinton, William Jefferson: vis a vis “the end of welfare as we know it”; “don’t ask don’t tell”; NAFTA; the repeal of Glass Steagall banker abuse protection etc].

Gylangirl watched with dismay the presidential candidate's role in the Bush administration's Goldman Sachs bailouts and the president-elect's Goldman Sachs cabinet selections. Obama would betray us, gylangirl reasoned. But even she admits that when he walked out on that stage election night with his family, she felt that tiny glimmer of [soon-to-be-dashed] hope.

But that was then. It is becoming obvious to all but the most loyal party hack that Obama is only pretending to help the middle class during this recession; he is only pretending to oppose Bush’s Afghanistan and Iraq wars; and he is only pretending to rein in the US Treasury-sucking vampire banks; he is only pretending to support democratic elections in foreign countries like Afghanistan, even as he successfully engineered his very first foreign coup d’etat of another democratically elected president in Honduras.

His campaign volunteers and supporters are imploring him to stop and do the right thing. They seem on the verge of a heart-breaking psychological breakdown. Or rather, one could hope, a psychological breakthrough: to cynicism, the only reality-based political sentiment these days.

So tonight Obama will announce his second troop increase for the war in Afghanistan. Thanks to the peace-prize winning president, there will now be more US troops in Afghanistan than there were Soviet troops back in the day. That’s a lot of blowback risk. Not to mention a lot of troop losses and billions of dollars in more national debt. And did you notice that Afghanistan is where empires go to die? But I digress.

The truly left wing peace activists who incorrectly placed him upon the anti-war pedestal are now in shock that they helped elect another war escalator. However, judging by the TV punditry, the dyed-in-the-wool Democratic Party partisans are neither shocked nor ashamed: they are dutifully shifting away from their Bush era anti-war positions so as to defend their leader. Because that’s what team cheerleaders do. They’ll justify the betrayal and accept any crumbs that fall: “no no-bid contracts this time” so hurray for Our war president! The more naive ones will endlessly hope, like Linus waiting for the Great Pumpkin, that someday, real soon now, or certainly after his 2012 re-election, Obama will justify their misplaced trust and their 2008 vote.

But gylangirl hopes that real soon now, many Obama supporters will join gylangirl in the ranks of the cynical, never to be fooled again. Yes, there she goes again, thinking it will be different this time. Hope springs eternal.


  1. Sure, I voted for Obama. I had my reasons (some of which I've sprinkled about on my blog and in its comment.) I've voted third party before, usually Libertarian Party.

    I don't like any political party, period. Either they advocate an ultimate result that I think is dangerous for this nation (the Republicans or Democrats), are too fringe and ideology-driven (Constitution), or are just disorganized, underfunded, feckless bodies looking for bread crumb votes to fall their way.

    I find it hard to vote my conscience at the ballot box when no candidate or party really accurately represents me and the ideas that I hold. I'm a cynic, too, I suppose.

    The only basis for casting a vote is looking for the party that I believe will do the least amount of harm. If I don't have that, then I really don't have any reason to go to the polls on Election Day to try and make any difference - such as I can in a pseudo-democratic republic.

    Re: Left Wing Peace Activists - If they voted for Obama expecting him to end the wars, then they did not listen to him during his campaign. He said over and over and over that he was going to wind down the War in Iraq and ramp up the combat in Afghanistan. Those who are SHOCKED AND APPALLED by his "betrayal" have real selective memory. I rather think the Nobel Peace Prize committee is dealing with a little egg on its face as well after his announcement that he's sending more troops over to kill more brown people.

  2. Yes Obama did say he would wind down in Iraq. That's not gonna happen, those are permanent military bases. He also promised to get out of Afghanistan eventually which is also not gonna happen. If troops are transferred out of either country, I suspect it will be into Iran instead. The two wars are a pincer strategy for the Caspian oil.

    But this current policy to ramp up Afghanistan grew out of the time when Bush had abandoned Afghanistan back to the Taliban, and Democrats made the most out of the misdirected materiel ostensibly going to build US bases, er, Iraq's infrastructure. Obama has to finish the job [stealing oil] with extended occupation of both countries but trick his anti-war base into thinking its a major policy Change away from Bush era policies. But it's just rearranging the pieces on the board.

    I recall a time in the late 90's when the left, specifically feminist orgnizations, were upset that the US was ignoring the plight of women in Afghanistan and wished for a US military intervention. To their chagrin, the Afghans are probably worse off now for it. Be careful what we wish for.