Harold Ford, Jr. and Fanning the Flames of Cowardice:
The Rude Pundit's goddamned sick of hearing about what the magical Massachusetts vote says about how piss poor a job Barack Obama's doing. That may be so, and the Senate Democrats couldn't fit more Republican balls in their mouths, but what the election of Scott Brown demonstrated is the selfish fickleness of independent voters. In Massachusetts, 57% of independents voted for Democrat Obama. This year, polling indicates that 65% of them voted for Republican Brown. By the Rude Pundit's mad calculator skills, that works out to a big fucking swing.
Now, you could look at that and say, "Well, obviously, this means that independent voters, beholden to no party, have made a judgment on the presidency of Barack Obama and the direction of the country." And just about every pundit who can slither his or her way onto any of yer CNNMSNBCFox "news" shows drooled out this crude bit of insight on the Sunday gabfests, as if somehow they were proclaiming the end of history. The problem is that Barack Obama and the Democrats in Congress have actually done very little that affects the lives of most of those independent voters except it got a few of them jobs and started the rebuilding of some roads and sent a few of them off to Afghanistan (no small thing). It's the fault of the administration in not conveying that message: "Wait. Let us do some shit for you first."
Actually the message should have been, "Okay, here's why we had to save the banking industry first. You'll get your shit next." And whether or not you agree that saving the banking industry first was the right step, at the very least it would have indicated that the administration understood that what independent voters were saying is "I want my shit. Where is it?" It would have also shown that it understood that a bunch of scared, angry fuckers might act stupidly and desperately, even if it's irrational for them to vote for the opposite of what they voted for a year before. As the tea party protests and town hall screamers demonstrated, our delusional fucktards no longer have to stand on street corners in rags.
The Rude Pundit's caught hell from readers for saying that many people who voted for change became cowards when it came to making change, as if somehow that was letting the Democrats off the hook, as if Democrats can't be special interest-blowing, corporate-owned cheap whores at the same time that many voters are wimps, the kind of people who go up in a plane, bragging that they're gonna sky-dive and experience that rush, except when it's time to jump, they piss themselves and ask the pilot to bring them back to earth safely. (By the way, it also doesn't mean that the Rude Pundit is talking about you. Unless he is. In which case, stop being such a pussy.)
Which leads us, in a long, strange way, to Harold Ford, Jr.'s editorial in today's New York Times. In a few paragraphs that look cobbled together like a sculpture made of the turds shit out by Joe Scarborough and Joe Lieberman, Ford, who is threatening to run for Senate in New York, proposes, among other things, "First, cut taxes for businesses — big and small — and find innovative ways to get Americans back to work." He waxes rhapsodically about how tax cuts create jobs and allow small businesses to thrive, as if that wasn't tried already. You know what'd allow small businesses to be created? Relieving the owners of health care costs for themselves and their employees. But we don't talk about that because it's too daring.
There's a lot of cowards out there right now. Many of them run the country. And there's people who want to fight. But there's gotta be a principle to fight for, something beyond, "When am I gonna get paid?" More on that tomorrow.