When I read Mr. Greider's "Who Will Tell the People," it filled me with hope he would eventually rise to the stature of another I.F. Stone. Alas, this is obviously not to be: while Mr. Greider does a superb job of reporting on the Obama Administration's failings, he remains oblivious to--or in deliberate denial of--their broader implications.
Taken as a whole, Obama Administration domestic policy expresses ever more succinctly the bitter truth that "change we can believe in" was never anything but the latest Big Lie fed the hopelessly submissive electorate of what--behind the labels "Republican" and "Democratic"--has been effectively a one-party state since November 22, 1963, and is now at last publicly declaring its identity.
This is clearly the message sent us by the lists of those the administration has already defiantly betrayed--financial reformers, gays and civil libertarians--or the others, most notably advocates of single-payer healthcare and supporters of the Employee Free Choice Act, from whom the administration is now distancing itself.
That such betrayal was predictable makes it no less painful. When I voted for Mr. Obama, I did so believing his candidacy was nothing more than a pacifier fed us by the ruling class but nevertheless hoping he might evolve into another Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his administration thus become another New Deal.
Now, of course, I know that will never happen. For the past forty-six years the United States has ever more obviously transformed itself into not just a one-party despotism but a realm in which the sole purpose of government and governance at all levels is the perpetuation of capitalism: the absolute protection of the ruling class, the total subjugation of all the rest of us. And now it is becoming clear that nothing on earth can stop its juggernaut of expanding tyranny.
Thus President Obama is merely doing what he was elected to do: first pacify us, then teach us that hope is audacious only in its most original sense: defiance of some shibboleth or status quo, a self-destructive act not only foolhardy but irrevocably doomed.
Meanwhile the present socioeconomic order is cemented ever more firmly in place. The sole beneficiary is Big Business: note, for example, how its obscene profiteering will be guaranteed by mandatory health insurance, which in effect will forever enslave us to the insurance oligarchs.
Perhaps then the real deception in the Obama campaign was not in its slogan but in the meaning of its pronoun--for there's no longer any doubt "change we can believe in" applies only to the ruling class.
Jun 28 2009 - 5:02pm