Six years ago, I visited Washington, D.C. the week after Barack Obama was elected President. The mood was joyful and ebullient, like the fall of the Berlin Wall, like Jesus just landed in a spaceship. It was morning in America ... really.
I knew conservatives who voted for Obama because they saw him as a stand for functional governance, imagining he could clean up Dodge. But a lad, and a lack. Obama and the rest of the corporate Democrat establishment dodged the clean up. First came the bank bailouts, and then in his eagerness to govern from the center, Obama immediately began compromising with Republicans who had vowed to take no prisoners.
By the time the 2010 mid-term elections rolled around, Obama was playing defense, and a poor defense at that. Instead of scrapping underneath the basket, he was hoping to score three-pointers from the sidelines. And just like that, a mandate devolved into a man who couldn't get a date.
Then three summers ago I met Bill Ayers - the infamous SDS radical whom Obama purportedly consorted with in Chicago. So I asked him for his take on Obama. He replied that Obama is a conventional Chicago politician, and that both frightened conservatives and hopeful progressives projected their worst fears / greatest hopes on this blank projection screen.
To progressives, Obama was a slightly darker white knight here to save us on a dark night. Meanwhile, conservatives screamed, "Obama is a socialist!" (Of course as Swami pointed out if Obama were REALLY a socialist, he'd have a 70% approval rating.)
On the eve of the 2012 election, I wrote a piece for Huffington Post supporting Obama over Romney (and the corporate controllers behind him ready to take control) saying, "I'd rather have positive change in very small increments, than negative change in very large excrements."
Well, the excrement has now hit the fan, and we have a shituation.
Our republic based on the rule of law and democracy representing the will of the people has devolved into a "new" (and actually very old) system called Futilism.
What is Futilism?
Futilism is collectively spending $4 billion on a mid-term election campaign, and getting the results we have now - a
government intentionally paralyzed so that the interests of a very small
percentage of the uncommonly wealthy can thwart the will and the well-being of
the commonwealth. (For a very
enlightening view of the endarkened nature of the Koch Brothers' endeavors,
this piece in Rolling Stone says it all and then some.)
In response to the billions in dark money spent by the Koch
Brothers and others of their ilk (makes you want to go ilk hunting, eh?), those
of us on progressive mailing lists received ceaseless irritating messages from
the Democrats saying, "Send us money or else!" In fact a New York Times article just prior
to the election indicates the Democrats actually outspent the Republicans in
the midterm races!
Not only did the Koch Brothers spend their money, but they spent OURS as well ... as millions of sane and reverent (Caroline Casey's coyotenetworknews.com/ updated term for "environmentally aware") middle class taxpayers forked over cash to the Democrats to try to stave off this final assault on the rule of law by those seeking to legalize their lawlessness. Talk about Futilism!
I will pull no punches here. The villainy of the Republicans bankrolled by the Koch Brothers and other dark money is undeniable. Blatant lies, voter repression, ruthlessly gerrymandered districts ... you can read this piece by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for as much detail as required. Or you can read this piece by Harvey Wasserman on how the coup of the oligarchs is just about complete.
Even the New York Times credits the Republican victory to massive Super Pac funding.