After Obama was elected, many liberals, Democrats and progressives found themselves in the same situation as Dorothy, the lion, tinman and straw man when they wandered onto the poppy field of Oz, soporifically cursed by the wicked witch of the west, even with the gleaming Emerald City in plain sight.
Dorothy, beginning to fall into a cursed sleep
Remember the scene?
They stopped being activists, stopped working for a better world.
Some stopped earlier, when the 2006 elections gave the Nancy Pelosi a majority in the house.
By now, it's clear that even with control of the house, senate and Whitehouse, it wasn't enough.
It's clear that the elections don't matter very much. The bills that WERE passed are now at risk of being overturned, sabotaged by weak or sell-out, fox-in-the-henhouse type appointees, or failure to fund.
We live in a time when it is a naive fantasy to believe that our elected officials are going to advocate for us or even be accountable to us. Even when a majority of us stand for a particular issue, WE don't provide the money that wins their campaigns. Corporations and PACs and the wealthy do. So our politicians lie to us and fail to protect and advocate for our interests.
That means WE have to assume the worst and not depend upon our legislators and certainly not Obama. WE have to find other means for getting our needs addressed, whether those needs include government spending priorities, social and environmental justice or pursuit of corporatist crimes and abuses.
There ARE other means. We have to learn about existing ones, explore, develop and support evolving, emerging and new ones. We absolutely cannot solely depend upon those we have elected, even if they are the "good guys." They've failed us too many times.
So I ask you. Are you, like Dorothy, and her travelling partners in OZ, in those soporific fields, doing nothing, waiting for Obama, or have you awakened to the reality that he will not deliver what you truly desire. The best he'll do is hold back the barbarians a little bit, and take some edges off the worst existing or threatening abuses and violations of justice and fairness.
It took the good witch to cause snow to fall on the poppy field for Dorothy and Toto and the lion to wake up. We're facing a pretty cold political winter now. It's time for all those still waiting for Obama to wake up.
To reach the threshold of our progressive dreams, we must face the reality that Obama and our legislators have been shapeshifters who are unable, even if they say they are willing, to do what needs to be done. I am so convinced of this that I've come to believe that the strongest progressives IN congress might do more good outside of congress.
I'm not saying we shouldn't continue to work to elect non-toxic or less toxic candidates, but we MUST do a helll of a lot more than that. It is delusion to believe that simply electing Democrats will be sufficient.
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Rob Kall is an award winning journalist, inventor, software architect,
connector and visionary. His work and his writing have been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, the HuffingtonPost, Success, Discover and other media.
He is the author of The Bottom-up Revolution; Mastering the Emerging World of Connectivity scheduled for release May 22, 2019
He's given talks and workshops to Fortune
500 execs and national medical and psychological organizations, and pioneered
first-of-their-kind conferences in Positive Psychology, Brain Science and
Story. He hosts some of the world's smartest, most interesting and powerful
people on his Bottom Up Radio Show,
and founded and publishes one of the top Google- ranked progressive news and
opinion sites, OpEdNews.com
more detailed bio:
Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind. Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives one person at a time was too slow, he founded Opednews.com-- which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big) to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet and the Psychopathy Defense and Optimization Project.