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A Democratic Primary Challenge to President Obama?

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message William P. Homans       (Page 1 of 3 pages)     Permalink

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Watermelon Slim Addressing President Obama from Lafayette Park 3/19/2011
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t seems a lot of us boomers are turning 62 these days. The Greatest Generation had to be hard at "work" in 1948-1949 to turn out as many 62-year-olds as I've been meeting!

One fellow 62-year-old is on my discussion forum. He is the best economic analyst there.

But what I like about him is that his analysis digs under the numbers and deals uncompromisingly with who it is that's making what appears to be an unrelenting stream of lackluster to disastrous decisions, regardless of political Party.

There has been a growing rumble from people calling themselves progressives, most recently in California, about how someone ought to challenge Obama from the left in the Democratic primaries.

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I suggested that no Democrat with any thought to run a serious presidential campaign in 2016 would embarrass a sitting president from his own Party in 2012.

Mr. Mulp responded,

"I wouldn't consider it an 'embarrassing' moment to be challenged, and I don't believe Obama would. If I were Obama, my only response would be 'ok, enlighten me, what should I have done? How would you have gotten a majority of the Republicans in the Senate and House to vote for your proposal?' "

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"The problem I see with progressives, and why I see them as not liberal, but a dysfunctional form of conservative," Mulp continued, "is that they reject logic and reason.

On issues of environment, they are 'green' because (they believe) all corporations are corrupt and pollute.

On taxes, they want high taxes on the rich and corporations because all corporations are corrupt.

On campaign finance, they want government finance because everyone with money to contribute works for a corporation and everyone is corrupt because all corporations are corrupt and corrupt everyone who works for them."

Mr. Mulp concludes, "The Tea Party and ilk replace 'corporation' with 'government' ".

As always, Mr. Mulp nails it, and in 9 words this time. I think progressives are more than that, but I cannot quibble with his characterization of dysfunctionality.

As someone who daily works with liberals and progressives (and radicals, though there are not many of us) in attempts to generate resistance to the status quo, I see the various ramifications of the old concept of a Leftist firing squad: everyone stands in a circle.

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It's not quite a circle, more like an arc, somewhere between supposed allies like John Conyers or Diane Feinstein, through liberal-yet-not-DNC folks like MoveOn (and my old buddy Danny Schecter, news dissector-- uh, director-- for WBCN-FM in Boston during the Vietnam War, now author and analyst, says they've been just Obamabots until recently when they've started to get wise)and NRDC, through antiwar activists purposely outside the main stream money flows (see Noam Chomsky on co-optation of movements in Manufacturing Dissent), like Veterans for Peace and Vietnam Veterans Against the War,

VVAW/VFP Opposing The American Wars
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or analysts like Danny Schecter, or Dr. Richard Phillips, PhD. (Witness to A Crime: A Citizens' Audit of An American Election), out to people even more ideologically Marxist than myself. But the principle is sound.

I don't know how it can be otherwise. As I have said here before, one intrinsic advantage that CONSERVATIVES have over liberals and progressives is that the very basic tenet of conservatism is DOING FOR ONESSELF.

Liberals and progressives have a perspective-- a vision-- that what they attempt, and do, in the political intercourse of the United States of America, is meant for the ultimate benefit of all their fellow citizens. Some may not even think it through that far, and they're just hoping to help people who are manifestly, visibly getting shafted.

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My name is William Perkins Homans the third, but probably more people know me as the bluesman (and artist) Watermelon Slim.

I've been in the fight against war, fascism, injustice and inhumanity for 40 years. I was at MayDay, and at the moratorium March the week before. I was one of the leaders of the Great New Jersey Turnpike Stall on my birthday, April 25, 1971.

I bear the scar on my left shin from a neoNazi jackboot, when I was one of the Vietnam Veterans Against the War who bounced the NSWPP from Flamingo Park at the Republican National Convention of 1972. My father fought the Nazis in the North Atlantic and Anzio, and I met their spawn in Miami.

My formal education has been first-rate. I wouldn't trade my degrees for Harvard ones. I was raised in the finest private Catholic and Episcopal high schools.

Elementary School: Gibbons Hall, Asheville, North Carolina

High Schools: Asheville School for Boys, Asheville Country Day, Lenox School for Boys. Graduated with honors 1968.

College: Middlebury College, 1968-DNG

1984-86: University of Oregon, B.A., Journalism and History, Departmental Honors in History, 1986.

I was also captain of the U of O bowling team, 1984-1986. High game 299.

1997-2000: Oklahoma State University. M.A., History, 2000, plus the school-teaching curriculum. Mentor: Dr. Ronald Petrin.

This was my second great self-reinvention attempt. In both, I got the degrees, but neither worked. After both, I went back to truckdriving and the blues. and now the latter makes my living. I just am not a button-down enough fellow ever to be a schoolteacher or general-purpose news reporter. But I think and analyze, and so I write...

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