I don’t know how any rational person could make the claim that Obama’s jobs speech was anything but short on substance and long on empty and rehashed political rhetoric. The PR was also mismanaged badly from the get-go, and the verisimilitudinous statements the Democrats delivered about the various scheduling slots didn’t help their self-delusional image of competence any. Every proposal contained in the speech has been pitched before, both in the 2008 campaign and during the recent jobs bus tour, often using the very phrases previously issued. There is no reason to think any of it will now pass through the Republican-controlled House, still conducting a scorched-earth defense against any possible Obama success.
The only good thing you could say about the speech was the technical aspects of the delivery were sound. Obama made that smoke he vigorously pumped up our dorsal ports sound good enough so that a lot of people didn’t bother to think about the things Obama said. It was the same actor’s method that convinced a lot of people that Reagan was such a great orator. Read Ronnie’s words without hearing his delivery, and it’s clear the man babbled. It is thus with Obama, who had no specifics to offer on how any of his proposals would get passed or funded, other than to again offer “entitlements” for slaughter. He will again -as he always has- leave the real leadership to the Congress.
But the Democrats are desperate. I saw several major polls released recently all showing lowered approval ratings for Obama’s performance as president:
- POLITICO/George Washington University Battleground Poll says 45 percent
- NBC/Wall Street Journal reports 44 percent
- ABC News/Washington Post puts him at 43 percent
- Gallup has Obama at 41 percent
- Quinnipiac University: “Voters disapprove of Obama’s performance by 52-42 percent, compared with 47 percent-46 percent in July, showing how quickly Obama’s disapproval numbers have grown.” (Probably due to the debt “deal”?)
- Pollster John Zogby has Obama down to 39 percent approval.
- CNN/ORC reports 65 percent disapproved of the president’s handling of the economy [PDF], which converts to a 35 percent approval rating on the economy.
The only good approval news for Obama is that he’s still polling more favorably than the Congress as a whole. An NBC/Wall Street Journal poll finds approval of Congress at only 13 percent.
About the only other good news on the poltico-economic front comes from Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. He says that “voters still blame former president George W. Bush — rather than Obama — for the economy by 53 percent-32 percent.” That has to help the sting coming from a poll finding that the voters feel that Obama did significantly worse with the economy than did Jimmy Carter.
The Democrats have to see they could lose the 2012 election, but don’t seem to understand that their MO, lofty rhetoric intended to distract the voters while destroying the New Deal, rather than visible and positive political action to repair the economy, is exposed beyond redemption. The same campaign strategy which inspired record numbers of voters to go to the polls last time won’t work this time. They didn’t deliver, not on jobs, not on credit card reform, not on mortgages and foreclosures, not on civil and labor rights, not on ending the oil wars, and especially not on health care. Nothing!
The voters aren’t going to fall for another slate of lies modeled after the Advertising Age and Cannes Film Festival award-wining 2008 strategy again. The Democratic Party’s public approval numbers are much worse than they were in 2008, now barely above those of the Republicans. Pollster Peter Hart sums it up for NBC News, declaring that “Obama is no longer the favorite to win re-election.” An Alternet commenter, tailcap1984, created the Democratic Party Apology Handbook © as an expression of the growing disdain from Obama’s former base over his poor performance. And the hits just keep on coming!
The Wall Street investor money that put Obama into power in the first place is drifting over to Mitt Romney, because they don’t want to lose the controlling power they took away from the energy sector by backing Obama in 2008. Bush had almost pushed Wall Street into economic and geopolitical corners in which they didn’t want to be trapped, and Wall Street wasn’t going to get the energy-captive Republicans to change direction. Sucking the nation dry to fight oil profit wars (which neither of the wealthy cabals will abandon for their respective profit pictures) doesn’t leave much to suck out of homeowners crushed under gouging mortgages and usurious credit card accounts while losing wages, benefits, and jobs! That’s why Wall Street supported a Democrat in the first place, despite their very Republican fiscal philosophy. they had hope that the audacity of change would work for their interests (which Obama clearly did try to do), a strategy which completely ignored the adage that you can only rape the public a certain number of times before that one-eyed snake turns about and bites you too.
The Obama administration’s many failures blew up in their billion-dollar-bonus faces. Despite having had lots of their handlers interspersed among Obama’s staff (Rahm Emanuel, Bill Daley, Tim Geithner, Ben Bernanke, etc.), he wasn’t listening to them any closer than he was to the voters of Main Street, the ones who had elected him with a lot of hope for an improvement in their future. Obama ignored the real economy so long that JP Morgan Chase (who in late 2007 sponsored a series of “seminars” for the brokerages featuring most of the major 2008 candidates to present their platforms) has again downgraded the prospects for economic growth. Conservative pundit John Podhoretz declared after the first Morgan downgrade forecast in April that the economy is to be the “potential death knell for Barack Obama’s presidency“. It’s looking like he might be right. It looks like the last straw as far as Wall Street support for Obama. No more nice Mr. Campaign Contributor! No $2 billion campaign soup fund for you!
It’s a major break with traditionally accepted investor communication protocols for such a report to be so explicit and public about pressuring Washington to do something which is clearly in the investor’s benefit. In the past, a few private phone calls from greed is good gulch to the Oval Office, and to the leaders of the Congress, would take care of such issues. Not anymore. The tea baggers have broken up all of the usual understandings among many of the big money groups and their bought public servants, but have stoppered their own ears, unlike Odysseus, against the stipend sirens’ softly singing. Thus, even Wall Street is now left outside the chambers, plaintively pleading, “Can you hear me now?” while the tea baggers continue to bring down the shining temple of treasure on the hill.
Welcome to our world, the one you greedy Wall Street bastards shoved us into for your personal gain! How’d that greed is good thing work out for ya?
So Wall Street is giving up on Obama like most of the rest of us already have. Unlike Obama, they know better than to continue shoveling assets down a rat hole when there are no meaningful returns. But their alternate choice, Mitt Romney, isn’t going anywhere fast, because the voters see he’s clearly just like Obama in too many ways. This has the energy sector drooling over their prospects for regaining the White House with one of their own purchased puppets: Rick Perry. The only problem is that the same Quinnipiac Poll shows him stuck in the herd with the others. What lead he might have had stuffing the tempestuous Michele Bachmann back into the teapot was lost when he touched the hot Bob Wahr surrounding Social Security.
That is in part why the assault on Perry in the Wall Street media this week. Why fight by his rules when you can kick the man when he’s down? Even former Republican Rep. Joe Scarborough jumped in. It isn’t being done to help Obama. It’s to help Mitt; and, of course, their power and profits.
So the real political battle, the one not getting any coverage to speak of from the media, is between Wall Street investors on one side and the oil and gas companies on the other. We, the people, are caught between lit matches on the one side and leaking gasoline on the other. Both sides want the money promised to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, because their greed gutted the New Deal goose which laid the golden billion dollar bonus eggs. They don’t want to have to do without, as they expect the sick, old, and unemployed little people to do. Their obedient bipartisan servant Obama is struggling to give it all to them before one of the others takes away that job he once liked so much. It would be like taking candy from a baby.
This is why Jeb is being prodded by his brother and father, the former head of the Carlyle Group (many of whom are not American citizens, yet most of their fortunes came from controlling the stock of US military contractors and other profitable assets), to step in (maybe as late as at the convention?) to defend traditional Republicanism, both from the radicals of the religious groups and the not-so-looming populists (Gary Johnson, Jon Huntsman, Buddy Roemer) searching like Diogenes to find honest voters. So far, Jeb has not publicly indicated much interest, no matter how enthusiastic Dubya is about abusing the weak.
I don’t think that these posing populists really mount much of a challenge to the new corporate world order. Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson hasn’t gotten any boost from his economics-only pitch to Republicans, but it “wouldn’t be prudent” to be certain he won’t eventually be considering the way things are going. Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman has been very quiet since he posted his Captain Beefheart video link. Maybe he got lost revisiting the 60s, or else maybe the Trout Mask Replica decals won’t lick off. Until he’s back from his trip, he can be discounted for now.
The one the Bushes do want to stop short is Former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer, who has been very busy this last week. He appeared on both the Rachel Maddow and Jon Stewart shows in an attempt to gain support from what should be Obama supporters to get his campaign off the ground. Roemer’s platform isn’t very detailed yet, but what he is saying has to sound good to voters already fed up with the Citizens United effect on our national politics. While Roemer himself may not get far on his quixotic quest, I can see where his main meme could.
No matter what, though, the establishment Episcopalians don’t want to see the stormin’ Mormon get the nod. Mitt’s doing what he can to help them slit his political throat much like Obama does. Romney handed the stealth Carlyle candidate a gift with his usurpation of the populist pitches of Johnson, Huntsman, and Roemer. By establishing a political platform intended to appear to be to Obama’s left while still remaining well to the right of the center, he hopes to differentiate himself from his opponents. His Magick undies must have told him that this illusion would work to fill a huge political vacuum and attract lots of voters. The establishment Calvinist followers of John Knox (which include most of the Bush Family as consecrants) would certainly have no faith in that belief. I’m sure they now see Romney as easy to crush as they do Obama on their way to a third episode of the establishment of the dynasty.
And so go the politico-religious wars for the economic dominance of America and the world. But to bring the current state of affairs back to the real world most of us live in, Obama pledged on national television to pay in advance for all those menial, minimum wage, no benefit jobs (which he won’t get from the Boehner House) with very real cuts in Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. If it isn’t clear to the electorate by now that “entitlements” are the big target of both parties for the next few years, there isn’t anything more I can add to convince anyone that major reductions in benefits are coming. It will probably take at least until it’s way too late to do anything about it, as the checks arrive with smaller numbers embossed on them, before enough people will believe. In the meantime, we keep hearing, from Obama, and just about everyone else running next year, about how losing Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid is the sacrifice to Mammon we all get to provide so that either Big Energy or Big Investment can be the top dog in their petty little Malthusian world (the one Obama could have massively changed with a little audacity) and make everyone so prosperous they won’t have time enough in a lifetime to spend everything.
Let the excuse games begin!