Thursday, January 05, 2012

How Can It Be?

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore, I began to wonder, how can it be most everyone seems to think the 2012 election is going to be very close, probably won by only a scant one or two percent of the vote?

Is my grasp on reality so tenuous that I am missing something entirely? I grant you that President Obama can be seen as vulnerable on the economy, and perhaps on a few other things as well. However, it seems to me fairly clear that (l) he is going to have the vast majority of the Black vote, (2) he is going to have a comfortable majority of the Hispanic vote, (3) after the Republican onslaught on Planned Parenthood and women’s health, as well as a woman’s right to choose, I cannot believe he will not be the recipient of a majority of the women’s vote, (4) with the Republican threat to do away with or privatize social security, as well as Medicare, I can only assume he will get a majority of the elderly vote, (5) somewhere I saw something to the effect that he is now doing better with White male voters, and (6) it appears that his “base” is still with him. If all this is so, and it seems to me from everything I read and hear, just who is it that is going to vote Republican? It might well be the case that young people have turned off to Obama and may waste their votes on Ron Paul, but surely the younger vote is not enough to elect anyone.

When it comes to issues and the record I can’t see where Republicans are going to have much to claim either. They can’t really denigrate Obama when it comes to national security or defense, he did get Osama bin Laden, Ghadafi, and etc. And he also did get us out of Iraq on (Bush’s) schedule. While he did not succeed in closing Guantanamo that was mainly because of Republican opposition. When it comes to jobs and why Obama has not created them, it is very clear that it has been Republican obstructionism that has stood in the way of every attempt to create jobs. While Republicans rail against “Obamacare” it is indisputable that he did bring about some much needed reforms with a program so far from socialism as to render that criticism pretty harmless. He also ended DADT, passed (I believe) and equal pay bill, and has a number of other accomplishment s to his credit, all in the face of overwhelming opposition from Republicans. Obama has not walked on water or moved mountains or single-handedly solved our many serious problems, but all in all he has done pretty well. The Republican criticism seem to have little basis in fact and represent mainly their personal dislike of Obama (a Black President), and, it seems to me an element of wishful thinking.

I believe Obama can be rightly criticized when it comes to civil rights, and his failure to prosecute the Bush/Cheney war crimes, his hawkish foreign policy, and also his questionable support of the Banking industry, but these are criticisisms far more likely to come from the left than the right. He has not been a completely uncritical supporter of Israel, much to the dismay of the believers in Armageddon, but he has continued to insist on our support of that (criminal) nation.

I should think Obama’s greatest asset going into the 2012 election is the dismal level of opposition he will face. If any of the current Republican candidates manages to win the nomination he/she will be a relative lightweight, a second or third rater with baggage hard to lose. I cannot see any of them mounting a serious challenge, not even Romney, whom they seem to believe has the best chance. Romney will probably eventually emerge as the Republican candidate but he will have suffered such withering criticism from his own party he will be seriously crippled, and he is already crippled enough in that some 20% of Republicans have apparently already said they would never vote for him (because they believe Mormonism is a cult).

Anyway, as I think all of the above is more or less the case, I cannot imagine why the 2012 election should be as close as everyone seems to predict. In spite of my beliefs about this, in spite of my belief that most or all of the above is true, in spite of what seems to me to be the obvious, in spite of what I might personally believe should be a landslide victory for Obama, somehow, mysteriously, even magically it seems to me, the election will still manage to be very close, and my beliefs about the reality of the facts and situation will simply vanish in a whiff of apathy, disinterest, and ignorance. It’s the American way!

Do I believe Obama should be re-elected? Yes and no. Will I vote for him (in the absence of a viable third party candidate), of course. I cannot fathom why anyone who is not a member of the 1% would vote for a Republican under any circumstances. But, alas, they will. One bright spot perhaps, I don’t think anyone will vote because they want to drink a beer with Willard.

If voters don't have a stomach for me, they can get one of those blow-dried guys.

Ross Perot

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