Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All
Saturday, September 05, 2009
I'm feeling a little less angry than yesterday about the stupidity of the health care debate in its present state. But I'm still worried and still pushing as hard as I can from Obama's left in the rather limited ways that seem open to the likes of me. My partner Eric is worried that the Republicans will run David Petraeus against Obama in 2012, a figure who would almost certainly siphon off many of the "independents" Obama counts on ("independents" as a cohort seem to be moved less by particular policies than by a kind of animal attraction to "decisiveness" "resolve" "conviction" -- qualities not much in evidence from Obama these days) and would energize the wingnut Base just because they love a man in a uniform even if he's less nutty than they are. Meanwhile the left, which Obama seems to take for granted in the usual outrageous manner of Dem pols the second they get in office, demoralized by serial capitulations on their promises by the Obama Administration and unhappy at the prospects of a Petraeus Presidency but hardly panic-stricken about it the way they were when they were still in a full-froth of (fully justified) Bush hate, likely would not re-enact the energetic activism of 2008, indeed, might not even show up at the polls. Unless corporate criminals and war-criminals are made to pay a real price for their crimes, and unless new policies and programs to relieve the burdens of vulnerable American majorities are put in place it is very difficult to see how Democrats can seize this moment and take the lead in the urgent struggle for sustainable consensual equitable diverse literate secular democratic civilization, peer to peer. And if Democrats don't seize this moment and take up that work, honestly, what's the damn point of all this exertion and heartbreak?