As I said in a previous diary, it is clear that Obama and the National Democrats are captured by a strange desire to relive the ’90′s and “get them right this time”. You can see it in every action, in the personnel choices, and this return to a constant retreat, surrender by “negotiation” style presidency. They’ve accepted the Repug framing on every issue as though it was what the country wants because that’s what their media friends on the Beltway cocktail party circuit are telling them. Needless to say neither of them (the Dems or the Media) is in touch with the American public.
Now we can keep acting out our parts in their Kabuki theater for the next year and a half or we can completely upturn it. It is clear that Obama plans to offer nothing new next year except some small ball policies offered in the context of disastrous austerity framing. He plans to play the equally disastrous “centrist” card. This is nothing but another name for defensive politics which itself is a euphemism for allowing the opposition to dictate terms. What we need to do is similar to what is going on in Wisconsin with their recall efforts. We need to push for relatively radical proposals to be put on state ballots for 2012. Relatively radical in that they aren’t radical at all but they are far more substantive than the middling efforts offered by national Democrats and the Obama administration. Obama’s team has already signaled they don’t think they can get the base out so they are turning to big donors to get them through. They aren’t even going to try. I think we need to push for things at the state level that will take away corporate personhood, ATM fees, push for mandatory audits of contractors every time they apply for any state project to make sure they paid their taxes for the 5 years previous to their application, public financing of campaigns with absolutely no outside spending allowed, marijuana legalization, single payer health care, recalls of other Repugs, and other such things. The key is to galvanize our voters because Obama does not plan to.
The benefit to doing so is that we will finally force him left. By having things like this, our voters will rally. THey’ll have something to vote FOR instead of AGAINST and they’ll be enthused. Likewise, there are very many people on the Right and independents who actually support many of these policies. If even only some of these things get through, they radically change the terms of national debate. It makes a pro-corporate presidency and pro-corporate policies that much harder to justify. Since “centrism” is just another way of saying “I follow fads”, when the Obama people see that their rallies are not attended with as much enthusiasm as ours are, they’ll start changing their policies to appeal to Democrats for once.
As I said earlier, the administration plans to do nothing next year except try to “educate” us on how amazing their record really is. They plan to stay in denial over the disastrous course they’ve been on for some time and to blame the Left for the consequences of ineffectual “leadership.” This is so foreseeable it is pathetic. With this strategy, you take away that argument and you show quite clearly that their problems are their own and that our policies are indeed far more popular. They’ll have no choice. They’ll either have to appeal to us or show the utter failure that “centrism” is.