Tuesday, November 11, 2008
We won. We know that. And if you're like me, you still smile when you think about it.
However, winning this election is like winning a car that's been in a wreck so bad that the insurance company will do a write-off rather than pay for repairs.
This is the dilemma of Obama supporters. We won the "car", which is a metaphor for getting our country back from the Party That Wrecked America.
Barack's role is the Repair Man. He's currently assessing the damage and after January 20th, will look with at us with sympathy as he tells us whether this bitch will ever run again, anything remotely like it did in it's better days.
If he can't fix it, he'll have to be like Xzibit on Pimp My Ride, and he and his crew will have to rebuild it. "It" is the economy and the general way the mega-corporations, banks, defense and government do business.
To use the car metaphor, our economy is running on fumes. The US auto makers are on their knees begging for a rescue. So far, Bush is resistant to Obama's desire to tap into that initial $700 Billion Bailout to save it. There's a good chance the Big Three will be no more by the end of this year.
That's some serious shit, and may be one of Bush's last shit sandwiches served to the people before he says buh-bye to us.
Writer Jim Kunstler says in this week's essay that the car you have now may be the last one you have and you just don't know it yet. This is courtesy of the Great Depression and peak oil. I concur, so stop waiting for a formal announcement and do what you gotta do to prepare for it.
The American people could not have chosen a more level-headed man for the job. Barack's cool is utterly amazing. The story that blows me the most is when Bush met him for the first time at the White House with other new incoming Senators in late 2004 or early 2005.
Bush shook his hand, and immediately used hand sanitizer right in front of him, then smiled and offered him some. Damn! If that ain't in yo face racism, I don't what is.
Barack kept his cool and politely accepted it. I can't imagine being able to do this, but he did, saying later in one of his books, "I accepted because didn't want to appear unhygienic."
Was that smooth or what? He sucked up the put down, but got his payback later by telling this story in The Audacity of Hope. And he told it without appearing bitter, and allowing readers to draw their own conclusion whether George W. Bush behaved like an asshole or not.
Heh-heh. Barack is gonna be a lot of fun to watch.
So will his Cabinet members.
During his acceptance speech, Obama promised his kids a new puppy. Hours later, he selected his own dawg - a real pitbull politician named Rahm Emanuel. This guy will have the fourth most powerful political job as the White House Chief of Staff.
Of the many facts and rumors I've read about him, this one true story stood out the most:
"...[On] the night after [Bill] Clinton was elected, Emanuel was so angry at the president's enemies that he stood up at a celebratory dinner with colleagues from the campaign, grabbed a steak knife and began rattling off a list of betrayers, shouting "Dead! . . . Dead! . . . Dead!" and plunging the knife into the table after every name.
"When he was done, the table looked like a lunar landscape," one campaign veteran recalls. "It was like something out of The Godfather. But that's Rahm for you."
- Rolling Stone article, 10/20/2005
Yo, if that don't put the "G" in gangsta, I don't know what does.
There's a lot of history in Rahmbo's baggage. We'll never know if the rumors about him are true, which I ain't even gonna get into, but since the O-Man has or will soon have full access to the CIA and NSA, I'm sure he will know if he doesn't already.
I'm also betting that what Barack and Emanuel does in 2009 will be extraordinarily interesting and make history, so keep an eye on how they work together.
They appear more comfortable with one another than Barack and Biden ever has, and their relationship goes back to Chicago, and Obama's top advisor, David Axelrod, has a long friendship with him.
While I have reservations about Rahm Emanuel, I assume that Barack, a bonifed political genius, either knew what he was doing when he made his choice, or the choice was one of many compromises he had to make in pursuit of the White House.
My guess is it will prove to be either be utterly disastrous, or amazingly brilliant, and with nothing in between.
Maybe I've been smoking on Barack's Hope bong too long, but I lean toward the latter. Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni politely 'warned' Obama less than 48 hours after he was elected to not have talks with Iran. Meanwhile Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad broke a nearly 40 year old tradition of ignoring our new President-Elects; he sent a Obama his congratulations in a fairly long letter sprinkled with advice.
Thus, who better to tell the Israeli government "no" to a pre-emptive nuclear strike on Iran than one of their own, a politically savvy American Jew with close personal ties to the major players and nick-named Rahmbo? Or for Barack to meet next year and listen to what, if any, compromises the Iranians are willing to make?
Soothing the Russian bear may prove hardest. While the world celebrated Barack's election, their President, Dmitri Medvedev ordered missiles deployed next to the Polish border. They had planned to do this anyway in response to Bush's military expansionism near their own border, and are clearly not confident that any President, Barack or otherwise, will change the way business is done in Washington.
I remain cautiously optimistic that he'll shrewdly continue to assemble the best team to pimp our ride.
Posted by Kit (Keep It Trill) at 5:02 PM