Well, Yes, I’m Disappointed!

Spandan C over at The People’s View has an great post up about “liberals” disappointment in President Obama.  It’s a brutal takedown of Liz Halloran’s NPR posting about how Obama spent the year “disappointing the liberal base.”  It’s a laundry list of what he hasn’t done, which supposedly he should have accomplished despite having to deal with all the other “minor issues” like government shutdowns, international crises, among other issues.  It’s not the only one like that, a quick look at around various professional liberals show a remarkable similarity along the same lines   What it gives me is a sense of deja vu, mostly because I’ve seen exactly the same complaints before.

When?  Oh, back at the end of 2009, building to a crescendo in 2010.  Democrats, and in particular the President, were a horrible disappointment to these same people.  They pounded keyboards, used up huge amounts of electrons to spread the word that this administration was a failure, and liberals should “send a message” to the President by staying home instead of turning out to vote.   How did that work out?  Oh, right, Republicans took back the House, giving us Speaker Boehner, and took over various statehouses and legislatures. As I said back then,

A good portion of the blame is that rather than sending the message of what was being accomplished, of highlighting the successes, the idiot left was helping the right by screaming their fool heads off.

Finally, remember all those things that were started and supposed to get finished in the next two years?  DADT, improving the Health Care legislation, climate change legislation,  and immigration reform?  Kiss all that good-bye.

Yes, because they were “so disappointed,” they did what they could to help conservatives.  Which has led to a remarkable (and predictable) dearth of progressive legislation over the past several years.  A number of them whine about “gerrymandered districts” which favor Republicans.  Hmm, let’s see, why would that have happened?  Oh, right.

That is that 2010 was a Census year.  That’s the year we count the population, and determine the number of House seats each state will have,  legislative districts within the state.  So?  Well, in those states that switched parties, Republicans controlled redistricting, not Democrats!    The people drawing the lines were not Democrats, and if you think that Republicans were interested in being “fair,” “unbiased,” or helping save a Democratic seat, you’re hallucinating.

What do you know, elections have consequences.  Unsurprisingly, they were at it again in 2011, wanting to come up with a “real progressive” to … primary the President.  Heck they even advertised on Craigslist for a challenger when their own “favored” names had an attack of realism and disavowed any interest in running.   Here we are at the end of 2013, and what do we see?  A litany of columns and blog posts explaining to the world how President Obama is a real disappointment, a “failure” who has somehow alienated the “liberal base.”  Which mainly consists of the authors and the commenters on their postings, but not so much when it comes to … Democrats.

But do you notice the pattern?  Every two years, as we are getting ready to head into an election year, they’re out there beating the drums of “Democrats suck” and “the President is a failure!”  It’s really wonderful, for Republicans.  It’s probably even nice for them, because if Republicans win, they can make decent money telling everyone how bad the Republicans are, and pump up their own egos by telling the world that “if only Democrats had listened to us!”  It isn’t so nice for the rest of the country.

Progressive legislation?  Dead, not going to happen.  Just consider the past three years.  Instead of moving forward on various items, like adding to the healthcare reform law, immigration reform, building new green infrastructure, and climate change legislation,  we were fighting constant battle to keep long-standing programs alive.  Fights to pay the government’s bills, and the threatened destruction of the country’s “full faith and credit.”  Voter ID laws, rollbacks of women’s rights, no new  infrastructure, cuts to education, and a host of other regressive policies have been passed or proposed.  It will take years to undo the damage done in the past three years by the Tea Party Republicans.

As I said in a previous post, next year is important.  It’s the year we can start to reverse that damage, by keeping the Senate and taking back the House. But apparently “liberals,” the “professional Left” can’t grasp that concept.  Instead, they’re still whining about not getting their fairy dust farting unicorn, and in the process doing their level best to ensure that they’ll never get there.   They asked for this back in 2010, and now they’re complaining because they got it. Apparently they can’t learn from the past, and see beyond their own petty grievances.  That’s why I’m disappointed with them.

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18 Comments

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18 responses to “Well, Yes, I’m Disappointed!

  1. Chris Andersen

    Saw a report today of a new poll that had three points:

    1. ~75% Americans think we have the worst Congress ever.
    2. They favor the GOP over the Democrats in a generic poll by ~5 points.
    3. Democrats are disillusioned with their own party and may choose not to vote in protest (shades of 2010).

    In other words, Congress sucks, the party that made Congress sucks is favored, and Democrats who haven’t gotten their magic pony yet are “disappointed” and might stay home and let the Republicans gain even more power.

    I’d say these idiots deserve what their attitude brings them, but that means we who actually care about this will end up with the same crap.

    • Exactly. It’s bad enough that there’s the drumbeat from the Right, after all I rather expect that. I also expect massive amounts of spinning on their part to try to divert attention from themselves. The problem is that when you have supposed liberals joining in, all the while bemoaning that liberal or progressive legislation isn’t being proposed, it doesn’t help their cause. Unless their cause is “losing” and “not giving a damn about anyone else.”

  2. I’ve met these liberals in activist circles and artists’ circles. They like to pretend that they’re working class heroes, unsullied by their trust funds. Everything shy of their fantasies being made miraculously and instantaneously manifest with no compromise is an outrage. They read and talk at length about what they think is wrong, but have no working vision of a world that would be better for most people beyond fashion and slogans.

    They don’t know how the world works for most people, how the government is supposed to work, how the government does work. They have no idea what an overly vocal and small population they are in this country and in the world. They feel entitled to dictate what is right and proper about everything because they’re them— white, college educated, wealthy “liberals” that might as well be rabid Republicans for all the good they do us. They don’t understand why poor people don’t recycle more and tsk tsk the moral turpitude of the poor, ignorant multitudes. Why can’t everyone be as morally superior and unblemished as they are? Huh? They keep telling people!

    They really should just go fuck themselves and get a clue that they don’t understand our problems, much less solutions, and the most they could offer this country is their silence.

    • Excellent comment, Felonious G. I have no patience for these liberals who are shooting off their feet to spite their faces. Idiots all. They discovered that President Obama wasn’t their puppet and they didn’t get those shiny presents at Christmas this year. These “liberals” will ruin us all. They are laying the ground for a Republican rout. I wish they’d shut up, too.

  3. see above

    I’m with you it’s the beginning of an echo of 2009. I thought at the time it must be r’s pretending to be dems the “I’ve always voted D but, fill in the blank”. To make matters worse we have the supposed independent news people asking the pundits/experts questions starting with the r’s talking points “has this been the worst year five ever for a president? is this Obamas Katrina?” and other equally inane questions.

    • A number of them (Kos, Greenwald, and Cenk, for example) were “former” libertarians and Republicans, so it’s not like there wasn’t a basis for your suspicion.

      • Chris Andersen

        I’ve never bought the wolf in sheep’s clothing argument, at least not when it is presented as if they were deliberately joining the Democrats in order to undermine them. However, it is possible that the same sense of privilege that made them Republicans in the first place was carried through with them when they became Democrats.

        But even that feels to simplistic to me.

        I think the more likely argument is that a sense of privilege has never been a strictly Republican trait. Liberals can feel it just as much as Conservatives. It just manifests in a different form.

        In other words, selfishness isn’t just a Republican trait.

        • I don’t think all – or even any – of them were “wolves in sheep’s clothing,” but I do think several were switching based on a mercenary mentality. That is, go with the side that is going to pay you better. That’s my opinion of Greenwald’s “switch.”

          In the others, the sense of privilege, of entitlement, is rather obvious. It’s when they didn’t receive what they considered “their due” that they went off. Kos spent a great deal of time touting the “rise of the netroots,” and selling that as the new paradigm in politics. Many of the other “big bloggers” on the liberal side bought into it. When it turned out that the old paradigm hadn’t gone anywhere, when a candidate named Barack Obama took the new and old ideas and created a winning organization, without needing them, they were … less than pleased. They were devastated to find out that politicians can count, and it turned out that the netroots was a paper tiger, mostly “nothing but net.” Not something that could run a campaign, put boots on the ground, and voters in the booth.

          So many of their attacks circle around that, the idea that they were “owed” a big say in the Democratic Party, and that they were major players. That they weren’t is just not something they believe.

  4. majiir

    Those who are “disappointed” have no one to blame but themselves. President Obama went into a lot of detail many times warning democrats that they needed to show up at the polls in 2010, but they decided to listen to the carnival barkers on faux progressive blogs like FDL and to people like Ed and others. I showed up and I voted. They, OTOH, allowed their “disappointment” in not getting everything they wanted ASAP to persuade them NOT to vote. This gave republicans control of the House and them additional opportunities to bitch and moan endlessly. And, as it turns out, bitching and moaning is what they do best. As you’ve mentioned several times, Norbrook, unless your words, actions, and fundraising efforts result in winning elections, you’re of no use to anyone, not even yourself. You’re just a paid mouthpiece whose only goal is further enriching yourself, like Glenn Greenwald, Jan Hamsher, and others whose specialty is convincing some dems to vote against their own interests or to become so apathetic as to not show up to vote at all.

    • Exactly. You’re right, it’s been one of my repeat themes, and it’s still something that irritates me. They asked for this, whether they want to admit it or not, and now they have the gall to complain? :roll:

  5. You are so right, Norbrook! We’re being betrayed by our own party members. We’ve got our own extreme left who set all this mess in motion by keeping voters from the polls. They’re idiots.

    • Chris Andersen

      I think we should be careful not to paint to broad a brush when talking about the disappointed liberals. They are a vocal minority, but still a minority. However, they feed into a media narrative of Democratic disillusion and so they appear to be much more common than they actually are.

      A lot of Democrats still support Obama and most of them will come out to vote in 2014. But the margins today are so narrow that even a 1% drain on those numbers can produce catastrophic results.

      And so we need to counteract the whingers by doing more than calling them out. We also have to highlight the positive things that are happening in Democratic circles. Those positive things can encourage that 1% to come out. If all we do is complain then we will just add to the malaise.

      • Aside from emos, not voting in the midterms and primaries is a problem with liberals. The Republicans rally for every position from the PTA to city councils to the POTUS. They vote. Otherwise, I don’t think we would have seen so many Republican majorities from post-Reagan on. Unlike the media’s rosy image of Reagan, he was not loved when he left office. The Moral Majority rose because there was a hard-core movement that worked for it and Republicans turned out in every election.

      • You’re so right, Chris. The negative always gets more attention. But we can’t let that happen. I’m considering a post of Obama positives!

  6. Dennis Bossinger

    Unless all people who have the real best interest of our nation in mind band together we are in for more of the same ; elimination of our middle class is at hand.

  7. aquagranny911

    I am in no way shape or form “disappointed” with PBO but I will be way “disappointed” more like red chili pepper hot pissed if we do not GOTV for Dems in 2014!

    I’m so sick of the whining, moaning, complaining and the not doing of those who call themselves liberal/progressives or Democrats. I say get up off your sorry lazy asses & do more than moan & give clicks to failed sites (that I won’t name) If you won’t work to be part of the solution than we will mow you down like dead weeds in 2014!

    My two pesos & no change required!!!

  8. The problem is that ideology is being allowed to interfere with strategy. The democrats do in fact suck, from a progressive perspective, but that has nothing to do with voter turnout or insidious candidates, or even primaries. It has everything to do with the legalized corruption called campaign finance. It’s no coincidence that the people who pay for the elections are the ones who get listened to. Both parties cater to their interests for the sake of keeping their jobs. That’s not going to change until it’s reformed–Constitutionally to circumvent the whackjob SCOTUS.

    However, there is a profound difference between republicans and democrats from a policy standpoint, from gay marriage, to jobs, education and infrastructure. And it’s not even close. This GOP hasn’t just gone insane, it’s gone ouroboros for the sake of purity. The lunatics run the asylum and the only thing stopping them are the votes (and voting rights) of reasonable people which are being chipped away at from both sides. Progress is both inevitable and, for now, secondary. We’ve got one of our two main political parties at war with its government and the 47% of the population they see as dependent on it. Voter turnout is the only thing that will keep them at bay.

    Unfortunately, disappointment is to be expected, but we have to fight to keep it from turning into disenfranchisement.