1992 Or 1980?

To the chagrin of our friend DemfromCt, Paul Krugman chooses to present a clear and fair picture of the Obama campaign, a view you will not find in the blogs for the most part:

It’s feeling a lot like 1992 right now. It’s also feeling a lot like 1980. But which parallel is closer? Is Barack Obama going to be a Ronald Reagan of the left, a president who fundamentally changes the country’s direction? Or will he be just another Bill Clinton? . . . [T]he odds are that this will be a “change” election — which means that it’s very much Mr. Obama’s election to lose. But if he wins, how much change will he actually deliver?

More . . .

Last January, I wrote a post entitled Senator Obama, You Are No Ronald Reagan:

Obama simply misunderstands how Reagan achieved that transformational change - to the detriment of the country I must add - he ran a partisan, ideological divisive campaign that excoriated Democratic values and trumpeted GOP values. He also race baited.

Obama is running a post-partisan, nonideological campaign that is bereft of defenses of Democratic values and ideas. He is running an anti-Reagan campaign. His argument is simply ahistorical. It is precisely BECAUSE he refuses to try and make this a transformational campaign, a campaign to fight for Dem values, to persuade the country that the Dems are right, that his campaign is a promise unfulfilled.

Krugman writes:

Reagan, for better or worse — I’d say for worse, but that’s another discussion — brought a lot of change. He ran as an unabashed conservative, with a clear ideological agenda. And he had enormous success in getting that agenda implemented. He had his failures, most notably on Social Security, which he tried to dismantle but ended up strengthening. But America at the end of the Reagan years was not the same country it was when he took office.

Bill Clinton also ran as a candidate of change, but it was much less clear what kind of change he was offering. He portrayed himself as someone who transcended the traditional liberal-conservative divide, proposing “a government that offers more empowerment and less entitlement.” The economic plan he announced during the campaign was something of a hodgepodge: higher taxes on the rich, lower taxes for the middle class, public investment in things like high-speed rail, health care reform without specifics.

. . . So whom does Mr. Obama resemble more? At this point, he’s definitely looking Clintonesque. Like Mr. Clinton, Mr. Obama portrays himself as transcending traditional divides. Near the end of last week’s “unity” event with Hillary Clinton, he declared that “the choice in this election is not between left or right, it’s not between liberal or conservative, it’s between the past and the future.” Oh-kay.

I would make a further point. In 1992, the Democrats simply were not perceived as a Party that could handle the Presidency. In 1992, the Clinton approach made political sense. I personally doubt Bill Clinton himself would have run the 1992 Clinton campaign in 2008. This election presents a historic opportunity to make, as Digby put it, "serious ideological change that has deep political meaning." I for one do not believe Bill Clinton would have squandered the opportunity.

By Big Tent Democrat, speaking for me only

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    "It's between the past (5.00 / 7) (#3)
    by vigkat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 07:56:24 AM EST
    and the future."  It is this core definition, coming from the presumptive nominee himself, that frustrates me.  What is this "future" that he envisions?  It must have some defining contour capable of communication.  Why aren't we hearing about that, why aren't those broad strokes being filled in with something tangible?  Bill Clinton at least made it real, and delivered something that, in the end, bore some resemblence to the earlier vision of change he was promoting albeit not identical and perhaps not entirely satisfying.

    For me, the difference between Obama's (5.00 / 6) (#10)
    by zfran on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:23:11 AM EST
    "past and future" comments bring to light once again his demeaning of age. Whether McCain is qualified for president s/b debated on his merits, not his age. The same s/b said for Obama's qualifications, not his age. Is it just a coincidence that so many on Obama's "team" were once on the "Clinton" team. And, if Clinton was the past and Obama the future, I'll take the past!

    Do you believe (5.00 / 5) (#11)
    by standingup on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:26:17 AM EST
    the Democratic party of 2008 is ready to handle the Presidency any better than they were in 1992?  

    I am not feeling particularly confident in the party at this point.  We have a Democratic majority in Congress that was undoubtedly put in place in 2006 because people were unhappy with the direction the Republicans were taking the country.  The country is still if not more dissatisfied and what have we seen  the Democrats do recently?  They talk a good talk but still seem unprepared to walk the walk.  How do we know it would be any different under a Democratic administration?

    I disagree on one basic (5.00 / 13) (#12)
    by frankly0 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:27:45 AM EST
    point with Krugman: I really don't think that 2008 is like 1992.

    Yes, 1992 was a year for change -- but basically change away from George H.W.Bush, and the ineffectuality he brought to economic issues. It was about jobs and wages and returning to prosperity.

    No one presumed at the time that great ideological change was afoot, or that the public was yearning for a dramatic turn from Conservative policies. The Conservative movement, as represented by Reagan, retained its great allure for many voters; Bush was simply seen as a rather incompetent, and not even committed, agent of it. The best evidence of this is the Revolution of 1994, when the Conservative movement took one of its greatest steps forward.

    2008 could hardly be more different in that sense. The Conservative movement is in disarray and disgrace. It has been found out by the public; hardly anyone believes its promises anymore; it doesn't itself even know what it might stand for, or how it might change to make itself palatable to the public, or coherent to its own devotees.

    2008 is poised therefore as a time ripe for great, fundamental change, as it was in FDR's day, and in Reagan's day.

    And yet that opportunity will be squandered on a Democratic candidate who has shown no concrete interest in making basic change, however much he may talk about it.

    Tragically, we have no good reason to believe that this powerful moment will repeat. We are likely to be left merely with the saddest words ever written: It might have been.

    IMO it goes beyond not being willing to (5.00 / 8) (#15)
    by MO Blue on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:31:01 AM EST
    making basic change. Obama has actually said much that actually helps rehabilitate the Republican Party and the conservative movement.

    But that it is ending up to be like 1992.

    The Irony, Of Course, (5.00 / 2) (#25)
    by The Maven on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:08:40 AM EST
    being that the nation ended up being a lot better off in the eight years following 1992 than it was in the eight years after 1980.  Sure, there was no fundamental ideological shift under Bill Clinton (something he had never strongly advocated for, anyway), but the nation was overall in a better, stronger place.

    As Krugman notes, most of Obama's positions are decidedly centrist in nature.  I personally tend to believe that that is probably more beneficial in the near-term to help the country recover from the effects of Bushism.  Pulling the nation too far to the left too quickly would likely prove both disruptive and ultimately unsuccessful, giving the Republicans a great opportunity to restore themselves to power on the backs of dissatisfied Americans.  Should Obama tread cautiously in this regard (as opposed to other, bolder steps that he seems reluctant to make even where the political costs would be minimal), he may do well after all.  1992 is far from the worst model one could hope to follow.


    Except that Obama has refused to (5.00 / 8) (#29)
    by frankly0 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:32:30 AM EST
    embrace any position that one would describe as representing a fundamental shift. I hardly think that he is more likely to make bold steps as President than he has been in his campaign promises -- it is always easier to be bold in one's promises.

    I certainly understand the concept that one keeps one's powder dry for the major battles one needs to fight.

    But there will be no major battles, if Obama himself is to be believed. The one major thing that would truly advance the progressive agenda, and might represent real change, universal health care, got only perfunctory attention from Obama, and only because his hand was forced on the issue by the other Democratic candidates. On this policy initiative, it could hardly be more obvious that his heart was not in it.

    We should, I think, resign ourselves in advance to policy mediocrity.


    that is totally ridiculous (none / 0) (#70)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:10:22 PM EST
    Obama is every bit as serious about UHC as Hillary was. THe only real difference between the two was that, once again, Hillary had a plan that was politically very difficult - setting herself up to fail once again, whereas Obama's approach had a much better chance of success.

    You dont try to sell the public on punitive mandates - fines and other penalties for not buying insurance, along with a promise that they will have an affordable plan to buy. People do not believe politicians much in the first place. People REALLY dont trust politicians when they offer a hammer and a promise. And, of course, half the country doesnt trust Hillary no matter what.

    Roll out the subsidies and other inititiatives to help people afford insurance - do that first. Deliver on your promises first. Then you can slap on a mandate to pick up those who are gaming the system - the people will support mandates then, cuz no one likes people who game systems.

    Obama's apporach was smarter politically. To claim that it manifest less interest in achieving universality is just absurd.


    No (5.00 / 5) (#84)
    by nell on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 01:18:15 PM EST
    Obama's approach does not work in the real world. Offering guaranteed issue, which means anyone can get health care, without mandates, will result in a death spiral and collapse the system over time. If I am guaranteed to be able to buy health insurance when I need it, why wouldn't I wait until I need it? And if everyone waits until they need it, it is only sick people buying into the system. Health insurance works best and most efficiently when we have both healthy people and sick people buying into the system - when we maximize the risk sharing. The only way to prevent this kind of abuse of the system is to impose back premiums, which Obama admitted was necessary during one of the debates, but even this would be incredibly problematic, not just for patients, but also for health care providers.

    I think we are at a point right now where people are fed up enough with the health insurance system in this country that we really could have achieved  progressive reform, including mandates. I also think she was fantastic at explaining the concept to people in terms that they could understand, and not just to Dems, also to Republicans. I don't know if you saw her interview with O'Reilly, but she was amazing because she did NOT back down from her liberal values and positions, she just helped O'Reilly at least see them from another perspective, if not agree. That's what Dems have to do.


    you seem not to understand the point (none / 0) (#88)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 02:17:16 PM EST
    BOth I, in my explanations here (there have been many) and Obama in his discussions of this issue, have acknowledged that mandates might be necessary down the road if people end up gaming the system in the manner that you describe.

    The issue is not so much mandates or no mandates, its mandates NOW, or mandates LATER, if and when they really prove to be necessary to make the finances work.

    Hillary was offering a package of benefits that promised to make insurance afforable to all. And a hammer - a penalty if you dont buy insurance.

    Obama was offering a similar package of benefits but no penalties for now.

    Which do you think has a better chance of passing? People are cynical about promises. You really think they will support penalties plus promises?

    It is so unnecessary. Pass the package of benefits first. Thats a lot easier sell. Tweak it if necessary in a year or so to make sure it really really covers everyone. Then, when you have fulfilled your promise, when 95 or 99% are covered, then you can pass the mandates. Then you can go to the public and say - we did what we promised, the system works great, now we need mandates to prevent people gaming the system. Then they pass easily, and you have passed the whole package. Following Hillary's lead, you probably fail to get anything passed. Again.


    Heh (5.00 / 3) (#94)
    by Steve M on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 03:03:03 PM EST
    It amuses me that you've truly persuaded yourself that you have a coherent argument.

    Gee, why don't we start by getting all the benefits of universal coverage, and just skip the bad parts till later?  What an awesome idea!  If only Hillary were a smart enough politician to realize that it's easier just to promise everyone something for nothing.

    Out here in the real world, virtually every health care expert - even huge Obama fans like Ezra Klein - understands that you can't just magically create affordability without the use of mandates.  But please, keep pretending you know what you're talking about, and that your candidate didn't use cheap GOP-style demagoguery to attack the only plan with a chance of achieving universality.


    Is there any substance to your ideas (2.00 / 1) (#98)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 04:25:55 PM EST
    or do you really have nothing to say, just engaging in a little afternoon insulting?

    Stripping out the punitive mandates till later is a smart political move. It is so because, though the mandates will only be relevant for a small minority (those who can afford a plan but want to game the system), the fear of them will be much more widespread (all the people who dont trust that they will be able to afford insurance). Thus everyone without insurance, or who ever fears they might be without it someday - all those people will tend to oppose a mandate plan if offered now. But if you dont put forth mandates until the subsidies are in place, then the only people who will oppose them are the real gamers of the system.

    The logic seems obvious and compelling. You dismiss it with childish insults, but show no reason why the logic fails. All you have managed to do here is to show that you, at least, and perhaps your whole side of the argument, has no answer.

    Your heroine came up with mandates. It happened to be one of the few policy disagreements with Obama, so it had to be highlighted in order to make the distinctions between them. As a loyal supporter, you then became locked into defending them, without ever thinking them through. Your candidate didnt help matters by trying to pretend that a lack of mandates is somehow akin to abandoning universality, or turning your back on all of western civilization,  or so it seemed.

    Mandates are nothing more than a way to force some people, mainly the young and healthy, to buy insurance and thus subsidize the insurance of everyone else. Thats all - its a way to spread the risk and raise money. It may be necessary and wise to do it, but it is not the heart and soul of universality. Having affordable plans available to all is the heart and soul of universality.

    That is what we should all be focused on achieving. If mandates in the original plan lower the probability of it passing (as they SURELY will), then they should be put off till later. Unless the issue that is really most important to you is to stamp your feet and insist that Hillary is the best, and Obama is bad.


    Actually that is backwards (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by splashy on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 06:24:06 PM EST
    First you get everyone covered, then you can cut costs.

    You have to get everyone on board first. That is the only way it can work.

    Basically, without the mandate it will give the Repubs a bunch of ammunition to say it costs too much and won't work, setting us back and killing thousands more every year.


    huh? (1.00 / 2) (#104)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 07:28:00 PM EST
    Where have you been the last 16 years when "thousands have been killed" because of the political incompetence of Ms. Clinton? (and no, I am not making that charge, I am making fun of you for making the charge),

    Forget about using the bold function, it doesnt lend any added weight to an empty argument. All you do is assert that the only way it can work is a way that seems to me pretty clearly to be political suicide, or at least politically far more difficult than it need be.

    People can accept mandates and penalties if the are assured that they will be applied against cheaters, not agaisnt them if they happen to fall on hard times. Unless they can SEE that there are affordable plans out there ,not just hear promises, then they will be very wary of politicians making promises. Beleive it or not, the average American is not so gobsmackingly in throbbing awe of the awesomenss and noble honor of hillary Clinton, nor of any other politician.
    Show them the policies, roll them out, let everyone check them out, talk them over - and if they really do cover everyone, then we can start talking about imposing penalites.

    Thats the way normal people think. You should consider that when deciding what policies to support.


    If you study up on the subject (none / 0) (#109)
    by splashy on Wed Jul 02, 2008 at 02:13:01 AM EST
    From those that have actually implemented universal health care, they all say you have to get everyone involved first. If you let anyone opt out, your don't get the largest pool. Then, when they get sick or injured, they want in, after not helping to pay for years.

    I sure wish people would study the subject some first, before commenting.


    Enough with your insults Tben....are you (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by PssttCmere08 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:08:22 PM EST
    incapable of civil commenting?

    The Luxury of 1992 vs The Perils of 2008 (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by santarita on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:11:37 AM EST
    Bill Clinton became president at a fairly benign time in our history compared to now.  The Cold War was over.  Communism was defeated.  There didn't seem to be an enemy on the horizon (which is why the Republicans had to look for one - they got good mileage out of the enemies of "family values" with Clinton being the Great Satan).  The economy was recovering from the S & L crisis.  It was a perfect time for a major change, in this case, health care reform.  Clinton tried and was turned back by a hostile media and entrenched interests.

    Now we have an economy on the rocks, an energy crisis, a military disaster, signs of climate change that we are not ready for, etc.  

    Whoever the President is will not have the luxury of initiating fundamental changes.  They will be reacting to crisis after crisis.  Times of crisis afford opportunities for major changes.  I'm not sure Obama (or McCain) can take advantage of the opportunity.


    As I recall 1992 (none / 0) (#105)
    by BackFromOhio on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:17:18 PM EST
    the economy was pretty bad. Of course, nothing like now, which, imo, is getting closer & closer to 1929.

    A similarity between 1992 & 2008 campaigns, to me, is that the economic troubles are hitting the poor & middle class the hardest. To win this time, I believe, a candidate must convince working class people that the candidate cares about them and will follow through once elected in delivering economic relief.  Bill Clinton was a master at connecting with working class.  So were the Kennedys.


    I think though (5.00 / 4) (#34)
    by frankly0 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:51:49 AM EST
    that it's a mistake to imagine that Bill Clinton had before him the opportunity for dramatic change that was present to Reagan in 1980, or to the Democrats in 2008.

    Bill Clinton might certainly have accomplished more in terms of change, and I think he didn't use his considerable clout and great skills in his second term to full effect.

    But mostly his Presidency had already been pretty well circumscribed in its mandate by what it went through in the first term, namely, the Revolution of 1994. Clinton was always obliged to fight those forces, and achieved whatever policy gains he made in the teeth of that then formidable opposition.


    "FISA is not a defining issue" (5.00 / 8) (#13)
    by MO Blue on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:27:59 AM EST
    This seems to be the feeling of quite a few Obama supporters and not just Jgarza.

    For someone who is struggling to continue to support the Democratic Party as well as its current nominee, it is very much a defining issue. If the candidate and party is willing to advance the Republican agenda on FISA that has a real Constitutional impact on people's rights, where and on what issue will they actually stand firm. Protecting the Constitution is one of the prime responsibilities of Congress. It is the only item mentioned in the oath of office that each member takes upon assuming their position.  I do not consider Constitutional rights to be negotiable items.

    Once again, where is the line beyond which Obama and the Democratic Party will not go in capitulating to the Republicans and their agenda?  

    The Constitution is a defining issue (5.00 / 4) (#27)
    by Cream City on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:12:22 AM EST
    for me, too.  But then, I'm just a voter.  Thing is that I thought it was a defining issue for anyone who wants to be president -- as that's the person who swears the oath to uphold the Constitution.

    Maybe we need to have candidates for president do that, too.


    DemFromCT calls it "picking on" Obama? (5.00 / 4) (#17)
    by andgarden on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:32:08 AM EST
    I have no words, really.

    Where can we get the fair and clear picture? (5.00 / 3) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:35:11 AM EST
    On Obama not from DemfromCt.

    Ooh, this is rich. From the comments: (5.00 / 5) (#22)
    by andgarden on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:55:49 AM EST
    there are a lot of people who will have trouble (0+ / 0-)
    with "post-partisanship'. It's why Obama was not the first choice here. it is interesting to see how people adapt and get used to it, and will be interesting to see that about Obama as well.

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

    by DemFromCT on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:24:54 AM EDT

    No longer an activist, DemFromCT is reduced to being a snooty observer.

    The reason (5.00 / 6) (#23)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:02:16 AM EST
    Obama was NOT the first choice there? Who for eff's sake WAS the first choice once Edwards went out?

    No "clear and fair picture" was ever presented about Obama at his site. He makes a mockery of his complaints about Media narratives with this type of stuff.


    Krugman is (5.00 / 3) (#21)
    by TomP on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:48:12 AM EST
    right in a lot in that article.

    Cart before the horses (5.00 / 7) (#26)
    by koshembos on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:12:10 AM EST
    Even Krugman misses the point. Even if Obama gets elected, not an obvious assumption, no one at this stage knows whether he'll make a decent president. He may be a Carter. It isn't simple to succeed the way Clinton did. Taking it for granted is kind of strange. Obama, for instance, doesn't have even half the intellect Clinton has and has highly undemocratic tendencies that are quite close to Bush.

    The whole spectrum of possibilities from success to failure is widely possible.

    Half the intellect? (none / 0) (#38)
    by santarita on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:15:19 AM EST
    How can you make that statement about someone who was Harvard Law Review Editor?

    You're right in that (5.00 / 4) (#60)
    by mg7505 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:38:39 AM EST
    he was the HLR editor (or was he the president?), but he didn't write any articles. He may have been the first to have that dubious distinction. I think after that they put in a requirement that the editor HAS to write.

    BO has proven his intellect in plenty of ways, but that's not one of them. Note that Bill Clinton was a Rhodes Scholar, but Obama was not. Clinton was also a governor. But honestly this debate could go on forever; and it seems offensive to both the Clintons and BO.


    More on topic (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by Edgar08 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:16:36 AM EST
    If Obama does turn into a Bill Clinton I think of that as a good thing.

    I genuinely feel transformational change did occur during the Clinton Administration, it just doesn't meet the definition of transformational change that people most readily talk about.

    Bringing 7 million people out of poverty COMBINED with welfare reform.  How does that compute, how does that fit into the transformational change progressive paradigm.  I don't think anyone knows.  A lot of people focus on the welfare reform component on that and say it's not transformational change, it's taking two steps backwards and they ask: so where was the one step forward.

    I look at the 7 million people raised out of poverty and say, well, that's transformational change.

    So.  If Obama turns himself into a Clinton, not just in rhetoric, but in the actual results of his administration, I have always gone on record that I would admit that I was wrong about him.

    I would consider that a good thing.  A very good thing indeed.

    woulda, coulda, shoulda, (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by jb64 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:22:54 AM EST
    If some of the "progressives" that went off the reservation and voted for Nader in 2000 instead of the Democratic standard bearer Al Gore, the transformation we all talk about would have in all likelihood been realized by now. I find it regrettable that people seem to think that Bill Clinton somehow failed to realize many of the core values of the Democratic party. the pushback of the GOP revolution in '94 created an over-reaching legislative branch, clearly out of touch with the mainstream. Their failure was epic in scope and forced them on an endless "fishing" expedition that resulted in the most embarrassing spectacles in American political history (Impeachment) that ultimately took down their own man (Gingrich)instead of the intended victim.

    If this Congress is anything like the one WJC inherited in '93, I would speculate that it will be very difficult for Obama regardless of his margin of victory.


    Agreed; & what about (none / 0) (#106)
    by BackFromOhio on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:19:28 PM EST
    balancing the budget?  Wasn't that a true change?

    It is 1992 + a war (5.00 / 3) (#31)
    by ruffian on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:40:58 AM EST
    I don't sense a call from the average voter for ideological change.  I see a call for problem solving - get us out of this mess.

    I wish I thought the average voter was connecting the dots between the ideology and the mess, but they would need the nedia to help them with that, and they are not getting that help.

    If Obama wins, it will take all he has to fix even one problem.  I don't think he has the skills of either Clinton in that area.

    Obama is not inclined to push for ideological change - he is not identified with any ideology, as Reagan was. Nwither is McCain though, thankfully, in case he wins.

    As Digby alluded to in the post you cited earlier, the biggest change Obama will bring is demographic. Maybe he can also solve a problem or two - starting with getting us out of Iraq - but I am not optimistic.

    Krugman is already counting the chickens (5.00 / 3) (#42)
    by daryl herbert on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:30:31 AM EST
    but I don't think they've hatched yet.

    It's easy to see what kind of president Obama would be:

    A limp dishrag who does whatever Congress tells him to.  If Congress wants to compromise on FISA, Obama will go along with it.  Whatever Congress puts in front of him, he will sign.

    Well gee (none / 0) (#43)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:31:45 AM EST
    considering that Congress will almost certainly be dominated by the Democrats, even more than today, I would hope that Obama isn't put in the position of needing to veto too many bills.

    I don't think (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by cmugirl on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:48:09 AM EST
    it's about worrying about him vetoing too many bills.  It's about he will do whatever Nancy and Steny and Kennedy and Kerry want him to do because he will owe them.

    Not reasonable (none / 0) (#46)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:52:50 AM EST
    The moment someone sits down in the Oval Office they automatically become vastly more powerful than anyone else in government.

    When someone from the Capitol comes to the White House they do so with hat in hand.

    You don't push the President of the United States around.  And I have seen absolutely nothing from Obama to suggest that he is a pushover.  He can argue that he is too politically calculating, something I'm fine with but others may not be.  But he most certainly doesn't strike me as a weak personality.


    For well seasoned politicians, this is true (5.00 / 2) (#87)
    by goldberry on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 02:12:32 PM EST
    But Obama is not a well seasoned politician.  He hasn't been in Washington long enough to have developed networks and coalitions of people who he has worked with and who may owe him favors.  Because he hasn't done much legislating, he doesn't understand the executive branch departments well or know how they work.  He hasn't developed any area of expertise that he can cite as a jumping off place for learning the rest.  
    This makes him very vulnerable and beholden to people who do understand how the whole machine works.  So, he may be very dependent on Congress to get things accomplished but if some members of Congress have donors to appease and if those donors have a hand in crafting legislation, you have the K-Street Project all over again, this time with a different party in charge.  
    Hillary, oddly enough, would have been a better enforcer and could have pushed back harder for unencumbered legislation because she knows who has their hands on the levers of power.  

    DemFromCT (5.00 / 3) (#45)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:48:45 AM EST
    Is complaining about Krugman being obsessed with Obama. Irony or hypocrisy?

    Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I am once again impressed by how Krugman once again dug into my braid and described what I was thinking without even knowing that I existing, throwing in supporting evidence from his much vaster knowledge of history.

    It isn't hard (2.00 / 1) (#47)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:54:13 AM EST
    Krugman is a leading advocate of the Hillary Clinton for President brigade.  As a fellow traveler I am sure that you would find many things he said as being spot on.

    Krugman's basic positions haven't changed (5.00 / 4) (#52)
    by Josey on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:08:51 AM EST
    They are the same with Hillary as a presidential candidate - or not.
    The person that HAS changed is Obama!  and depending on the group acknowledging it - it's called flip flopping or lying or conning...
    But best to attack Krugman than admit Obama is not a Progressive Messiah but a Centrist, as most of us knew all along.

    You forgot a few defintions (5.00 / 4) (#54)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:12:26 AM EST
    The group supporting Obama the most heartily sees his changes in position as re-positioning himself to win the election so that he has an opportunity to implement the highly progressive positions he secretly endorses.

    LOL - yes, so many twisted pretzels! (5.00 / 2) (#62)
    by Josey on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:48:03 AM EST
    Krugman has been critical of all candidates (5.00 / 4) (#53)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:10:37 AM EST
    Do you actually read Krugman, or have you simply taken the word of people who are angry that he dares question the annointed one? I have read and admired him for years.Krugman is pretty close to a single issue supporter: Health Care. He seems to feel that the health care crisis is likely to economically destroy the nation.  I think that he was more in favor of Edwards, to tell the truth. He feels that Obama's plan is totally ineffective, Edwards was best, and Clinton's very close to that of Edward's. Krugman has, however, been critical of all candidates at some point or another, especially of McCain, and has gained credibility for not pulling punches on anybody.

    Really (none / 0) (#57)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:22:40 AM EST
    I must have missed his essays castigating Hillary Clinton.  You got a link to them?

    I did see Krugman's essays criticizing Obama because of his supporters.  


    Google is your friend (5.00 / 4) (#63)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:51:22 AM EST
    Although it would be better to hold of criticizing people until you have actually read them long enough to get an idea of what they believe.

    All Stars

    Gas Tax Follies

    Krugman isn't so much critical of Obama personally as he is critical of 1) the fanatical behavior of some of Obama's supporters and 2) Obama's health care plan.  I can see how this would irk Obama's more fanatic supporter's, who are quite sensitive to the "cult" meme, however appropriate it seems, and who have worked very hard to ignore Obama's lack of a decent health care plan. Don't believe everything you read. Krugman is one of the good guys, whether he worships Obama or not.


    Wow (none / 0) (#65)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:01:31 PM EST
    That was some really biting criticism there.  Why he had 2 whole sentences, in those two articles combines, that criticized Hillary.

    Hey if you want to believe that Krugman is an objective voice and that he treated Hillary the same as Obama, have a grand time.  

    Let's just say you are in a pretty exclusive club holding that view.


    He hasn't exactly torn Obama to shreds (5.00 / 5) (#73)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:16:36 PM EST
    Krugman doesn't work that way. He criticizes policies, not people. He has treated them both fairly in that he compared facts, primarily the quality of their health care plans. He treated them differently because their plans are different - if you expect Krugman to try to find redeeming features in a policy he opposes, then you're looking at the wrong guy. He won't praise Clinton just because he likes her, he will criticize her if he find reasons. Same for Obama. He's fair. You may not like what he says, but he isn't tearing anybody down. He is simply willing to do what many Obama supporter's are not: Criticize policies he finds offensive.

    I don't think flyerhawk understands (5.00 / 2) (#85)
    by hairspray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 01:45:43 PM EST
    those differences.  Too subtle for Obama fanatics when aprising a critique of their rock star, reminding me of my children saying "You were meaner to me than to her."

    Oh... and I'm a member of a big club (5.00 / 5) (#82)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:55:53 PM EST
    People who respect Krugman because he speaks plainly and uses intelligent reasoning instead of simply supporting or dismissing people based on personality issues. I was disappointed to see how many people who admired Krugman when they agreed with him on Bush's economic ideas (or lack thereof) but now castigate him, even though he is applying the same critical analysis, for not supporting their candidate. Krugman hasn't changed.

    When I read the part of 1992 or 1980... (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by blogtopus on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:55:31 AM EST
    I must confess the first thing I thought was: Do we have a Bill Clinton or a Jimmy Carter?

    At this point I think its the rhetoric of Bill Clinton with the effectiveness of Jimmy Carter. And perhaps the election results of George McGovern. Yay.

    1992. (5.00 / 3) (#51)
    by lilburro on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:04:40 AM EST
    imo the opportunity for ideological change was in Hillary's saying healthcare was a human right.  How do you get ideological change if you won't be ideological?  And without better Congressional leadership, I don't know what we can accomplish.

    All in all, I'm thankful for Krugman.  He is the one voice in the NYTimes that takes bloggers seriously and engages with them.

    "Just be another Bill Clinton".. (4.87 / 8) (#1)
    by Aqua Blue on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 07:48:57 AM EST
    We should be so lucky.  The attacks on Bill Clinton are just beyond my comprehension.

    I LOVE the Clintons.  Bill Clinton gave us an 8 year delay of the Republican/Corporate take over of the country.

    And, will the masses EVER realize what oost they have paid for the Ronald Reagan years...the deregulation of EVERYTHING!    Reagan set us up to be ripped off by Corporate greed.

    Looks to me like the Propaganda Machine is winning out.    

    Democratic leaders are idiots (5.00 / 14) (#9)
    by BernieO on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:13:25 AM EST
    Republicans run on Reagan's record and it has worked for them, even though Reagan ballooned the deficit and increased income inequality. Republicans are still misleading the public into thinking that tax cuts pay for themselves (note how they say "raise revenues" while conveniently leaving out the part that tax cuts never raise enough to make up what is lost, hence the increased deficits.)

    In contrast Clinton raised taxes on the affluent and the economy boomed while producing a surplus. Democrats ignore this amazing achievement. Liberals berated Clinton for his welfare reform and still ignore the fact that record millions moved out of poverty due to his policies like increasing the earned income tax credit, job training, increased access to health and child care. NO OTHER PRESIDENT HAS HAD SUCH AN IMPRESSIVE RECORD ON THE ECONOMY!!! Not only that but Clinton gave Democrats the ammunition to kill off the Republicans' supply-side economics once and for all. So what do they do? They sit back while other - Obama included - trash Clinton's legacy. If someone can explain this kind of stupidity I would like to hear it. (Ditto for their staying above the fray while Gore and Kerry got trashed.)

    Bill Clinton was the first truly successful Democratic president in years. His approval ratings after Monica and impeachment were sky high - except, of course, with the inside-the-beltway crowd. To throw this legacy away is sheer lunacy. It is up to those of us who recognize this to fight back. This has nothing to do with whether we support Obama, it is about the future of the party. Clinton proved that centrist approaches can achieve progressive goals more successfully than traditional liberal approaches have. Maybe that is why he is despised?


    Great post! (5.00 / 3) (#74)
    by stefystef on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:17:06 PM EST
    You hit all the points right about Bill Clinton's achievements and the Democratic Party's refusal to use Clinton's successes to highlight the importance of the Democratic Party.  William Jefferson Clinton is the only Democratic President in the last 28 years and I dare say after November 4th, he still will be in the only Democratic President in the last 3 decades.  

    Instead, they have vilified Bill, made him to be a racist and devalue Clinton's successes.  This I will never EVER forgive the DNC and Howard Dean for.  They sacrificed the man who put the Democratic Party back on the map for this up-start out of Chicago.  Shame on them...SHAME ON THEM!

    Bill Clinton doesn't need to campaign for Obama.  Let the "new" coalition handle it, if they think they can.  Bill should go back to his private endeavors and let the smart-ass upstarters try their hand at this politics business.

    That's right Bill, they can kiss your ass!


    And What An Odd Thing for Krugman (5.00 / 4) (#83)
    by flashman on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 01:02:18 PM EST
    to say Obama may "ONLY" be another Bill Clinton.  Only???  Then, Krugman goes on to enumerate some of Bill Clinton's more important accomplishments; economic growth, better vet health care, better FIMA, and so on.  How is this not change?  Taken in the light that he came after 12 years or Republican neglect, I think his presidency represents the most positive change of the decade.  How is it that Krugman argues otherwise?

    All the hype about Ronald Reagan being the big 'change' president is media invention, IMO.  The admiration for Obama in the media very much remindes me of the Reagan days.  I've been calling Obama the new teflon candidate for months.  He'll be the media darling no matter what happens.


    I hope the story about Bill Clinton... (5.00 / 9) (#30)
    by Shainzona on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:33:44 AM EST
    telling people that Obama will have to "kiss his ass" to get him to "campaign" for him is corrct.

    And even if the Big Dawd does say anything good about the empty suit I will always know that he's holding his nose while he's saying it.


    Heh (5.00 / 8) (#33)
    by Steve M on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:50:18 AM EST
    I confess, I hope it's true as well.

    Bill Clinton has let an awful lot of crap roll off his back over the years, but I don't think he's required to sit there and take accusations of racism from his own party.


    No kidding (5.00 / 2) (#58)
    by JavaCityPal on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:35:58 AM EST
    especially something that is so incredibly untrue, and considered a character flaw that has few things that would be worse.

    Obama made a huge mistake not running on the value of a democratic administration with the Clinton years as that period all voters can remember. It was as though he believed only Hillary was entitled to use the democratic years of the 90's to her benefit.

    And, one thing is for sure...this election is more comparative to both 1980 & 1992 than it will ever be to 1960.


    I don't put much faith (5.00 / 2) (#35)
    by standingup on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:52:30 AM EST
    in anything the media is reporting on the tension between Bill Clinton and Obama.  The press is more interested in creating stories than reporting on the truth.  

    The media needs the Clintons (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by JavaCityPal on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:38:16 AM EST
    to keep the country entertained.

    They didn't consider the consequences of a ratings dive when Hillary was no longer a focal point of the race.


    I'm sorry (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by vigkat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:10:27 AM EST
    And I know it's soooo wrong, but that story made me laugh with delight.  I like to see a bit of consistency now and then.  Bill is consistent.  When he starts doing what he knows he has to do, I, like you, will know that he is not speaking from the heart.

    I guess I'm in the wrong . . . (5.00 / 2) (#64)
    by nycstray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:59:26 AM EST
    I laughed also  :) And it seemed like an appropriate comment considering . . . .

    Is there a link for that? (none / 0) (#97)
    by sj on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 04:20:32 PM EST
    I took a quick look and came up empty...

    Clintonian Triangulation (1.00 / 2) (#2)
    by Jgarza on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 07:52:34 AM EST
    If my memory serves me correctly Clinton ran to the left of where he governed.  The triangulation didn't really begin untill after the '94 defeats.  Running on universal health care, tax increased and ending DADT, was pretty solid liberal.

    Second the things that supposedly mean Obama is running to the right, are FISA, healthcare mandates, and the 2nd amendment.

    FISA, I think is more  a libertarian issue, and i think while it is a dumb move, which he should be criticized for, Fisa is hardly a defining issue.  Mandates are a silly way of defining someone to the left or right.  2nd amendment stuff has been a non issue for modern liberals for a while.

    What i find strange is, neither you nor Paul Krugman are specific about what issues he should be further to the left on.  I suspect if you were they would all be pretty mild variances on some issues.  

    Lastly judging from the ending:

    This election presents a historic opportunity to make, as Digby put it, "serious ideological change that has deep political meaning." I for one do not believe Bill Clinton would have squandered the opportunity.

    I would guess main point of this post is to stir up hurt feeling from the primary and give commenters some justification to repost the same personal attacks on Obama they do in everyone of your posts.

    Your memory does not serve you well (5.00 / 0) (#4)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 07:59:36 AM EST
    Let me remind you of three words - Ricky Ray Rector.

    BTW (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:03:13 AM EST
    Your loast line of your comment earns you a permamnet suspension from my threads.

    Do not post in my threads ever again. You may of course post in the threads of Jeralyn and TChris' posts.

    Any further comments from you in MY POSTS will be deleted.


    Your last line did it for me. (5.00 / 9) (#8)
    by BarnBabe on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:09:14 AM EST
    I would guess main point of this post is to stir up hurt feeling from the primary and give commenters some justification to repost the same personal attacks on Obama they do in everyone of your posts.
    No, BTD did not stir up the feelings at all. But, your last line reminded me of just one of the reasons I am not in favor of Obama. His supporters who just never know when to leave it alone.  As to the post, I did not find it offensive at all. What Bill or Ron did is just a bit of interesting history. What Obama will do is still an unknown.

    you sound like a Bushie (5.00 / 6) (#14)
    by Josey on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:29:32 AM EST
    >>>>give commenters some justification to repost the same personal attacks on Obama they do in everyone of your posts.

    that doesn't know the difference in a personal attack and valid criticism of a presumptive nominee that is high on hype and low on substance.


    Obama has divided the Party (5.00 / 3) (#19)
    by Josey on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:39:56 AM EST
    Black vs White, old vs young, denigrating the Clinton admin and glorifying the Reagan admin...

    And Obama's race-baiting skills and false accusations of racism, learned at the feet of Rev. Wright, were so successful that it's highly likely he'd continue it in the WH.



    It's comments like this (3.66 / 3) (#39)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:21:44 AM EST
    that make realize that some people live in a different universe than I do.

    The only way Obama "divided" the Party was by being black.  

    To suggest that he "glorified" Reagan is nothing more than a lie.  One offhand comment that was somewhat positive about Reagan's efficacy is glorifying him?

    Can you give examples of Obama's race-baiting?  Not some TV talking head or political surrogate.  Examples of Obama race-baiting?

    Seems to me that you are the one race-baiting.


    Political surrogates count (5.00 / 3) (#49)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:59:14 AM EST
    As evidenced by the many attacks on Clinton for things that her supporter's and surrogates said (in her case, there was no distinction made - as opposed to Obama, who seemed to be held responsible for neither). Obama tolerated what his supporter's and surrogates said about the Clintons, refused to deny it, and even supported it in many ways.

    The accusations of race-baiting by anybody who was critical of Obama (I even heard people say that Clinton was race-baiting in the 3:00 commercial, and her comments on MLK/Johnson were widely considered race-baiting - I don't understand either) were essential to his win. He allowed his surrogates to divide the nation. Period. His supporter's may not be willing to see that, but it was real.  

    As for his favorable comments on Reagan, I have a hard time believing that the people who supported Obama would have justified such comments from Clinton.

    Oh, and I'm pretty sure that accusing fellow board members of race-baiting is not appropriate here. Of course, I don't make the decisions, and they sometimes tolerate negatives in otherwise reasonable comments. But the general rule is that insulting other posters is not accepted. If you feel that the comment is inappropriate you can flag it, and if a moderator agrees with you they will remove it.


    Surrogates count (none / 0) (#56)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:16:56 AM EST
    Only to those people that really want to get upset about the other guy.  

    Obama is not responsible for the actions of his supporters anymore than Hillary or McCain is.  

    No one considered Hillary's comments about MLK/Johnson race-baiting.  They considered them insulting towards MLK.  

    I have no idea why people would accuse Bill Clinton of race baiting in the 3:00 a.m. commercial.  I didn't even know he was in it.


    You are living in an alternate political reality (5.00 / 3) (#66)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:05:58 PM EST
    If a candidate refuses to refute offensive words from someone who speaks for their campaign, then they presumably support those words. Bill Clinton wasn't in the 3:00 am commercial. I was referring to Hillary Clinton, the "Clinton" most in my mind of late. I admit it does get a bit confusing, but it seems logical that since she was the candidate then she was the Clinton to whom I referred.

    Here are some of the more ridiculous claims about the "race baiting strategy". It all got lumped together.


    I misread your comment (none / 0) (#69)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:09:50 PM EST
    I thought you mentioned Bill.

    Honestly your claims of anguish over the race baiting charges are no different to me than condemnations of Barack Obama as a sexist because of some contrived interpretation of some quote of his.

    Glad to see you are able to move though.


    I have not condemned Obama as sexist (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:27:59 PM EST
    I haven't actually seen many people do that. I think that a lot of people think that Clinton supporter's blame Obama for the sexism because Clinton supporter's believe that, overall, sexism negatively effected Clinton, and (separately) that Obama is a bit of a misogynist, as evidenced by bits and pieces of offensive behavior. I have yet to hear a Clinton supporter flat out say that Obama ran a sexist campaign, although I've heard a lot of Obama supporter's say that we believe that.

    Obama trashed the Clinton admin (5.00 / 3) (#50)
    by Josey on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:01:03 AM EST
    numerous times - reflecting his "beat the Beetch!" campaign theme.
    Surely you got the 4-page memo that instructs Obamabots how to twist Clinton remarks as "racist." Of course, as usual, Obama claimed it didn't come from "the" campaign, but he clearly allowed the precepts to continue.

    Interesting that the AP wasn't accused of racism for their exit poll results that white working class wasn't voting for Obama. But when Hillary cited the data, she was deemed a racist.

    Same with the Johnson/King faux outrage by Obamabots playing the Race Card.

    Same with the RFK faux outrage by Obamabots claiming Hillary wanted Obama assassinated.

    Obama divided the Party by screaming "racism" where none existed and playing the victim and Race Card where no victimization existed.


    I'm still waiting (none / 0) (#55)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:13:52 AM EST
    for you examples of Obama race-baiting.

    You said that Obama is a race-baiter.  Prove it.


    read the 4-page memo (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Josey on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:45:52 AM EST
    his SC campaign distributed that he denies came from the campaign.

    Obama is scary! when people can't even make a historical statement without being accused of racism.
    Did you participate in that?


    So (none / 0) (#67)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:07:23 PM EST
    your "proof" that Obama is a race-baiter is a an allegedly leaked memo from his campaign staff?

    Truly a biting indictment of his character.

    I don't even know what you are asking me about regarding participation.


    IIRC, Russert had the memo at (5.00 / 1) (#79)
    by nycstray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:31:35 PM EST
    one of the debates. It wasn't leaked, it was distributed, was my understanding . . .

    Here is my favorite (5.00 / 3) (#68)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:09:14 PM EST
    "But those tears also have to be analyzed. They have to be looked at very, very carefully in light of Katrina, in light of other things that Mrs. Clinton did not cry for, particularly as we head to South Carolina where 45% of African-Americans who participate in the Democratic contest, and they see real hope in Barack Obama."

    Jesse Jackon Jr., Obama's campaign co-chair


    Jesse Jackson is not Barack Obama (none / 0) (#71)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:12:17 PM EST
    anymore than Geraldine Ferraro is Hillary Clinton.

    He is his campaign co-chair (5.00 / 4) (#76)
    by dianem on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:22:12 PM EST
    And Obama didn't say a word, and Jackson stayed co-chair after this incredibly offensive statement that combined race-baiting and sexism. Of course Obama doesn't say these kinds of things himself - that's what surrogates are for - to say things that the candidate can't say. That's why we hold candidates accountable for things that their official surrogates say (and sometimes even things that their unofficial surrogates say, if they are truly egregious, or if the candidate is Hillary Clinton). Clinton publicly disagreed with Ferraro, although she (wisely) stopped short of condemning her personally. Obama repeatedly allowed his surrogates to accuse the Clinton's or race-baiting. Of course, Clinton didn't have a chorus of supporter's screaming for blood every time Obama's people suggested she was manipulating racist sentiment in order to win.

    Are you baiting me? Or snarking?


    Ferraro was immediately vilified when (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by hairspray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 02:00:43 PM EST
    what she said was deemed "inappropriate", but JJr is still around. Only Stepahnie Powers, who called Hillary a monster, was ousted.  The Clinton campaign immediately dumped anyone who made racist remarks and they sent memos out to that effect.  Not so the Obama camp.

    an absurd lie - shouldn't these be deleted? (none / 0) (#72)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:16:02 PM EST
    Show us ONE TIME that Obama EVER screamed, or even calmly charged "racism" toward Hillary. ONCE.

    I googled Sean Wilentz "Race Man" (none / 0) (#90)
    by hairspray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 02:20:51 PM EST
    and found the whole story on the race baiting of Obama campaign. Sean Wilentz writes for the New Republic and there was much review of his story when it first appeared, because Wilentz is considered a competent clear thinking writer by the political community.  I know that because I saw this piece reviewed by a number of blogs and print publications.  The people who supported Obama trashed the story as you would expect.

    Wilentz is a (none / 0) (#99)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 04:34:21 PM EST
    long time supporter of Bill and Hillary, and someone also long criticized for his over-the-top defenses of the two. I read that article and found it to be absurd crap.

    Everything you disagree with is (none / 0) (#108)
    by hairspray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:42:03 PM EST
    suddenly because "they support someone else."  Your critical thinking skills are beyond belief.  

    He made more than one "offhand comment" (5.00 / 2) (#75)
    by nycstray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:20:12 PM EST
    regarding Reagan. You may want to check what he said about Foreign Policy re Reagan . . .

    What? (5.00 / 5) (#20)
    by pie on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:44:51 AM EST
    I would guess main point of this post is to stir up hurt feeling from the primary...

    Whose feelings were "hurt" during the primary?  There was anger, indignation, and a lot of faux outrage, but there was also excitment, pride and in the end, disappointment for half the dem voters because of what could have been.

    Your candidate won.  Why can't you move on?  It's up to Obama to win over the voters.  You're certainly not doing it.


    As for "being more left on" (none / 0) (#5)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 08:01:36 AM EST
    Krugman wants him more left on the issues. Other than his FISA cowardice, I have no problem at all with Obama's policy positions as provided on his internet site.

    You did not read my post nor my excerpt of my previous post clearly.

    I will not go around the mulberry bush with you on this again.


    So SICK of that phrase "hurt feeling" (none / 0) (#100)
    by splashy on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 05:36:19 PM EST
    As though we are children, rather than adults that have real issues with Obama.

    It really burns me! That is what males have been saying to females for a long time, to diminish what we think, as though it isn't "rational" or well thought out. It's just "feelings" which in the male mind are to be dismissed with the old "they'll get over it and we can go on being the creeps we always have been, and get away with it!" It's arrogant, acting superior, and is a major put down.

    Really burns me.


    So why do people feel (none / 0) (#24)
    by Edgar08 on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 09:06:40 AM EST
    Democrats can handle the Executive office today?

    The difference between 1992 and 1980 (none / 0) (#41)
    by flyerhawk on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 10:29:46 AM EST
    is more a question of competency in office.

    I believe that Bill Clinton really wanted to push forward a Liberal policy in the White House.   He wanted to push for universal health care and greater minority rights.

    But early stumbles left him climbing up the ropes.  First there was the don't ask don't tell policy that managed to anger the military and made gays feel betrayed.   Then it was the aborted universal health care plan in which he placed an unelected unappointed person in charge of one of the biggest changes in domestic policy since the New Deal.

    This is the one thing that tempers my desire to see Obama bring in a new cadre of fresh faces into the White House.  Yes I want new thinking types like Sam Power advising him.  But I also want to see some old guard guys who have been through this before.  Someone like John Podesta would serve Obama well, I believe.

    The first 100 days of a Presidency are vital.  They define the agenda.  Obama will need guys that know how to avoid obvious pitfalls before he falls in them.

    Well I dont much like Krugman anymore (none / 0) (#77)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:24:23 PM EST
    but I know he earned some big-time cred around here for all his anti-Obama harangues.

    So I'm suspecting there are either a lot of heads exploding around here, or some artful dodging!

    First Krugman seems to understand completely (as all rational people did) what Obama was talking about when he mentioned Reagan. Krugman seems to agree with Obama that Reagan was a transformational president, and he also seems to accept that Obama aspires to be that consequential for our side. I have had to try to patiently explain this point a dozen times to people who seemed determined to simply spread the lie that Obama was praising Reaganism.

    Krugman is worried that Obama is failing to actually live up to his aspirations though (don't worry Paul), and fears he may end up with a presidency JUST LIKE BILLS!


    Barack Obama . . . (5.00 / 4) (#80)
    by nycstray on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:39:25 PM EST
    is no Bill Clinton.

    on that, my friend (5.00 / 1) (#81)
    by tben on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 12:52:59 PM EST
    we agree.

    Thankfully (none / 0) (#92)
    by Veracitor on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 02:45:44 PM EST

    You are an idiot (none / 0) (#102)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 06:39:59 PM EST
    Seriously. you really are.

    I hjabve had enough of you.

    You are banned from my threads.

    you can post in Jeralyn of TChris' but not mine.


    Isn't it more like 1988? (none / 0) (#89)
    by MarkL on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 02:19:45 PM EST
    Even though Reagan was popular, GHWB was NOT the person who was the obvious successor to his legacy---remember how he criticized "voodoo economics". He was seen as a lightweight, and was a clear underdog to Dukakis, the academic turned politician who was promising to bring new things to Washington.
    Obama is a patronizing academician in the mold of a Dukakis, except when he is faux-preaching in his prepared speeches. Obama is more similar to Dukakis than to Carter Reagan or Clinton.

    No question (none / 0) (#91)
    by Veracitor on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 02:45:10 PM EST
    Obama's presidency will be a paradigm change for the better.  We'll make up most of the ground we lost since 1980, and more.

    Right (5.00 / 3) (#95)
    by Steve M on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 03:05:53 PM EST
    No question about it.  The country is ripe for a paradigm shift, and Obama is ready, willing and able to make it happen, as demonstrated by the fact that he's saving all his paradigm-shifting rhetoric until after the election so he won't lose.

    If the country were really ready for a paradigm shift, you wouldn't think there would be such a pressing need to run to the center, would you? No, you wouldn't.  Either the country's not ready, or Obama just isn't the guy to take us there.


    The country is more than ready (none / 0) (#96)
    by lmv on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 03:47:31 PM EST
    Reagan (for worse, I agree with Krugman) DID change the country.  He made "liberal" a bad word.  He vilified feminists and affirmative action.  Basically, the country was sick of the Dems and Reagan took advantage.

    This cycle, the country is sick of the Repubs and Bush's "conservative" values.  This was the cycle to stand up and tout Dem values.  Americans would have been receptive.  Obama won't do it.

    Krugman supports UHC because he believes it is the only way to shore up the middle class.  

    We'll get UHC one day.  Either we'll have the political will to do it (HRC) or so many Americans will need Medicaid it will be a fait accompli.  


    You can't get Medicaid In my state (none / 0) (#103)
    by splashy on Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 07:15:36 PM EST
    Unless you are under the age of 18, over 65, or disabled, no matter how poor you are. So that is a huge group that would still be left out without UHC.

    I had the discussion with a doctor that actually practices in my state that didn't believe me. He was astonished to find out such a huge group was just left out to suffer and die.

    I imagine "eventually" will be when I am about to turn 65 and eligible for Medicare, in another 10 years, after Obama or McCain leaves office, and perhaps someone like Clinton - or Clinton herself - gets in. Obama doesn't seem to be into bringing it about, and McCain certainly will not.

    It's pathetic how we have had it jerked away once again, despite the will of the people.