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August 04, 2010


Axel Edgren

The republican strategy is simple - exploit every democrat weakness while using every available republican in congress to create sluggishness and malaise in the 2008-2010 period.

This will get more republicans into congress in 2010, which will make democrats even more degenerate while allowing for even more deadlocking and insanity in congress, which will make voters even more unhappy in the 2010-2012 period.

Because the US media is one of the most despicable and unintelligent institutions in the entire world, it will ask "Why are everyone so unhappy under Obama, and why is everything so partisan and inefficient under Obama?"

It's disastrous for America, but it is a strategy that works, so why should the republicans not go for it? If they can't control the nation, they will hurt it until they are allowed to control it again.

But yeah, you are screwed. I'm a European, BTW, so I'm not going to gloat.


Yeah, how unrealistic and shrill of progressives to expect a democratic president to respect civil rights, to not spy on his citizens, and to stop holding people indefinitely, without trial, all over the world. How dare they expect the president of the United States to operate within the laws and traditions of the United States!

I'll support Obama because he's better than anything that might replace him, but I'm getting real tired of hearing about how I should just shutup about the wrong he's done because it'll hurt "the party". We're Democrats dammit; we're supposed to be the ones who put principle before politics. If those people with threatened seats thought the same instead of cowering near pseudo-conservatism, if they'd make a decent, impassioned argument for liberalism instead of just scratching their heads and laughing nervously when presented with Tea Party insanity, then maybe their voters wouldn't consider them despicable cowards unworthy of their votes in the first place.

Berkeley Choate

My experience is things are rarely as bad as the naysayers make them out to be. And while it is far too simplistic to try to fit a cogent arguement into this format, the author makes good points. I see a country consumed with infighting, insecure and unfocused on what's really important. That said, to lay our problems at the feet of any one group, political orientation or party is absurd. We are all part of the problem, and the sooner we lay our animosities aside and adopt a results-oriented pragmatism, the better off we will be.



And who's job might it be to at least even bother to propose an industrial policy and a sane energy policy?

Oh yes that's right I forgot the President is never responsible for anything, how dare we foster unrealistic expectations of doing anything that isn't a direct corporate giveaway to Wall Street or the pharmaceutical industry onto the President. How unfair.


Reader from Portland

You'd have to be pretty willfully ignorant of the principles of geopolitics to predict such a sudden fall for the U.S.

George Friedman's THE NEXT 100 YEARS isn't perfect, but it's a fine rebuttal to this thinly supported pessimism.


The intransigence of the GOP is legion, as is the weakness and division of the Democrats; denying it is courting irrationality. However, to create an equivalence between the ideological diversity of one party making it indecisive and the venality of another making it dangerous to the prosperity and security of our country rings false in my ears.

I suspect the doom and gloom facing us will not manifest; our lead is too great. To become less than a superpower our fall would be too far and we'd take the rest of the world with us, especially in a world that is deeply interconnected.

Axel Edgren

Tom, the republicans are much more focused on hindering Obama than the democrats were on hindering W.

Add to that the fact that republicans are more homogeneous and ideologically predictable.

It's a good thing the Blue dogs will suffer in the midterms.


It would be interesting to see some real sources for some of these numbers. 12th in college grads? 90% of engineers in Asia? Does that include India? Lots of people in India and China; some of that would be due to simple population as those countries advance, and have nothing to do with an absolute US decline.

And could we stop it with the goodbye to manufacturing meme? We make LOTS of stuff, and the value of said stuff has gone up over time. We just do with with a lot fewer people.


Let me second what Julian wrote. We need leaders, we got cowards.

If we measure our power by military might, we will be a superpower for decades to come, but if we measure power by quality of life, employment, and standard of living for the non-wealthy, I think we are sliding toward second rate power status right now, and that is based on business trips to Europe. Their middle class is vibrant and stable, ours is shrinking by the month. Worse, in countries like France and Denmark, the middle class feels empowered and have a voice in their government. In the U.S. without exception our middle class feels defeated and powerless (because we are).

I don't envy Obama, but I also don't see much concern in his administration for the middle class, which is having it's meager wealth drained by high unemployment, lower salaries, and skyrocketing health care costs. I don't see how we will ever earn it back.

Tennessee catfish

We comprise 5% of the world's population. Maybe, just maybe, we should be a second-rate power. Maybe our expenditures on our military should be 5-10% of the world total instead of 50%. We might be a much better country if we were not an empire.


Catfish, the problem isn't being a second-rate power (in some ways we already are); the problem is being a second-rate power and acting like a first-rate one.

Marc McKenzie

To Julian and Trakker: Understand--and sympathize--with both of you, but I have to turn my anger on where it belongs--the Republicans.

It's their policies and the eight years of GW Bush's bulls**t policies that got us here (Thanks again, Ralph...). Yes, some--but not all--Democrats went along with it, but it started with the GOP.

And you know what? We MUST be realistic in our thinking. If you seriously believe that President Obama could fix everything in less than two years, well...that's wishful thinking. And screaming, "But FDR did it in 100 Days in the New Deal!!" is a serious, fatal misreading of history.

In truth, it took Roosevelt close to four years--and maybe a bit longer--to get the New Deal up to speed. Don't forget that he also had to deal with numerous problems that cropped up, and vocal criticism of some (such as Huey Long) who claimed that he was no better than Hoover and wasn't a "real" Progressive.

Note also that Roosevelt didn't have Fox News, 24/7 Cable jawboners, and Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh. Then again, Father Coughlin was just as bad as these two, maybe worse.

What PM is saying--what he was trying to say at Buzzflash--is that this is going to take time. We are rolling down the proverbial cliff, and the guy who had the wheel before cut the brake lines and smashed up the car. The guy now behind the wheel has to try and fix the brakes and turn around while taking left-rights from the maniac in the passenger seat.

He doesn't need the backseat driver pounding him in the back.

Criticize Obama all you want in a constructive manner. That's fine and it is recommended--hell, even Obama said it himself. But if you just want to take your ball and go home in a huff, remember that an uptick in Repubs in Congress will throw sand in the wheels that are slowly turning. And God help us if Palin strides into the White House in 2013 all because we wanted to practice ideological purity.

You don't like the choice of holding your nose and voting for--gasp! wheeze!--more Democrats? And allowing Blue Dogs to stay? Deal with it. As far as I'm concerned, I've embraced pragmatism and sent ideology to trash dump. Personally, Repubs must not be allowed to hold power in ANY branch of government for the next 30+ years until they learn the value of governing like competent adults.

And I'm sticking with Obama. Right now, he's the best we've got.

Sorry for the length of the rant, but I had to get this off my chest.


We are already a second-rate power absent our military might. We're a politically correct, ridiculously self-flagellating morally bankrupt society. This has largely been brought on by the left, but which was carried on by Bush and the Republicans when in office. Our media, outside Fox (which is stupidly pro-American, too pro-business and insanely flag-waving/interventionist) is a despicably unfair politically-correct, left-leaning mob run by 60s radical leftists who see fit to portray every issue through their prism or rose-colored glasses. And blind support of whatever Democrat is in office goes hand in hand with their viewpoints, almost exclusively.
We lost our way decades ago, and this great experiment is going to get ugly quickly (it already has).

John s

Never expected to see so many Blue Dog comments on a a financial article. But a republican = a democrat. Who voted for the Iraqi war? Who voted for the first bailout? Who voted for the second bailout? Who didn't close Guantanamo? Who didn't end the Iraqi war? Who duo led the number of troops in Afghanistan?

The elite rules the same way the British ruled their colonies, divide and rule. Divide the americans I to rep and dem, and do the same thing. Mark my words, Gua tango is not closing, we are not leaving Iraq nor Afghanistan, and we will invade Iran soon.

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