Tuesday, January 20, 2009

God Bless The Cynics

From Obama's inauguration speech:

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them, that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long, no longer apply.

The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works, whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified.

What's terrifying/sick/troublesome is the sheer number of people worldwide completely enraptured by the Obama cult of personality. I didn't get the chance to watch during the day and the coverage tonight is just plain nauseating. I don't care if you agree with everything Obama's ever said, the idea of placing all your hopes in one political leader should be frightening. Bleh, that's all for tonight.


Blogger McMc said...

This really is such an interesting phenomenon when you think about it. On one hand you have generation after generation of African Americans looking at Obama as a beacon of hope, not for the country but for black people throughout America. Then you have a bunch of liberals who see Obama as the "anti-Bush" which alone is something to be hopeful for. Both see Obama as a representation of hope/change, but both sides might not even be on the same wavelength.

Meanwhile, the entire pop culture world has rallied around Obama and as you mentioned in your Rage Against the Machine post, the entire pop culture world has gone from anti-government/anti-establishment to anti-Republican. Doing an NBA game at work tonight, the pre-game and post-game hosts Gary Payton and Chris Webber both wore Obama t-shirts and both talked about his impact. I just looked at pictures from one of the inaugaration balls and if you didn't know any better you'd think it was an award show, with celebs like Leonardo DiCaprio and Queen Latifa introduing musical acts like Mariah Carey, Faith Hill, Sting, Stevie Wonder and others. I was watching the MTV Europe Music Awards show a month ago and actor Jared Leto was not only wearing an Obama t-shirt, but the first thing he said to the British crowd was, "Let's here it for the new president Barack Obama" and not only that, but the crowd did in fact cheer. Anywhere you look on TV, the internet, wherever, it's Obama Obama Obama.

As you said, it's pretty disturbing that so many people believe one man can be so good and such a savior. But what be more disturbing is why. Some of it is because he is the first black president, some of it is because of his human-like quality (a quality Bush had), some of it is the fact that he isn't named George Bush. I guess his "policy" factors in but the specifics of it aren't the thing people love, it's just the basics. So when you think about it, millions of people are giving this guy a heroes welcome and all the support in the world on blind faith.

The most interesting thing will be when Obama starts making decisions. Will he ever be "wrong" is what I want to see.

Until then, you really have a fascinating and horrifying reality that is the Barack Obama presidency.

4:46 AM  
Anonymous rose said...

I just wanted to share a quote with you guys. My female cousin, Jane Doe we'll call her had the following as her facebook status:

Jane Doe "is listening to Obama Speak, and for once has hope for restored peace and goodness in the human race..."

On a funny note: Obama has gone from a quasi-socialist complete dove in the dem primary, to basically hillary clinton w/ out any of his supporters so much as blinking.......except.....Hugo Chavez. hahah the lunatic socialists, islamic fundamentalists, dictators are the only ones who are like "WTF!" this is not the guy i thought he was. I dunno, I find it kinda amusing...

1:10 PM  
Blogger lonely libertarian said...

I don't remember where I read it, but someone had noted that Obama's rhetoric doesn't merely attempt to be non-partisan, but actually attempts to cast the "ideological disputes of the past" in a childish light- As If Obama and those in his administration were the adults and the rest of us should stop behaving foolishly and let the adults do the real work of saving the economy.

And Rose, your cousin (and everyone else like her) was why I just couldn't stomach to watch any of this stuff yesterday. If you're Dennis Haysbert (24's David Palmer), then by all rights you probably should be choked up. What's disturbing is all the white folks- particularly the young white folks- moved not because of a triumph unique to their cultural experiences, but because the world is now somehow a better place ... I don't know. It just doesn't make sense and it's far too much leader worship for my liking.

One other comment- what's up with all this, "we want to give Obama our support" nonsense? He's the President of the United States and he has a job to do- whether or not or how much we support him isn't going to change anything. Whatever your politics you should want him to make good decisions- if you're of the view that Presidents should lead irregardless of public opinion, than our support and what we have to say is irrelevant. And if you're of the view that Presidents should take notice of public opinion, than maybe you should have an opinion beyond the blind support that's being thrown out.

4:02 PM  
Anonymous rose said...

You're absolutely right that Obama tries to act above the childishness of the past. The thing that makes that all the more ridiculous and irrelevant is that we haven't had a strong ideologue since Reagan. Clinton reformed welfare, wasn't a regulator and negotiated NAFTA. Bush expanded medicare entitlements and his treasury spawned the largest government intervention into markets possibly in US history.

It's not like we've had a socialist and a libertarian in office in the past 16 years, so his rhetoric is not only stupid, but irrelevant.

9:31 AM  

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