“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Thunder on the Left

Even America's liberal elites concede that Obama's Presidency is crumbling

By Nile Gardiner World Last updated: September 8th, 2010

Democrats in Congress are no longer asking themselves whether this is going to be a bad election year for them and their party. They are asking whether it is going to be a disaster. The GOP pushed deep into Democratic-held territory over the summer, to the point where the party is well within range of picking up the 39 seats it would need to take control of the House. Overall, as many as 80 House seats could be at risk, and fewer than a dozen of these are held by Republicans.

Political handicappers now say it is conceivable that the Republicans could also win the 10 seats they need to take back the Senate. Not since 1930 has the House changed hands without the Senate following suit.

Is this a piece from National Review, The Weekly Standard, The Wall Street Journal or Fox, all major conservative news outlets in the United States? No. It’s a direct quote from yesterday’s Washington Post, usually viewed by conservatives as a flagship of the liberal establishment inside the Beltway. The fact The Post is reporting that not only could Republicans sweep the House of Representatives this November, but may even take the Senate as well, is a reflection of just how far the mainstream, overwhelmingly left-of-centre US media has moved in the last month towards acknowledging the scale of the crisis facing the White House.

To its credit, The Washington Post has generally been ahead of the curve compared to its main competitors such as The New York Times in reporting President Obama’s travails, but its striking front page coverage of the “Democrats’ plight” and talk of a possible GOP Senate win (regarded as fantasy just a fortnight ago) was a bold step for a publication that is probably read in every office of the Obama administration.

The Post also ran another headline yesterday on its front page – “Republicans making gains ahead of midterm elections” – which would undoubtedly have sent a shudder through the White House. It carried a new poll commissioned jointly with ABC News, which showed public faith in Barack Obama’s leadership has fallen to an all-time low, with just 46 percent approval. The Washington Post-ABC News survey revealed high levels of public unease with President Obama’s handling of the economy, with 57 percent of Americans disapproving, and 58 percent critical of his handling of the deficit.

For most of the year, America’s political and media elites, including the Obama team itself, have touted the notion of an economic recovery (which never materialised), significantly underestimated the rise of the Tea Party movement, and questioned the notion that conservatism was sweeping America. It is only now hitting home just how close Washington is to experiencing a political revolution in November that will fundamentally change the political landscape on Capitol Hill, with huge implications for the Obama presidency. What was once a perspective confined largely to Fox News, online conservative news sites, or talk radio is now gaining ground in the liberal US print media as well – historic change is coming to America, though not quite the version promised by Barack Obama.


  1. Really Good, Long Article By Dinesh D'Souza

    who also wrote books about Christianity and life after. Good writer.

    But instead of readying us for the challenge, our President is trapped in his father's time machine. Incredibly, the U.S. is being ruled according to the dreams of a Luo tribesman of the 1950s. This philandering, inebriated African socialist, who raged against the world for denying him the realization of his anticolonial ambitions, is now setting the nation's agenda through the reincarnation of his dreams in his son. The son makes it happen, but he candidly admits he is only living out his father's dream. The invisible father provides the inspiration, and the son dutifully gets the job done. America today is governed by a ghost.

  2. He is a disaster, a tribute to foolish hope and wishful thinking.

    Suspend common sense, be seduced by words, fail to distinguish truth from platitudes, indulge in generational chauvinism and you end up with (What is the correct word for twisted sick mother fuckers?) politicians like Barack Hussein Obama.

  3. L'shanah Tovah! Happy Rosh Hashanah to our favorite Heeb barflies.

  4. Talk about a septic case of buyers remorse:

    A treacle tart of political fantasy served up by a tingle of media myth merchants to a palpitating delirium of Democrats and the usual clack of bleeding hearts.

  5. Will the departure of Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel be a plus or a minus for the next two years?

  6. Will the departure of Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel be a plus or a minus for the next two years?

    Neither. He didn't have enough clout to rebuff the Pelosi crowd while CoS so his absence will make little difference.

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

  8. blert@BC:

    The idea of bringing modernity to the natives is a supreme mistake. It won’t stick.

    KSA is a perfect example. Culturally, they are still in the 12th Century. Jihad R Us is their mindset.

    Material comforts will only confirm such a faith.

    The more educated and wealthy a muslim gets the more he climbs Maslow’s scale and MUST kill. That’s what self-actualizing means to a muslim.

    Notably, ALL of the worst threats have college educations in the West. That folly must stop ASAP.


    I confess I have a soft spot for blert. He writes in single sentence paragraphs.

    Even if you disagree with his formulation of the Muslim mindset (I abstain for now), it still leads to a policy directive for AfPak that seems to make sense: emphasize self defense and forget electricity and cell phones.

    As I write this, I am reminded of the mistakes made by the Peace Corps in 1970/80's Africa where the organization was criticized for bringing modern birth control to villages where everyone was dying of starvation and disease. Another long-term solution for a multitude of short-term hells.

    The general public seems to be rejecting the concept of long term COIN ops by the military.

  9. All right.

    I posted a comment three times that got pulled/eaten.

    It's just rude to toy with a bipolar paranoid**. Very bad manners.

    All I did was quote blert@BC.

    I mean, really.

    **I joke I joke.

  10. On the subject of Rahm Emanuel, I think he might be a huge positive for Chicago - lean mean political machine with one foot in the modern world. Could do wonders for rehabilitating the Old Chicago Dame.

  11. ...a political revolution in November that will fundamentally change the political landscape on Capitol Hill, with huge implications for the Obama presidency.

    Make that "...huge implications for incumbents."

    In another era, tar, feathers and rails would be in short supply due to excess demand.

  12. That Gerald Celente; he gives me da creeps.

    The Washington Post could be trying to sound the alarm and call the left to battle stations. Don't think the MSM is going to sit passively and let their agenda do down the tube.

    We have just under two months to the mid-term elections and nothing is "in the bag." It might look bleak for Democrats in Congress but Obama can turn his fortunes around before 2012.

  13. Dennis Miller says that his liberal friends are beginning to admit to buyers remorse re: Obama.

    Miller says his friends feel like they took Ambien and woke up in the yard, naked.

  14. Regardless of the all the bickering it's still an important holiday for Allen and WiO.

    Happy New Year.

  15. Our problem is: we're being held to 20th Century solutions by politicians that are deeply affected by entrenched interests.

    Again, let's look at the States that are doing the best; Iowa, N. Dakota, S. Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, these are the core. What are they doing.

    They're producing biofuels. They're producing "Wind power."

    They have reasonable levels of taxation (neither too high, OR too Low,) and "smallish" state governments. They have a mix of agriculture, And manufacturing. They're neither strong Democratic, or Republican.

  16. Our economy is geared such that when it's "clicking" it's running a Fifty to Sixty $ Billion Trade Deficit. Well, that is not sustainble. $200 Billion of that is with China. That is a problem, but 1) it's solvable, and 2) at least, those are products that are, usually, "somewhat" durable.

    The $300 Billion, Annually, that we're blowing on Foreign Oil is just gone. Burned up every day. That's about $3,000.00 Yr, every year, that the Average family is sending to the Saudi Royal Family, the Kuwaiti Royal Family, Hugo Chavez, Russia, and various Dictators, and Despots around the world.

    THAT is Not sustainable.

    Add to it the Trillion Dollars we've blown in Iraq, and the continuing $100 Billion we're pumping into the Persian Gulf (note, that's the "Persian" Gulf) for a continued presence in Iraq, Kuwait, Qutar, the UAE, etc and it's just slowly draining us dry.

    At $15.00 Oil this wasn't a huge problem. At $75.00 Oil we're in a Death Spiral. At $90.00 oil next Spring we're "back in recession," or mired in a "Zero Growth" tarpit.

    But, here's the "real" problem: If I can't convince even smart, well-informed people (like T, and Q) of the problem, what chance is there of reaching John, and Jane Doe?

    If Exxon was able to alibi out $147.00 Oil, A worldwide Economic Crash, and and ensuing two years of 9.5% Unemployment what Will it take?

  17. New, improved Google search is an advertising scam.
    I get a bunch of stuff related to Hawaii regardless of what I type.

    Too weird.

  18. I thot the Dakotas are benefitting from OIL, Rufus.

  19. Miller is slowly realizing Barry believes what Wright believes, Whit.
    He denied the obvious for two years, seemingly unable to accept that this cool young hipster could possibly harbor such beliefs.

  20. North Dakota certainly is, Doug. S. Dakota I'm not so sure about. Both Dakotas are hitting on ALL cylinders.

  21. From a "National" energy perspective that Bakken play gets greatly exagerrated, but from a "State" perspective it's definitely a Boon to N. Dakota.

  22. Buick's got a Beautiful little puppy coming to market that runs like a striped-assed ape, and gets, essentially, the same mileage on ethanol as on gasoline. The World's First Mass-Produced True Flexfuel.

    So where are they building this gorgeous world-beater?

    Germany, of course.

    I mean, "Damn, Sam."

  23. Jerry Brown: ‘I Have a Plan, I’ll Tell You After the Election’

    While speaking to business leaders in Silicon Valley, California Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown announces that he has a plan for the State's fiscal crisis, but he won't reveal it until after the election. At first we thought this was just a joke, but then we checked the candidate's web site. It's true, he doesn't have a plan.

  24. Best to Allen, WiO, Mat, wherever he is.

  25. Jerry Brown, sounds just like Nixon, in 1968, doug.

  26. Vatican: Quran burning 'outrageous'

    (glad they find some things are outrageous)

  27. Outrageous Album Art, T

    Saw an Econoline P/U in perfect condition last week.
    Too cool.
    Wish I'd kept my Corvair Van.

  28. Saw an Econoline P/U in perfect condition last week.
    Too cool.
    Wish I'd kept my Corvair Van.

    I saw it parked in front of a nearby school the other day.

  29. What is with all the comment deletions in the last thread?

  30. My knee does jerk, when I see US troops needlessly endangered for home grown political expediency.

  31. It's just Quirk trying to cover his tracks, Ash.

  32. Such a tiny tail (that broke pastor with a congregation of 50) wagging such a big dog!

  33. Quirk's a pretty rational guy most of the time. What tracks was he covering? hmmmm, gotta luv a bit of intrigue.

  34. Otumble is down to 41% in the new Rasmussan.
    Do I hear 39? 39? Give me a 39.

  35. I'm not quite sure but Trish seems pissed.

    He deserves it whether he deserves it or not for saying he'd vote for Otumble.

    If the muzzies attack the church, the reaction could be quite something to behold.

  36. Hundreds of millions of free advertising, Ash.
    The Mutt is easily wagged.

  37. Prosecute border sheriffs and sue states but protect the Black Panthers

    DoJ War Against Border Enforcement Continues

  38. My neighbor's daughter blew his up with an unbalanced load.

    We got a high-efficiency top-loader for one third the price.
    Frontloaders are an expensive, unreliable scam.

  39. Clinton likens Mexico cartels to insurgency

    The secretary of State's comments reflect a striking shift in administration comment about the violence and come as the U.S. weighs a large increase in aid to fight the drug gangs.

    Tobar: Where's outrage over immigrant slayings in Mexico?

  40. Ballad of the White Cells

    Today with needle they will suck
    Red blood from my right arm
    In a cup I'll piss with urine warm
    My whites are gone with any luck
    She will tap my knees with a plastic stone
    My liver she will push and heave
    She'll spy my heart with a stethoscope
    Breathe deep she'll say
    And exhale slow
    In my eyes, ears, nose and throat
    A light will shine
    And if she's kind
    Tender she'll be when I'm bent over
    And she explores my inner nether parts
    The tests return and it is grim
    The whites are still in your urine dear
    And it's very very clear
    To a specialist you go this day
    Is what she'll frightful say
    But all is never never lost
    When I am gone and far away
    My wife alone will pay the co$t
    O will any miss me when I am lost?

  41. Hillary baby is getting ready to run.

  42. Told ya so, Ruf, I agree. She'll be outta there after the November disaster, I'm betting. (I'm always wrong) But she's got a problem, as someone pointed out--she won't get one black vote, if she challenges Obowwow, and she needs those black votes.

  43. Yep, that'd be a problem, alright.

    It don't matter; she'll run anyway.

  44. She's done done all the Secretaryin she wants to do. She just took it to get her "foreign policy" creds.

    From here on out she going to be doing one of two things: bein President, or running for Prezident.

  45. Take it from the Guvnor, he's got it right. He knows his polytics.


  46. Bob, I intended not to respond to your posts anymore.

    Still, good luck to you at the doctor today.

    O will any miss me when I am lost?

    (Fucking drama queen.)


  47. From here on out she (Clinton) going to be doing one of two things: bein President, or running for Prezident.

    I am well and truly humbled. A few months ago when her name was first floated in anticipation of Obama's fall from grace, I thought no way in hell. Woman's been through too much.

    Dopey old me.

  48. Humility is the "New Normal."

  49. I have no idea as to who deleted their comments or why on the last thread. It was not done by an administrator but by the author.

  50. Well it certainly wasn't me!

    There are some jobs I won't do.

  51. WiO

    What T said above regarding the holiday, same from me.