See... yet again... I said this the day after he got elected, and I'll keep saying it again, why we ever thought that Obama was going to be a liberal president is just beyond logic and quite frankly the facts. We deluded ourselves into believing that. If we're upset that he's not meeting our expectations, quite frankly it's because our expectations were way off the mark!!
As I wrote then, and I'm still writing now, every platform that he stood on was a centrist one. No Gay marriage, continuing the bailouts, continuing the wars, etc... Even healthcare reform! Let's be real, a liberal solution to healthcare would be a Universal Healthcare system. Even the House bill which so far is the most left leaning, barely holds onto a "Public Option". Have we completely lost our perspective. "Optional" is SO far from "Universal"!!!
Thinking that Obama was gonna' be like a Kennedy or a Dennis Kucinich is just plain delusional.
The irony for me in all of this is that I like to consider myself a centrist, (leaning to the left for sure though). But having a centrist in the White House with the stubborn obstructionist Right Wing in the minority, we're not getting any centrist policies. Even the Right Wing has convinced themselves and their constituents that he is way liberal!!! So now his liberal policies (actually centrist policies) are under fire and are going to get modified to the right. The lesson for me being that if I want centrist policies I have to vote for real far left liberals. Imagine if Obama had strongly insisted upon Universal Healthcare. Might then the compromise be a "Public Option"???
Anyway, sorry to go on a rant, but those on the left side of center really need to understand what they're dealing with. It's really easy to equate Democrat with Liberal, Republican with Conservative, but the bottom line is that there are many, many shades of Blue and Red. Just 'cause a guy calls himself a Democrat doesn't mean he's not purple. If he's telling you he's purple, if all the facts say that he's purple, don't turn around and get all upset because he's not blue enough!!! DUH!
Well, I agree, L56, that many people erroneously read Obama as a "liberal" during the 2008 campaign, even though his positions were generally not so liberal, and as a result of those expectations, many people are angry and disappointed now. Personally, I didn't vote for Obama because I thought he was a liberal, or even a centrist, for that matter. I voted for him because I felt that he was a focused, grounded, intelligent adult, an item we haven't seen in the White House in decades, and I thought him flexible and practical enough to assess situations on the merits, rather than ideology. Pretty much, I still think this about Obama. I still think he has great leadership qualities.
But as the title of my post, spinning off of Maryanne Williamson's article, implies, I do not feel that any political leader can salvage America's devolution at this point.
What our country needs at this point is an "intervention."
Just as Carl Jung realized, and revealed in his correspondence with Bill Wilson who led the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous, that some problems were untreatable through psychoanalysis alone, and required a "spiritual experience," America right now, it is clear, desperately needs a spiritual awakening (not to be confused with anything religious, by the way, because religion is actually a microcosm of politics at its worst).
When primitive, fear-based beliefs and attitudes become entrenched, stultifying our intellects and emotional intelligence, and our empathy becomes encrusted beneath layers of anger and need and greed, no political leader, political party or even political movement will penetrate deep enough to heal the infection and disorder. None. Not liberal, conservative, centrist or tea bag, because none of these parties demonstrate any of the soul qualities, most especially not sense of oneness, needed to bring us together.
Whether the catalyst for that intervention comes in the form of more natural disasters or man-made disasters, I don't know, and where our collective bottom is remains to be seen. I am continually surprised by how low we seem determined to go as a society. The extremes we've reached in our levels of avarice, egoism and narcissism, combined with the virulent, unchecked diseases of racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia and willful ignorance boggles the mind.
And the enablers are legion.
I wish it were as simple as you describe, LOFF56. I wish it were simply a matter of voting one way or the other. But I fear that we are past that point.
America needs an intervention.