The old adage is that in a democracy a people get the government they deserve. Hopefully this wont be true this time around with Obama's election since its clear that a lot of well meaning and sincere people, many in need, and fearful of a possible depression voted those fears and understandably so. It was as complete a repudiation of the Republican Party, their policies and conservatism as you could get and after the worst administration in history and watching the Republicans run the country into the ground with Bush presiding over and in many ways causing four catastrophic events, Obama became the beneficiary of a country fed up with the Republicans. But will people get what they think they voted for or more of the same?
It was a year when the conventional wisdom said the Democrats could run Mickey Mouse and win but Obama's candidacy made the choices a lot harder for people who weren't voting their fears though its hard to blame working people in Michigan and Ohio for doing just that.
Many,understandably, voted to punish the Republicans and no one can say they didn't deserve it. The bad news is that the government is now in the hands of Pelosi, Reid and Obama by default, three people who have already proved they wont have a clue as to what to do with it. On the other hand no one expects them to be worse than the Republicans. Or will they?
When George Bush became President in 2000 many of us couldn't believe there were people so stupid as to actually vote for someone so obviously over his head and unqualified to be President. It wasn't enough to say the Supreme Court gave Bush the Presidency. It really shouldn't have been close and we said it was hard to believe people could be that stupid to elect someone so clearly unqualified.
After fulfilling our expectations and having 4 years of the most inept incompetent Presidency in history it seemed almost impossible to think people would be stupid enough to re-elect him. But people were and they did. And what followed was another four disastrous years.
Now its the Democrats turn as someone as unqualified, unprepared and inadequate as Bush has been elected but for completely different reasons because Obama has problems to deal with that Bush never had. Bush caused most of the problems, but that aside, they are still there and need solving and based on his track record Obama is not going to solve them.
Unfortunately, add to his lack of qualification that Obama is more dishonest,underhanded,and untrustworthy than any candidate in 40 years and while the repudiation of the Republicans for the last 8 years is well deserved, another four years of ineptitude is not deserved but that is entirely what people who voted for better is likely to get.
For those hoping Obama is actually going to do something to solve the problems facing the country,there is the likelihood that, like Bush he will make them worse. And the reason for that likelihood is that Obama has never done anything or accomplished anything or solved any problems in the past nor has he shown the slightest inclination to wanting to do so which is why he voted "present" over a hundred times in the Illinois state legislature and had a record of doing nothing in the US Senate. So why should anything be different now?
If Obama follows his pattern it will be to do nothing which is the safe thing to do. After all if you do nothing then you cant get blamed for much. Obama promised to start bringing the troops home from Iraq within 60 days after taking office. I'll give odds that never happens. Obama didn't spend 6 years in the Illinois state senate doing absolutely nothing because he is a dynamic problem solver. What he is and what he has made himself into is a symbol. Nothing more.
So will Obama turn the current economic crisis into a depression? Hard to say. Maybe. Will he make it better? Very doubtful. Like George W. Bush, he has never once ever shown he has the skill or the knowledge the intuition or problem solving skills or the conceptual ability to grasp a problem and solve it. What's even worse he's never even shown he has the desire to even try.
For many, his lack of problem solving won't matter. Like Reagan in the 80's he has been a symbol for people who need symbols instead of anything real. Or are superficial enough to believe that symbols will solve their problems.The primary symbol of course is that he is black but that is not why most people voted for him.They voted as much against the Republicans and holding them accountable for the last 8 years as anything else. And working people voted for him because they are concerned about losing their jobs and their homes and the economy is the number one issue in the country.
The media of course is going to milk the race thing for all its worth. That's who and what they are.They can always be depended on to make irrelevant things important and reduce important things to irrelevance especially if they think it will make buck. I'm sure if he could, Wolf Blitzer would start doing the news in blackface.
But it's not going to be any consolation after 8 years of Republican ineptitude and incompetence that if we have more of the same the face on the incompetence will be black instead of white. If things get worse, the fact that it will have a black face will mean nothing to the workers in Ohio or Michigan who lose their jobs.
Obama promised change because he knew how to press the buttons of people who wanted just that and made himself a symbol for people who wanted a symbol. But Obama has lied, reneged and broken every promise he ever made. That is indisputable. His path to success has been to do nothing or as little as possible and his goals have always been simply to get elected to the next office. But he has inherited a set of problems that need action. His history is that he will do little or nothing about them. That is what he has been in the past and taking action is just not who he is because its not who he's ever been.
Will the next four years simply be like the last four only with a Democratic Party label? Its not going to take long to find out. We'll know as soon as the first promise is broken and that might be with regards to Iraq. It also might be with the economy if things gets worse
Its been a tough year for choices. The Republicans deserved to be punished for their gross negligence and incompetence of the last 8 years.On the other side the Democratic congress hasn't exactly covered itself in glory and the Democratic candidate for President has shown the character of a shady used car salesman and zero problem solving or legislative skills. Yes he is black but I don't think the amount of melanin in his skin, the chemical that makes a black person dark and kept their ancestors from getting skin cancer from the sun's ultra violet rays, is going to help him much if the economy gets worse.
The country is just about finished with 8 years of an unqualified President. Its not going to take long to find out if there is going to be four more years of the same. A lot of people think there will be. Obama's speeches and ability to manipulate the easily manipulated won't help him now.
As Obama joked to a reporter a few years ago at one of his book signings, "Maybe it's time for me to actually go do something". He never did. And it could be because he doesnt know how. Let's hope for the sake of the people who voted for him that the real change is that he is the one who changes. If he doesn't, it could be a long four years for the people who expected more.