Saturday, December 20, 2014

Obama swinging for the fences. . .

Obama going out in style. Many things necessary, he's getting to them now.

We've got the basis of a decent health care system, something worthy of this nation, and it will survive — be improved and built upon — unless Republicans succeed in pulling it down.

 He's recognized Cuba. C'mon, about time. This too will hold and be worthy of the twenty-first century unless know-nothings of the right succeed in blocking it.

All of the above applies to immigration, as well. And gay rights, of course.

Remember when Obama dozed through that second debate with Romney, then kicked Mitt's butt in their last exchange? The same pattern — rope a dope — might be on view here. Gridlock with Republicans sent Obama into a near vegetative state. Or seemed to. Then he absorbs the damage and comes out swinging.

And foreign policy: If — and I emphasize that "if" — Obama can contain ISIS, as may be happening, while negating Iran's yen for nuclear weapons by securing a treaty that bars or seriously delays any possibility, these will be foreign policy coups of historic dimensions.

It hasn't happened yet. Maybe it won't. But if it does, forget the Nobel Peace Prize he got just for not being GW Bush (earner of this century's first Really Dumb & Stupid War Prize). Give Obama a prize in math — topological algebra, fractal anthropology, transcendental number theory, what have you.

Does that mean I jettison my criticisms? No. Obama seems to be holding onto a dream of an Iraqi nation — Kurds, Shias, Sunnis — that Bush, Cheney et al broke beyond repair. Saddam Hussein was the tyrant glue (Tyrant Glue — a brand name) of that Iraqi nation. Saddam gone now. Penny for the old monster.

(I remember we couldn't even hang him right. Made a mess even of that, which should have been simple, definitive and clean. But no, he hung there, and re-hung there, and protested and argued. I doubt a tyrant has ever been overthrown worse, or with worse consequences.)

Back to Obama: he took his damn time doing what he's doing now. He might have stepped up sooner. That would been very energizing, populist, galvanizing.

OK, this guy prefers to be a counter-puncher.

That's his style.

But that he is doing what he's doing now restores my hope that to attach some hope to politics is not utterly ridiculous.

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