Question dear reader: Why has the word “stimulus” wrongfully been made a bad word today? That is because the Republicans have won the war of creating definitions!
The issue is not merely laws passed but the definitions of problems in the public’s mind. Laws passed are simply the results of the prior war being waged on the psychological front. Lose the war on defining the issues and the underlying assumptions and you loose the war!
Latter in this post I list some of the definitions that the Republicans have internalized into our society and which we must counter act.
President Obama gave a fired up speech to the Democratic Convention but it is kind three and one half years late. In this era where corporate money goes unchallenged and the corporate news media is running amok we need a president who fully uses the bully pulpit. President Obama is an almost complete failure in this regard.
“Stimulus” Is A Bad Word Today: Why?
There is a game of psychological warfare being played in America today and the Republicans are winning. The membership of Congress and even the laws it passes are a reflection of this underlying battle.
On a recent episode of MSNBC’s “Up With Chris Hayes“, Rep. Jerrold Nadler mentioned in passing, that we Democrats don’t use the term “stimulus” but instead say the “American Recovery Act“! He said this is because the term “stimulus” has been given a bad definition by Republicans! (Note you may have to hit your browser’s reload button to see the video.)
Latter in the program the guests mused that President Obama has to be more of a “explainer in chief”. I agree. Furthermore I believe that is one of the reasons that we lost the House of Representatives.
I have argued in this blog that one of the most important roles of an American President is to be “Pontifex Maximus” of the nation! Technically the term means bridge builder but it was used by the papacy as to the role of the pope to “define and answer issues”.
An American President cannot force us to accept his answers. But the focus of the nation will get bound up in what the president defines as the issues or questions. This power to “define” also effects the “underlying assumptions” that take place in the American electorate and frequently below surface awareness.
Using the bully pulpit and being an “active definer” is an important role of an American president.
That is unless the President prefers to be a Carl Rogers style non-directive “facilitator”. Carl Rogers was a clinical psychologist who founded an approach to therapy that is also used in some management situations. It is called the “person centered approach”. The problem is Barrack Obama could have found this approach helpful when he was a community organizer but the “person centered approach” is not valuable in an era when corporations want to define themselves as persons! It also assumes that all are acting for the common good. No we are dealing with Republicans!
That is the kinder definition of Barrack Obama and how he has dealt with his use of the bully pulpit.
My other definition of Barrack Obama is:
Playing make believe liberal inside the monied confines of the corporate sandbox of his donors! Besides being a mealy mouth wimp.
I have a some questions for my fellow progressives. In particular to those who still like Barrack Obama.
- Do you really believe we can ever have “change we can believe in” if we have a president who does not utilize the bully pulpit to define the issues facing our nation today?
- If the issue is “how best can we lower the deficit while not scaring our social betters to taking their money and investing overseas”, do you really believe we can ever have progressive laws passed? I guess the idea of legally forbidding foreign investments unless in our national interest never occurred to Obama!
- If we don’t have a President who will use the entire weight of his office to push for a constitutional amendment to separate corporation and state along with public funding of elections, do you really believe we can break the corporate gripe on both parties?
Republicans Are Winning At “Defining Issues”
If the Republicans succeed at making the definitions below then the battles will be fought on their landscape! This has simply not sunk into Obama’s testosterone challenged mentality!
The Republicans have successfully defined:
- “Keynesian Economics” and the concept of a “stimulus” as “euro-socialism”. Rep. Nadler mentioned this in the video above which is the reason they refer to the stimulus by the formal law that was passed. By the way I like West European Social Democrats!
- The news media as being liberal. Are you kidding?
- “Compensation” is entirely based on merit in the corporate world. Do you want to measure an individual’s level of contribution to society? Then look at his or her’s bank account!
- “Deficit Spending” is an unacceptable evil.
- “Regulations” as the enemy of personal freedom! Thus we can enjoy soon the “freedom” of Wall Street destroying our jobs, pensions and economy as our polar ice caps melt and our jobs are off shored while the 1% sing the the new hymn of the cut and run capitalists. What is that hymn you ask? Why the “Globalization Internationale“! Arise ye wretched who live from dividend check to dividend check while the moochers attack the wretched producers!
- The “recent economic crash” to be defined as the result of moochers who bought houses with the federal government helping them! The very concept of banks over leveraging is beyond the attention span of most Americans to begin with and our President has done nothing to keep the public’s attention focused on this problem. But why would he when he did not push for any prosecutions of the banksters who caused this problem. Also Obama’s advisers are a “who is whos” of the banksters!
- “Hedge Funds” are a concept that can put an insomniac to sleep so therefore don’t focus on them or DEFINE their role in the crash. So sleep America! Both Romney and Obama want you to sleep…sleep…SLEEP! Let the casino game and “to big to fail” go on.
- “Social Contract Rights” are defined as “entitlements” while the 1% who are the “producers” are burdened to give us moochers things like pensions, medical benefits and job security.
Oh please Atlas don’t shrug!
We 99% will give up our pensions, job security and far to high employee compensations. We middle class Americans must come to know our place and serve our social betters!
Yes this is the brave new world of Mitt Romney and the the world that Barrack Obama will fight if he first gets clearance from his sponsors at Goldman Sachs!
Why Obama Is A Failure
Stop making excuses for President Obama. Sure the Republicans fought him at every turn.
- I don’t care if Barrack Obama was a total failure on the legislative front! I would still support him.
- I would not care if Barrack Obama failed on the psychological front in defining issues!
My problem with President Obama is that he did not fight at all!
WE NEVER HAD A STIMULUS TO START WITH. EVEN WHEN OBAMA HAD A DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS! NOW THE PUBLIC BELIEVES A STIMULUS MAY NOT WORK!
The public believes we tried Keynesian economics and it failed. This is where Obama has really failed us. We gave more money to AIG then we paid for infrastructure repair. Stop making excuses for this wimp!
A QUESTION OF VALUES
President Obama valued being perceived as a centrist rather than being a fighter and taking the battle to the public over the heads of Congress. Well look at the fruits of that set of values! Where are the jobs Mr. President? Stop making excuses for Barrack Obama!
President Obama has abdicated his role as “pontifex maximus” and did not use the bully pulpit to educate the American people concerning the lessons of history from the depression! Now look at the results! We have a poor recovery and Americans are starting to believe that Keynesian Economics is untrue.
Americans Like Action Figures
Americans do not like wimps. It is against our own self image!
That is why if a right winger comes on strong they will elect him because any action is better than no action in their minds.
The Republicans and the Tea Party in particular have been the “issue definers”. That is why we lost the House in 2010 and why Obama is a failure even if he should win re-election.
Imagine the further damage Obama can do if re-elected.
He will continue his celebration of the testosterone free political life style and make a “grand compromise” with the Republicans!
In an era where “regulations” are defined as evil, Obama has stated he will consider “tort reform“! My God the one method citizens have to redress the excess of corporate power in this era of corporate permissiveness! Yet Obama toys with taking this away! Obama will make the young feel that political involvement does not work. Keynesian economics and even universal health care will be proven failures in the public’s eyes even though we never had the a stimulus and we never had a public option to keep costs down.
I just cannot wait till Obama gets re-elected so we can compromise on every achievement since FDR.
Oh yes this is “Change We Can Believe In”!
If Obama looses due to a Green Party surge then the message is clear.
We Progressives do have testosterone and we can be a counter weight to the Tea Party. While having Romney in office is not desirable it is not the end of the world. Without a Democrat in the White House then Congressional Democrats can be free to act as Progressives. They will not be subject to “Obama trickle down testosterone deficiency syndrome“!
Besides we still have the patriots in the Occupy Wall Street Movement to serve as a reform movement and the seed for an American Social Democratic Party!
That is why we need to vote for the Green Party in 2012! No more playing “make believe liberal” inside the corporate sandbox!
But wait that would be a disaster for Progressives!
We would have a President Romney. All would be lost. Wrong! You do realize that Democrats can filibuster also? Oh but then we are talking about Democrats now aren’t we.
- Democrats filibuster? Oh we don’t want to generate bad karma now do we?
- All this negativity. I need to go mediate and center on my mantra! You know the mantra…”meow…Meow…..MEOW”!
Well this Progressive does not care about his karma! Time for Progressives to bite back! If we are to win on the legislative front we must first win the game of psychological warfare!
Vote Green In 2012!
- Progressive Arise: Say NO To The Romney – Obama Drama (middle-class-populist.com)
- WHY Am I Crying? (pbenjay.wordpress.com)