Conventions discussed

In an interesting piece on the conventions the Economist notes that the Republicans want wish for President Obama to answer “a question so weighty that he cannot use his charm, personal popularity or powers of lofty rhetoric to escape from it, namely: is America better off today than it was four years ago, when he took office?”. This question is very convienent for the GOP to ask as it negates their own destructive, corrosive and immoral neoliberalism whilel clinging unrelentingly to their failed “trickle down” theory. Oddly enough, Romney seems to have embraced these failed policies (and attempting to buck history) by picking Paul Ryan as his running mate. Of course the GOP win the argumement if the question is framed the way they want. America, is not economically a better place after four years despite what Obama has said.

The magazine piece rightly notes that the Democratic convention “left questions unanswered about how Mr Obama, in a second term, might tackle America’s looming crisis of debt and public spending. Indeed, too many of the governors, senators, congressmen and union bosses invited to speak seemed to see no crisis at all, as they hailed the importance of continued government spending (or ‘investment’) on everything from new infrastructure to preserving middle-class jobs”.

The piece goes on to mention the Democratic convention, noting “several speakers, among them a former president, Bill Clinton, the First Lady, Michelle Obama, and a young Hispanic mayor from Texas, Julián Castro, accused today’s Republicans of misrepresenting the American dream, and even their party’s own traditions. Speaker after speaker reached into their country’s mythic past to paint a communitarian vision of American success”. There is nothing “mythic” about the communitarian values in America. Indeed, they are alive and well. To say that Americans are solely individualists is not true and ahistorical. It comments on President Clinton’s speech, who “enjoys high approval ratings from a public that remembers his two terms as a time of prosperity, solemnly painted the present-day Republican Party as captured by a hate-filled far-right and living in an ‘alternative universe’ in which all those who have achieved success are ‘completely self-made’. This he suggested, ignored a centrist case for business and government working together to promote growth and ‘broadly share prosperity'”. Yet while Clinton’s two terms were a success his policies were perhaps not quite so successful being much of the same rampant neoliberalism that the GOP are espousing now. Clinton undid the 1933 Glass Steagall Act leading to less regulation and more chaos later on.

The article concludes “for victory, Mr Obama must also win over a separate group: independents who backed him in 2008, but who are now gravely disappointed by the gap between his promises to transform Washington politics, and a reality that has seen him look like a prisoner of congressional dysfunction and obstructionism”. However, it is not a popular thing to say but few should have believed that Obama would change Washington politics forever so perhaps independents should look at themselves.


One Response to “Conventions discussed”

  1. A lack of understanding? « Order and Tradition Says:

    […] not either understand or help national security. He opens noting that with the close of the GOP and Democrat conventions “we now have a clear idea of the difference between the two parties on foreign […]

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