[HCCN] NYT- How Obama Saved Capitalism and Lost the Midterms-

Dick Atlee atlee at umd.edu
Thu Nov 4 08:06:13 EDT 2010

Timothy Egan wrote, On 11/3/10:
> They will whine a fierce storm, the manipulators of great wealth. A war on
> business, they will claim. Not even close. Obama saved them, and the biggest
> cost was to him.
> http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/11/02/how-obama-saved-capitalism-and-lost-the-midterms/?src=me&ref=general

I'm not sure the basic tenet of this article is correct. Mr. Egan may 
have missed the forest for the trees.

This wasn't a Presidential election.  Technically, they didn't attack 
Obama -- and that's not just a technical point.  They attacked not the 
general, but his army, leaving him in a condition much less capable of 
hurting them.  If they'd supported Democrats instead, a few of more 
Democratic Senate seats would have given him a filibuster-proof playing 

It seems to be the style now to tout all the things Obama was doing that 
should have pleased progressives.  Perhaps without the Republican 
opposition he would have done a lot more -- that's something we'll never 
know. But were one of the big bad guys in this game, the specter of that 
possibility would certainly move me to cripple him.  As their initial 
cheering of his move toward fat-cat socialism shows, these folks aren't 
interested in capitalism, per se.  They're only interested in their own 
aggrandizement and power, and once the initial smoke cleared, he posed a 
theoretical threat to that.  The Republicans they elected were only 
rhetorically against them in order to whip up a lynch mob (aka Tea Party).

The oligarchy is safe and sound, perhaps permanently so. They are 
entrenched behind their Court and the state legislatures they have 
bought to enable future gerrymandering and protect them from an 
anti-Citizens-United Constitutional amendment.  I haven't checked all 
the Secretary of State contests yet, but if they are now overwhelmingly 
Republican, with their control of voting rules and technology, Karl 
Rove's electronic manipulation of the 2004 Ohio vote will seem like 
penny-ante -- if it wasn't already present in this election under cover 
of the pre-election "Republican-wave" hype.

Perhaps Obama was functionally irrelevant to what took place on Bloody 

Dick Atlee
Southwest Harbor

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