Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Obama and the "Center"

In the past few days, Obama has been reminding liberals that he hasn't changed or is running to the center. This is true. His stance on the war hasn't really changed. He left himself wiggle room in debates by not saying the troops would be out by 2013 and saying he he will work to get the troops out in 16 months- almost a year and a half. However, Iraqi leaders might make the point moot if they kick the U.S. out by the end of the year like their elected officials have been saying.

What Obama and others need to remember is: Obama wasn't really Progressives first choice to begin with. If you thought that Obama was going to be progressive on health care or be a radical on other touchy issues, then you need to check why you call yourself a progressive.

Progressives have known for sometime that Obama isn't really the "most liberal Senator" as conservatives would like to tag him. He's pretty left-wing but he's not Sen. Russ Feingold or coming up with the same ideas as Rep. Waxman or Rep. Wexler.

Progressives, however, have made his campaign a success. They rejected Clinton as a nominee of the old guard much like they did with Humphrey and Muskie in 1972. And Obama does have some very progressive planks in his platform. He is very squarely for LGBT issues, Labor, Native Americans and the environment.  

Those items excite Progressives into action.

And those are the ideas that put him ahead for the nomination and put him ahead in national polls.

The rumble the press heard from the left last week was a lot of progressives wondering if their issues were going on the back burner. That's what Arianna Huffington's posts were about last week.

And why can't progressives can't be critical when a campaign says stuff we don't like?

Case in Point:
What happens when you have the former Health Secretary for the present administration and a co-chair for Obama's campaign talk about health care?
Total agreement! Ignore all the problems we have with the health care system here and how well other countries health care systems work. All our system needs is a little tweaking.

That's right. All you need to do is regulate tobacco more, make insurance forms simpler and require phys. ed. in schools. That's what Tommy Thompson and Tom Daschle came up with at a lecture on the subject. 

OK,that's a start. But that's the best these two knuckle heads can come up with at a hour-long lecture about health care. Both ruled out single-payer health care out of hand.

That's what was said at the 6th Annual Templeton Lecture.

You can listen for yourself here:

Skip ahead to about minute 23. That's where the BS starts flying.

We The People Stories - 6th Annual Templeton Lecture: Health Care, Choice or Mandate?

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