I gotta admit, I have no desire to watch Obama speak tonight. Not because I don’t like him, but because I’m just feeling sort of fatalistic today and not really sure anything can be done to solve this crisis that has been developing for 3-4 decades. Plus, he’s not crazy, and will give a sober, rational speech, so there won’t be that train wreck in the waiting effect that you get with the GOP. Besides, we already know what is going to happen.
Obama will propose something moderate and completely reasonable, but we all know it is not going to be enough to get us out of this mess, and that assumes we can even get it past the teahadist House (we won’t- they are in full on tilt mode). He’ll get flayed alive by the usual suspects on the left, Paul Krugman will be mainlining thorazine by the end of the speech, and someone at FDL will call for a primary or impeachment.
The right, of course, will ignore everything he said and scream about the program costing too much, and trumpet deregulation, offshore drilling, claim Obama is over his head while making teleprompter jokes, and then go back to wailing for tax cuts and screaming Obama is doing nothing about jobs.
The media will spend the night focusing on how many Republicans refused to clap, or comparing Obama to Perry, insinuating that Perry is manly and Obama is a pussy, Maureen Down will write another column calling him a wimp, and we’ll have a rogues gallery of rightwing dickheads from Ed Rollins to Mark Halperin to whomever the Politico shits up spewing bullshit on every channel. Each network will be sure to include one milquetoast corporatist Democrat like Evan Bayh for balance, because all the left’s effective communicators are busy sending dick pics to random women on twitter or lunching at AIPAC. Glenn Kessler will find one minor mistake in grammar and give him four pinnochios.
In the long term, assuming a plan gets through the House (it won’t), then we get to go through our usual drama of the blue dogs from Red States (Manchin, Nelson, Landrieu, McCaskill, etc.), Lieberman just so he can continue to be the world’s preeminent douchenozzle, and some others I am sure I am missing. They’ll cockblock it on the Senate side, moaning about the program being a deficit buster while conveniently ignoring the fact that each one of them represents a welfare state sucking at the federal teat. Finally, at the 11th hour, Snowe and Collins will swoop in and offer tax cuts for the ultra-rich as a sweetener and they will support it. At this point, Bernie Sanders or whatever progressive hero of the moment will claim he can’t support anything with tax cuts for the rich in it. This will bring things to a standstill for a couple more weeks until another shitty jobs report comes out, and the Senate, acting in the fierce urgency of when-the-fuck-ever will pass some piece of shit that is too small, unfocussed, and does nothing other than provide the left with another opportunity to fracture and start flinging shit at each other. Republicans will have spent the entire time using procedural tricks to slow things down while having Frank Luntz work on the framing of the issue so that by the time it is about to hit the President’s desk, they will already have a cute name, the talking points will be distributed, and we’ll all be hearing about the new “Porkulus” or “Obamacare” or whatever the fuck childish name they come up with. In three months time, when employment hasn’t picked up because we are actually in the same god damned depression we’ve been in since 2007, Rick Perry can claim that Keynesian ideology has once again been disproven. Because everyone hates the bill, Friedman, Brooks, and other members of the Centrist jihad will claim this as proof that the bill is great.
Alternately, Obama might propose an extension of the payroll tax cut, at which point I get to read 500 progressive posts on how this is Obama’s secret plan to enable the catfood commission to gut social security. Regardless, no matter what happens, if the market drops tomorrow, it will be Obama’s fault.
So fuck it. Why should I put myself through this again? I’m tapping out. Someone else can deal with this clusterfuck, because I’ll be watching NFL. I’ve already told you what is going to happen- use this post as a check list (I’ll be pleasantly surprised if I am wrong). I honestly don’t know why anyone wants Obama’s job.
*** Update ***
Two other points. What would I do if I were Obama? Other than resigning and spending the rest of my life writing a book every couple of years, living a pretty damned good life, watching my children grow up, and telling everyone in the country to eat a bag of salted dicks, fix this mess yourselves? I’d go all in. Nothing he is going to propose tonight is going to get passed without being watered down to nothing. The House and Senate dysfunction will see to it. So go for it. Use the speech to propose everything you can. Massive infrastructure spending, extension of unemployment benefits that will be automatically renewed every six months until unemployment is under 7%, a public investment back to free up capital for small business, you name it. GO BIG. Hell, propose putting a million Americans to work building that god damned wall around Mexico the Republicans are so fired up about. Just go nuts and use the event to frame the Republicans as do-nothing. And if they start their usual bullshit in the stands with the ‘You Lie” crap, go off. Break out a metaphorical STICK and beat some pudgy wingnut with a southern drawl and a shit eating grin in the audience with it. Call them liars and frauds and point out the bullshit they have been peddling for decades is what got us here. If someone so much as mentions inflation or the bond market, take your shoe off and throw it at them. If you miss, throw the other one. That’s what I would do.
Point two. I will put up a post with a livestream from the White House so you all can watch without having to hear Luke Russert’s deep godddamned thoughts before and after.