I Am Of Two Minds About Barack Obama
I’m of two minds about Barack Obama
(Above–Many minds of various kinds.)
In one line of thought, I’m so relieved Mr. Obama has won the election. I feel President-elect Obama ran a disciplined campaign, and is now conducting a tight-ship transition. I know he may be as liberal a candidate ever to have to won the White House. I have some faith that he is at heart a good person. I am hopeful for good leadership in these tough economic times.
Yet I also hold another view that Mr. Obama is a politician who will use people to his own ends. I fear he is yet another Democrat who will use liberals and take them for granted.
At a deeper level, Mr. Obama will remain constrained, if that is the right word to use in a democracy, by the realities of American political life. He is also constrained by the realities of who holds power in America.
As a liberal I don’t need everything I hope for from the Obama administration. What I am looking for is a respectful hearing for liberals, and for policies that make sense for the times we live in. I’d say that the times we live in require a role for government in the economy, universal health care, and protection of the environment.
One thing that I’m paying attention to as we fight the recession is, when it is over, will the same people who helped cause the trouble still command of so much of our national wealth?
Another thing is will Mr. Obama ever speak frankly to the American public about the need to live within our paychecks, while at the same time serving as a real advocate for working people?
Change will be about shifts in who pulls the strings in our nation, and will involve truthful talk about our future.
I trust Mr. Obama for the moment. But as Ronald Reagan said about arms control agreements with the Soviet Union–“Trust but verify.”