The Washington Post is the latest paper to do a liberal primal scream over the failure of Obama to destroy capitalism and enact a full transition to socialism in his first year in office. They find multiple people and acts to blame, but topping the list is . . . wait for it, . . . Republican obstructionism. Who could have guessed that the party holding a minority in the House and with too few seats in the Senate to filibuster could be the cause of Obama's epic failure in 2009? Coming in second for WaPo's opprobrium was Harry Reid and disloyal Senate Democrats:
For House Democrats, who enjoy a 256 to 178 majority, the main obstacle in 2009 was not Republicans, but the Senate. Even with 60 Democrats, Reid was unable to advance the climate-change and student loan bills that the House approved last summer. The Senate regulatory-reform bill is still in the banking committee.
One might think that with this admission, the authors would realize that it exposes the lie of their headline theory of Republican obstructionism. But it seems that one of the great achievements of the modern far left is their ability to hold a belief in the truth of two or more diametricaly opposed thoughts at the same time.
No matter. According to Wapo, the problem was that Republicans unreasonably refused to take any part in Obama's "remaking of America." Obama's proposals amounted to a vast expansion of government, massive increases in deficit spending, and new taxes, whether directly or indirectly on every American. Yet WaPo seems mystefied why Republicans should object to any of that on substantive grounds. Their alternative take on it is that "[s]ome of the bills . . . were perhaps too unwieldy for voters to digest and too easy for GOP opponents to demagogue." Of course, that's it. There's nothing wrong with any of the legislation. It is just Republicans taking partisan advantage of an electorate that is too stupid to understand the great things Obama was doing for America. The arrogance and hubris of the far left knows no bounds.
WaPo also seems to have a dim memory of the facts reported in their paper over the past year. From the very start - indeed, within three days of taking office, Obama told Republicans who attempted to engage and have input into bipartisan legislation - specifically the Stimulus - that "I won." So much for bipartisanship. Facts are such inconveinient things for the left - unless you are very selective about them of course.
The left, from Obama through Reid and Pelosi, felt no need to engage in bipartisanship other than for some minimal political cover. And indeed, when one looks at the internal problems that Democrats had in 2009, the fact is that Pelosi and Reid treated most Congressional Democrats the same way they treated Republicans. Radical legislation was drafted behind their closed doors, only to be unleashed on Republicans and many Democrats alike vitrually on the eve on which they were to be voted. It was not merely bipartisanship that Obama and the Democratic leadership felt no need to consider, it was deliberative democracy itself. And indeed, the reason for that is the that the legislation, from cap and trade to health care to financial regulation, was so over reaching that even moderate Democrats blinked at the degree of the radical changes proposed by Obama-Pelosi-Reid.
WaPo concludes looking at what 2010 holds in store.
Before the Massachusetts loss, the White House officials touted 2009 as the most productive legislative year in decades. Prodded before Tuesday's election whether Obama and his team would change anything about its Hill strategy, Axelrod replied, "I've thought about that and I don't see how."
Lawmakers expect Obama to set a course for 2010 on Wednesday, in his State of the Union speech. Democrats want the focus on one issue: jobs. But on Friday in Ohio, given a few days to digest Brown's upset, Obama defended and promoted the same long to-do list he brought with him to office.
"I didn't run for president to turn away from these challenges," he said. "I didn't run for president to kick them down the road. I ran for president to confront them -- once and for all."
It would seem that Obama and his administration have as tenuous a grasp on reality as do the WaPo authors - though Democrats seeking reelection in 2010 seem to be grasping it well enough. I think it safe to say that we will be hearing primal screams from the left for at least the next few years. No matter to me, at least, as I find them oddly comforting.