Not only is the OFA outfit still alive and kicking and flush with cash, it has pivoted from re-election mode to mass suicide pact mode. It's not enough that you re-elected the Manchurian Candidate to another four years of stealth Republican governance. He expects you to continue knocking on doors for him, to convince your friends and family to support his Grand Bargain of trillions of dollars of cuts to programs that benefit your friends and family.
Become an official Eyass* for Obama! Take the Fiscal Fledge Pledge. Spread those little deficit hawk wings of yours and fly like an eagle in the name of economic patriotism and allegiance to Your President. Strike while the afterglow of pretend victory is still hot. Spread the word far and wide: OFA now officially stands for Obama For Austerity.
|Work Till You're 70.....Awwwwk.|
Delving even further down in my spam bucket, I discovered I had missed the chance to participate in a survey of Obama supporters about "where we go from here." Whatever. Because, although the campaign committee failed to publish any alleged results of this alleged survey, the president seems convinced he has a popular mandate to gut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, food stamps and heating assistance! And it is up to us to spread the Cat Food Gospel!
Of course, the email does not say this in so many words. It is simply full of pablum and cartoonish numbered graphics. The never-ending Obama campaign is devoted to "keeping you informed about how the President is fighting for you so you can continue to talk to your friends, family, and neighbors. So here's the deal".....
"There's a lot at stake. With your help we'll continue to move this country forward. Spread the word on Facebook and Twitter."
Hmm. Nowhere does he give the exact details of his "concrete plan", but based on what he said during the campaign. the so-called balance is heavily weighted toward cuts -- at least three times the amount of what might be gained from revenue. It's a concrete plan, all right. Kind of like what happened to Jimmy Hoffa. One day the New Deal is here, the next it's gone.
He still persists in the notion that cutting the deficit will grow the economy, too. President Obama does not want to believe in the Keynesian warning that austerity during a recession will only make the recession worse. You worry about the debt during boom-times, not during hard times.
You have to ask yourself why this "grassroots" deficit hawk campaign was officially launched right at the start of the Thanksgiving weekend, that most popular of all times for stealth news dumps. The New York Times, as far as I can tell, is not touching it. They were, predictably enough, live-blogging about the Black Friday flocks of consumerists. But in the U.K., where the overindulgence holiday is not celebrated, The Guardian has a piece on it.
The Guardian does offer an explanation of sorts for the OFA email campaign, which is actually sort of heartening: Obama is desperate!!!
It (the grassroots effort) comes after reports of no progress by the Republican and Democratic teams left behind in Congress over the Thanksgiving holiday period to start work on a compromise package.
They (Democrats) have left staff members from their teams to begin work on the framework of a deal, but the initial negotiations have not been fruitful. Republicans and Democrats have accused one another just setting out their standard party policies, with little in the way of compromise being offered.According to The Guardian, House Speaker John Boehner has insisted that Obamacare, the president's signature achievement of a grand giveaway to private insurance predators, be put on the table, and he won't budge on the Bush tax cut extensions for millionaires. So, because there is simply no way that Obama can dismantle the New Deal without Republican collusion, he is seeking to hypnotize the starry-eyed masses into doing it for him. Be partners in your own destruction, proles. Show Barry you still have his back, even if it kills you.
So far, the only true grassroots supporters that Obama has are his millionaire CEO puppet-master rentier class at Third Way and their corporate media shills. As Paul Krugman laid out in a recent blogpost, CNBC has transformed itself into Austerity Broadcasting Central. The CBS Nightly News, too, has been running a feel-good Thanksgiving week propaganda campaign of how we will all die later unless we agree to die sooner. It featured such paragons of virtue as unindicted Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, who offered the following cultured pearls of wisdom:
You're going to have to undoubtedly do something to lower people's expectations. The entitlements, and what people think that they're going to get, because it's not going to–they're not going to get it....And you can go back and you can look at the history of these things, and Social Security wasn't devised to be a system that supported you for a 30-year retirement after a 25-year career. So there will be certain things that the retirement age has to be changed, maybe some of the benefits have to be affected, maybe some of the inflation adjustments have to be revised.You're not going to get it. Get it, proles? This multimillionaire banker wanker and master of mile-a-minute Doublespeak thinks that working slobs retire at 40, and that your laziness is costing him your money. The sad part is that our so-called journalistic class seeks him out, panders to him and never once thinks of challenging his outright lies. But as interviewer Scott Pelley breathlessly informs the viewers, the Blankfein interview was a coup of sorts, a rare "get" in broadcast parlance, because Masters of the Universe rarely deign to pontificate in public. We should all be so honored to have a plutocrat of his stature telling us that suffering is good for us, and even better for the likes of him.
Get their backs, for the privilege of getting stabbed in yours. It's the Class War, and so far they are winning. They remain confidently convinced that the rest of us are assholes. But whether their flocks of potential eyasses will actually take flight only to commit hara kiri for the plutocratic cause remains to be seen.
|Barry & His Blankie|
*Eyasses: raptor birds, such as hawks and falcons, still in that vulnerable downy stage.