We are close to anarchy…word to the wise.

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In the media today we have so many opinions as to what to do about a “broken America” that one has to wonder, are all these commentors watching the same series of events?  One thing is for sure, the American people are out of patience with both private (corporate) and public (elected and appointed) government.

Let’s start off with the New York Times and Bob Herbert’s Op Ed piece entitled They Still Don’t Get It in which he tells us that poverty in the suburbs in increasing exponentially, Black unemployment is as high right now as it was in the Great Depression of the 1930s and both political parties are more or less stymied as to what they should do about it.

In another Op Ed piece Gail Collins wrote a column entitled The Lady and the Arlen in which Representative Michele Bachman of the GOP made Arlen Specter a newly found Democratic Senator lose his cool twice during a television interview with her extreme politics originating in the Tea Bag wing of the GOP.  Bipartisonship from the Obama camp has made no real gains for the American people.  That much is obvious.

Things are not getting better. They are getting worse.

In yet another Op Ed by Charles Blow entitled Mobs Rule we learn just how fickle we can all be relative to our love affairs with politicians.  They last as long as a snowball in July in downtown Miami.  Here is an excerpt:

“Unfortunately, many now see Barack Obama as a left-leaning version of George W. Bush: just another out-of-touch emperor. It seems as if Obama and the Democrats made the mistake of believing that a heart once won was forever won, that people would be patient, and that the mob would accept their reasoning for lack of results.

They were wrong. The mob is fickle. And it’s back with a vengeance.

While the left slept, the right saw a void and leapt in. They feted the fearful to a steady stream of dread and circuses, and now the pendulum of enthusiasm has swung in the other direction.”

Oh so very true.  The people are out for blood here.  If you are an American politician, you must make no mistake about that.

In an editorial from the Times entitled Here’s How to Help the editorial board points out that if more Americans lose their homes as a result of this anemic economy, the President’s day is pretty much over.  It must be a priority.  Here is an excerpt:

“Unfortunately, advance word of coming changes to the antiforeclosure effort are not encouraging.

When the effort was announced nearly a year ago, the administration said it would help as many as nine million at-risk families keep their homes by the end of 2012 — by lower payments through loan modifications, mainly lower interest rates, or by refinancing loans for borrowers who have little or no equity.

Yet recent tallies show that through 2009, only 66,465 loans had been successfully modified, and through last November, 155,700 loans had been refinanced. That’s abysmal. An estimated 2.4 million borrowers are expected to lose their homes this year alone because of joblessness, negative equity and, in many cases, unaffordability as teaser rates expire on adjustable mortgages.

It would take 100,000 successful modifications a month, starting now, to significantly counter the threat that so many foreclosures would pose to the economy, according to estimates by Moody’s Economy.com.”

This is not government at its best.

Relative to our “war” in Af-Pak there is an editorial entitled Pakistan Hesitates, Again in which the editorial board complains that Pakistan is not aggressive enough in fighting the Afghan Taliban, ie. they do not see them as a threat but as a buffer between India’s influence and violence in Pakistan itself.

About two or three months ago the New York Times editorial board took the paper to the right and threw in with the Obama Administration in support of these so called “wars against terror”.  Previous to this time, the Times was anti-war in a big way. 

There was never any explanation that was in any way forthcoming  as to why the Times changed horses in mid-stream. They just woke up one morning and decided that they were for these wars after all.  It was an abrupt turn to the right with no explanation to the readers.

Now, the Obama Administration and all of its sycophantic media outlets that threw down with it relative to these ridiculous wars against foreign populations that are ultra-fundamentalist Muslims in their outlook is sinking in the mud of messy reality.  The lesson to be learned is bitter and here it is:

The world is not America.  Other countries have their own agendas and most of the time they do not jive with our agenda.  They do what they want and what they see as supportive of their agenda and not what we want and what is supportive of our agenda.

Like it or not, the Pakistanis apparently see the Afghan Taliban as the only thing that stands between them and too much dangerous Indian influence in their country.  They will no more go to war with the Afghan Taliban than we will go to war with the Toronto Blue Jays.  It just ain’t going to happen.

We can fuss and fume and do all we want.  But they see the Afghan Taliban as occupying a critical space in their defense perimeter against India.  I guess we must have missed this little factoid over at the Pentagon when we were constructing these “wars” of liberation in western Asia.  Just a minor detail I guess.  Anyone could have missed it.

Sheesh!

Today’s Washington Post is running an article entitled Campaign finance ruling leaves Democrats with few options in which the Democratic Party is now pretty much at a loss to counter what will be a tsunami of big money political support for the right in this year’s election cycle.

Actually, I am not sure that Big Money advertising is all that important in this day and age of tweeter and internet advertising and back channel communications on personal hand held devices. 

All that is really necessary to win any campaign anywhere is that the Democratic Party block captains and precinct bosses do what their predecessors of the the 1930s and 1940s were apt to do; get a listing of every eligible voter on the block and in the precinct and personally visit his/her home asking for his/her vote.

Big Money cannot buy that kind of personal touch.  All Big Money can do is buy television and advertising time.  That is no match for the candidate himself or his proxy sitting in your living room asking for your vote.

The Democrats can counter Big Money with this door to door approach any day of the week but it takes time and discipline and fervor that neither Party has been able to muster in decades.  Essentially this is how the unions grew so powerful in the 1930s through the 1960s.  It was the personal touch in working class neighborhoods at every door that made the shop steward and the local union chapter president household names in any working class family.

Those days must return, but it takes discipline and Party unity to hold that together in a way that has not been seen in the USA since before the Viet Nam War.  Do the Democrats have what it takes to get that discipline back?  They had better find it if they don’t.  It is the only way to counter Big Money…that is, one must use Big Discipline.

As an addenda to the above notations on Big Money I note that the Associated Press has run a story today entitled Obama blasts Supreme Court campaign finance ruling .  I guess so.  It is time to be a Democrat again Mr. President.  Your stint as a Republican has hurt a lot of people and emboldened the Patrician class to over reach. Again.

I just thought you should know.

CWO3 Tom Barnes, USCG (Ret.)

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