We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Monday, January 4, 2010

Now I'm Really Getting Pissed Off

 By David Michael Green

Great humor by D. Green about the Obama presidency. But, of course, he is expressing in his humor the great frustration and disappointment that many people who voted for Obama feel. I swear I saw this coming a year and a half ago and felt quite conflicted. On the one hand I thought it terribly funny, but at the same time I saw the swooning and fawning over Obama's candidacy disturbing because it reflected an exceptionally naive political understanding of power in the US. Is dark skin and a gift for rhetoric all it takes to make a great President that will serve the needs of ordinary people?  I felt likewise about the positive reactions I saw from many women over Hillary's candidacy--as if the equipment one carries between one's legs makes a political difference. US elections are just spectacles choreographed much like the professional wrestling matches seen on TV. Or beauty contests to see who represent the country. Every candidate that the ruling class deigns to run in their election spectacles are carefully screened to make sure that they represent the interests of the ruling class. Yes, those people who give us never ending wars, bail out the banksters, and wreck the economy for ordinary people.