Saturday, January 23, 2010

America in Turmoil

Now that we have 5% market drop in 3 days, we are getting everyone's attention towards the turmoil America is in after the MA Senate Election. The primacy of Politics has come back with vengeance, not necessarily in any good sense.

What has happened after MA Senate Election is, Tea Party is getting firmly established in American Political Spectrum. What started with NY-23 election, it is culminating in positive result for the Tea Party. So this is how we stand in the Political Spectrum of America today:

Left / Netroots



Tea Party

Media Outlets

Huffington Post, DailyKos, Firedoglake, MoveOn Org

New York Times

RealClearPolitics .com, National Review Online, Weekly Standard,
Wall Street Journal

Fox News, Drudge Report

Visible official / unofficial Leaders

Howard Dean

Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid

John McCain, Eric Cantor, Pense, McConnell

Sarah Palin, Glen Beck, Scott Brown(?), Ron Paul(?)


Simon Johnson, Arian Huffington

Paul Krugman, Larry Summers, Thomas Friedman

Fred Barnes, Charles Krauthammer, George Will

Rush Limbaugh

Issue 1 - Fed Chairman Bernanke Second Term



Mixed Support

Possibly Oppose

Issue 2 - Health Care Reform

Mixed Support




Issue 3 - Firing Geithner



Don't care, but politically prefer to continue this 'albatross' for Obama

Don't care, but firing that scum bag is not a bad idea

Issue 4- How to create jobs?

More liquidity via Fed (Gagnon Plan?)

More Pork, dollars for union work like Transportation, Teachers,

Do nothing. Let Big Business grow.

May be help to small business?

Issue 5 - Foreign Wars (Iraq and Afghanistan)

Get out

Stay where we are

More boots on the ground

Get out

Now it is true, that more or less this is how the arrangement has been in America. However, Tea Party is a curious phenomenon where it is a mixture of populism and conservative ideas. It is not just 'ultra conservatism'. Sarah Palin and Glen Beck exemplify that at best. MA Senator Scott Brown ensured that how he would distance from the standard Republican machine and GOP has a classic problem on hand - how to ride the tiger of Tea Party.

Lot of Independents who back Barack Obama originally came from Republican Party. But today those have returned to Tea Party instead of going back home to GOP. That makes Barack Obama and Democratic Leadership's problem acute - they need to cater for three blocks: Left / Netroots, regular Democratic Party and now Tea Party too. Looking at the issues, it is clear that this is near impossible.

Taking on Wall Street is a strategy to address both extremes - Left/Netroots and Tea Party. But inherent Corporists influence of Rahm Emmanuel, Larry Summer, Chuck Schumer of the traditional Democratic Party would not allow Barack Obama to take on Wall Street clearly. Barack Obama is unlikely to undertake 'thorough' reforms here. Case in point is Bernanke re-appointment. If Barack Obama wants to save his politics, he needs to take out that nomination. But that is also at the same time 'giving in' to traditional Republicans because any time your own nomination goes down, you hand a win to opposition i.e. traditional Republicans here.

With Barack Obama's Wall Street fight ingrained for a failure; come November, Republican and Tea Parties are going to increase their presence in Congress at the cost of Democrats. Chances of American Economy improving during this period of turmoil, which can buffer Democrats, are not bright. Going forward with reduced Democratic presence in Congress, Republicans and Tea Party are going to make the life of Barack Obama miserable to ensure that his Presidency does not do anything constructive.

Hence, the importance of completing ongoing bills like Health Care Reform for Democrats - that ensures foundation for their constructive Politics. This means lots of guts and fights. Fight is also needed while taking on Wall Street.

This political fighting spirit seems to be the Achilles heel for Democrats.

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