Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Obama: compromise is not the way to go

Bless him for trying, but he should really give up.Obama has used his annual State of the Union Address to call for co-operation between parties in a divided congress.[] If this sounds familiar it's because it is. Clearly Obama decided a long time ago he was going to take the high road no matter what, and has persistently spoken the rhetoric of co-operation.

The problem with this is that he embarked on a programme of legislation that was wholly unsavoury to any self-respecting Republican. To expect an opposition party to work with you you have to offer some kind of compromise. Do I think Obama should have made his policies more Republican in the name of cross-party co-operation? Of course not. Because even if that had been desirable it wouldn't have worked. He should know that Republicans aren't reasonable people. He's trying to compromise with people who think cross-hairs on a map of political opponents is an appropriate way of getting support. They have tried to block every single bill Obama has introduced. They are not good losers and do not understand the language of political co-operation.

Obama's attempts to take the high road are admirable. But I think he might as well try and beat the Republicans at their own game: petty, selfish, aggressive politics; because the right-wing media will accuse him of it whether he does or not. He should have done this long ago, when he had both houses. His recent calls for co-operation seem more than a little futile.

The USA is in a dangerous situation. In 2 years we may have just seen the inauguration of the first female President. Unfortunately this may also be the inauguration of the first Fox News pundit President. The early signs don't look good for Palin, but the likelihood is that we'll have a Republican White House in 2013, and who knows how long it will take for the Democrats to claw their way back in, and what damage the Republicans will do in the mean time? And they can't count on having another Obama moment. That was once-in-a-lifetime. The harsh reality is they're going to have to stoop to the Repulicans' level eventually. They might as well do it before they lose everything.

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