Another great photograph from Getty Images
So. It looks like I worried for nothing.
I’m rather happy about that…
Is it me or did the Yankees take a big step to the left?
Despite the Republican-sponsored defrauding of the American vote (done, in an Orwellian fashion, largely in the name of eliminating non-existant voter fraud) and viral videos of ‘malfunctioning’ electronic voting machines, absurdly long lines and the spasmodic eruptions of verbal diarrhoea coming from Donald Trump, the United States pulled through and did a lot to restore my faith in their country. Barack Hussein Obama is the 44th President of the United States, but that’s not the half of it.
The whack-jobs didn’t get in.
Several states recognized gay marriage, a couple more legalized recreational cannabis consumption. There’s a record number of women elected to Congress and the Senate, high participation rates among key minority groups and record low turnout by Republicans.
It may not be a landslide as the term was once described, but given the intense barrage of deceit, amplified ignorance and seemingly endless supply of the bottom-feeding opportunists contemporary American society manages to produce all coming to the fore over the last few months, I can only say that this is a post-modern political landslide – the good held their ground while bullshit mountain crumbled all around them.
Obama’s no saint, but I’m saying that with a Canadian perspective – we like our liberals off in left field, not to the immediate left of the far right. In American terms he’s either a progressive liberal or a veritable socialist in sheep’s clothing – depending on whom you ask. The branding doesn’t matter, Obama has pursued a generally progressive platform (by neo-liberal-centrist standards) and has instituted modest Keynesian fiscal reforms designed to stimulate the economic underpinnings of the country. He’s governed steadily but not spectacularly, and his inaction vis-a-vis the closing of the Guantanamo Bay prison complex and intervention in Syria concern me a great deal. As does the continued torture of PFC Bradley Manning, in which the President is implicated. Going after Wall Street Robber-Barons would impress me much more than the idiotic pursuit of Julian Assange.
That said, he’s head and shoulders above Mitt Romney in every conceivable respect. The GOP should be ashamed of itself, not only for how it conducted this year’s campaign, but for putting such a couple of ignorant schmucks as Romney and Ryan on the same ticket. You would’ve figured they’d learned their lesson in `08 with Palin and McCain.
But no, they had to go full-retard this time around.
Such is their loss. This is a humiliating blow for the Tea Party faction of American politics – the whack-jobs lost.
And that’s fundamentally good for Canada. A stable USA is A-OK for you and I. Now that Obama has four more years I hope he changes and decides to push the pendulum back from towards the left and pursue a grand project for social benefit of the United States. If Obama’s first term was spent cleaning up W’s mess then maybe he can start realizing his own dreams now, and if we’re lucky we’ll catch a glimpse of a real leader, and demand better of those who lead us.
I am cautiously optimistic and far less concerned the Americans are our neighbours now that Obama has comfortably won a second mandate. I’m surprised and delighted with the number of progressive measures and sensible policies that came into existence yesterday. I’m glad Capitol Hill will be a little more diverse, a little more representative of what the States actually is.
And if Obama is the great leader and nation builder I think we all secretly hope he will be, then it is my sincere hope he use his next term in office in the pursuit of world peace, because it seems to me that he has been dealt a winning hand, one which may allow him to go quite far.
There must be American dreams to inspire the world.