So, Amanda Terkel over at HuffPo picked up the story of a New Mexico Obama For America official who flagged down this amazing The People’s View post on the post-downgrade Firebaggery which goes on to explain among other things why Paul Krugman should stick to economics and not politics. The HuffPo post is not the point (although for the record, Terkel is the only regular voice I’ll pay attention to over there.)
The larger point is of course that Terkel’s article immediately identifies everyone on Earth who believes themselves to be among the aggrieved Professional Left that Obama apparently hates. For example, Ezra Klein tries to play it Miles Davis cool, but ends up outing himself:
Time and again, however, we see evidence that they have gotten deep inside the White House’s head. In letters, in offhand comments, in outbursts at press conferences, in my personal reporting, members of the Obama administration and members of the Obama reelection campaign will let slip that they are dwelling and worrying over these arguments. They may not agree with them. They may not think they’re fair, or sophisticated, or useful. But they’re thinking about them. And if you’re the “professional left,” that’s exactly what you want.
Yeah see, we call that “Stockholm Syndrome”, Ez. But it gets worse.
Duncan Black thinks the bigger problem is of course That Obama Should Do Something.
But to the extent that something might be in their base bugging their d00dz, I hope it isn’t the armchair punditry or even the policy advice. It’s that we’ve basically had 9.0%+ unemployment for 2.5 years and maybe..somebody should do something.
I mean the Republicans keep blocking the Democrats from doing much of anything. It took all kinds of arm-twisting just to get unemployment benefits extended. A real stimulus wasn’t going to be possible. What we got kept us going up until now, but it’s clear that more help is needed and the GOP will not let anything happen. To the extent that anyone can actually Do Something, President Obama has done it. It hasn’t worked because the GOP set the stage up for failure by giving the President only enough stimulus to hang himself, then they declared the End Of Keynesian Macroeconomics and started in with the demands to shred Social Security and Medicare. President Obama Did Something. Republicans made sure it wasn’t enough. Atrios at least has something of an argument.
Digby on the other hand outright declares herself one of the aggrieved.
What’s the old saying? First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
It’s getting depressing over there at Hullabaloo. It really, really is. But it’s Greg Sargent that actually understands…up to a point, anyway.
Here’s my take on this. Some folks on the left are pointing to the campaign’s failure to adequately shoot down this story as a sign that the campaign perhaps sees political gain in riling up the left, as part of some kind of triangulation strategy to win independents. I just don’t believe this is the case. It seems far more likely that they see this kind of story as nothing but a headache, and want it to go away. My bet is they worry — rightly or wrongly — that publicly reassuring liberal critics won’t necessarily gain any good will from them, only risks giving the story more oxygen, and gets them involved in a fruitless public dispute about whether they’re triangulating and “hippie punching.”
What Sargent says makes a hell of a lot more sense if you realize that for some on the “left” there’s literally nothing President Obama can do that will not be considered “hippie punching”. Obama getting up in the morning and eating a bowl of cereal or whatever actually causes Hamwaldians physical pain. They’re not interested in the left at all, but they are very interested in grifting their way to a Republican President in 2012, because then people pay attention to them again.
The Professional Left is neither. But you guys knew that.