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November 2008

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To fight the neocons and win you have to be prepared to fight dirty. It's war and war's an ugly business.

You also have to be prepared to think dirty. You have to learn to think like them.

The neocons are united, well organised, and they play really dirty. They're vicious and unethical and they let nothing stop them.

Come November this year the Democratic candidate for president is going to have battle scars. That much is certain.

The Democrats in the US have a remarkable propensity for always picking the wrong candidate. It's as if they're sitting around and someone says 'hey we can have a candidate again' and they all get brandy snifters and begin to discuss it. And they discuss not who can beat the neocons but who they like. And there's a world of a difference twixt the two. As evidenced by that party's clumsy defeats recently.

Unseating George Bush in 2004 should have been easy. The man's a national embarrassment. Who did they put up against him? How did they run their campaign? They got Swift boated out of the race early on. They tripped up over their own feet and the neocons went back for four more years.

The Democrats think in terms of democracy and the neocons think only in terms of victory. To the Democrats victory is such an abstract concept they don't worry their wee pinheads much about it.

In international terms the US Democrats are 'liberals' and everyone knows what liberals stand for: nothing. They're just a bit 'liberal'. Whatever that means. The neocons know damn well what they want. And they go out and get it.

Sixteen years ago an Arkansas governor came to the White House and turned everything upside down. He balanced the federal budget for the first time ever. And he and his wife pushed for national health care - something unheard of in the redneck US of A. On the latter issue they were defeated by people from the homestate of the current incumbent - which was not all that surprising. But they did raise consciousness about the issue. And today it's a burning issue in the current political debate over there. And it's about time.

And yet even today all too few really 'get' what it's all about. They're still trying to be 'american' about it. Barack Obama's genial plan for national health care right from the get-go leaves 15 million unfortunate people out in the cold. Some plan.

On the former issue the 1992 couple in the White House fared better. They balanced the federal budget and even passed a law making it illegal to not balance it.

Of course this was ignored when the current occupant of the White House moved in. Today the US has an astronomical national debt of $9,000,000,000,000. A few years ago people weren't even used to counting that high. The US is today a mess. Each man woman and child is paying a 'Bush tax' of $30,000.

Today the US borrow money from China to buy oil from Saudi Arabia. The current US administration are oil people; they want to keep their country - and the world - dependent on this fossil fuel. It helps make the rich even richer. Even as it helps destroy the planet.

They don't want to save the environment; they don't want to lower taxes for ordinary people; they've passed legislation to instead cut taxes for people who already have more than they need. All the while nearly 50,000,000 people in that country go without health care and countless millions don't even have enough food on the dinner table at night.

And to all of this and more we today have an Afro-American Ron Paul who is dishing up the catch phrases to get the votes. This nobody came out of nowhere a year ago and he has one thing on his mind: a successful political career capped by two terms at 1600 Pennsylvania. Is it fair to say he has no higher ambitions? Yes it is. And it is fair because he simply hasn't been around long enough yet to think otherwise.

Obama's speeches go down like gospel revival meetings. They're coldly and intensely calculated. There's no substance to speak of - only the incessant progression of high octane buzzwords designed to incite the crowds all the more.

There's very little thinking that goes on at a Barack Obama meeting. It's mostly cheers and vapid rhetoric. Make no mistake: if Barack Obama is ever called on the fact he's an empty social climber he'll change overnight. For that is the essence of Obama: he'll be whatever you want him to be, whatever he needs to be. Until you cast your vote. After that all bets are off.

No matter what happens in November and along the road leading up to it things are always going to be eminently predictable. The only exception to this is what Howard Dean said the other night on the BBC: the necons won't win because they can't win because the people can't let them win because the world can't withstand four more years of their rule. And that's a fact and not a prediction. And it's a solid fact.

Will Hillary beat Elephant Man? She could. She'd have to polemicise the debate. She and John are good friends and the campaign could turn from amicable to boring. Will she win against him by charm and personality alone? Perhaps. Especially as she's sitting there with the cards in her hands and the other guy has nothing to play. She has everything the people want right now and her opponent would not be able to offer anything of the sort - only more unconvincing rhetoric.

Could Obama beat the same candidate? No. Things might look easy right now and the neocon spies are trying to suggest he's the tougher candidate - and that should only serve to make the Democrats more suspicious. They're trying to suggest no one would dare push too hard as Obama's camp could immediately turn attacks into racial slurs.

But this goes both ways. And if there's a way around something the neocons will find it. The neocons can use the 'deflector shield' of Obama against him - get him tripping up over his own feet, making gaffe after gaffe, expose himself as inexperienced, insincere, and incompetent - and then offer triumphantly 'who needs to slur this man on his race?' And what seemed to be a great defence suddenly turned into an embarrassing defeat for Afro-Americans and the Democrats both and here comes Elephant Man, the man Rove promised would have a second chance, and he's in the White House and the only ray of hope is that as compared to the previous tenants he's 'liberal'.

Whatever happens in November happens because it was meant to happen. You don't have to like the candidates to vote for them. You simply have to have the perspicacity to understand what November 2008 is all about.

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