Somebody in my household -- I don't know who; nobody will 'fess up -- subscribes to the New Yorker. The latest had -- besides a very amusing cover, which it took me a minute to understand -- a mighty thumbsucker on the prospects for an Obama second term:
Obama has an ambitious second-term agenda, which, at least in broad ways, his campaign is beginning to highlight. The President has said that the most important policy he could address in his second term is climate change....I laughed so hard at this I nearly fell off my chair. Climate change! Oh please! Is there a three-year-old anywhere in this broad land prepared to swallow such a bare-faced whopper? This narrowly myopic, cynical, on-the-make Chicago machine politician wants us to believe he wants to do something about climate change? Jeez, where do you start?
Let's begin with the obvious fact that there is a clear elite consensus to do nothing whatsoever about climate change, apart from a little greenwashing of exposed flesh from the neck up; below the collar, it's the same old reeking noisome insalubrious territory -- cheap oil, endless driving, and the BTUphagous suburban house. But we are to think that sometime next November, once safely re-elected, Obie is going to fall off his horse on the road to Damascus -- the literal Joe Biden road to Damascus, I fear -- and decide to defy elite opinion? If you believe that, I have a bridge to sell you.
Presumably this little global-warming lullaby is directed at the Dembot base. Now normally the base only needs cultivating during primary season, and since Obie didn't face any primaries, he was in a fine position to tell the base to go fuck its collective self -- which he more or less did, in fact.
Now that the election is starting to look a lot less like a shoo-in, however, the question of turnout looms large. Obie's eleventh-hour conversion to gay marriage -- without, of course, any concrete initiatives to accompany it -- and these soft cooing noises about climate change look very much like ways to get a few more dependable Democratic voters hobbling out in their walkers.
What's next? Free Lexapro? Don't be discouraged!