RANGER AGAINST WAR: The New Redcoats <

Thursday, November 08, 2012

The New Redcoats

The wind in the wires made a tattle-tale sound
When the wave broke over the railing
And every man knew, as the captain did too
'Twas the witch of November come stealin'
--The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, 
Gordon Lightfoot

Former Labor Secretary Robert Reich expresses my feelings in his post yesterday, "We the People, and the New American Civil War". The piece concludes,

"So we come to the end of a bitter election feeling as if we're two nations rather than one. The challenge - not only for our president and representatives in Washington but for all of us - is to rediscover the public good."

As mentioned in an earlier post, it is a pity tragedies like Storm Sandy must roll by to provide us perspective and remind us that we all suffer the same fate in the hands of a disinterested natural world. The slings and arrows of fate strike us all, regardless of color or wealth, a fact we would do well to remember when considering national programs aimed at keeping us afloat during the rough periods.  Along with this awareness some find it a bitter pill to realize that the demographic complexion of our nation is inexorably shifting, but it is a fact nonetheless.

The question is, will the majority of us embrace the mission set out for us as a nation 250 years ago and find the needs of the commonweal to be a higher calling than our own vested interests, or will we continue down the mean and petty road of "No, I won't", and "More for me"?

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

You think it matters that Obama got less votes than Bush did in 2004?

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 11:35:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

He's still the President.

How do you think it matters?

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 11:43:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well a sitting President who loses 9 million votes from his previous election and does worse than the previous sitting President in total votes is not quite the image of triumph that's getting portrayed by a lot of people.

Honestly have no idea what it means or how it matters, it just doesn't seem to fit the current narrative, and that makes me curious.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 2:26:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had about 15 free minutes today and looked on the internet for election numbers. There is certainly one election that is shaky but I don't think it's this 2012 term.

I voted for Obama again but I had no more enthusiasm this time than I had the first. In my opinion, he is well to the right of Richard Nixon. Actually, I'm tired of voting for our Republican vs voting for their Republican.

1992 Clinton Vs Dad Bush
Electoral Clinton 370 Dad Bush 168
Popular: Clinton 44,909,806 =43.01% DadBush 39,104,550=37.45
...*Ross Perot Electoral 0 Popular 19,743,821 = 18.91%

1996 Clinton Vs Dole
Electoral Clinton 379 Dole 159
Popular: Clinton 47,402,375 = 49.2% Dole 39,198,755=40.7%
*Ross Perot 0 Electoral Popular 8,085,402 = 8.4%

2000 Bush Vs Gore *Fla recount stopped. Bush appointed President by U.S. Supreme Court.
Electoral Bush 271 Gore 266
Popular Vote:Bush 50,456,002 = 47.8% Gore 50,999,897 = 48.3%

2004 Bush Vs Kerry
Electoral Votes: Bush 286 Kerry 251
Popular Vote: Bush 62,028,285 = 50.7% Kerry 59,028,109=48.3%

2008 Obama Vs McCain
Electoral: Obama 365 McCain 173
Popular: Obama 66,882,230 = 53% McCain 58,343,671=46%

2012 Obama Vs Romney
Electoral: Obama 332 Romney 206
Popular: Obama 60,841,547 =50.4% Romney 57,941,405 =48.0%

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 8:25:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obviously the Bush v Gore election was worse, but just consider that Bush GAINED over 10 million votes from 2000 to 2004. Obama lost (your count says 6 million, but on wikipedia, Obama got 69 million in 2008, so maybe 9 million?).

I don't know what to make of that but ignoring doesn't make it any less true.

Should we assume that this has to do with the economy or outside factors?

Hell, Bush in 2004 would have beaten Obama in 2012, how do we make sense of this? Or am I comparing apples and oranges?

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 10:42:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger FDChief said...


If you look at the run of U.S. history the country has pretty much been built on a foundation of "where's mine"? Contractors were dunning the Continental Congress while Washington's Army was getting handed it's ass on Long Island. The victorious officers nearly staged a coup to get their back pay.

Slaveholder and abolitionist tore the nation apart fighting over who would get what, and then the fight to rein in the robber barons of capitalism and win a decent working wage took decades.

We have never been a particularly harmonious nation.

Today we have a political right that has taken on the intellectual baggage of a cult; it believes in the good of things that the bulk of us find either ridiculous or actively harmful - tax cuts forever and always, the end of the New Deal, deregulation of everything, crony capitalism, endless war overseas and domestic spying at home.

It insists in getting its way not because its way is "better" but because it sees that as the only way. As the British Crown did in 1776 and the Southern Confederacy did in 1860.

That sort of logic can't BE "compromised" with; a nation confronted with such intransigence can only - as it did in 1781 and 1865 - become all one thing or all the other.

Obviously, I don't want to become what Karl Rove and Rush Limbaugh want my nation to become.

So they must be destroyed.

But that's a feature, not a bug. This factional fighting must be, as the issue of independence, as the issue of slavery, had to be, fought to a conclusion. We can regret living in the nation we live in - I'll bet many of the Americans of 1859 wished they had lived in a happier time - but we can't avoid the choice.

As with King George or Jefferson Davis, wWe are either with Grover Norquist or against him.

Friday, November 9, 2012 at 6:16:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger FDChief said...

"Bush in 2004 would have beaten Obama in 2012, how do we make sense of this? Or am I comparing apples and oranges"

No. You're comparing apples to grenades.

Comparing the vote totals is like saying that Romney 2012 would have beaten everyone running in 1992, which means that Romney would have been a better president than Clinton, Bush 41, AND Ross Perot.

It's like saying that because Oregon scored 62 points to beat USC and Alabama scored 21 against LSU that Oregon is three times better than Alabama.

Oh, and Obama got more votes than George Washington did in 1788.

Given the crappy economy and the lack of a Dubya to vote against it's no surprise that the total vote for Obama went down from 2008.

Given WHY the economy is so shitty and who the GOP nominated, it's no surprise to me that the nation didn't want to elect G.I. Luvmoney, the Poster Boy for Bain Capital.

Whether Obama was "better"? Well, given Romney's transparent duplicity and willingness to pander to anyone to get elected, probably. Was he the "best" we could do?


But the U.S. political system isn't designed to search out the "best" person to be President, just the one who can play the political game well enough to win.

And this week, Obama did just that.

Friday, November 9, 2012 at 6:28:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Well, you know, the population has been growing, so of course Obama would get more than Washington and of course Romney would defeat other previous candidates.

What I find intriguing is that despite the fact that minority and youth votes being proudly trumpeted as up this year, Obama got less votes than the last sitting President even though there are close to 30 million more people in the country today.

I just feel like this reveals something about American democracy without having any clue as to what it is.

Friday, November 9, 2012 at 1:34:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


I can add little to Chief's able replies. I would say that enthusiasm goes down the 2nd time 'round. I also stand by my earlier contention that racism is still a force to be reckoned with.

In addition, Obama's original platform -- "Change! -- turned out to be disingenuous, and he has proven himself to be more at a Nixonian Republican.

Still, despite it all, he won reelection, and to me, that shows that the majority (however slim) are unwilling to affiliate with the wacky Teapartiers, EVEN if their sympathies lie with the Republicans.
To me, this is heartening in some small way.

We may be tipping to the conservative, but we are not going over the edge with it; the majority have some sort of discernment and are able to see a greater good than petty cutting of social programs.

Friday, November 9, 2012 at 2:58:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous gruff said...

Much of Bush's strong performance in 2004 can probably be attributed to 9/11, still fresh in the memory, and the two (three if you count the secret stuff going on) active wars.

Saturday, November 10, 2012 at 3:36:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger FDChief said...

Oh, and if we're going to play with numbers, how about these numbers: Obama is now the first president to get at least 50 percent of the national popular vote in two elections since...well, what do you know;


Saturday, November 10, 2012 at 4:05:00 PM GMT-5  

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