Some July 4th political ruminations -part 1---------------------------------------------------------In a recent NYT letter, eminent Political historian James McGregor Burns declared that this presidential election should be a transforming one...transforming an 18th political system to meet the transforming needs of the 21st century.
Historian Gil Troy (Leading from the Center) makes the case that our best Presidents have been moderates, governing from the political center.
If that is true, the liberal bloggers (see daily kos and Huffingtonpost) should not get their shorts in a twist over Obama's move to the center. The NYT editorial board is also upset. In a lead editorial on Friday (New and Not Improved), the Times is concerned by Obama's flips on private campaign financing, electronic wiretappng, death penalty, gun control, faith-based initiatives and possibly Iraq.
The portion of the 50 million Millenials that gave Obama his caucus/primary victories may revote against Obama if he continues his rapid flip to the center.
I am also concerned by Obama's flips. I'm enough of a realist to expect him to move to the center. But the times call for a transformational leader. He should not govern from the center. Once taking office in January, or in his inaugural address, he should call loudly for a 100 days of transformation.
The 100 days should first deal with what conservative analyst Kevin Phillips calls the 6-7 sharks that are circling the US (see Bad Money). They are financialization of our economy; level of debt;peak oil;collapse of home prices;global commodity inflation;lousy economic indicators; and ,perhaps, Rush Limbaugh
The first hundred days should also deal with health care, a move to universal coverage. Obama should give Congress 100 days to put a universal health care bill on his desk. After 30 days, he should address Congress to bring this bill home in 70 days. It is what he should call the urgency of now; the urgency of hope. In his address to Congress, he should give them a ringing call, asking them if they are fired up and ready to go?
There are more transformational moves that are necessary. See part 2.