So it'll be Obama vs... well, it might be Bachmann, though I'm inclined to assume Republicans realize they actually have a shot at this unless they make a massive error of judgment and appoint someone who is unelectably insane, but that's actually not a sure thing - Republicans put up, and won with, various governor candidates who fit that profile in 2010, so they may try the same thing.
The question for me is who's going to be worse? Obama will never do the right thing. Never. That's been proven time and time and time again since 2008. He was elected with as clear a mandate as anyone ever has to do the right things to fix the economy, to end unnecessary wars, to end the actions of an executive that was looking like it had more in common with Pinochet than it did with Kennedy. And he's galloped, wildly, in the other direction. Even his supposed liberal "successes" such as "health care reform", have involved sticking a progressive label on an anti-progressive policy.
So I find myself, actually, wondering if a moderate Republican might be a better bet this time, maybe coupled with as liberal a congress as possible. I can't tell what a Bachmann presidency would look like in practice, but I do find myself wondering if a Republican who isn't an eye swiveling loony might actually stand a chance of doing the right things... occasionally.
And that's actually hard to tell. I guess the issues that concern me most are:
- Will the next President reject the deficit obsession of the pundits, and concentrate on getting the country back to work, given growth is, in reality, the only way we're going to fit the economy (and by the way, that'll fix the deficit too.) Will he or she recognize that the only economic system that has consistently worked since the 1940s has involved massive government spending at a time like this?
- Will the next President recognize that war is, actually, bad, and work to end the obsession of the US government with solving every foreign issue by putting our troops at risk, and killing large numbers of innocent people?
- Will the next President recognize that the "War on Terror" is ludicrous, terrorism is a combination of a criminal and political issue, that Al Qaeda is not a government but a group of extremists?
- Will the next President recognize that our values are more important than our enemies, and that we become no better than our enemies when we jettison our values to "fight" them?
The situation is hopeless.