Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Egypt afterglow


This Matson cartoon catches something all of us who struggle among the excreta of our plutocratic declining empire need to remember: somewhere underneath the indifference and ignorance, among most US people, there's a delight in liberty and an enthusiasm for freedom that can well up unexpectedly. If we want a better country, we need to nurture this, not just rave at our collective faults.
With this in mind, I think it needs to be said that President Obama's performance as the Egyptian revolution's most globally prominent spectator confirms the instinct that brought most of us around to supporting him rather than Hillary Clinton during the the 2008 Democratic primaries.

No one who could be elected as head-honcho of the world's dominant empire was going to dismantle it. So the question posed in that election was who among the options seemed to understand that the Bush regime had demonstrated the limits of imposition of US power by brute force -- and who would try to find less violent means to maintain a dwindling hegemony. That's not a very satisfying question to be forced to answer, but such choices are the fate of US progressives, until or unless we get our own uprising. Most of us plumped for Obama and I think the last few weeks have shown us we could have done worse. At least in this White House (as opposed to one with Clinton at the top), there was a set of advisers that didn't want to go down with the Mubarak ship. Weak tea, this -- but weak tea is what get until we change things.
Thank you Egyptians for a gift of hope.
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