Robert Letcher: With all the violence and contempt that seemed “in the air”, it was starting to feel like some “Tucson” was bound to happen, but there wasn’t enough actionable information: no “when”, no “where”. Nor were resources available to “look into the situation”, as they had been to President Bush.
Bob Letcher: In any case, people were screaming slogans at each other, as though volume alone would determine who was right. No nuance. Little listening, little worthy of being listened to.
Bob Letcher: Regardless of who “wins” and who “loses” next Tuesday’s election, can there be any doubt that the results will end the country’s slow downward slide… and send it plunging headlong toward disaster of the sort and scale that the first Republican President, Abraham Lincoln, must have foreseen when he admonished the citizenry, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”
Bob Letcher: In the few weeks since President Obama so emphatically linked his education program to his effort to revive the US political economy, the President has not been pressed to detail either the substance of his education program or his procedure for winning support from a public that is increasingly cynical, skeptical, frightened, and angry.
Bob Letcher: With all that snapping and unsnapping and re-snapping going on, how could a person who was never quoted as saying either “I apologize,” or “I am sorry.”—and never said either directly to me, or to the millions of Americans whom his pure ugliness offended, or to the millions of people around the world who count on America as a symbol of relative decency in a sea of that same ugliness he exhibited—how could he even begin to claim to have been sincere in his apology? And wouldn’t an insincere apology be oxymoron?
Robert Letcher: Eighth, how can you act so angry and unaware on the world’s stage (it’s not yours or ours anymore—so you can’t just take it home), yet hope not to be dismissed as ugly Americans who can no longer think well and creatively enough to compete in anything except war games made with real wars?
Robert Letcher: It’s not that I expected Obama to communicate with me about his policy positions, although I certainly hoped he would – even though I don’t wait around for him to call. Instead, it just seemed to me that his campaign – our campaign – would likely improve his prospects for winning if he were somehow to really communicate with this me and all the other me’s whose support he needs in order to be elected and govern successfully.
Bob Letcher: am reluctant to go in for visioning exercises, because in my own experience such exercises almost always proceed on the basis of (to borrow my favorite of George W Bush’s malapropisms) “misunderestimating” the capacity of the opposition, and particularly those elements of the opposition who always already possess systematically asymmetric advantages in access to power and resources.
Bob Letcher: doubt that any portion of the collapse of GM was included as a cost of NOT having national healthcare. But all those Golden Handcuff’s that GM’s employees understandably put on their own wrists as the only way they could see for keeping their loved ones healthy and covered just might have contributed to the recent very expensive collapse of the company, the company towns, all the nameplates and jobs.