I know this comes a day late, but yesterday I awoke to learn, as did perhaps the rest of the country, that President Obama had been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. And like the rest of the country and maybe the world, this really took me by surprise; I didn’t see this one coming. Nevertheless, I do extend to President Obama my hardiest congratulations. And to the right, I extend my sincerest condolences.
At one time, the actions of the right following the election and inauguration of the president surprised me. But little by little, episode by episode, they one-upped themselves on absurdity.
I think my incredulity began right after they announced Sarah Palin as a candidate for vice-president. Even as it became clearer that she lacked even the most basic qualifications for the office, the right solidified in their support of her. And almost as if they were sensing an imminent defeat, as the campaign wore on, the tone became nastier and nastier.
I believe at that time they too could sense the beginning of the end. They too realized just how preposterous her candidacy was, but they obstinately refused to admit such and held on to the very end.
And then following the inauguration, I thought the worst had finally passed. I thought that this country would move forward politically. I thought republicans would gracefully conceded defeat. And for a minute it seemed that they would do so, but then the foolishness began anew with even greater virulence and even greater antipathy.
Instead of getting out front leading, the republicans decided to follow the most obstinate, contentious, and seemingly racist and off kilter elements of the right. And with each new obstructionist tactic, they seemed to sink lower and lower until nothing they did surprised me anymore.
But then not too long ago, a conservative writer wrote a piece suggesting that President Obama’s administration should be deposed via a military coup. The article was subsequently pulled but not before someone was able to take screen shots of it and circulate it around the net. Just the very appearance of such an article suggests how desperate the right is and how far they are willing to go.
Also, implicit in this notion is the fear of what would happen if the President does succeed in his agenda. Such a success could change the paradigm of power in this country. Such a success could mean the diminished power of the upper classes and a resurgence of the middle class which all but perished under the Bush administration.
Thus the celebration when President Obama failed in his attempt to bring the Olympics to Chicago. And thus the reaction from the right when President Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize.
The recent gathering momentum of the Healthcare Reform effort and President Obama’s securing of the Nobel Peace Prize seem to signal just such impending success. And if Healthcare Reform goes smoothly, it opens the doorway to the success of the rest of his agenda.
But it gets even uglier from here because with every success, the opposition will simply get that much more obstinate and outlandish in its resistance. And in their obstinacy and outlandishness lies the seeds of their undoing. And for that they have my sincerest condolences.
As time moves forward, their position gets that much more untenable. And should Healthcare Reform succeed, should the economy right itself, should Americans go back to work, their attempt to portray President Obama as an incompetent outsider intent on destroying the country from within becomes an even harder sell.