Many of us became poll-obsessed during the ’08 General Election, daily tracking the overall and state-by-state numbers. Our confidence grew during the final weeks as the numbers held. Remember the exhilaration when the Obama family walked onto the stage in Chicago’s Grant Park?
That was so last year.
Now we have the presidential approval numbers. Not so much fun, right?
Just stay above 50 percent for now and we’ll be O.K. We have a year until the Congressional midterm elections and three whole years before the next presidential.
A lot can and will happen during that time. There will be dramatic and unexpected turns in health care, Afghanistan, the economy and the unknown.
Not everything will go our way. But there are different ways we can greet the history of the Obama era as it unfolds before us. We can be glum, outraged and desperately disappointed.
Our entire sense of well-being can depend on whether we get a public option!
Or we can welcome the changes that come our way: what it means to have the EPA run by environmentalists rather than industry hacks, how liberating it is not to be fighting to keep Scalia-clones off the bench; having a real conversation about a national high-speed rail system.
I know. You think I’m grasping for straws because Obama couldn’t deliver the transformational change we craved.
But this Obama thing is just getting started.
What made you think that the Republican’s would give up fear-mongering, name-calling and even a contemporary version of red-baiting? This stuff has worked for 80 years.
I urge my friends and colleagues to hang in there. Don’t get depressed. This is America. It’s a complicated place with very conservative impulses.
If progressive ideas are going to work here, progressive people must look like we’re having a good time, not sitting around staring at our feet.