First of all it's a disaster for the country because the fact remains a lot of people are suffering through unemployment, losing their houses. We have a stagnant recovery, virtually no growth. We have a federal government that has no coherent or any plans to deal with what's going wrong. And then we have, as many have noted, a bill that accomplishes very little except renewing the debt ceiling, which should have been an automatic mechanism anyway. So that fake problem was solved. And on top of that we have something that is going to induce short-term spending cuts at a time when we need money in this economy to drive the move toward jobs.
The embarrassing spectacle of what played out in Washington, I don't have to pile on there, everyone knows it was an absolute farce, regardless of one's political views, and everyone behaved essentially like a child. Obama I guess did not behave like a child, he behaved like an adult, as if that were its own reward. But I feel he did not lead, and he's bought into this idea that somehow he can win the next election by convincing this vague group of people in the middle, independent voters, that he's the only adult in the room. Well that and a quarter won't get you a subway fare. And I think he's done himself a tremendous amount of damage. The best thing he has going for him is the divisions in the Republican party and the lunatics that have taken over the asylum down there.
But his own base in many ways is very disillusioned, so he's caused a real schism there hasn't he?
He has, but it's hard to picture that anyone in his base is going to vote for Mitt romeny or a Michelle Bachmann. That said, it could very well dampen turnout and enthusiasm. It's not as if young voters and African American voters are going to vote for the opposition, but they might just stay home. I think this administration has this magical belief that he can in a campaign automatically re-create the grandeur and the excitement of the first time around. I'm not so convinced. I think it's a form of magical thinking, and on the assumption unemployment is going to remain this high or close to it and that nothing is going to help Americans who are really hurting, that's very bad for Obama.
Even if the Republicans don't want to do a damn thing on their own to hope anyone -- indeed they don’t -- but you have a situation where the presumptive frontrunner in that party, Romney, is going around pretending to be Tom Joad; he's acting as if he's this great savior of working class America. He's appearing before shuttered factories throughout the country, presenting himself as a jobs creator as Obama was not. In real life he was a venture capitalist who shredded jobs in companies that his company took over and broke up for parts. That he can get away with it at all is a problem for Obama because Romney is a total phony.