Monday, February 09, 2009

Same as the old boss, part 3: The apparatchiki strike back

I see that I'm not the only one thinking: Where's Howard?

As a libertarian, I don't support President Barack Obama's healthcare nationalization/socialization goals, but if I did, Dean would be the obvious guy to try to achieve those goals as Secretary of Health and Human Services. He's a doctor. He's a former governor who accomplished some of the very same things in Vermont that Obama wants to accomplish nationwide. He's popular with the grass roots of the Democratic Party (for very good reasons) ...

... Ah, wait. That's it. He's popular with the grass roots of the Democratic Party (for very good reasons) ... and that drives the party's Dinosaur Caucus -- the ones who connived to lose the 2004 presidential election by backing John Kerry instead of Dean, the ones who fought tooth and nail to keep Dean away from the DNC chairmanship, the ones who lost Congress to the GOP in 1994 and who are pissed off that Dean's strategy won it back for the Democrats in 2006 and paved the way for Obama's election last November despite their pouty obstructionism -- batshit insane.

Whether from true personal inclination or because he felt forced to for some reason, Obama started handing out office keys like so much candy to the old Democratic apparatchiki before he even took the oath. Membership in The Gang of Old Folks That Won't Shoot Straight is apparently a required resume item for appointment to a cabinet office in the Obama administration. Unless the Obama administration is notably leakproof, Dean's name isn't on the short list for HHS or for anything else.

At the moment of truth, Obama seems to have choked. The Democratic Party that Bill Clinton left wasn't able to get the job done in the age of Bush ... but now that tired, discredited Democratic Party is attempting to seize back control from the other Democratic Party, the energized, victorious Democratic Party built from the ground up by Howard Dean and a few million real Americans, the Democratic Party that returned control of Congress to the Democrats in 2006 and put a Democrat in the White House in 2008. And they're apparently succeeding.

Leave it to the Democrats to snatch long-term defeat from the jaws of short-term victory. Of course, in some respects that's a good thing, I guess.

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