Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Posted by Daniel Greenfield 4 Comments
On the left there are clashing calls of "Give him a chance" and "What the hell is going on here", and some on the right are displaying idiotic glee at Gates remaining on the job and are even prepared to embrace Hillary Clinton, little understanding what any of it means.
They don't get it because they are looking at Obama's appointments from an American political perspective. But Obama is not an American, and his political strategies are not what Americans are used to.
American Presidents appoint cabinet members they agree with to successfully carry out their policies, but Obama will appoint cabinet members he disagrees with as a hedge against failure.
Obama has said repeatedly that he expects long term economic problems, and that he will need two terms to fulfill his promises. Biden has spoken about a major crisis that will strike early in Obama's first term. None of that is a coincidence, because this is not an administration preparing for success, but one that is preparing for failure.
Obama's cabinet is not really a conventional American Presidential cabinet as much as it is a European style"coalition government", front loaded with what passes for "Conservatives" in the Democratic party. (Keep in mind that this is a party that has become so extreme that Hillary Clinton and John Kerry are considered its conservatives.)
Unlike European governments though, Obama's cabinet appointments have a great deal of visibility, but no real political power. Beginning most prominently with Hillary Clinton, Obama has surrounded himself with three of his opponents in the 2008 election. That is unprecedented in American politics, but not so unusual in a coalition government where keeping your enemies close is normal.
That combination of public visibility and political helplessness however makes the likes of Hillary Clinton and Gates dependent on Obama, far more than their European counterparts would be. While they may be the public face of their respective areas of responsibility, the policies will be made behind the scenes by Obama's real backers. The Samantha Power-Hillary Clinton duality in the State Department is typical of the real arrangement. The Cabinet members have been chosen for name recognition, but the real power will be in the hands of the radical left.
And so the policies of the left will be implemented with a "human face". Republicans will find themselves unable to protest what Gates will do, after all wasn't he Bush's Secretary of Defense, will be the reply? Jews will be told to shut up, isn't Hillary Clinton a friend of Israel? And so it will go down the line.
And when setbacks occur, Obama will have his "centrists" to blame and throw under the bus. He won't be "responsible", his coalition government will be. And in an American system he can "dissvolve" the coalition by firing his cabinet members without any need for new elections. This way Obama gets the best of both systems, by exploiting the chinks in American democracy, as he has done all throughout his career.
And when Obama shows his real hand with a new left wing cabinet, there will be no more room for protests. After all didn't his "center - right" cabinet fail? Time to give the radicals a chance to drive the bus, as if they had not been driving the bus all along. Obama will ask for another chance to implement his agenda, this time "uncompromised" by having to work together with the conservatives who failed him and the country. No wonder those in the know around Obama are smirking at the gleeful reaction by conservatives to Obama's cabinet appointments.
The radical left's tactics commonly involve gaining power by forming limited coalitions with more moderate liberals, only to find a pretext for purging them once in power. Obama has his coalition now and his scapegoats. And the game is beginning.
But the key to understanding what is set to happen, is that the left's rhetoric and its real agenda are not at all the same thing. The radical left may be anti-war in the opposition, but once in office, it is very much pro-war, only the targets of the war change. Under the left, occupations become peacekeeping missions, and domestic police powers become completely justified.
But Conservatives who applaud this change are like pigs who applaud the sausage machine. Bill Clinton vastly extended the power of Federal law enforcement without any domestic crisis to justify it, and helped turn what was left of Yugoslavia into a pipeline for drugs, sex trafficking and Jihad using the US military. The current Democratic congress will pass things that will make the Patriotic Act look Libertarian by comparison, and Obama will target countries like Columbia and Israel who are standing up to the terrorists.
Start looking beneath the surface. The Obama campaign was conducted with a smiley face up front concealing the ugly vicious guts of the real campaign inside. That is a taste of what is coming for the next four years. It was a campaign of smoke and mirrors, a grandiose media spectacle with empty slogans, that amounted to nothing. It was the organized vote fraud and media recruitment that mattered. And that is the lesson for those who want to understand the enemy. What is out front means absolutely nothing. It's the agenda behind the scenes that really matters.
Expect a great many vapid statements over the next four years, events that have no purpose except to put on a show and grandiose sounding names, while the real work will go on in the basement, and the scenery on stage will change in order to keep right on manipulating the public. But nothing is what it seems. This will not be a White House run in any conventional way and that is the real message of Obama's cabinet appointments. Forget the usual conventions of American politics, the rule book has changed. The White House is no longer in American hands, and American politics no longer runs by American rules. While some conservatives reach for the brass ring of bipartisanship, refusing to realize that what they are reaching for does not exist. What exists is a ruthlessly planned takeover of American democracy. Resisting it is our task.