Arrogance of a Microphone: Talking Down to Barack Obama

Yesterday, Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks (and an oft-called for guest host on MSNBC) wrote a condescending piece on Daily Kos purporting to teach President Obama how to fight.  Cenk Uygur, a political commentator -- a former Republican no less -- who has never run a campaign is talking down to Barack Obama, America's first black president, on how to wage a campaign.

Barack Obama, the man who went from being a State Senator to President of the United States in four years.  Barack Obama, who beat back the venerable Clinton political machine to gain the Democratic nomination and then went on to unite the party and the country to a thumping victory to the presidency.  Barack Obama, who despite facing unprecedented challenges from the uniform, vitriolic, violent right in the presidency has accomplished more in 20 months than most presidents can put together in two terms.  That is the man Cenk Uygur is directing his arrogant, disrespectful diatribe to.

This very self-aggrandizing condescension of the President aside, what are Cenk's specific accusations?  Well, of course, he starts with "he's not fighting the Republicans!"
President Obama spent the first two years of his administration practicing political unilateral disarmament. He laid down his arms to reach out to Republicans, and they ripped his arms off and clubbed him over the head with them.
Aren't we getting good at disgusting imagery, now?  Unilateral disarmament - oh noes!!!  Perhaps Cenk has forgotten Obama going into the lion's den to a House Republican retreat and whipping their backsides on their own turf.  Maybe Cenk hasn't even seen the White House health care summit that revived health reform after the election of one Scott Brown (R-MA).  Perhaps he just sped past the President taking Boehner of Orange head on for calling the financial crisis an "ant."

I could tell Cenk that the Democrats and the President has fought back, and I just did, but I'm going to let Rachel Maddow show him.



As for other examples of whether Obama and the Democrats have fought back, I give you... well, I give you this video, titled Obama Uses Jujitsu: Democrats Fight Back Against Townhall Mobs, by a certain Cenk Uygur circa August 2009:



Apparently, Cenk Uygur does not watch The Young Turks' YouTube channel.

Cenk also thinks that no Democrat is campaigning on the success of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, because you know, they are all running scared of their own shadow.
Let me be specific. The CBO just came out with great numbers on the stimulus package. They said that it created up to 3.3 million jobs and added 1.7 to 4.5% to the GDP in the last quarter alone. How many Democrats have you heard talking about that? I haven't heard any. Why?
Well, let me be specific.  You haven't heard any Democrat talk about it, Cenk, because you haven't been paying attention.  For example, two Democratic House members facing serious electoral challenges this November campaigned with Vice President Biden just on the success on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
Vice President Joe Biden took the administration's defense of its controversial $862 billion stimulus plan to New Hampshire Thursday, touting the program's investment in making houses more energy efficient.[...]

Democratic Reps. Paul Hodes and Carol Shea-Porter joined Biden at the event. Rather than run for re-election, Hodes is bidding for the state's open Senate seat, currently held by retiring Republican Sen. Judd Gregg, and is his party's presumptive Senate nominee.

Shea-Porter is running for re-election. Thanks in part to the tough political climate facing incumbents and Democrats, analysts say both Hodes and Shea-Porter face difficult elections.
Want more examples?  President Obama has himself been campaigning on the successes of the stimulus package.  Sen. Barbara Boxer pointed out a real life example of jobs created in California by the Recovery Act last night in her debate with spoiled CEO Carly Fiorina, who would like to buy the Seat with her money:
There is a man out here in the audience. I don't want to embarrass him. Jay smith, if he's out there, who is working because of the economic Recovery Act on doyle drive. 2,000 Workers working because of the economic recovery act.
And all Cenk has got to say is that he hasn't heard any Democrats talking about the success of the Recovery Act.  Are you freaking kidding me?  Cenk, if you are this bad at paying attention to news that's happening all around you, stop hosting TV and radio shows.

The problem for Democrats is that we have had to govern for the past 20 months while the Republicans have done nothing but play politics.  President Obama did not have the luxury to politic all the time like Cenk would have liked him to.  He had to be, you know, President of the United States.  Despite Cenk's quips at the imperfection of legislative policy, I will keep pointing out the impressive list of progress to be proud of, and Rachel Maddow can tell you that:
The last time any president did this much in office, booze was illegal.
Disagree with the President's strategy if you wish.  Suggest something else if you must.  If you are worried about the Democrats' prospects in November -- and even if you are not -- get yourself to a local campaign office and help.  But don't give me this condescending, petulant diatribe about how the President has laid down, played dead, and got nothing of value accomplished.  Don't tell me Barack Obama does not know what's what and who's who in electoral politics.

As President Obama warned the Republicans recently, they've forgotten that he politics pretty good.  It appears that so have a lot of people on the doomsayers on the left.  So Cenk, rather than writing Democrats' obituary, if you really want a progressive agenda to advance -- and for progress to take hold -- use those giant microphones you have and rally the troops to vote Democratic in November!


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