In the end even I, a proper political junkie, had to switch off the endless coverage of the US mid-term elections (while observing in passing that the obssessive British coverage marks us as a client state: reckon CNN follows our elections that closely).
I'm sickened by the stupidity, nastiness and hypocrisy of the American political scene. Republican after Republican shouting about Obama's policies as though he had no right to make decisions, despite winning a landslide victory. Calling this morning for 'bipartisanship' after spending the last two years voting against every single Democrat idea: the Healthcare bill was watered down massively to please the Republicans, and still they voted against it unanimously.
It seemed to be such an uninformed debate - people on state medical schemes calling for the abolition of the state, bandying around words like socialist, communist and fascist. The endless calls for smaller government, while insisting that the US maintains itself as the biggest military power in the world (outspending the nearest rival by 40 times). Hysteria about immigrants from a nation founded on immigration (and wiping out the natives). They're voting against even minimal state healthcare because they don't want government deciding how you're treated: they'd rather corporations with an interest in excluding the sick do it! Most awful of all, voting for the party of corporate power, untrammelled banking power and finance capital after these people bankrupted America. The debate has shifted from persuasion to screaming abuse and naked hypocrisy, mixed with a dose of barely concealed racism. I just don't get it. I know the ideological basis of the American Dream is hardy individualism, but this is something far nastier.
Sure, Obama's failed in some ways - mostly, I feel, by not being bold enough, and not being skilled enough at getting his hands dirty. He believes, like a good university teacher should, in rational, calm discussion, while his opponents are smashing him over the head with a cosh. He's a liberal - that's the problem. While he's putting the case, his opponents (quietly funded by companies like BP), are waving things like this:
This morning, I had to switch off my radio, so depressed was I with the fate of a great country.