As you've noticed there are a lot of Villagers trying to tell the world that this is a center right country and Obama better watch out because he will be punished if he listens to his left wing base and tries to govern what he got elected on. Please, give me a break. When Obama ran on the theme of change, he was talking about leading the country away from a failed Conservative platform from Bush that has led this country into ruin for the past eight years while the entire Conservative community cheered him on. And the Limbaugh crowd can chant all they want that they must become Conservatives again. You were and you lost.
Here's a message to all the Villagers. Change means going in a different direction. I may not agree with all of Obama's choices as he moves forward, but that doesn't mean he's supposed to be frightened by the cackling sounds being made by the DC insiders or bow down to the "conventional wisdom" crowd and fear for his political life.
Paul Krugman reads the situation correctly:
Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008, is a date that will live in fame (the opposite of infamy) forever. If the election of our first African-American president didn’t stir you, if it didn’t leave you teary-eyed and proud of your country, there’s something wrong with you. But will the election also mark a turning point in the actual substance of policy? Can Barack Obama really usher in a new era of progressive policies? Yes, he can.
Right now, many commentators are urging Mr. Obama to think small. Some make the case on political grounds: America, they say, is still a conservative country, and voters will punish Democrats if they move to the left. Others say that the financial and economic crisis leaves no room for action on, say, health care reform. Let’s hope that Mr. Obama has the good sense to ignore this advice.
About the political argument: Anyone who doubts that we’ve had a major political realignment should look at what’s happened to Congress. After the 2004 election, there were many declarations that we’d entered a long-term, perhaps permanent era of Republican dominance. Since then, Democrats have won back-to-back victories, picking up at least 12 Senate seats and more than 50 House seats. They now have bigger majorities in both houses than the G.O.P. ever achieved in its 12-year reign. Bear in mind, also, that this year’s presidential election was a clear referendum on political philosophies — and the progressive philosophy won.
Helping the neediest in a time of crisis, through expanded health and unemployment benefits, is the morally right thing to do; it’s also a far more effective form of economic stimulus than cutting the capital gains tax.
So a serious progressive agenda — call it a new New Deal — isn’t just economically possible, it’s exactly what the economy needs.The bottom line, then, is that Barack Obama shouldn’t listen to the people trying to scare him into being a do-nothing president. He has the political mandate; he has good economics on his side. You might say that the only thing he has to fear is fear itself.