For many liberals, it is the summer of their discontent.
Already disappointed with President Barack Obama’s ability to deliver on campaign promises, they now contemplate a slowing economic recovery and a good chance of Republican gains in November. Such developments would make enacting Obama’s agenda even more difficult.
Two recent essays framed the debate raging within the progressive community over why the promise of Obama’s candidacy has not lived up to their expectations — and how liberals should proceed in what they fear will be difficult months ahead.
In a 17,000-plus word piece published in The Nation on Thursday, journalist Eric Alterman calls the Obama presidency “a big disappointment” for progressives and blamed a broken system in Washington that he says allows the minority party to rule with impunity, and special interests and big money to dictate legislative policy.
“Face it,” he concludes, “the system is rigged, and it’s rigged against us.” His essay is subtitled: “Why a progressive presidency is impossible for now.”