Here is one area where the average Gather participant seems to be seriously off base. Many of you seem to have trouble understanding what makes Obama tick. Allow me please to contribute my expertise. I read his book "Dreams from my father." I can't claim that his entire personality is contained therein, but it's worth noting that he wrote it before there was a serious possibility that he would ever live in the White House. he therefore had little reason to lie.
Some of you seem to believe that Obama is busy trying to convert the US economy to socialism, and is plotting to brainwash all our kids, cancel all future elections, and declare martial law. What's more, you think that he will actually succeed by sheer force of will and natural charm despite the natural tendency of Americans to resist despotism.
Not only are you unrealistic to worry about the success of such a project, but you are also wrong to think that this is what Obama wishes.
Barack Obama is the product of a broken home who was essentially raised by his maternal grandparents. Actually to call it a broken home is an exaggeration, his dad really spent no time with him after he was of an age to remember things. His mother took a role in raising him, but his grandparents had a bigger slice of his time. He grew up in Hawaii in a poly-cultural atmosphere. He records in his book that for quite a while in his life he had sort of a self image problem, or maybe it should be called a lack of ambition problem. He was very bright, but he was not ambitious because he sort of took on a piece of that common belief of African Americans- I am not a full stakeholder in this culture or this government, so I am not going to try my hardest. If I offend any African Americans there, I apologize, but it is in the book. This period of his life ended about halfway through his undergraduate college years, and his life followed a different trajectory thereafter.
To those who are suspicious of Barack Obama as a man who is secretly plotting the downfall of the United States of America, I reply, you do not know this man. He believes in the American Dream as much or more than you do. But he has eyes to see that the American Dream becomes a reality much less often than some of us seem to think. Rush Limbaugh & Co. believe in the American Dream, supposedly. But they tend to blame the failure of all who do not achieve the full reality of that dream on those persons themselves. Why? The newspapers are full of Bankers and CEOs receiving rewards for failure, and the poor failing to receive any of the mythical "trickle down" wealth of the Reagan and Bush II years.
Has Obama cancelled the 2010 elections? Has he declared martial law? Has he attempted to restore the 1960s Great Society Welfare system? Has he shut down Fox News?
In case you wondered, the answer to all the above is "NO." What some of you fail to understand is that the answer will continue to be "NO."
Does this mean that Obama secretly is friends with Rush, Glenn, and Joe? No. Barack Obama's world view is pretty much 180 from theirs, and the mutual dislike is very real. Obama has seen competent people who failed to achieve the American Dream. He knows them because he was one of them. He understands in a way that no recent American president does that the status quo USA is that you can achieve the American Dream through hard work, uh, and with some connections. He understands what they do not, that we do not live in a world or a country in which poor people with messed up parents and no wealthy and powerful friends have a chance. He understands what they do not, that wealth perceives poverty not as a challenge to solve, but rather as a source of wage slaves and credit slaves to exploit. Read the fine print of your next credit card offer.
It should also be noted, for the benefit of a few Gatherites on the opposite side of the political spectrum who had hopes that Obama would instantly change the world, that the President of the USA is not a dictator. He rules with the consent of the governed, and is subject to refusal from Congress. If that refusal happens, he will accomplish nothing. Therefore, the hope that Obama would somehow single handedly change the rules was always just as unrealistic as the conspiracy theories of the far right.
Having vented, I feel better. I do not expect to change certain minds. I would love to receive some responses from those with open minds.