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Barack Obama and the Presidential Address – They’re Just Not That Into You February 25, 2009

Posted by aetiusromulous in Commentary, news, politics.
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the-scream-commentsBarak Obama addressed the American people directly last night in an effort to restore hope and change to an American Dream in chaos. Beneath the stats, the headlines, and the babbling of confused economists lays the simple, destructive fact that Americans may be abandoning the ride in droves. In a word, America – and the world – has lost all confidence in unbridled capitalism and with it, by extension, American democracy.

At the root is the credit crisis. And at the root of the credit crisis is the now undeniable fact that credit is unavailable because those with the money to lend will not lend into a market that promises no safety or return. The money is there, waiting, but is locked down by fear and loathing of a system it no longer trusts. The financial community has lost faith in America.

Ben Bernake, Chairman of the American Federal Reserve Bank said exactly the same thing earlier in the day, in an address with the same message but without the soaring rhetoric. In an economic outlook penned for economists – and not people – Bernake stated flatly that without confidence in the American financial system, all bets were off. No amount of stimulus, rage, or legislation is going to coax those with billions at risk to part with their money. The system has always been a voluntary one, free markets depending on free will. And free will has left the building.

Hillary Clinton, American Secretary of State, said the same thing even earlier in the global day in far away and formerly evil China. There, in a short, barely covered address Clinton all but begged the former regime of communists and torture to please continue to buy her American junk bonds, for which America would be eternally grateful by forgetting social engineering, freedom and democracy in exchange, rewarding the shiny new Chinese state with endless purchases of useless crap. The Chinese were more polite than they had to be, given the beating Americans have given them over the years. China is responding to the crisis by spreading out over what’s left of the economic world, building agreements and friendships in all the places Americans had ignored and left out of the century of their American progress. They gave America a swell photo op and nothing more.

Americans are trapped by the devastating fact that the money that has come to define the dream has long ago ceased to be theirs, and has for a generation been at the pleasure of a world it increasingly held with disdain and ignorance, invasion and retribution. When the music stopped and the investments went bad there was suddenly no reason to invest in America, no faith that America was anything more than an empty, broken investment vehicle. The mortgage the earth held against America came due – the mother of all automatically resetting mortgages.

Into this maelstrom, Barak Obama has stepped, perhaps the greatest American President, at a time where the greatest may not be enough. His address was a craftwork of hope and inspiration, but if is to be anything more than a fine collector’s edition plate or a sound bite for hip hop, Obama had to convince not just the American people, the congress, the judges and legislators, but the planet at large.

A planet that may be moving on, a planet that is just not that into him.

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