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Obama’s day

Obama’s supporters should savour today, they really should. Even Obama’s detractors have at least something to be happy about. A black man has become President of the United States, The Leader of the Free-ish World, the Commander-in-Thief. And that at least is a fine thing.

But the mere fact it has happened shows it is much less important than it seems. A huge percentage of America’s blacks voted along racial lines, and thus presumably can have had no complaint if non-black people had likewise voted their race en-mass. Fortunately by and large even in race obsessed America most white people did not see it that way. Things have moved on, something obvious to anyone who has visited or worked in the US over the last few decades. Perhaps, just perhaps, the sheer folly of identity politics, the poison wellspring of all ethnic sectarianism, can be discarded once and for all. Yeah, as if. Well one can hope.

But today Obama does indeed become the very embodiment of a victory over an irrelevant thing which should never have divided people in the first place. And against that noble tableau, the calls for a New Hope and Bipartisan Unity will ring out strong and loud against a backdrop of Old Glory fluttering in the wind as Obama looks out at the horizon in all his Apollonian glory. Powerful stuff given how much Americans respond to appeals to the sentimental.

And the correct response to this is not to put your hand on your heart and get all misty eyed, it is to nod sagely at the agreeable symbolism of a clear triumph over America’s grotesquely racist past… and then, in answer to the calls for unity, raise your middle finger and make a loud raspberry sound. You will be drowned out by the cheering crowds but trust me when I say there will be millions of other people off-camera doing precisely that.

President Obama will only ever have one meaningful victory, and that is being a black man who was elected President. Cool. Seriously, very cool indeed. Celebrate that much in good faith. As for the rest, the things he actually wants to do, well that is the stuff that always should divide us and always will. Republicans and for that matter libertarians who cannot see that are, quite simply, political enemies who are part of the problem, not the solution.

So cheer the glorious apogee of the civil rights movement today because its significance ends the instant he takes the oath. Everything else that follows will be the start of a progressive and cumulative defeat for Obama. The One will get the laws he wants and his supporters will conclude that means he is winning, as if saying something is so makes it so. Let them do their worst because there is nothing anyone can do to stop them at this juncture in any case.

But Obama’s actual enemy is not the Republicans, who are prostrate at the moment and worthless as currently constituted. No, it is reality itself that is Obama’s utterly implacable opponent: that vast Ponzi scheme called ‘regulatory statism’ has reached the end of the cycle, as Ponzi schemes always do in the end. In previous times, economic growth has masked the pyramidal nature of what both parties did as they pushed the hard choices off into the future with the knowing connivance of millions of voters… but not this time. The future has arrived and the sainted American middle class, who acquiesced to it all and yet about whom no ill may be spoken, will find that future quite unsympathetic.

And when irksome reality stubbornly refuses to follow Hollywood’s script and accept the Triumph of the Will, more laws will follow. And then more. And more. The cannibalisation of the shrinking productive economy to ‘bail out’ the failing bits will become ever more intense. Much as John “I support the Bail Out” McCain would have done in fact. Pervasive political regulations trying to manipulate things back into health will become ever more pervasive, all to rapturous applause at first… and all to no avail. Obama’s progressive and spectacularly expensive defeat will be a defeat for the entire nation with implications that will be felt around the world. It will be a defeat that consumes much that is still gleaming and golden in the Republic and turns it into toxic waste.

So now is not the time for ‘unity’ and ‘bipartisanship’, which is just a genteel way of demanding surrender, it is the time for resistance and the renewal of purpose by those who see the liberty and prosperity that comes from constitutionally limited government as a prize worth any price to defend. This was never really about race other than as the final flourish of a very worthy battle that had already been won.


44 comments to Obama’s day

  • Many “white” Americans voted for Obama along racial lines, too – they voted for Obama because he’s “black.” Thus, Obama’s election is a triumph for “reverse” racism.

  • Nuke Gray!

    When the economy nosedives because his socialist policies add to the problem, will Americans then admit that America has a B.O. problem?

  • Andrew

    “A huge percentage of America’s blacks voted along racial lines…..”

    If that was the case, how come his % of the AA vote was only marginally higher than Kerry’s?

  • cs

    Keep kicking ass, Perry. Keep kicking all asses which need kicking.

  • lucklucky

    Very Good. Best text yet about it.

  • Jesse

    Indeed, beautifully put. Though I’d say the time for resistance has passed. The time for preparation is at hand. If you’re not a gun believer (much like me in the past) than I strongly recommend you become one. If things crumble as much as they have the potential to, survival may take on an older fashioned meaning.

  • Jesse

    Indeed, beautifully put. Though I’d say the time for resistance has passed. The time for preparation is at hand. If you’re not a gun believer (much like me in the past) than I strongly recommend you become one. If things crumble as much as they have the potential to, survival may take on an older fashioned meaning.

  • Mole

    Ill believe Mr “Hope’N’Change” when the race hustlers like Shrpton and Co pack up their tents and fade off into the sunset.

    It seems fairly obvious that there are a lot of rent seekers looking to be installed in one of his 4 million jobs “created or preserved”. All suckling on the government teat.

  • If that was the case, how come his % of the AA vote was only marginally higher than Kerry’s?

    Marginally? 88% for Kerry, 95% for Obama.

  • Monoi

    Can someone explain why he is considered black? His mother was white, wasn’t she?

  • There were laws in the USA (the ‘Jim Crow’ laws) within living memory that would have classified him thus and discriminated against him as a consequence.

    But this article is actually about how this is not about race.

  • After reading this I suddenly feel much better having come down with a bad bout of Barack Broadcasting virus.

  • If I may quote the blessed St Terry on the matter of unity –

    Pulling together is the aim of despots and tyrannies. Free men pull in all kinds of directions.

    paraphrased from Lord Vetinari

  • The RSA’s Matthew Taylor has an interesting piece on the tests for Obama: http://www.matthewtaylorsblog.com/thersa/obama-and-our-special-day/

  • Johnathan Pearce

    It will be interesting to see how some of BO’s supporters react if he actually operates on a centrist basis rather than as an outright socialist looter and foreign policy idiotarian: picking moderate Dems and even the odd GOP person for various positions, as well as going slow on shutting Gitmo, repealing various bits of Bush-era laws, etc.

  • Ham

    It will, Johnathan. It’ll also be interesting to see the reaction of those who were gasping in terror at the spectre of communism before the election. Perry speaks the truth when he lumps Obama in with the history of big state failures, rather than a revolutionary Manchurian Candidate.

    Being just another centre-left political animal is still contemptible, of course. And I hope some of us can keep the energy to gasp in terror, as I will continue to do, at that thought. Obama’s presidency is an opportunity to make a strong case for the opposite attitude to government in a way that an equally disastrous McCain presidency would not be.

  • James

    “Can someone explain why he is considered black? His mother was white, wasn’t she?”

    BHO is a mulatto (“biracial”, if you please). He is the first generation offspring of one black parent and one white parent. The actress Halle Berry occupies the same position.

    Barry’s identity as a “black” man is more than one of convenience. It stems from America’s old “one drop” rule.

  • Kevin B

    On the main point, that Obama’s election will mark some sort of closure in race relations: Fat chance!

    There are too many people with too much invested in keeping the race relations industry alive to allow it to ride of into the sunset. Plus ‘Blame whitey’ is such a useful slogan for race hustlers.

    On the possibility that Obama will govern as some sort of slightly leftist, third way, centrist. Hmm…

    True he may have appointed some ‘pragmatic’ Clinton retreads to some key posts, but the next layer down is far more leftist, so the suspicion must be that while Hillary and Co smile benignly at the world, the underlings will be beavering away, with the help of their soulmates in Congress, at entrenching the socialist model deep into the American political/economic system. Oh, and some of his picks, Holdren and Browner for example, scare the pants off me.

  • On the main point, that Obama’s election will mark some sort of closure in race relations: Fat chance!

    Except that is far from my main point… I could not care less about the race relations industry as the facts indicate that particular battle was won a while ago.

    Blacks are not poorer because of racism now, they are poorer because they follow leaders like Barack Obama and Jessie Jackson and Charles Rangel rather than truly wise men like Roy Innis. The point I made about race is just that this objectively marks the apogee of the civil rights struggle and that, and nothing else about Obama, actually is worth a well deserved smile.

    My main point is this is not about race, it is about statism and how no matter what the statists do, they will make the economic crisis worse, not better. I would be writing almost the same things if the dismal John “I support the bail out” McCain had won

  • David Beatty

    Perry, well done.

  • Kim du Toit

    I intend to treat the new President with all respect and deference, in much the same manner as the Left treated our previous President.

    I likewise think that we Americans should all come together in in a spirit of unity, just as we did in the past four years.

    No TV will be switched on in our house today.

  • Vinegar Joe

    There’s absolutely nothing to be happy about. In a very short time, the world is going to be looking back at George Bush’s tenure as a golden age.

  • Vinegar Joe

    Barry’s identity as a “black” man is more than one of convenience. It stems from America’s old “one drop” rule.

    I’m a Southerner, raised with mostly Black neighbors and I never heard of this “one drop rule” until Obama and the questions about his race.

  • Brad

    I agree Jesse. I don’t see the transition to a Federal Government bounded by constitutional constraints and a free market as a smooth and easy one. History has shown to what lengths romantics will go to preserve the State and all its Good Works. When civil disorder comes about, what will be the result? Suddenly red state crackers and blue state elitists will come to their senses and take Misesian Free Markets and near anarchanism as the only method to preserve free individuals? Or will a defenseless minority be scapegoated into labor camps for ultimate disposal?

    This isn’t hyperbole for effect. When times are bad and stomachs are empty people look for the tallest totem pole they can find. And suddenly Providence appoints some Romantic (Robespierre, Stalin, Hitler, Mao) to take the reins of society to order things. And the end result is a triangulated minority who take the blame for all that is wrong.

    If we ever do get to some stable, market based, limited government society of fluid and dynamic mutual associations it will only be after a hellfire. The economic misallocations that have to adjust backward aren’t going to be tolerated by whomever are the ones left standing after the music stops. There are going to be too many people with nothing to their names but the ability to unleash violence to get their daily bread. Too many people are accustomed to “safety nets”, which has merely been Ponzi Schemes succeeding while the cash flow was positive, to make for soft landings. Once reality hits and these safety nets are removed, stability is compromised.

    Word has it that there will be riots in the likes of Detroit. The State of Michigan has the highest unemployment rate at near 11% and we haven’t seen anywhere near the worst of it yet. It took three years after 1929 to hit bottom, and if we have the likes of Michigan already crippled, with car manufacturers barely holding on and likely to do worse, what will happen? I can hope for a short transition to free markets and individualism, but I don’t think history abounds with examples that it will work out so well.

  • I am unsure who you are really talking to Brad. I for one do not expect a ‘short transition to free markets and individualism’, I expect things to get a great deal worse. And I cannot say I am entirely unhappy about that either.

    You assume the Man on the White Horse will perforce come from the statist side. I allow for quite different possibilities, which is why the battle that matters *now* is the culture war, not the political one.

    The statists in power will do their worst. So let them. That is not the battle to be fighting right now. The only US politics I care about at the moment are internal Republican politics with a view to The Long Struggle, with has little to do with opposing Obama in the short term. It was never going to be a quick or painless matter.

  • MlR

    “No TV will be switched on in our house today.”

    I’m watching Donnie Darko.

    Good post, Perry.

    I wonder, though, what’s going to happen as “whites”, who generally turn the other cheek on racial matters, to say the least, become a smaller and smaller part of the population.

  • David Beatty

    On a side note, Bill Quick has a similar opinion regarding President Obama’s policies.

    Sadly, with respect to liberty, I agree that things will get worse before they get better.

  • pst314

    “I’m a Southerner, raised with mostly Black neighbors and I never heard of this “one drop rule” until Obama and the questions about his race.”

    I’m guessing that you’re less than 30 years old. Am I right? I’m in my 50’s and well remember all that stuff, so your lack of knowledge about “ancient history” illustrates how far we have come.

  • I utterly and COMPLETELY fail to see why I should give a shit that a black man was elected. It has nothing to do with what should matter. I would also fail to understand why I should give a shit if a “hispanic” (whatever that means) was elected. . . or any other ‘category’ of ‘people’. The main category BO belongs to is that of malignant narcissist, or demagogue, or whatever suitable epithet you would like to choose yourself.

    The ONLY thing that matters in a political victory is whether the elected person is a statist or believes in freedom and limited government. There is no other line to draw.

    My son, and many of his friends wore all black to school today to mourn the death of freedom. In a few years, I am sure that sort of thing will be illegal, too.

  • JerryM

    Reality, mixed with Pelosi and Harry Reid is going to make for some interesting times.

    Look to China. I always thought after the Olympics, it would falter. Combine that with the current collapsing economies no longer buying their goods. Going to be interesting.

  • Eric

    The only US politics I care about at the moment are internal Republican politics with a view to The Long Struggle,

    Bah. Right now the Republican leadership is trying to figure out exactly what new programs they can promise to get back into power. They’ll leave the field open for the Democrats for a good long time.

  • I remember (during the summer of this past year I think) when Perry was arguing that a vote for McCain was no great alternative whatsoever to Obama. I argued at the time the whole “lesser of two evils”, with the main purpose of supporting McCain because of his clear and unwavering support for the war.

    I still lose the “support of the war” part with the election of Obama, (although a lot less than I thought) but further research reveals McCain to be no less of a big-government tool than Obama, campaign promises to the contrary of course.

    I realize we have to truly burn the statists philosophies to the ground and salt the earth they are grown from, but I am not afraid to admit I question whether or not this nation can afford the price.

    The expansion of federal powers and big government programs is a cancerous tumor that is going to grow during Obamas tenure, and I fear GREATLY the inevitable medecine that we will have to swallow to get rid of it.

  • darkbhudda

    It’s a sad day. It would have been a sad day if McCain was elected too but at least he didn’t have the media worshipping him and admitting they will cover up for him.

    Bush was bad enough, but he could never get away with turning his supporters into some kind of domestic corps. And he certainly would have been raked over the coals suggesting slavery or as Obama called it compulsory community service for high school and university students.

    Tech sites are falling over themselves praising the new open, accessible Whitehouse.gov site. Ignoring the model that Change.org provided by removing controversial pages and deleting comments from people who aren’t Obama worshippers.

    I knew that we would see full on fascist worship in my lifetime, but I didn’t expect it to happen so soon. I fully expect to see giant posters of our Fearless Leader up everywhere, “spontaneous” marches and of course video screens showing his weekly address to the nation.

  • Are you guys kidding? This is great stuff! If this does not motivate people to purge the statist/RINO crap from the Republican Party so that some meaningful opposition actually becomes possible, then nothing will.

    You will know things are starting to get on the right track when the media start saying the Republicans are ‘committing suicide’ and ‘losing their minds’ etc. etc. If they are not saying that then nothing meaningful has actually changed yet.

  • Zevilyn

    Irrelevant off topic screed deleted. if you want to be able to change the subject, start your own damn blog

  • Perry,

    What I’m afraid of is that the statist/RINO crap from the Republican Party WON’T be purged as a result of the inevitable reality shock from Obamas administration. I’m afraid we’ll see more McCains instead of less.

    I’m afraid of just HOW BAD it will have to get before the majority in this country sees through the liberal big-government empty promises.

    But, fears be damned- I wouldn’t rather be anywhere else. This place is amazing.

  • What I’m afraid of is that the statist/RINO crap from the Republican Party WON’T be purged as a result of the inevitable reality shock from Obamas administration.

    Then learn Spanish and move to Costa Rica. Otherwise get involved in any way you can and make it happen.

  • Zevilyn

    “I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country….corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.” Abraham Lincoln

    I doubt Abe would have been a big fan of Bush and his Corporate Republican party.

  • Otherwise get involved in any way you can and make it happen.

    YES WE CAN!!!


    Reminds me of the People Who Hate People Party from the Master Bill Hicks:

    “People who hate people – come together!!”
    … We’re kinda having trouble getting of the boards, but you know …
    “Are you gonna be there?”
    “Then I ain’t fuckin’ coming”
    “But you’re our strongest member!”
    “FUCK YOU!”
    “That’s what I’m talking about, you asshole!”
    “Fuck Off!!”
    “Damn, we almost had a meeting going…”

  • Mrs. du Toit

    Taking the long view, I suspect that Obama’s failures (which will be plenty and deep) will hurt the race divide, as opposed to all the happy/sappy crap that’s going on now.

    So when the WORST President of the United States, whose policies destroyed the U.S. economy for decades, is judged, will his race be a footnote or in the opening paragraph?

    It’s the old adage: “Be careful what you wish for. You may get it.”

    Making a big deal about his race today will mean that it will be a big deal in the future. It was a very stupid move.

    Many Americans voted for Obama on racist grounds, “because he was black,” not because he was the best person for the job. (“Reverse” racism is STILL racism.)

    They got what they wished for and the outcome will not be good for any of us.

  • Laird

    Purging the RINOs isn’t going to be easy. These morons have learned absolutely nothing from their massive electoral defeat. Here’s a quote from an article in today’s Wall Street Journal:

    “What the Republicans have to understand is this is not about getting more conservative, it’s about getting more seats,” said John Feehery, a former aide to Dennis Hastert, the Republicans’ most recent House speaker.

    In other words, principle is irrelevant; regaining power is all that matters.

    Here’s another quote from the same article:

    Mr. [John] Boehner said he occasionally must battle his party’s conservative wing; some think that is what happened in the fall when rank-and-file conservatives balked at the financial industry bailout, helping contribute to the defeat of early versions.

    There is a little opposition to this method of thinking, but it’s not really in any position of power. One such person is SC Sen. Jim DeMint. “We have to have a remnant of the Republican Party who are recognizable as freedom fighters,” Mr. DeMint said. “What I’m looking to do as a conservative leader in the Senate is to identify those Republicans, and even some Democrats, and put together a consensus of people who can help stop this slide toward socialism.”

    But unless the DeMint element can unseat the Boehner/Hastert RINO wing from the leadership (an unlikely event), we’re going to see an extended period of accommodation and appeasement. Compare this to 1980: The Democrats were so shocked and demoralized when Reagan took power that for the first year or so they gave him pretty much whatever he wanted (which was a good thing). Eventually, though, they reverted to type and became their normal obstructionist selves, which was possible because they controlled Congress. Today, the Republicans control nothing and can barely maintain a filibuster in the Senate (and not at all in the House). They are just going to bend over and smile while Obama, Pelosi and Reid have their collective way with them. Not only is power their only objective (and principle be damned), they are so obtuse that they can’t see that being “Democrat-lite” isn’t the way to get there.

    The better strategic model is the “Contract With America” adopted by House Republican firebrands early in the Clinton years. They had some successes, although in my opinion they gave up too quickly. Where is Newt Gingrich when we need him?

  • Purging the RINOs isn’t going to be easy

    Of course not. It will require courage and ruthlessness but the alternative is a great deal worse.

  • Mrs. du Toit

    “Overwhelming defeat” is what Reagan did to McGovern. 22 to 28 states, a difference of 6 is “overwhelming”? 53% to 46% is only “overwhelming” if you use the same type of analysis and formulas the Global Warming alarmists use.

    Vote by Age(Link) | Obama | McCain | Other
    18-29 (18%) 66% 32% 2%
    30-44 (29%) 52% 46% 2%
    45-64 (37%) 50% 49% 1%
    65 and Older (16%) 45% 53% 2%

    The “Other” vote makes those who didn’t vote for Obama a tie in the 45 to 64 demographic, and only 2% difference in the 30 to 44 group. Obama lost older voters. It was the ignorant youth and women who supported Obama.

    That’s not an “overwhelming defeat.”