Barry SCHWARTZ (Barijo ŜVARC) (chemoelectric) wrote,

Breaking the ‘change’

It is distressing to me when someone takes that Obama promised ‘change’ and then inserts their own words after the ‘change’. Mind you, Obama encouraged this behavior by using ‘CHANGE’ without content as a (hardly unique) campaign slogan; but he did, frequently, give content. He said, for example, that he was going to try to change the way things are done in Washington, and he said he would try to change the way people talk to each other in political matters.

But, on Air America, Nicole Sandler (with thorough justification) wants our healthcare changed and so she inserts that after Obama’s ‘change’ and complains that he doesn’t ram through healthcare in exactly the fashion of Bush. To do that would be direct breakage of the explicit campaign promise that Barack Obama actually did make. Yes, he promised healthcare reform, but it was, if anything, the foundation of his campaign that Obama would not do things the way George W. Bush had done them.

I’m not saying this is a policy I support; that’s beside the point. I’m not saying that Barack Obama is super wonderful. If I had been elected president, we’d likely be seeing Washington moving in quite different ways. But Obama promised what he promised, and he has been pretty good on the follow-through: he promised military escalation in Afghanistan, and we have military escalation in Afghanistan; he promised to change the way things were done in Washington, and, true to this promise, he has resisted ramming things through without debate; and, as the counterproductive Max Baucus himself recently admitted, Obama will get us healthcare reform. Obama did not promise to get it done immediately and painlessly, and did not promise any particular type of reform (though he did, of course, voice preferences).

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