Last night as I was drifting off to sleep I caught this clip on the local news. What do we have here? A Black woman expressing discontent with President Obama. Now having had a chance to make the rounds to some of my favorite bloggers this morning like Field Negro and a few others, there are some that want to down play what this woman had to say. To recap in case you aren’t up for link clicking, this gal expressed her unhappiness that her financial situation has actually worsened since Obama took office. Now anyone who thought that Obama becoming POTUS was going to magically make America a happy and prosperous place for all clearly had been smoking herbals. No one man can be all things to all people. Clearly Obama has faced some challenges that his predecessors never had to face namely the rise of nut jobs aka Palin, Beck, etc. There is also the fact that a certain segment of the American population will never see this man as a legitimate president. Hell, a video could be shown clearly showing Obama being born and well folks will still believe what they want to believe.
However I thought what this woman said was brave and for many millions of American a true statement. Is she literally eating hot dogs and beans? My guess is no but more like the comfortable standard of life she thought would be rightfully hers by a certain age is no longer a sure thing. Instead of financial stability my guess is there is financial instability. In fact just before my local news showed that clip, there was a piece about how food pantry use was up in some of Maine’s most well heeled towns. I am talking places with multi million dollar homes and views of the ocean and the inhabitants of such spaces needing to go to a food pantry for food. Don’t know about you but that shit doesn’t compute, of course thanks to my job I am regularly in touch with members of the formerly middle class who need some help.
For many when Obama was elected back in 2008 we felt the spirit of change, problem is we had no idea what change would look like. While we are now being told the recession officially ended last year, the fact remains that for millions there are no jobs and what jobs exist do not pay a living wage. If the economy is stagnant it’s because people who are financially fearful tend to hang on to their money. Marketers and retailers are starting to realize that frugality is not a passing thing, it’s the new reality yet for an economy driven by consumption it’s a bad thing.
As far as Obama while he has had many barriers the fact remains he and his economic team did not take the economy seriously enough and frankly I think that is going to bite the Democrats in the ass come November. No, our President and leaders are not meant to be our friends yet in America we have a silly habit of wanting the powers to be to relate to us, to make us feel good. If you think I am lying think about the last POTUS, dude wasn’t the brightest bulb in the box but he made folks (well some folks, the ones who vote apparently) feel good. So to reward those good feelings he in return got 8 years to fuck up our nation. Spent all the money on silly wars but damn it he made us feel good.
Obama on the other hand does not make us feel good, shit we look at him and some of us get mad. Some of us support him on the basis of his Blackness (I’m talking about my fellow Black folks) but lately even Blackness is not enough to keep us from grumbling. If you can’t make the people feel good and or deliver some change that results in a few shekels in folk’s pockets so Friday dinners can be had, well you have a problem.
As I see the Tea Party growing in this country despite the clear level of stupidity of most of its members that tells me we as a nation are getting ready for some change. Yet for some reason this change feels a lot less positive than the change we witnessed in November 2008.