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  1. #1

    Default Obama's Second Term

    Since "Between Barack and a Hard Place" is well past the 10,000 post limit I suggest we start a new thread to discuss what the second Obama administration is going to look like.

    It might also be amusing for people to post their predictions for what the World and the US will look like in 2016. That way we can dig this out in four years time and embarass the heck out of each other.

    I'll start this with a couple of points:

    1. Per Realclearpolitics, Obama's job pproval has hit 50%. Rassmusen actually has him on 52% approval. I think i'll move uf for a week or two and then stabilize - peopel love a winner.

    2. I expect one of the first issues Obama addresses internationally will be Syria. I don't expect an air war much less a ground campaign. I do expect increased assistance to the rebels; assistance to Turkey and Jordan in setting up so-called "safe zones" inside Syria; supprte for Turkish proposals (unveiled within hours of tthe US elction) to establish a no-fly zone in northern Syria enforced by ground-to air-missile batteries loaned from NATO and a concerted attemtpt to force Assad to negotiate a political transition.

    3. NASA apparently has detailed plans for a manned lunar mission as part of a broader program aimed at a manned Mars mission. They didn't announce this before the eelction for fear that it didn't fit with Romney's budget plans asd could be seen as politcizing the agency.

    4. I strongly suspect that Fidel Castro will die before 2016, allowing a possible restoration of diplomatic ties and and end to the embargo.

    5. Before the election Obama was hinting that, if re-elected, he'd seek changes to US drug policy. It wouldn't surprise me if, for example, he issued an exective order effectively ending enforcement of federal anti-mariuana laws in Washington and Colorado. (Sorry, "prioritizing enforcement in other states.") Yes, I'm aware of his support for the DEA in his first term.

    6. I expect the Dream Act to pass in some form. If the Mexican economy continues to outperform the American economy, I can see many more illegal immigrants choosing ot go back home and illegal immigration becoming a much less important issue in US politics.

    7. I see little to no hope of substantive progress on an international agreement to limit GHG emissions. I do however expect to see a lot more of the piecemeal, sectoral programs sseen in Obama's first term, leading me to hope that the US economy can grow without a significant increase in GHG emissions.

    A snap-shot of 2016

    Unemployment 5-6%
    Economic growth: 3-4%
    Budget Deficit: $800 billion.

    Yes, i'm a crazy wild-eyed optimist. I left out the bit abotu his farewell world tour where million-strong crowds in newly-democratic Syria and Iran turn out to greeet him and he finishes up with dual speeches in the Israeli capital of Jerusalam and the Palestinian capital of East Jerusalem.
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  2. #2
    Here we ..... go DennyK's Avatar
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    Predictions sure to go wrong:

    1) 12,000,000 will have been created in the U.S. since the start of Obama's second term.

    2) In a cynical attempt to prove how diverse it is, the Republican National Committee will trot out Marco Rubio as its Presidential nominee.

    3) People will piss and moan about how much they hate Congress and then go out and vote the majority of incumbents back into office.

    4) Axl Rose will scrap work on Guns and Roses upcoming album citing irreconcilable differences with himself.

  3. #3
    Big Hairy Member JeffreyWKramer's Avatar
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    I will be surprised if there is not a serious assassination attempt made against President Obama, either before his reenauguration, or shortly afterward.

    The reactions to many elements in the far right to Obama's reelection are not unlike the way John Wilkes Booth reportedly reacted to Lincoln's reelection and the subsequent Union victory in the Civil War. A disaffected loser and alcoholic who identified with the South due to their underdog status and who was a white supremacist apparently so he could feel himself superior to someone, Booth surrounded himself with like-minded, easily-influenced malcontents. When the Confederates lost, he felt a sense of impotent rage and personal slight, and finally carried out an assassination attempt, after several months of plotting and at least one previous, aborted attempt.

    One doesn't have to look far into the reactions to some in today's far right to see much of this same mentality. Entitled extremists feel personally insulted and betrayed because this election has not gone as they wanted, and there is no lack of excessive vitriol aimed at President Obama. Just prior to the election, people like Mike Huckabee framed voting for Obama as a sin - something that could sentence one to Hell - while last summer some other evangelical extremists were sending out group emails more or less urging their fellow Christians to pray for Obama's death. Elements in the Tea Party have framed their hate-and-fear-driven movement as a "new American revolution," and Donald Trump reportedly twitted to urge a revolution against Obama's win, before he or one of his handlers sobered up and deleted the message. Various elements of the right identified - and continue to identify - Obama not as a mere political opponent, but as The Enemy. Many in the GOP - notably including Karl Rove, the FOX crew and many of the more noxious conservative pundits - frame the election as something that was taken from them, and are in denial that their losses are the fault of the party, their poor selections of candidate and a set of messages and stances that are too extreme and too exclusionary to be accepted by the majority of Americans. They regard their failure as someone eles's fault, and a lot of them don't show any progress toward accepting and moving on.

    I won't be surprised if some individual - or perhaps a small group of individuals - either makes some serious attempt on the President's life or is disovered plotting to do so but taken into custody before they can act on such a plan. I would expect the person(s) making or planning the attempt to be someone on the fringe of the Tea Party or like-minded movements, or someone involved at the more extreme fringes of the Christian right, probably someone with a history of repeated failure, mental illness and/or issues with drugs and/or alcohol.

    My hope is that the FBI and US Secret Service are paying an awful lot of attention to the activities of the various far right groups, in person, on message boards and in the blogosphere, and have been putting a lot of effort into identifying the sorts of people who might do something like this.

    And yeah, I'm aware that people were making this prediction after Obama was first elected, and that no serious attempt or credible effort toward making one developed, but since then things have gotten even more polarized, the histrionic rhetoric on the right has only increased, and after their perceived gains in the midterm elections, the extremists feel robbed. I will be surprised if all that misplaced hatred and fear doesn't get expressed in some very unfortunate manner.

    If not Obama, Gov.Christie might be targeted by some on the far right who frame him a traitor and blame him for Romney's defeat, and if Boehner and others among the GOP do try to compromise with Obama and soften their obstructionist efforts in Congress, they too might be branded traitors by those whose sense of entitlement they've previously fed into. A lesbian was elected to the Senate; virulently anti-abortion candidates were defeated, leaving their misogynistic and (in their feeble minds) Biblically-inspired supporters feeling wronged and fearful. Gay rights activists, Latino churches, Muslims... I fear someone is going to get hurt.

    I hope I'm wrong.
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  4. #4
    Elder Member jesse_custer's Avatar
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    Jeffrey, you (and others) might find this interesting: http://www.libertarianrepublican.net...rica-only.html

    In short, the man says to end your relationships with all Democrats. If you're married to a Democrat, for example, get a divorce.

  5. #5
    Peachtree St. Irregular Loren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jesse_custer View Post
    Jeffrey, you (and others) might find this interesting: http://www.libertarianrepublican.net...rica-only.html

    In short, the man says to end your relationships with all Democrats. If you're married to a Democrat, for example, get a divorce.
    Eh, Eric Dondero is something of a nutter. It doesn't surprise me when crazy people say crazy things.

  6. #6
    Elder Member jesse_custer's Avatar
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    It didn't surprise me so much as illustrate how some have amped up their hatred of all things Obama.

  7. #7

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    As I said earlier, now that you've got a bit more time, go ahead and replace a few Supreme Court members. They're about due.
    Stay away from the chimps. You can't reason with them and you'll just end up with monkey shit all over your clothes.

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  8. #8
    Big Hairy Member JeffreyWKramer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jesse_custer View Post
    Jeffrey, you (and others) might find this interesting: http://www.libertarianrepublican.net...rica-only.html

    In short, the man says to end your relationships with all Democrats. If you're married to a Democrat, for example, get a divorce.
    Quote Originally Posted by Loren View Post
    Eh, Eric Dondero is something of a nutter. It doesn't surprise me when crazy people say crazy things.
    This particular nut was mentioned in passing on "Morning Edition" this AM. Pathetic, and disturbing.

    They also featured a married couple who manage to make things work, despite one being a Republican and the other a Democrat. That was much nicer, and closer to the norm than Mr. Dondero, thankfully. But that doesn't make me worry any less about the ones that make Dondero seem rational by comparison.
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    KRAMER'S LAWS:
    1) Most people are stupid.
    2) Most people who aren't stupid often behave as if they were stupid.
    3) Many people who are not stupid nonetheless believe a lot of astonishingly stupid things.

    “really? isnt the bible millions of years old?” – curefreak
    “Yep. It was originally written by a stegosaurus and a fern.” – Dan Apodaca

  9. #9
    The power of the rainbow. jade_nova's Avatar
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    I would like to see mas protests like there was during George W. Bush's term and have conservatives and Republicans say that dissent and protests are forms of patriotism.
    "Here's to me and here's to you. If we should ever disagree, then here's to me and to hell with you," William O. Astle 1905-2002

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  10. #10
    Marked for Redemption David Walton's Avatar
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    If not Obama, Gov.Christie might be targeted by some on the far right who frame him a traitor and blame him for Romney's defeat, and if Boehner and others among the GOP do try to compromise with Obama and soften their obstructionist efforts in Congress, they too might be branded traitors by those whose sense of entitlement they've previously fed into. A lesbian was elected to the Senate; virulently anti-abortion candidates were defeated, leaving their misogynistic and (in their feeble minds) Biblically-inspired supporters feeling wronged and fearful. Gay rights activists, Latino churches, Muslims... I fear someone is going to get hurt.
    Jeffrey, I live in Texas, which is predominantly Fundamentalist and Republican.

    The simple truth is, most people are inherently decent and their prejudices are constantly breaking down when faced with the reality that homosexuality can't be wished away. There was a time when it was 'the love that dare not speak its name,' but that time is passing. The conversation has moved into the light of day, where love thrives and hatred is exposed for what it truly is.

    Christians believe God is Love, and we struggle daily with what that means. Most of us find that truth inconsistent with ideologically inspired violence.
    "I came to the conclusion that the optimist thought everything good except the pessimist, and the pessimist thought everything bad, except himself." -- G.K. Chesterton

  11. #11
    Elder Member Winslow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DennyK View Post
    3) People will piss and moan about how much they hate Congress and then go out and vote the majority of incumbents back into office.
    Due to gerrymandering, it is going to be extremely difficult to vote these guys out. The makeup of congress is more about corrupt rigging of the system and disenfranchisement rather than it is about the mindset of the American voter.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Walton View Post
    Jeffrey, I live in Texas, which is predominantly Fundamentalist and Republican.

    The simple truth is, most people are inherently decent and their prejudices are constantly breaking down when faced with the reality that homosexuality can't be wished away. There was a time when it was 'the love that dare not speak its name,' but that time is passing. The conversation has moved into the light of day, where love thrives and hatred is exposed for what it truly is.

    Christians believe God is Love, and we struggle daily with what that means. Most of us find that truth inconsistent with ideologically inspired violence.
    I think Jeffrey's point though is that the extreme language and ideological demagoguery can push an unstable person over the edge.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Anodyne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jesse_custer View Post
    Jeffrey, you (and others) might find this interesting: http://www.libertarianrepublican.net...rica-only.html
    When I clicked on the link, I got a "Suspicious Site" warning from McAfee. Apparently this guy is dangerous in more ways than one.
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  13. #13
    Marked for Redemption David Walton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Winslow View Post
    I think Jeffrey's point though is that the extreme language and ideological demagoguery can push an unstable person over the edge.
    Which can be a self-fulfilling prophecy on the other side of things, too.

    I see no more reason to believe there's going to be a major assassination attempt than four or even eight years ago.

    There were some intense narratives circulating about President Bush that were easily the equivalent of Hellfire and damnation. His re-election signaled the end of democracy, after all.

    As did Clinton's before that, and Bush 41, and Reagan...
    "I came to the conclusion that the optimist thought everything good except the pessimist, and the pessimist thought everything bad, except himself." -- G.K. Chesterton

  14. #14
    Too late Nick Soapdish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iangould View Post

    6. I expect the Dream Act to pass in some form. If the Mexican economy continues to outperform the American economy, I can see many more illegal immigrants choosing ot go back home and illegal immigration becoming a much less important issue in US politics.
    I think that something like the Dream Act is almost a sure thing. Republicans are realizing that they can't just alienate the Hispanic vote like that. They're a rapidly growing demographic and one that isn't nearly as predisposed towards the Democratic Party so they could make big inroads and get back to Dubya's support pretty quickly. They don't need to support the Dream Act, but as long as they stop actively fighting it and demonizing Hispanics, I think that they'll be doing a lot better. But now, they're barely keeping a majority among Cuban-Americans.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Walton View Post
    Which can be a self-fulfilling prophecy on the other side of things, too.

    I see no more reason to believe there's going to be a major assassination attempt than four or even eight years ago.

    There were some intense narratives circulating about President Bush that were easily the equivalent of Hellfire and damnation. His re-election signaled the end of democracy, after all.

    As did Clinton's before that, and Bush 41, and Reagan...
    But we've already had an upswing in domestic terrorism in the United States since Obama's election.

  15. #15
    Big Hairy Member JeffreyWKramer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Walton View Post
    Jeffrey, I live in Texas, which is predominantly Fundamentalist and Republican.

    The simple truth is, most people are inherently decent and their prejudices are constantly breaking down when faced with the reality that homosexuality can't be wished away. There was a time when it was 'the love that dare not speak its name,' but that time is passing. The conversation has moved into the light of day, where love thrives and hatred is exposed for what it truly is.

    Christians believe God is Love, and we struggle daily with what that means. Most of us find that truth inconsistent with ideologically inspired violence.
    Absolutely. Most do. But then there are the ones who don't, and those are the ones that are a concern, as are those who get to the same place through extreme beliefs other than religious ones.
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    KRAMER'S LAWS:
    1) Most people are stupid.
    2) Most people who aren't stupid often behave as if they were stupid.
    3) Many people who are not stupid nonetheless believe a lot of astonishingly stupid things.

    “really? isnt the bible millions of years old?” – curefreak
    “Yep. It was originally written by a stegosaurus and a fern.” – Dan Apodaca

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