Saturday, 3 November 2012

The first US Tuesday in November...

Anyone who knows me would have to guess that I hope Obama wins the US Presidential election this week.  I'm heartened by polls and analysis, particularly Nate Silver's analysis, showing that Obama is likely to win.

There was a time I expressed a hope that, if he won, the Etch-A-Sketch Romney would reveal the moderate (pro-choice, gay friendly, climate science accepting) Romney of old.  I believe now that I was wrong, and that was a position of convenience for him in a liberal electorate. We have seen Romney swing hard right, but I think he no more cares for social conservatism now than he did liberalism in the past. He's more than happy to use social conservatism to further his real goal - the heartless dream of the US economic conservative. It's a little odd to see social conservatives, generally Christian, rallying behind such anti-Christian economic policies.

I suspect that if he wins, Romney will throw the social conservatives a few meaty bones, including appointing Supreme Court judges that will overturn Rose vs Wade. When elections roll again, he would tell the left that he didn't wasn't responsible for it, it was Supreme Court. He would, of course, loudly claim responsibility when sucking up to social conservatives.

This combination of the worst of both conservatisms means that it will be a little depressing if Wednesday (Tuesday US-time) sees a Republican win. I don't want to see those those here in Australia with either of those agendas emboldened by a US win.

If, as expected, Obama wins, it will be interesting to see the fall out on the US right. Will they decide, as last time, that the problem was that they weren't conservative enough? Will the Republicans split to become a libertarian economic party and an almost theocratic social conservative Christian party? Either of those would probably result in Democrats having power for a while, and a nice leftwards move in US society.

The sensible option for Republicans after a loss, if it happens, would be to come together and move a fair bit leftward, to become right of centre instead of being far right. That would see them return to power sooner and slow the progressive move in their society.

Here's hoping for an Obama victory, and for the teeth to come out at Romney for being "too liberal" in the general election campaign.

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