Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Obama II

I was trying as usual to figure out what to write about today and then it came to me, the Presidential election of course!  How can you not!  As of this writing, Pres. Obama has won re-election and although some states are too close to call (Florida, Ohio), nevertheless Obama appears to have won.  One must admit that Obama ran a well-organized campaign, with the advantage of being the incumbant, and was the first President elected with a higher unemployment figure at the end of his term than at the beginning, yet he still won.  Although Romney ran a creditable race, and seemed Presidential, he never projected the charisma that Obama generates naturally.  I think it's a case of style over substance, but everyone may have their own opinion about that.
Obama won amongst young people, blacks (90%), hispanics (80%) and asians (75%),  Romney won amongst whites and seniors.  It was clearly an uphill struggle for Romney to attain the popular vote.  As the complexion of the US population changes, whites being in a  minority, that would help non-white candidates, but as the proportion of seniors increases that may favor the more conservative candidate.   
WIll it be four more years of the same, or will some things change, for the worse or even for the better?  Most people think that Obama does not have the policies or the capability to improve the economy.  Things will probably get worse before they get better. Obamacare will become the institutionalized healthcare system in the US, extending coverage to more people, but also costing a lot more.  On foreign policy there may be a tremendous effect if Obama decides, as he is likely to, not to consider a military option against Iran developing nuclear weapons.  In that case, Israel may be forced to act unilaterally, causing a rift with the US.  Obama is more likely to pressure Israel again to make concessions to the Palestinians, yet this will bring no useful result since Gaza is under Hamas control and Abbas of Fatah will be afraid to make any agreements with Israel under those conditions.  It is doubtful if Obama can deal effectively with Egypt, Syria and the ingrained anti-Americanism in the Arab world.  Certainly US influence world-wide is in decline.
But, on the positive side, another democratic election has occurred peacefully in the US.  The Congress is going to remain predominantly Republican, so in their wisdom the American people gave the President a mandate to continue his policies, yet at the same time provided a Congress that is able to rein in the more extravagant elements of those policies.  So the US will limp on into the future with hope, but without much conviction.


Post a Comment

<< Home