New Day Rising

Chris Lehmann says this song played at random on his iPod this morning. Talk about synchronicity...

It's good to have theme music. I'd guess this is from 1987.

This is the first day in a few that I've actually been able to concentrate on work for more than a few minutes at a time. Until the very moment that the election was called last night, there was dread. I don't think I realized just how much until I sat down at the keyboard this morning and became fully absorbed in writing in spite of not having had quite enough sleep.

As a socialist, I remain skeptical about the implications of what just happened: Nobody gets as far as Obama did as fast as he did without a keen instinct for finding the center (at least not in a period of low social struggle). The idea that he's going to do anything but that without major pressure from below is purely wishful thinking.

But yes, this is a transitional moment, and the energy unleashed by this repudiation of a low, dishonest decade is something glorious to experience.

And while I never thought of it until just this moment, BHO is the first president who might very well have been at a Husker Du show at some point.

PS. Another soundtrack suggestion here.

November 5, 2008 2:33 PM | | Comments (1)



Nobody gets as far as Obama did as fast as he did without a keen instinct for finding the center (at least not in a period of low social struggle). The idea that he's going to do anything but that without major pressure from below is purely wishful thinking.

The actual center, in one sense, resembles the central squares of a chess board. (My knowledge of the game is thin, but I like the metaphor.) They are not the object of the game, but they are contested by the patient and the attentive yet ceded by the naive or the uncommitted. Taking, and holding, the center requires organization and resources. In politics, if you don't build them yourself, the only shortcut is to align yourself with those who do.

In another, the center is an invocation. Neither left nor right but somewhere beyond, the center is the plane of What Works above the partisan fray. It is the promise of a common good without conflict. To this usage, your co-blogger Daniel at Crooked Timber has the rejoinder:

People seem to be faintly drawn to the idea that there might be more political dimensions than just "left" and "right". Bullshit. Being in favour of allowing other people to take drugs, shag each other or read what they want isn't a political position; it's what we call "manners", "civilisation" or "humanity" [....] The political question of interest splits fair and sqare down a Left/Right axis: either you think that it is more important to provide a decent life for everyone in the world, or you think it is more important to preserve the rights of people who own property.

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This page contains a single entry by Quick Study published on November 5, 2008 2:33 PM.

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