1. That Barack Obama was elected by no small majority of Americans seems to have been clearly wasted. No, I don't always think that legislation ought to be forced through, but clearly, Americans chose to give the Democrats a certain level of power and they have fucked it up royally.
That Obama backing down from these incredibly well-organized faux grass-roots lunatics is kind of surprising to me, honestly. There have been nut-jobs all along and Obama has done an amazing job of avoiding them in order to, for example, get elected. To back down now is much worse, I would say, than simply losing this fight. Obama has weakened himself throughout much of this term and is certainly in no position to help Democrats maintain their numbers in 2010. I think there's a good chance that we could well lose enough to be back to even in the Senate and House.
That the Right and conservative Democrats have been able to maintain their funding from the health care industry at the expense of the American people is nothing short of corruption. That the organized Right have been able to cause such a ruckus as to make it so that facts have been completely obscured and their "bull" (to use the phrase of that NRA guy in Montana) has become larger than life is disgusting. They claim that people are mobilizing themselves at these rallies, even when faced with the evidence of busing and corporate sponsorship.
The removal of the public option is disgusting, and that Obama seems to be on the verge of abandoning it is nothing less than denying the mandate which he was given when elected. That Obama and the Democrats are so afraid of these fuck-nuts protesters to the point of changing their tactics is perhaps one of the greatest let-downs in modern American politics. Without a public option, this bill is just an excuse to force Americans to buy expensive health care with no alternative.
As Mark Wallace points out, the fat lady has yet to sing, but I fear the Republicans, smelling blood in the water, are circling quite close.
2. Providence has been...interesting. We've had a rough time of it so far, to be honest, though I have no doubt we've been spoiled a bit in the past. It has been HOT and with no A/C, Jennifer and I have had a rough time sleeping (at night) or doing much of anything during the day time.
Providence is lovely but quite busy, and moving from the quiet streets of Iowa City hasn't helped. There's constant noise from the street and I think it's just contributed to the feeling of things being different.
The car decided to pick this period to mess up, so now that we've spent a chunk of money on it, we're not doing terribly well on money, which of course simply adds to our nostalgia for Iowa City.
On the plus side, all university-related issues have been easy and fun. I've hung out with the Waldrops and emailed back and forth with students who are coming in. I'm unbelievably excited about school, though slightly nervous about, you know, actually HAVING to write on a regular basis. School starts in a few weeks, so we'll see how it goes.
Needless to say, I've been glued to the television watching the news, especially regarding the Healthcare quagmire.
Soon: a post of the motivations of the Right in all this mess.