January 1, 2013 - admin

Volume 39, Issue 1: Old Wine, Old Bottles

We have just finished a marathon election season, almost two years in the making, and by all accounts billions of dollars spent (almost $3b by the candidates, altogether about $6b by all the various campaigns and PACs formed to promote one candidate or another), to arrive at the same place. We might be excused if we glance at a British system that holds its elections in 3 weeks and bans television advertising – after all, we are hard pressed to see how that results in very different outcomes in governing styles and political philosophies. Little has changed in the US political landscape: stubborn right-wing Republicans, wary of Tea Party primary challenges, retain control over the US House of Representatives, while Democrats and their uneasy neoliberalism remain entrenched in the US Senate. President Obama was re-elected and, depending on whose tea leaves one consults (certainly not the Tea Party’s), it was a resounding victory for a continuation of his policies, or a narrow victory by a President with a less than stellar record in office over an elitist and even more unappealing opponent. After all, fewer than half the eligible voters chimed in by voting, so a case can be made that the electorate was not enthusiastic about its choices….

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