It has been said that a large number of 'crazy' US voters vote against their own interests. GW Bush's administration favoured the rich in just about all of their policies and, yet, Bush won a large number of white working class voters in his election victories. Many of the same impoverished people now fiercely oppose Obama, galvanised by the rhetoric of the Tea Party movement and nationalistic media figures. There is angry rejection of so-called ObamaCare which, as well imposing a compulsory health insurance coverage purchase on most Americans, also expanded health insurance coverage for more poor people, including children.
So, these working class Americans who rail against Obama and cheer those who wish the most harm of them, the Republican plutocrats, are just stupid or nuts, right?
Well, no. They are actually powerless victims reacting in desperation. Democrats and liberal forces like to blame right wing demagogues for manipulating ignorance. This may be partly true but the reason that this manipulation can take place is because there is no countervailing voice from the left.
In fact, mainstream left barely exists - even in the UK. Tony Blair's Labour Party deferentially followed Bush's extreme right wing Republican coterie whilst in office. Now the Labour Party are in opposition in the UK, their opposition to Tory-lead policies are weak. The Tories of course, are following the US' lead, as British political tradition dictates.
No genuine mainstream left exists in the US or the UK. Democrats and Republicans are, as has been said, two wings of the same bird of prey. This is why commentators like Glenn Greenwald have called Obama's first term as a Republican one. Obama has continued the policies of Bush. His deviations have been minimal - ObamaCare was one - but even that was the implementation of a right wing think tank's idea, supported by Mitt Romney, and benefiting the multi-billion insurance industry. He has not shown much inclination for the real revamp of the criminally inefficient US healthcare system, where drugs are extremely expensive and mortality rates higher than many poorer nations.
It is not stupid or delusional for poor Americans to angrily reject ObamaCare and its compulsory insurance mandate. In the absence of real political representation, they are defending their closest turf, namely, their pockets. They do not trust the government, right or left, to manage healthcare and, as a result, the corporations have gained a stranglehold over their society. So, the government takes the flak, the corporations clean up. The American citizens are under siege by forces with huge control and finances and they are, in the haze, acting to protect themselves and their family.
Just look at how much citizens are told falsities and broken promises. Campaigning politicians promise the world. Then, they fail to deliver. Obama's excuse, in a recent interview, was that as a candidate he did not realise how gridlocked Washington was. That is why he hasn't delivered the "YES WE CAN" revolution.
Political naivity and opportunism cause politicians to spew false hopes. Then, in office, they spew more prevarications and falsehoods to disguise their broken promises - whilst they go about their agenda of rewarding their candidacy sponsors, that is, the multi-million corporations who bankrolled their political campaigns.
The falsehoods are gushing constantly but the Iraq War, commenced by Bush in 2003, is a particularly heinous example. The authorities falsely claimed that Saddam Hussein had WMD and that he had links with Al Qaida. Neither was true, yet a murderous and expensive war and occupation commenced.
Now Obama seeks a second term as President, boasting about his saving of the economy, what do Americans believe? Did Obama save the economy? Or is it just another of his naive beliefs - or opportunistic rhetoric? Most Americans do not know but they hear the plangent back and forth between the two wings of the bird of prey. No wonder, then, that people give up on knowing who is telling the truth, who is best for the country - and vote, if they bother, on narrow personal reasons.