Victory of the Lesser Evil (Blog)

A crucial fact going into the 2012 election was this: from October 2010 to October 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics calculates that average real wages of non-supervisory workers fell by 2.4 per cent. That deterioration for the mass of the US working class happened at the same time as the so-called “recovery” from the so-far worst period of the ongoing crisis (October 2008 to October 2010). That recovery benefited only portions of the financial industry, larger corporations, and the stock market. In short, most Americans had for years been steadily worse off going into Obama’s re-election campaign. Obama had not delivered on the “hope and change” hype of his campaign. His real message to Americans was and is “hope and wait”.
Obama’s victory occurred despite disappointment in the failure of Obama and of US capitalism as a system to change the economic decline for most Americans signaled by the economic crisis that began in 2007 and has continued – for them – ever since. Romney and the Republicans lost the election because they appeared to most Americans as, if anything, likely to be worse than Obama in terms of the economic conditions of most Americans. The Republican victories in the 2010 elections had done nothing to reverse economic decline for most people. During the 2012 election campaign, Republicans presented an economic program that appeared likely to be even worse than Obama’s for most Americans. Obama forces then magnified that appearance further.
Obama’s was indeed the victory of the lesser evil.

Visit Professor Wolff's social movement project,

Permission to reprint Professor Wolff's writing and videos is granted on an individual basis. Please contact to request permission. We reserve the right to refuse or rescind permission at any time.