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Posted by on Feb 6, 2008 in Politics, Religion | 5 comments

Obama in the White House? … Analyzing the American Mind

[The Independent]
If one were to put America on the couch and probe into the question of whether the country is ready for a Barack Obama presidency, what would be the results? In this ‘analysis’ by French psychoanalyst Daniel Sibony, the writer delves into some of the more disturbing aspects of what America REALLY thinks …

“Americans – subconsciously, of course – won’t like having a president named Barack Hussein. That is indeed his name, and they know, even if they also know that they shouldn’t mention it, that his origins shouldn’t matter. It’s in bad taste blaming someone for their origins. But ‘Hussein’ isn’t going away.”

By Daniel Sibony, writer and psychoanalyst*

Translated By Kate Davis

February 5, 2008

France – Liberation – Original Article (English)

Can we say that in France, there is a kind of consensus for Obama? Undoubtedly … Just as there was for Al Gore (and for others choices that the United States has not made). Drat, why don’t they listen to “us”?

In discussions here, the choice is unanimous: it’s Obama who wins; he’s clearly the one who’s needed. First of all, he’s Black, which is already very good, both for the Yankees he will lead from the White House and for the Whites here who choose him,
thereby proving that all involved have an open mind: and more than open: bold and innovative. And then he has promised to raise wages, open universities to the poor, withdraw troops from Iraq, perhaps spending billions – not to revive the economy like the awful Bush wants to do – but to create jobs (yes, funding for job creation: this method works so well here that they need to borrow the money from us). In short, this is a debate with the kind of consensus we’d like to build here and denounce in passing before giving in to it because it’s “realistic.”

In fact, Obama has a chance. He’s “nice” and he speaks well; his clear and decisive sentences give the public the impression (or the illusion?) of accessibility, a little like Sarkozy but more reserved; accessibility to someone with some punch, who will tackle reality head-on and change it, yes: he’s so close, eager to take action, impatient to get going, trim out the soft or worn out parts, the flabby tissue; in his hands it will be pruned, rejuvenated, just like Obama, who has youth to spare. And if there is resistance, he will lay down his more sophisticated tools, and will go at it with his “bared teeth.”

Then there are the effects of the subconscious, which could disrupt this conception. There is one such meandering idea which, unfortunately, could stop it: that is that Americans – subconsciously, of course – won’t like having a president named Barack Hussein. That is indeed his name, and they know, even if they also know that they shouldn’t mention it, that his origins shouldn’t matter. It’s in bad taste, blaming someone for their origins. But “Hussein” isn’t going away.

Certainly, he’s not Saddam Hussein, but this is a “recurring” factor, especially when combined with the idea (which is also repressed, but present and active even in its repression) that, as a child, he received a dose of Islamic education. At an age when there is no critical thinking, when things leave a mark on the memory without any “reduction.” This is an established fact, but it’s also repressed. However, a bit of reflection will reveal that this is rather positive: that if one has a fundamentalist background as an infant which is then buried beneath a layer of “Christian kindness,” because he converted, it’s possible to have more flexibility with this fundamentalism, a more rounded approach that’s less cowboy and more cooperative, more fraternal.

READ THE REST AT WORLDMEETS.US, along with continuing translated foreign news coverage of the U.S. election

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