I contend that we were right to be. 2008 did seem like a confluence of circumstances that set the stage for a new liberalism that would finally be a resounding rebuttal to the creeping and noxious authoritarian reactionary movement that American society has been embracing since the election of, gag me, Ronald fracking Reagan. Here's Digby (emphasis mine):
Kuttner's critique of Obama is on the money --- in my view, if there was ever a president who had the economic circumstances and political mandate to challenge the prevailing wisdom, it was him. But for reasons about which we can only speculate, he didn't do it. I agree with Alterman that the deck is stacked against progressives, but it always is. Money never welcomes the hippies into the country club. But it's a rare president who has a huge mandate for change, a once in a generation economic crisis, a reputation for rhetorical brilliance and a congressional majority. I just don't agree with the conventional wisdom that Ben Nelson had more power over policy than he did.
Alas, it was not to be. And many of us fear that the failure of this moment will seal the fate of liberal policies for generations to come, a fear that exacerbates our disappointment. So what happened? Digby points us to a review of a couple of books about the Obama presidency, one good and one bad, but it is the review itself that she recommends reading. I agree.