In 2009, Barack Obama was the most powerful newly elected American president in a generation. Democrats controlled the House and, for about five months in the second half of the year, they enjoyed a filibuster-proof, 60-vote majority in the Senate. For the first six months of his presidency, Obama had an approval rating in the 60s.My recollection is that Obama used the opportunity to take over the banking, automobile, and health care industries. It was the biggest wave of nationalizations in American history. Was that not enough?
Democrats also had a once-in-a-lifetime political opportunity presented by a careening global crisis. ...
If he’d been in the mood to press the case, Obama might have found widespread public appetite for the sort of aggressive, interventionist restructuring of the American economy that Franklin D. Roosevelt conjured with the New Deal.
It was a political disaster, as Democrats lost most of their power from then until Nov. 2016. They didn't recover until Nov. 2018.
Another NY Times column calls Pres. Trump "the most authoritarian American president in living memory, elected by a paltry minority". No, he was elected by a majority in the way votes are counted in our system, and he is much less authoritarian than Obama was. Here is the real complaint with Trump:
But the premise of Trumpist populism is that the legitimacy and authority of government is conditional on agreement with the political preferences of a shrinking minority of citizens — a group mainly composed of white, Christian conservatives. ...He is boasting that White Christian conservatives will be demographically marginalized, and eliminated from political power.
Votes? Sooner or later, they won’t have enough, and they know it.
He explains that there is only one obstacle to exterminating the White Christian conservatives -- they belong to citizen militias. So he urges plans by Beto O'Rourke and others to disarm the Whites.
Meanwhile, it is the Left that appears to be itching to provoke a Civil War. Increasingly, California is rebelling against federal policies, and acting as if it wants to secede.