From historian and author Howard Zinn, and in my opinion, put pretty well:

I CONFESS I am excited by the thought of Obama becoming president,
even though I am painfully aware of his limitations--his smooth,
articulate intelligence covering up a quite traditional approach to
domestic and foreign policy, aided and abetted by a group of advisers
recycled from the Clinton administration and other parts of the

Does he really think Robert Rubin will come up with a bold approach
to the economy? Or that Madeleine Albright will carve a new path in
foreign policy? (It was she who ran around the country in 1998 to
defend Clinton's bombing of Iraq, warning of "weapons of mass

If Richard Hofstadter were adding to his book The American Political
Tradition, in which he found both "conservative" and "liberal"
presidents, both Democrats and Republicans, maintaining for dear life
the two critical characteristics of the American system, nationalism
and capitalism, Obama would fit the pattern.

His obsequious joining with McCain in approving the $700 billion
"bailout" for the financial giants is a sad sign. See my article (I
say arrogantly) in a recent issue of theNation about the bailout, as
a futile "trickle-down" act, instead of using the money directly for
the people Obama claims to represent.

So it will take a revivified social movement to do for Obama what the
strikers and tenant organizers and unemployed councils and agitators
of the early 1930s did for FDR, pushing him into new paths, so
angering the superrich that FDR, in one of his best moments, said,
"They hate me, and I welcome their hatred!"

Obama needs such fire. It is up to us, the citizenry--and
non-citizens too!--to ignite it.