Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Confusion over conservative criticism

'Conservatives seem deliriously drunk with their cartoon picture of Obama, to whom is glibly attributed every pathology in the book. Yes, there were ambiguities about Obama's birth certificate that have never been satisfactorily resolved. And the embargo on Obama's educational records remains troubling. But I am still waiting for hard evidence about the host of other charges that are continually being hammered against him -- from his alleged fidelity to the crypto-tactics of Chicago leftist Saul Alinsky to the questions raised by right-wingers about the production of Obama's two memoirs. Out of respect for the presidency, conservatives need to put up or shut up about these issues.'

Although some of her pronouncements are plainly intended purely to provoke and outrage, I've got a lot of time for much of what Ms Paglia says. Sadly, her list of crazed accusations launched by conservatives seems both outdated and whimsical. I have not read anywhere about Obama's birth certificate for at least a month, barring her comment. Obama's educational records? I have not read a single thing about that since the election ended. As to the Alinskyist crypto-tactics, if Obama were adhering to them, how would we know? I agree that any conservatives bashing Obama about that would be speculating with no evidence, but hardly any are doing so. Again the criticism of Obama over the memoirs was almost exclusively a campaign issue. I've picked up only a tiny drizzle of commentary about them since the campaign finished.

Missing from her list are all the issues currently dominating discussion on conservative websites- the trillions of waste in the new budget; the business-as-usual earmarks situation; the bumbling cack-handedness of the 'new' diplomacy; the divergence between Obama's publicly stated positions on things, and what actually happens in Congress and the Executive Branch; the inability to get in place credible personnel in important posts of the US government.

You might notice a discrepancy even between Ms Paglias first sentance and the things in her own list. Every pathology in the book? The main criticism of Obama from the very beginning was that he was a nothing- not experienced in any of the usual ways to take on the job he was going for. All the warnings of conservatives about that were overridden by the pompous arses of academia and big media. Of course, the conservatives were right. All the genuine conservative criticisms of Obama so far are rooted in the single great criticism: inexperience. Does Obama have time to learn? Of course not. Thats why in every election since the first one, one of the key factors in choosing candidates was age/experience. Young whippersnappers were fine, they just wouldn't get the nomination. And that was for a perfectly good reason. You don't make a two year junior lieutenant captain of the ship. You don't make a two year junior senator president. Its just stupid.

But liberals are too excited about their dreams and their fantasies about what a great black man can achieve that a mediocre white man could not. They have written a script where Obama is that great black man, and no contrary evidence is allowed to intrude into this delightful scene. Is the archetype more powerful than the facts?

No comments: