Monday, March 30, 2009

'Not exactly the anti-Christ' - Horowitz defends Obama. Sort of.

No less a bomb-throwing reactionary than David "Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week" Horowitz is appealing to right wingers to chill out on the apocalyptic anti-Obama talk.

Horowitz is distressed by a fear and loathing of President Obama so toxic and mindless that he labels the phenomenon Obama Derangement Syndrome.

I have recently received commentaries that claim that "Obama's speeches are unlike any political speech we have heard in American history" and "never has a politician in this land had such a quasi-religious impact on so many people" and "Obama is a narcissist," which leads the author to then compare Obama to David Koresh, Charles Manson, Stalin and Saddam Hussein. Excuse me while I blow my nose.

This fellow has failed to notice that all politicians are narcissists – and that a recent American president was a world-class exponent of the imperial me. So what? Political egos are one of the reasons the Founders put checks and balances on executive power. As for serial lying, is there a politician that cannot be accused of that? And once, the same recent president set a pretty a high bar in this category, and we survived it. As for Obama's speeches, they are hardly in the Huey Long, Louie Farrakhan, Fidel Castro vein. They are in fact eloquently and cleverly centrist and sober.

So what's the panic? It is true that Obama has shown surprising ineptitude in his first months in office, but he's not a zero with no accomplishments as many conservatives seem to think – unless you regard beating the Clinton machine and winning the presidency as nothing. But in doing this you fall into the “Bush-is-an-idiot” bag of liberal miasmas.

It is also true Obama has ceded his domestic economic agenda to the House Democrats and spent a lot of money in the process. But what’s the surprise in this? After all, Bush and McCain both proposed (and in Bush's case pushed through) massive government giveaways (which amount to government takeovers as well). This is bad, but it doesn't make Obama a closet Mussolini, however deplorable the conservatives among us may regard it. Moreover, he's already run into political resistance even within his own party. Charlie Rangel has made it clear that the itemized deduction tax hike is not going through his committee – and that should tell you that the American system, the one the Founders created, is still in place.
It is silly for Horowitz to compare right wingers' rabid, unreasoning hatred of Obama to Democratic and liberal disgust over the totalitarian excesses of George W. Bush.

And he pretty much goes off the rails by failing to acknowledge unequivocally that Obama is not the anti-Christ.

But to have so fringe a figure as David Horowitz call you out as unhinged should come as awake-up call to the Rush Limbaugh/Sarah Palin wing of the Republican Party. It means you're really losing it.

blog comments powered by Disqus