Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Michael Gerson: Comedian

I always find it hilarious that the right includes The Washington Post in its list of the pernicious "liberal media". This paper lets the following left-wing nutjobs write for it.

  • Staunch Libertarian and Conservative Icon George F. Will
  • Neoconservative War-monger Robert Kagan
  • Neoconservative and Compulsively Wrong William Safire
  • Big Flaming War-monger and Israel Apologist Charles Krauthammer
  • G.W.Bush Speechwriter Michael Gerson
Not to mention regular old conservatives Kathleen Parker, Ruth Marcus and David Broder. They let liberals write there too. But the deviation from the center is nowhere near the same. Harold Meyerson is the only one that I would consider a true liberal. Maybe E.J. Dionne. But neither of them are anywhere near as far left as the average person on Air America, or even MSNBC, whereas people like Krauthammer, Kagan and Safire are as far right as you can go.

Will is smart. I like him, but I usually don't agree with him. Kagan and Safire are idiots who continue to act as apologists for the worst failures of the Bush administration and to pretend that hundreds of thousands of dead people and billions of dollars out the door is actually buying us democracy in the Middle East, regardless of what those pesky "facts" might be. Gerson, as noted above, was a Bush speechwriter. Do you need to know anything else?

His column today is a scream. It is positively Rovian in its hypocrisy. As you know, the Rove model is one of pure projection. Whatever is wrong with you, just assert that the other person is the one who has that problem. Then they'll have to fight that charge and it'll never stick to you.

Gerson laments the polarization of today's political culture. The main culprit?

[Wait for it.]

Barack Obama!

That's right. It wasn't Bush. It wasn't Cheney. It wasn't Tom Delay or Newt Gingrich or Karl Rove himself or any of the talking heads at Fox News or Rush Limbaugh. It was the president.

Here are some fine nuggets of joy from Mr. Gerson.

"Who has been the most polarizing new president of recent times? Richard Nixon? Ronald Reagan? George W. Bush? No, that honor belongs to Barack Obama."

Yes, the man with a 66% approval rating. Not the man who left office with a 28% approval rating. Gerson offers some statistics to back his claim up, but they demonstrate the way the culture has changed, not anything about the current president. Gerson as much as admits this, basically refuting his own point. Oh, but wait, here comes that projection I talked about.

"Obama has been a unifier, of sorts. He has united Democrats and united Republicans -- against each other."

Ha! Um, sorry. That happened a long time ago, and the list of culprits was mentioned a few paragraphs ago. It's the one that starts with Bush, although I think Rove gets the lion's share of the blame. The fact that the Permanent Republican Majority so quickly fizzled out is the main reason these caged rats are biting so ferociously. Their dreams have been shattered. And it's their own fault. They're desperately trying to blame someone else. They couldn't be wrong.

"[L]ast week's votes on the budget resolutions [were] a landmark of ineffective governance. Not a single Republican in the House or Senate supported the bill, largely because the Democratic majority forced its will. Republicans were flattened, not consulted."

I've already written about what a farce this concept is. I'll decline to comment further, other than to snort derisively. You can picture me snorting derisively, right?

"Obama's polarizing approach challenges and changes the core of his political identity."

His what? His polarizing approach? Excuse me, no. Projection again. Big time. Least polarizing approach in history, possibly.

"Polarization in American politics has its own disturbing momentum, aided by some strident Republican voices. But that does not require a president to make it worse. And it is a sad, unnecessary shame that Barack Obama, the candidate of unity, has so quickly become another source of division."

Ah, yes. Begin with a weak denunciation of some unnamed Republicans. Then blame it all on the guy who inherited the culture, is trying to change it and is being thwarted by those same Republicans. But don't just blame him for not changing it. Say he's actually made it worse.

If Michael Gerson has a mirror in his house, I doubt it gets much use.


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