Real change has never been easy. ... The status quo in Washington will fight. They will fight harder than ever to divide us and distract us with ads and attacks from now until November.How does he do it, indeed?
-- Barack Obama, Pennsylvania primary night speech
WASHINGTON -- With that, Obama identified the new public enemy: the "distractions" foisted upon a pliable electorate by the malevolent forces of the status quo, i.e., those who might wish to see someone else become president next January. "It's easy to get caught up in the distractions and the silliness and the tit for tat that consumes our politics" and "trivializes the profound issues" that face our country, he warned sternly. These must be resisted.
Why? Because Obama understands that the real threat to his candidacy is less Hillary Clinton and John McCain than his own character and cultural attitudes.
He came out of nowhere with his autobiography already written, then saw it embellished daily by the hagiographic coverage and kid-gloves questioning of a supine press. (Which is why those "Saturday Night Live" parodies were so devastatingly effective.)
Then came the three amigos: Tony Rezko, the indicted fixer; Jeremiah Wright, the racist reverend; William Ayers, the unrepentant terrorist. And then Obama's own anthropological observation that "bitter" working-class whites cling to guns and religion because they misapprehend their real class interests.
In the now-famous Pennsylvania debate, Obama had extreme difficulty answering questions about these associations and attitudes. The difficulty is understandable. Some of the contradictions are inexplicable.
How does one explain campaigning throughout 2007 on a platform of transcending racial divisions, while in that same year contributing $26,000 to a church whose pastor incites race hatred? . . .
And why can’t Tom Shales, Chris Matthews, Frank Rich and other Obama flacks realize the question is very important.
Is Obama really being helped by MSM supporters who complain with him about such “distractions?”
They may not care about Wright’s raving racism and Obama’s close friendship with him, but many Americans do and rightly so.
Krauthammer finishes with this:
Would you maintain friendly relations with an unrepentant terrorist? Would you even shake his hand? To ask why Obama does is perfectly legitimate and perfectly relevant to understanding what manner of man he is.The entire Krauthammer column is here.
Obamaphiles are even more exercised about the debate question regarding the flag pin. Now, I have never worn one. Whether anyone does is a matter of total indifference to me.
But apparently not to Obama. He's taken three affirmative steps in regard to flag pins. After 9/11, he began wearing one. At a later point, he stopped wearing it. Then last year he explained why: Because it "became a substitute for, I think, true patriotism, which is speaking out on issues that are of importance to our national security."
Apart from the self-congratulatory fatuousness of that statement -- as if in this freest of all countries, political self-expression is somehow scarce or dangerous or a sign of patriotic courage -- to speak of pin-wearing as a sign of inauthentic patriotism is to make an issue of it yourself.
For Obamaphiles to now protest the very asking of the question requires a fine mix of cynicism and self-righteousness. (emphasis added)
But Obama needs to cast out such questions as illegitimate distractions because they are seriously damaging his candidacy. As people begin to learn about this just-arrived pretender, the magic dissipates.
He spent six weeks in Pennsylvania. Outspent Hillary more than two to one. Ran close to 10,000 television ads -- spending more than anyone in any race in the history of the state -- and lost by 10 points.
And not because he insufficiently demagogued NAFTA or the other "issues." It was because of those "distractions" -- i.e., the things that most reveal character and core beliefs.
I periodically run through my head a list of my 10 favorite columnists. I try to rank order them.
Krauthammer is always among the top three – George Will and Michael Barone are usually the other two - and he almost always leads the list.