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Monday, April 04, 2011


"in Drum's world, apparently, you're not worthy of consideration unless you were snowed by Obama at some point along the way."

Compare reflexive war-supporters' constant complain about reflexive war-opponents: "Why should I bother listening to them? They've never supported ANY pointless, immoral bloodbath!"

But yes, liberal support for Obama is the exact same psychological phenomenon as conservative support for Bush: blind, tribal leader-worship.

Ah ... I don't know if I should or not. What would obama do?



I think there might be the smallest of differences. Conservatives will support a war because war itself is a moral good. War is ordained. War is part of the order of things. To not pursue war is to be inhuman. Peace, for most conservatives, is unnatural. God reserved perfection for the after party. In this world, good people necessarily have evil enemies.

Scratch even a profoundly "anti-war" conservative, and you'll probably find someone who believes in Catholic or just war.

Liberals, on the other hand, will often enough genuinely argue that war is an evil, but a necessary one. They will spill milk over the otherwise perfectly legal killing of unintended targets. They will clutch at their chests and rend their garments, if needed. They will spend loot on international bodies of review and relief, to whitewash their guilt-tinged warmongering, to give it a moral purpose and cause, and they will call that "peace." They will do what it takes to only kill the right people, next time.

One does have to admit at least that Obama is brighter than either of those two people. Not that this is saying much.

Another angle at this:

"But the reason I killed for Charles Manson in 1969 is because I trust his judgment. And not in any merely abstract way, either: I mean that if he and I were in a room and disagreed about some issue on which I had any doubt at all, I'd literally trust his judgment over my own. I think he's smarter than me, better informed, better able to understand the consequences of his actions, and more farsighted. I kllled for him because I trust his judgment, and I still do."

What would obama do?


Shorter Kevin Drum (in suitably high-pitched voice): I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.

Shorter Joe Hope: Democracy is all well and good, but in a crisis, fuck that shit and get behind the Man.

Basically, Drum is saying that the president has similar political goals as Drum as far as policy goes (despite Obama's vast record to the contrary), but Obama has good political judgment and is in the best position to know how much change to push for (that gosh darned Senate!!!!), so he's going to defer to Obama's judgment . . .

You know what? Screw all that. No one can be this stupid. He can't truly believe that Obama shares his goals, can he? I think Drum understands full well who butters his bread: the Democratic party. He realizes his place in the new media is as an arm of the Democratic party. Specifically, his job is to corral wayward lefties into staying in the party by exaggerating the lessor evil argument and playing up the scary Tea Party people. He knows the Democratic party, including Obama, has been co-opted by corporate interests and will only enact a somewhat tamer version of the GOP platform (at best). His job is to sucker people--and he has to look like a legitimate sucker in order to sucker others.

Drum has not made the rational political argument. The Democrats have taken us farther away from major liberal goals like ending America's wars, single payer health care, or taxing the rich. He probably has had more liberal victories under Republican leadership than under Democratic control of Congress and the White House, but he's not concerned with the nuts and bolts of achieving liberal policy. He's a hack, pure and simple. He just knows that all the A-list liberal bloggers that want to make money or maintain their serious progressive cred need to fall in line behind Obama (just as during health care reform). So Drum's getting his out of the way early. Digby, Yglesias, Ezra Klein, Duncan Black, and John Cole will all similarly fall in line and be good Democratic soldiers.

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