John Podhoretz has a column that says Barack Obama is a Serious Man doing Serious Work and also he is Serious:
Barack Obama is a serious man. . . . The truth is that Barack Obama and his liberal followers have been doing very serious work over the past four years, and the same cannot be said, alas, of far too many people who oppose them.
. . . .
The notion that Obama is a dangerous extremist helps him, because it makes him seem reasonable and his critics foolish. It also helps those who peddle it, because it makes them notorious and helps them sell their wares. But it has done perhaps irreparable harm to the central conservative cause of the present moment—making the case that Obama’s social-democratic statism is setting the United States on a course for disaster and that his anti-exceptionalist foreign policy is setting the world on a course for nihilistic chaos. Those are serious arguments, befitting a serious antagonist. They may not sell gold coins as quickly and as well as excessive alarmism, but they have the inestimable advantage of being true.
Barack Obama is a serious man. The professional and political right needs to be as serious as he is to make sure the Age of Obama ends with him.
I’m not sure what JPod’s real point here is, other than to repeatedly label Obama “serious.” What are we supposed to do, put on our Grim Serious faces? Not point out how frivolous he is, with his endless golfing and spending?
The closest Podhoretz comes to a prescription is to tell conservatives to stop pushing a view “that Obama is a not-so-secret Marxist Kenyan with dictatorial ambitions and a nearly limitless appetite for power.” Take the word “Kenyan” out of that phrase and I have no problem with it, as long as the argument is backed up by examples and facts. If Obama takes an action that shows his commitment to Marxist redistributionist principles (which happens all the time) or seems to want to reserve the option to, say, kill Americans on American soil even if they pose no imminent threat (remember the drone debate?), are we supposed to stand by and whistle nonchalantly?
That doesn’t sound like a very “serious” response.