Patterico's Pontifications


David Brooks on the Faults of the Tea Party — Faults That MOST DEFINITELY!!!1!!1! Are Not Shared by Obama

Filed under: General,Obama — Patterico @ 3:23 pm

David Brooks on the Tea Party:

Along the way, the movement has picked up some of the worst excesses of modern American culture: a narcissistic sense of victimization, an egomaniacal belief in one’s own rightness and purity, a willingness to distort the truth so that every conflict becomes a contest of pure good versus pure evil.

It’s good to know none of this applies to the Democrat party!

Narcissism? Brooks thinks the Tea Party suffers from it, but does not mention Obama. I guess Brooks thinks there’s no narcissism in Obama’s comparing his election to the fall of the Berlin Wall, or turning the White House into almost a shrine to himself, or reading a letter from someone who says she is going to be buried in an Obama T-shirt, or building an imperial stage for his nomination speech, or writing his autobiography years before being elected President.

Victimhood? Brooks thinks the Tea Party has it — but not Obama, who thinks people don’t like him because of his middle name, which his wife calls the “fear bomb”; or who plays the race card (I don’t “look like all those other presidents on the dollar bills”).

An egomaniacal belief in one’s own rightness and purity? Are you kidding me, David Brooks?

Obama humiliated the Supreme Court in front of the nation. He humiliated Netanyahu. He gives his opponents the finger (not once, not twice, but three times). He is haughty with opponents (even as Michelle assures us that he is never disagreeable).

A willingness to distort the truth so that every conflict becomes a contest of pure good versus pure evil? David Brooks, are you telling me that the Tea Partiers distort the truth, and President Obama doesn’t?

Let me list just a few examples, Mr. Brooks.

Obama claimed an aide filled out a questionnaire with extreme views, but his handwriting showed up on the form. He said he wouldn’t run for president in 2008 and then did. He ran a dishonest ad tying John McCain to Rush Limbaugh on the issue of immigration reform — and distorting Limbaugh’s quotes beyond all recognition in the process. He claimed McCain was “fueled” by money from lobbyists and PACs, when that actually accounted for only 1.7% of McCain’s money.

Obama flat-out lied about taking public financing — and he lied about why he didn’t do it, blaming it all on McCain when it was his own decision. Obama misstated the reason that he voted against a bill that would have required doctors to give medical attention to babies born alive after a botched abortion. Obama took money from oil companies and claimed he didn’t.

He inflated his role in the creation of the stimulus package. He was deceptive about McCain’s regulatory record.

Since being President, he has misrepresented job creation numbers; broken his promise to allow bills to be reviewed by the public before passage; broken his promise to have no lobbyists in the White House; broken his promise to close Gitmo (thank goodness), and has broken a whole host of other promises. He has lied about whether ObamaCare would cover illegals and a host of other things.

He asked people to send “fishy” online commentary about his health care plan to a special e-mail address: Sounds like someone making a list — but it’s all for the greater good, you see.

Obama has consistently demonized his opponents — including the Tea Partiers, the GOP, Fox News, BP and other oil companies, “bitter clingers” who won’t vote for him, Wall Street/banks and businesses, the rich (especially those who got bonuses), insurance companies during the health care debate, car companies, and anyone who opposes unions or him.

He called the Cambridge police “stupid”; has demonized insurance companies; gone after Rush Limbaugh; and recently declared war on John Boehner.

I don’t really have to list all the ways he has demonized and blamed George W. Bush, do I?

Yet according to David Brooks, the people who distort the truth and demonize opponents in an effort to paint themselves as the Good fighting the Evil are . . . the Tea Partiers.

Wouldn’t it be nice if the “conservative” at the New York Times could see a few logs in the opponents’ eyes, even as he whines about the mote in the eyes of the Tea Party?

Thanks to a reader who pointed me to the link, gave me considerable help in researching this, and listed all the people and groups Obama has demonized.

Christine O’Donnell in 1999: I Dabbled in Witchcraft

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:38 pm

Oh, come on. She was young:

You think any of this might show up in a campaign commercial?

I dabbled into witchcraft — I never joined a coven. But I did, I did. . . . I didn’t join a coven, I didn’t join a coven, let’s get this straight. . . I dabbled into witchcraft. I hung around people who were doing these things. I’m not making this stuff up. I know what they told me they do. […]

One of my first dates with a witch was on a satanic altar, and I didn’t know it. I mean, there’s a little blood there and stuff like that. … We went to a movie and then like had a little midnight picnic on a satanic altar.

I also like the bit about how she wouldn’t lie to the Nazis at the front door to save Anne Frank. But lie about which counties she won to defuse a tough question from an interviewer? No problem!

If only someone had warned us that she has this tendency to say nutty things.

[UPDATE 1:16 p.m.: The actual clip shows her refusing to lie to Nazis for generic Jews and not Anne Frank. She says that God would find a way to help her in that situation without lying. Might as well get the facts on the table now since that debate is coming up too.]

I toddled on over to Dan Riehl’s to see what the True Conservative Take on this will be, and so far I don’t see a post. But it’s pretty clear that the reaction will be some combination of the following:

  • It’s Bill Maher! You’re gonna trust Bill Maher?!

This one gets you only so far because of, you know, the video. But you never omit the ad hominem.

  • She wasn’t serious. She was just saying something whimsical to fit in with the Bill Maher Crowd.

But . . . she sounds serious. I mean, she’s laughing about it, but ishe doesn’t sound like she’s making it up. (If she were, would that be better??)

  • She didn’t realize she was dating a witch. See how she says she didn’t know she was having the picnic on the Satanic altar?

But she says she “dabbled in witchcraft.”

  • Who here hasn’t done something weird as a young person? You’re just bringing this up because you’re a RINO who really wants to see socialism prevail! You jackass!

Trump card played! There is, of course, no answer to that.

What defense am I missing? Over to you, Riehl . . .

P.S. You realize this isn’t the end, right? Maher says he has more. A lot more.

UPDATE: This post has been up maybe 5 minutes and I already see that the last bullet point was pretty much right. The Correct Reaction is: a) a shrug of the shoulders; b) an announcement that it’s absolutely nothing, as every young person listens to heavy metal and therefore dabbles in witchcraft; and c) an unmitigated wall of fury directed at anyone who suggests it could be a political problem.

I didn’t suggest that! Did you see me suggest that? Well, if it looked like I did, I didn’t mean it! [Looks at ground, shuffles feet.]

Those are your talking points. Now go out and say them. Go on. Do it.*

UPDATE x2: This should be obvious, but I’ll say it anyway. Yes, they are going to use this, and yes, I think it will hurt her candidacy.

I would still vote for her. She could still be a witch for all I care, as long as she takes time out from her potion-mixing to vote the way I want her to vote.

What, like the Democrats don’t have flawed candidates that they have to hold their nose and vote for?

UPDATE x3: Commenters make a valid point: Coons dabbled in Marxism. Which ideology has killed more people: Marxism or witchcraft? Which is more dangerous to the country NOW? You guys are pretty smart. [UPDATE 9-19-10: Except that the “bearded Marxist” allegation, which appears valid from the link provided, does not withstand further scrutiny. Don’t take Weigel’s word for it, follow his link to the Politico article, which I refuse to link because of my boycott, and make up your own mind.]

UPDATE x4: Jeff Goldstein claims that I am saying O’Donnell will lose because Tea Partiers will be turned off by this. Of course, that’s not what I’m saying at all — as I thought was perfectly clear from my post. I doubt Tea Partiers will care about this. As I say in the post, I think they will defend her to the nth degree. But Tea Partiers aren’t a majority in Delaware. I think voters in the middle will think it is plain weird, and laugh at her. And not want to vote for her.

I hope I’m wrong. I don’t think I am. We’ll see.

UPDATE x5: Shockingly, Mark Levin has linked Goldstein’s flawed reading of this post. And he said he was done with me. LIAR!!!

For what it’s worth, I not only sent a trackback to Goldstein when I published UPDATE x4, but I also e-mailed him since then, to specifically direct his attention to the fact that the author of this post disagrees with his interpretation. He acknowledged receipt of the e-mail but has not updated his post to reflect my disagreement with the way he portrayed what I wrote. INTENTIONALISM!!!

UPDATE x6: A commenter at Goldstein’s place gets it.

UPDATE x7: Michelle Malkin claims missing context: Christine O’Donnell opposes witchcraft because she tried it and therefore opposes it.

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