Let me start by apologizing for the title of this column. It's crass, uncharitable, maybe even a bit misleading. But, in my defense, let me explain that I got the idea from Newsweek, which we all know is a highly respectable magazine.
Newsweek's cover story this week, Why are Obama's Critics so Dumb? has grabbed a lot of attention due to its crass, uncharitable, and misleading headline. The article itself, penned by blogger, journalist and unyielding Obama groupie Andrew Sullivan, is actually tamer than the headline suggests.
Nevertheless, after reading the author's complaint about how the president gets attacked mercilessly by his partisan opponents, under a headline that appears to attack the intelligence of any person who dares to criticize the president or his policies, I couldn't help chuckling at the irony.
A few years ago, in a 2007 essay for The Atlantic, Sullivan called Obama a potentially transformational figure. Unlike any of the other candidates, he could take America-finally-past the debilitating, self-perpetuating family quarrel of the Baby Boom generation.
Sullivan argued in 2007 that Obama could transcend petty partisan bickering and chill the overheated rhetoric of our political discourse. Now, this week, Sullivan tells us we are dumb for criticizing The Transcendent One.
So much for chilling the overheated rhetoric.
Obama's Two-Timing with Wall Street
The Newsweek article takes aim at Obama's critics on the left, complaining that they unfairly view him as a hapless tool of Wall Street, a continuation of Bush in civil liberties, a cloistered elitist unable to grasp the populist moment that is his historic opportunity. The article softens this a little by allowing that the president's critics on the left are less unhinged than those on the right.
Seemingly on cue, an Occupy D.C. crowd of more than 1,000 amassed outside the gates of the White House last night, and someone threw a smoke bomb at the building. The Secret Service dispersed the crowd of less unhinged, leftist, bomb-throwing, critics, and made no arrests.
It is alarming anytime someone launches an explosive device, even a relatively harmless one, at the president's residence. By the way, can anyone recall a Tea Party rally that ended with bomb throwing and a Secret Service crackdown? I can't.
Last night's incident illustrates just how dangerous the Democrats' appeasement of the radical and quasi-anarchical left has been. Democrats have been eager to tap into the potential election-year energy of a grassroots, populist movement like Occupy Wall Street. Therefore, they have been unwilling to speak out against the movement's lawless excesses. Desecration of public property, murders, overdoses, and a plague of rodent infestations -- all these hazards have been documented and roundly ignored by Democratic leaders.
Obama has been raising campaign cash at a record-setting rate, and he is getting much of it from our nation's big banks. Employees of Goldman Sachs have given more than a million dollars to Obama's campaign fund. JP Morgan Chase and Citigroup are also among the top ten corporations funneling money into the Obama campaign through employee contributions.
Over the past year, masses of angry occupiers got together to protest the corruption and political influence of Wall Street's big banks. These same banks have given Obama mountains of campaign cash.
Do Democrats really think the angry protestors now criticizing the president will suddenly decide to support him when the election draws near? Do they think his critics on the left are that dumb? If this week's Newsweek cover story is any indication, then yes, perhaps they do.
Obama's Unhinged Critics on the Left
What will happen when protestors show up to occupy the Democratic Convention this summer? Every dollar Obama takes from Wall Street is an insult to the occupy protestors. Will occupy protesters respond with more violence?
Perhaps there will be another riot like the one the Democrats endured outside their 1968 convention in Chicago. A convention marred by rioting leftists would be a public relations disaster for Obama and the Democrats.
I would like to suggest an emergency plan to head off this disaster and appease Obama's angry critics on the far left: I think Obama should take the $68 million he raised last quarter and distribute it to the people of Occupy Wall Street.
Imagine how it would look on TV. Obama could personally fly over the protestors in Air Force One and drop the cash on the hordes below. Ultimately, the best way to win back the support of occupy protestors, and get them singing the president's praises instead of throwing bombs, would be to engage in the radical wealth redistribution that so many of them are demanding.
Nothing calms a riot like money falling from the sky.