The Boy Who Cried Moment

Watching Barack Obama's ich bin ein internationalist speech I found myself in constant, low-level irritation at what one might call the Audacity of Now. Which is to say, the man can't stop telling us that "this is the moment" when we "must" do this, that, and the other.

Not to be too curmudgeonly about it, but what's so special about this moment (as opposed to this moment), aside from the fact that a guy with a furrowed eyebrow and enviable teeth is running for president? Did Communism just collapse? Are we in some kind of hinge moment, a fork in the road between darkness and light? Yet count the ways in which Obama is sure that THIS IS THE MOMENT....

when our nations − and all nations − must summon that spirit [of the Berlin airlift] anew.

when we must defeat terror and dry up the well of extremism that supports it.

when we must renew our resolve to rout the terrorists who threaten our security in Afghanistan, and the traffickers who sell drugs on your streets. 

when we must renew the goal of a world without nuclear weapons.

to begin the work of seeking the peace of a world without nuclear weapons.

when every nation in Europe must have the chance to choose its own tomorrow free from the shadows of yesterday. 

when we must build on the wealth that open markets have created, and share its benefits more equitably. 

for trade that is free and fair for all.

we must help answer the call for a new dawn in the Middle East.

when the world should support the millions of Iraqis who seek to rebuild their lives, even as we pass responsibility to the Iraqi government and finally bring this war to a close.

when we must come together to save this planet. 

to give our children back their future.

to stand as one.

when we must give hope to those left behind in a globalized world.

That's 14 freaking Moments, some of them as perennial and/or totally '80s as Vanity Fair Kennedy covers (save the planet? believe that children are our future? stand together as one?); some of them sorta nonsensical (uh, Europeans can freely choose their future these days); some of them code phrases meaning practically the opposite of their rhetorical content (free and fair trade for all!).

I'm an anti-must guy from way back, but what struck me watching was more the implication that all these things are boiling to a head right now because Barack Obama's running for president. I don't often agree with Charles Krauthammer but, well, I pretty much agree with Charles Krauthammer.

And this paragraph in particular gives me chills about Obama's apparently deeply felt belief about how to "give hope to those left behind in a globalized world":

This is the moment when we must build on the wealth that open markets have created, and share its benefits more equitably.  Trade has been a cornerstone of our growth and global development.  But we will not be able to sustain this growth if it favors the few, and not the many.  Together, we must forge trade that truly rewards the work that creates wealth, with meaningful protections for our people and our planet.  This is the moment for trade that is free and fair for all.

This, Mr. Hopey, is the moment where the two greatest anti-poverty policies known to mankind − immigration and free trade − are under constant attack in the rich West, precisely from the type of hope-floating politicians who would blame global warming on the Chinese, talk '70s-era bollocks about economic "sustainability," and use the kind of labor vs. capital rhetoric that fell out of fashion long before the kind of people cheering you back home today were jeering Ronnie Ray-gun for asking Gorby to "tear down this wall" two decades ago.

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  • Other Matt||

    Well, I most certainly do NOT agree with CK, at least on one point. He says:


    For the first few months of the campaign, the question about Obama was, "Who is he?" The question now is, "Who does he think he is?"



    I'm still with the crowd wondering "Who is he?", as he's never answered that.

  • ed||

    It's always "the moment", Matt. Look at any political speech from the last 200 years. Remember "President Nixon. Now more than ever"? Their sense of urgency is, in hindsight, always comical.

  • Matt Welch||

    ed -- That's true.

  • ||

    Ed-

    The young americans certainly remembered President Nixon.

  • ||

    Well, "now" is the time when the US selects a President, based in part on what they think he's going to do in his four or eight years in office. What's illegitimate about that?

    Also, isn't it odd that most of what BO proposes is, according to Adam Smith, the logical consequent of free markets? I think this, and not the nowie-wowie stuff is where you meant to sneak in and turn us onto Barr-mania or something.....

  • ||

    Damn! Ed said it first, and better!

  • Jean-François Grenier||

    Urgency and Public speaking go together. You must say that your stuff must be done now, because everyone is saying the same thing about its own stuff.

    You can't look like a leader who can act (whatever that means) if you tell the truth, "We will act when it's in our best interest" don't get votes.

  • Non Sequitor ||

    There is that big difference between Nixon and Obama on policy. Nixon abolished conscription.

  • Guy Montag||

    Matt,

    The Boy Who Cried Moment

    You used b-word about a person of color?

    Expect the Cosmotarian Overlords to withdraw your Cosmotarian Certification before week's end.

  • Bingo||

    Having a monarchy and institutionalized regicide would be easier to deal with than the insanity of the presidential election every 4 years.

  • dhex||

    no, he's got the glasses - he's one of us.

    new portishead is fanfuckingtastic, btw.

  • Nigel Watt||

    He spoke of how our military can be used for good - for example, sixty years ago our airplanes dropped, not bombs, but food and candy…of course, that isn't what we dropped sixty-one years ago

    From LRC.

  • alan||

    It is rare for me to agree with CK (I'm too lazy to copy and paste his name to avoid spelling it incorrectly). The last time I recall doing so was an 1989 article of his on the UN in the New Republic titled, 'Let It Sink'. Though I've changed my mind on that idea. I made friends with a former diplomat who told me what the hawks didn't get was that many hostilities and wars have been averted through informal channels at the UN than through formal arrangements and high profile treatise. He thought it was necessary to keep the scope of its power reigned in (this conversation took place around the time of the Somalia caper), but chunking the institution would also be disastrous.

  • Nigel Watt||

    alan: How about we chuck both institutions, the UN and war?

  • ||

    OK alan, we'll keep the UN. But let's move them to Gary, Indiana for some cheap laughs.

  • ||

    to begin the work of seeking the peace of a world without nuclear weapons.

    Screw that noise. When the Foot falls on earth, we're gonna need those.

  • ||

    Now more then ever we need to stop worrying about the future.

  • Warty||

    Musth (or, alternately spelled, must) is a periodic condition in bull elephants, characterized by a thick, tar-like secretion called temporin from the temporal ducts and, far more notably, by highly aggressive behaviour. It is accompanied by a significant rise in reproductive hormones - testosterone levels in an elephant in musth can be as much as 60 times greater than in the same elephant at other times. However, whether this hormonal surge is the sole cause of musth, or merely a contributing factor, is unknown: scientific investigation of musth is greatly hindered by the fact that, once under the influence of musth, even the most otherwise placid of elephants may actively try to kill any and all humans.



    Beware a politician in must.

  • alan||

    Nigel, it is my hope that our modern manegerial elites (taking a phrase from the Trostkyite Burnham) will go the way most monarchs have, perhaps they will still be with us, but stripped of power and effectively nuetered they would be reduced to a contemptible decadent side show, and nothing more.

    Come to think of it, my annoyance with Obama mirrors how I felt about Princess Diane. Another mediocrity propelled to superhuman status by a cynical media spoon feeding their marks.

  • ||

    "Act now! Before it's too late!"

  • The Talking Paperclip from Mic||


    This, Mr. Hopey, is the moment where the two greatest anti-poverty policies known to mankind − immigration and free trade − are under constant attack in the rich West, precisely from the type of hope-floating politicians who would blame global warming on the Chinese, talk '70s-era bollocks about economic "sustainability," and use the kind of labor vs. capital rhetoric that fell out of fashion long before the kind of people cheering you back home today were jeering Ronnie Ray-gun for asking Gorby to "tear down this wall" two decades ago.


    I see you have written a run-on sentence! Would you like me to edit it for you, or will you just take a chill pill?

  • ed||

    I must say, Barack Mandela is striking while the iron is hot. His adoring media accomplices beat the drum daily: CRISIS...CRISIS...CRISIS...and we gullible, self-pitying hayseeds take it hook, line and sinker. A year from now we'll look back and say, "Damn! Duped again!" If America is in a "crisis", it's a crisis much of the world wants a piece of.

  • Federal Dog||

    "Mr. Hopey We Can Believe In."


    I like it.

  • OBAMA IS THE ANTI-CHRIST||

    That's why his birth certificate remains hidden...

  • TallDave||

    but what struck me watching was more the implication that all these things are boiling to a head right now because Barack Obama's running for president.

    Although, that might explain why his wife is proud of America for the first time ever.

    Or could that just be because her husband is running for President too? Nah...

  • No Name Guy||

    The Middle Eastern part of his trip went well and was a good moment.

    The European part is making him look like a presumptuous a-hole.

  • No Name Guy||

    BTW, hes starting to remind me of Hillary Clinton in the primary--acting like hes already won. Thats gonna backfire badly.

  • ||

    This is the time when I have come to despise the Great and Wonderful Obama.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Not to be too curmudgeonly about it, but what's so special about this moment (as opposed to this moment), aside from the fact that a guy with a furrowed eyebrow and enviable teeth is running for president?"

    Well according to Saint Obama, THIS is the time that future generations will point to and say that the "planet started to heal".

    So we've all got hurry up and get right on that.

  • Old Bull Lee||

    I think when future generations point to THIS time I'll be able to laugh and say "I didn't vote for that fucking moron, so get the fuck off my lawn." Whoever wins.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Oh and THIS is also the time when the sea levels start to fall.

    That would be a good job for Obama's new national service army.

    They can all head down to the beach and form bucket brigades to drain the ocean.

  • Barack Obama||

    This will be the moment when they look back on my campaign and liberals whine, "IF only they had voted for HIM!"

  • ||

    THIS is the time that future generations will point to and say that the "planet started to heal".

    Heal? It's barely a cough. I feel fine. Really.

  • Old Bull Lee||

    You win the thread Barack. I don't know about the election. Although I kind of hope so, I've got Intrade money on it.

  • Paul||

    It's cause he's mass communicatin'! He ain't one-at-a-timin' it!!!

  • ||

    Obama is nuts. No politican has ever talked such asinine nonsense. The only high level government official I have ever heard spout such cacaphony is Supreme court justice Kennedy.

    If Obama wins we are in trouble, real trouble.

  • ||

    Bad call refering to Barack Obama as boy who...

    Is that any worse then calling Barbara Jordan "Barbara Morondon" or an "archetypical half-educated victimologist".

    http://www.reason.com/blog/show/124339.html

  • ||

    Well, Terry, I guess we are in real trouble, because John McCain is trying to lose the election.

    Obama was at the Tiergarten in Berlin, amid a sea of people. McCain was at "Schmidt's Sausage Haus und Restaurant" in German Village, an enclave of Columbus, Ohio...

    In front of the restaurant stands a cardboard cutout of a Bavarian man in lederhosen and Bavarian woman in a dirndl. The faces are cutout, so tourists can pop in their heads for photos.


    Oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah...

    I'm going to go regulate some interstate commerce and let the phrase "a cardboard cutout of a Bavarian man in lederhosen" roll around in my head.

  • Paul||

    I'm going to go regulate some interstate commerce and let the phrase "a cardboard cutout of a Bavarian man in lederhosen" roll around in my head.

    If there was ever anything that needed interstate commerce regulation...

  • Paul||

    Obama is nuts. No politican has ever talked such asinine nonsense.

    Oh yes they have talked such asinine nonsense.

    Obama is fit to sleep with the pigs...

  • BakedPenguin||

    joe, don't get caught, especially if you have too much, cause...

    we must renew our resolve to rout the terrorists who threaten our security in Afghanistan, and the traffickers who sell drugs on your streets.

    There isn't gonna be any change in the WoD if Hopey MqChange wins.

  • No Name Guy||

    Joe, Obama is having a pretty strong downward trend in the swing state polls despite the media love fest. He should be doing better than this. The European leg of the trip was a mistake.

  • ||

    BakedPenguin,

    There's gonna be change in the War on Drugs if he loses?

    NNG,

    You can cherry-pick polls all you want, but there are as many showing him going up as down. He hasn't budged in the composites.

  • Colin||

    "ich bin ein internationalist"

    Have we learned nothing from the time Kennedy called himself a danish cake?

  • JB||

    "His most memorable work is a biography of his favorite subject: himself."

    hahahahahah

    Obama is going to force me to do what? He can show up at my house and try. He can take his magic Obama-wand and shove it.

  • No Name Guy ||

    Sure joe, if in the "composites" you include the polls from back in June.

    If Obama wins this election, he will do it with 48-49% of the popular vote and only because of Bob Barr and/or Ralph Nader.

    Hillary Clinton would be measuring the drapes.

  • jtuf||

    This, Mr. Hopey, is the moment where the two greatest anti-poverty policies known to mankind − immigration and free trade − are under constant attack in the rich West, precisely from the type of hope-floating politicians who would blame global warming on the Chinese, talk '70s-era bollocks about economic "sustainability," and use the kind of labor vs. capital rhetoric that fell out of fashion long before the kind of people cheering you back home today were jeering Ronnie Ray-gun for asking Gorby to "tear down this wall" two decades ago.



    This just about sums up my view.

  • ||

    NNG,

    Any poll you're looking at was taken before "the Euorpean leg of the tour" even began.

  • No Name Guy||

    Joe-

    When I say he looked good on the Middle Eastern part of his tour, and looks like an arrogant a-hole on the European leg, thats personal observation.

    Hes gone down DESPITE the good part (the Middle East).

    And now hes chosing his "transition team", aka dancing in the End zone.

  • Anonymous||

    Oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah...

    Ah, so he's going for the Mexican immigrant vote. They love their polka.

    I'm totally serious. I hear it daily from houses, cars, and dance halls; beer, sausage, and funny pants (well, not so much the pants). Everything continentals touch turns to polka.

  • No Name Guy||

    The globalist/internationalist rhetoric is going to scare a lot of swing voters.

  • ||

    Hes gone down DESPITE the good part (the Middle East).

    So, you didn't see any rise from the good part, and are seeing a drop even before the "bad part" even began?

    How about this: the polls you're seeing now trail the news footage you're seeing now by a few days, so the effects of even the Middle Eastern trip haven't shown up yet?

  • BakedPenguin||

    joe - There might, if he loses to Bob Barr.


    ...ok, stop laughing.

  • ||

    Seriously, Penguin, the only thing I've heard either one of them say about the drug war that isn't just lazy status quo is Obama supporting marijuana decriminalization, and McCain opposing medicinal marijuana.

    We're a long way from serious efforts to roll the beast back. It's just not even a factor in presidential politics.

  • No Name Guy||

    Alright, Joe. I don't think Obama will be up in the polls at all (state or national) bye next Wendesday. He may even fall. What do you think?

  • BakedPenguin||

    joe - true enough, but equating a dealer who sells to consenting adults with someone who murders indiscriminately is very sad, on many levels.

  • ||

    No Name Guy,

    Are you Cesar?

  • ||

    NNG,

    I think that by next Wednesday, the RCP composite will show Obama with almost exactly the same lead he had today (4 points).

  • No Name Guy||

    Why no bounce from his summer abroad Joe?

    Are you going to discount the old polls from June?

  • ||

    It's the summer, NNG. I don't think there's going to be much movement at all for a while.

    It's too hot. The polls like to take it easy, find a nice, cool place to take a nap.

    Are you going to discount the old polls from June? Huh?

  • ||

    So, seriously: you're Cesar, right?

  • Orange Line Special (NWO Editi||

    MattW is apparently unable to understand that BHO is a complete fake. His "tough" talk on trade is for the rubes. His advisors send a different message.

    But, it's not just his advisors: he admitted to being misleading about trade and he's even come out for a highly questionable Bush trade scheme.

    So, MattW shouldn't worry: BHO too is GlobalistScum. More thoughts on today's speech here.

  • ||

    Obama does not have a "messiah complex" as some (many) suggest......the messiah has an "Obama complex"

  • ||

    Yes those of us who don't watch American Idol or surf the internet in search of ringtones that advertise our individuality get annoyed with this blather. But remember, the U.S. is a nation of blithering idiots. almost 50% believe the world was created 6000 years ago. 40% can't find North America on a globe. So you have to talk SLOWLY AND REPETITIVELY TO MAKE A POINT, or at least an impression. 60% of white people over 50 are walking around saying "he speaks so well" (refer Chris Rock). The other 40% is calling him a N$%^&g.

    I notice you don't comment on the Alzheimer ridden platitudes of Reagan. Or seem particularly annoyed at a East Coast Conn. WASP passing himself as a good ol' boy.
    Hmmm.

    Barrack is just another organ-grinder, but maybe he will put a brake on our spiral down to an authoritarian if not fascist country. I could insert a Ben Franklin quote or 2 here, but I'm sure we all know them by heart.

  • JB||

    The Pale Scot, the real scary thing is that nearly all the rest of the world is even more stupid.

    There are smart people the world over, but they are vastly outnumbered by the stupid people who can be found in droves in every country.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "This is the moment when we must build on the wealth that open markets have created, and share its benefits more equitably. Trade has been a cornerstone of our growth and global development. But we will not be able to sustain this growth if it favors the few, and not the many. Together, we must forge trade that truly rewards the work that creates wealth, with meaningful protections for our people and our planet. This is the moment for trade that is free and fair for all."

    That is pure unadulterated socialist bullshit (excuse the redundancy, since ALL socialism is bullshit) - especially the "truly rewards the work that creates wealth part".

    Obama is no authority on what the value of any activity is or whether it is "truly being rewarded or not". That is essentially a claim of being a superior judge than the marketplace as to what jobs are worth.

    No one on earth has ever accomplished anything in his or her life that proves they are s superior judge than the marketplace as to the value of anything.

    Obama is no exception.

  • K.T.||

    i nominate this for "best blog post of 2008."

    mr. hopey, i love it.

  • K.T.||

    oh, and thanks for the link to the japanese "we are the world." i used to live in japan and love being reminded of their pathological passion for karaoke.

  • ||

    I liked this passage, Gil:

    When you, the German people, tore down that wall - a wall that divided East and West; freedom and tyranny; fear and hope - walls came tumbling down around the world. From Kiev to Cape Town, prison camps were closed, and the doors of democracy were opened. Markets opened too, and the spread of information and technology reduced barriers to opportunity and prosperity. While the 20th century taught us that we share a common destiny, the 21st has revealed a world more intertwined than at any time in human history.

    I like the way he explicitly linked the tearing down of the wall and the closing of prison camps with the opening of markets.

  • crapass mcgee||

    I'd like to see someone giving credit to McCain for the cute and funny move of appearing at a German restaurant in Ohio to coincide with Obama's "ich bin ein global citizen" speech. I've spent a lot of time in the depressed socialist hellhole that is Berlin and, frankly, I prefer Ohio.

  • Guy Montag||

    GM,

    Obama is no authority on what the value of any activity is or whether it is "truly being rewarded or not".

    Oh, come on now. Of course he is. He can see that some people who do not deserve more than others actually have more than the deserving.

    That is essentially a claim of being a superior judge than the marketplace as to what jobs are worth.

    Oh, you noticed that too. Never mind :)

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "I liked this passage, Gil:"

    Of the parts that I heard, I didn't like any of it.

    He got it stared with an absurd comment about being there as an American citizen - not a presidential candidate - as if he were just some average guy who happened to be wandering by and suddenly decided to get up and make a speech.

    And all the pompous recitation of history - which we all already know and don't need to hear from him. It was all merely a stunt to attempt to spin the notion that his running for president is equivalent to other momentious turning points in history.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Oh, come on now. Of course he is. He can see that some people who do not deserve more than others actually have more than the deserving."

    Obama walks, talks and quacks like a liberal but we're not supposed to call him a liberal.

    That would be a "distraction" from the "real issues".

    LOL

  • Guy Montag||

    He got it stared with an absurd comment about being there as an American citizen - not a presidential candidate - as if he were just some average guy who happened to be wandering by and suddenly decided to get up and make a speech.

    We saw this effect in the famous Monty Python documentry The Life of Brian. It is not like this has never happened before.

  • ||

    Of the parts that I heard...

    So, instead of bothering to listen to or read the speech, you're just repeating something you read about the speech on a web site.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "So, instead of bothering to listen to or read the speech, you're just repeating something you read about the speech on a web site"

    No, I am commenting on the part I heard just as I said.

    I had no desire to listen to the whole thing anyway.

    I don't particularly like listening to Obama talk and, in any event, it is physically impossible that he could ever say anything that is actually profound - he's a liberal.

  • ||

    Remaining deliberately ignorant about the other side is not just intellectually cowardly, Gil.

    It's also strategically foolish.

  • ||

    Holy &%$#, I agree with Charles Krauthammer, too!

    Obama, reflecting the mainstream Democratic view, simply wants to get out of Iraq as soon as possible. Two years ago, it was because the war was lost. Now, we are told, it is to save Afghanistan. The reasons change, but the conclusion is always the same. Out of Iraq. Banish the very memory. Leave as small and insignificant a residual force as possible. And no long-term bases.

    McCain, like George Bush, envisions the United States seizing the fruits of victory from a bloody and costly war by establishing an extensive strategic relationship that would not only make the new Iraq a strong ally in the war on terror but would also provide the U.S. with the infrastructure and freedom of action to project American power regionally, as do U.S. forces in Germany, Japan and South Korea.

    For example, we might want to retain an air base to deter Iran, protect regional allies and relieve our naval forces, which today carry much of the burden of protecting the Persian Gulf region, thus allowing redeployment elsewhere.

    ...The Democrats have long been protesting the Bush administration's hard bargaining for strategic assets in postwar Iraq. Maliki knows the Democrats are so sick of this war, so politically and psychologically committed to its liquidation, so intent on doing nothing to vindicate "Bush's war," that they simply want out with the least continued American involvement.


    Yup. It's a very clear choice this year.

  • Anonymous||

    Profundity would require principles. The West's Left, from the time the term was defined, is purely reactionary.

    Don't like monarchy? Get rid of it (France).

    Don't like morality? Redefine it (legacy of Nietzsche and the rest of the 19th-century philosopher-socialists).

    Don't like individual responsibility? Legislate around it (20th-century state socialism, including fascism, communism, and the fall-out of Wilson and FDR).

    Don't like people debating against your wicked ideals? Call them the names that would apply to you ("fascist," "reactionary," "bigot," "ignorant," "you just hurl insults").

    Don't like your enemies? Massacre them (but take away any means to physical and intellectual defense, first).

    Nothing else is left. The deification of yourself is complete. Now that you have made yourself God, and you long ago proved God is dead, you have only one action left. I hear the brimstone is warm and soothing this year.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Remaining deliberately ignorant about the other side is not just intellectually cowardly, Gil.

    It's also strategically foolish."

    You're no authority on intellect or strategy.

    Furthermore, ignorance has nothing to do with it. As I said, it's physically impossible for Obama to ever say anything profound so I'm not missing anything "vital" by not not hanging on his every word.

  • ||

    Barrack is just another organ-grinder, but maybe he will put a brake on our spiral down to an authoritarian if not fascist country. I could insert a Ben Franklin quote or 2 here, but I'm sure we all know them by heart.

    Wow, you really haven't been paying attention if you think Barack will REDUCE the spiral towards authoritarian government.

    Let's just recall his wife's description of your future life: "Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed."

    Last I checked, I kinda like my uninvolved and not so uninformed life and really don't need the government to tell me what my attitude can be

  • ||

    Darury,

    That statement was made to a room full of campaign volunteers being briefed on what would be required from people volunteering for the campaign.

    Are you an Obama campaign volunteer?

  • ||

    The West's Left, from the time the term was defined, is purely reactionary...Don't like people debating against your wicked ideals? Call them the names that would apply to you ("fascist," "reactionary,"

    That's some awesome right there.

  • ||

    As I said, it's physically impossible for Obama to ever say anything profound so I'm not missing anything "vital" by not not hanging on his every word.

    And you know this by all the time you spend not knowing what liberals are saying.

  • Anonymous||

    joe, convince me otherwise. Here are some examples I've encountered repeatedly.

    A citizen upholding traditional values (classical liberalism, Judeo-Christian morality) is called "reactionary" why? Because someone who aims to destroy them is reacting to them.

    A citizen who refuses to vote for a black candidate because of his domestic terrorist associations and his unprecedentedly left-ward policy suggestions is called "racist" why? Because his shouting opponent sees only a black man running for office, and the only reason you could oppose a black man is because he is black.

    Leftism is defined by reactions against established powers, and as such is jealously grasping for the same power. The state is their chosen tool because it comes with its own built-in enforcement devices.

    If what I've said were untrue, socialists would embrace minimal government and collectivize voluntarily. In truth, they believe only in the power to bend others to their will for the chance to remake society (not just polity, but society) in their image. If collectivists of all stripes really believed in the benefits of large-scale collectivism, they would practice it and de-politicize it.

    (Communes and traditional "communities" in a collective sense have existed and thrived since before agriculture, and during most of that time there was no state to leverage oppression. This is not an argument for or against collectivism, or for or against the concept of the modern state.)

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "And you know this by all the time you spend not knowing what liberals are saying."

    I know it by knowing the underlying ideology that drives what they advocate, the way they look at the world and the way they describle things - the ideology of socialism.

    And regardless of whatever term they use to descibe it, be it progressive, socialist, communist, collectivist, common good, whatever - it is physically impossible for any of it to be correct because it is based on something other than the primacy of the individual.

  • ||

    It must be awfully to know that you can judge truth and worth purely by judging the speaker's conformity to your own political ideology. The term is "Lysenkonism," I believe.

    We in the reality-based community spend all of this time poring over "facts" and "evidence" and actively trying to put poltical preferences aside and look at things "objectively."

    But not only do you not have to do that when you read what somebody is saying; you don't even have to know what somebody is saying to know that what he's saying is untrue. Your way must save a lot of effort, Gil. I'm jealous.

  • Barry Bamilow||

    This magic moment
    So different and so new
    Was like any other
    Until I met you
    And then it happened
    It took me by suprise
    I knew that you felt it too
    I could see it by the look in your eyes

    Sweeter than wine
    Softer than a summer's night
    Everything I want, I have
    Whenever I hold you tight

    This magic moment,
    While your lips are close to mine,
    Will last forever,
    Forever, 'til the end of time

    So why won't you dance with me?
    Why won't you dance with me?

    This magic moment
    So different and so new
    Was like any other
    Until I met you

    And then it happened
    It took me by suprise
    I knew that you felt it too
    I could see it by the look in your eyes

    Sweeter than wine
    Softer than a summer's night
    Everything I want, I have
    Whenever I hold you tight

  • ||

    This is the moment when:

    Obama's going to save you from the greedy HMO's by giving you free health care. (and making the government into a giant HMO)

    Obama's going to make it so safe that no reasonable person would even want a gun. (Don't you know they're dangerous? Are you sure you're reasonable?)

    Obama will make you feel so bad for having been a selfish libertarian that you'll spend the first half of each Obamoctober each year visiting his statues in the various former state capitols.

    I like this one the best:

    we must help answer the call for a new dawn in the Middle East.

    I've never actually been to the middle east, but everything I've ever heard about the place indicates that the one thing they've totally got covered is the "call for a new dawn " business. (Even without the call to prayer blaring through loudspeakers, the dawn's pretty much inevitable, by the way) This sounds like a "secret muslim" reference.

  • ||

    I'm still waiting for the "change" he promised us in Illinois. As it stands I'm thinking of seceding from Cook County thanks to his friends who run the place, one of the most corrupt gang of politicians in the country. Though I guess just moving away might be simpler.

    Really if he's for change, why did he change nothing here? Why did he only recently agree to keep Fitzgerald on, the only one fighting for us? For so long he would have gone along with Durbin and the other elites who wanted Fitzgerald out for causing trouble.

    It just gets worse and worse.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "We in the reality-based community spend all of this time poring over "facts" and "evidence" and actively trying to put poltical preferences aside and look at things "objectively."

    LOL

    You have never accomplished so much as one single thing in your entire life that proves you have any greater grasp of "reality" than I do.

    It's an absolute physical impossibilty that you ever could.

  • ||

    Well, I managed to know what was in Barack Obama's speech - a low bar, I realize, but one you couldn't clear.

    You keep using that phrase "physical impossibility," Gil. I don't think it means what you think it means.

  • ||

    Gil,

    What have I accomplished in my life?

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Well, I managed to know what was in Barack Obama's speech - a low bar, I realize, but one you couldn't clear."

    Obama's speech doesn't have anything to do with reality - it only has to do with politics.

  • ||

    You must have figured that out by not reading it.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "You keep using that phrase "physical impossibility," Gil. I don't think it means what you think it means."

    Who cares what you think.

    It's physically impossible for you to know any more about it than I do.

    "What have I accomplished in my life?"

    Nothing - you're a liberal.

  • Anonymous||

    I don't know whether either of you are genuine, but I'm loving it nonetheless.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Oh and one more thing about "facts" and "evidence"

    Facts and evidence can prove what is but they cannot prove what should be, what is right or wrong or assign desirablility or relative worth (or the lack thereof) judgements to outcomes.

    Take the issue of health care for example. There are no "facts" that prove health care is a "right" or that anyone should be responsible for paying for anyone else's healthcare or that any of it is a legitimate business of government at all to begin with.

    The liberals policy prescriptions on health care are all predicated on the belief that all those presumptions are true and then focus on what they claim to be the best mechanism to achieve that outcome.

    If one doesn't agree with any of those underlying presumptions, then it doesn't matter what mechanism would best achieve since there is no agreement on what the objective is in the first place.

  • M. Simon||

    You can't look like a leader who can act...

    He has a pretty good act when he has a script.

    He doesn't do improve. Or interviews.

  • ||

    joe-

    As a Columbus resident, I can assure you that German Village is probably your vision of utopia.

  • ||

    We all know germans have a history of picking good leaders.

  • Mark||

    plutosdad, just curious, but who would you prefer have been the Democratic nominee? (Assuming no Republican can be or deserves to be elected this year)

  • Guy Montag||

    Will President Obama kill the haters? Huh? Will he?

    I am sure there is a two hour speech in that one for someone to get to him. Looking forward to the multiple non-answers.

  • Chris||

    Most of you sound afraid of reality. I feel terribly sorry that you could look back at the last 8 years and want to have more of the same. Honestly, I pity you. I never would have believed that so many people could continue such unabashed ignorance.

  • ||

    Chris, what part of reality are you thinking about? The reality that either Mr. Obama or Mr. McCain will soon be at the head of the greatest collection of military might that the world has ever seen? Yeah, that's pretty scary. I'm personally a little more afraid of McCain, but not much.

    And what "more of the same" are you referring to? More increases in the size of the government? More foreign military interventions? I'd guess most of us would not want any more of any of that.

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