Why We Need Strict Separation of Punditocracy and State, David Gergen Edition


David Gergen, the insider's insider's insider (who has apparently worked for every presidential administration of the past 175 years except the second Cleveland term) is all over the new issue of Rolling Stone, musing on whether Obama has been unutterably wonderful, surprisingly amazing, or even slightly disappointingly fantastically magical, along with Paul Krugman and Michael Moore. (Moore loves the prez, but to a large degree because he thinks he doesn't mean anything he appears to have said or done so far. Seriously.)

The whole thing isn't online, alas, (here's a sample though) and I don't even particularly recommend you read it, though Moore twisting himself around to believe Obama must ultimately be trying to do everything Moore would want him to do no matter what it looks like is sadly amusing. I'm a little let down on Moore; seems to me he could have gone either way on Obama, and to see him decide to toss his reputation on the wagon is a little depressing, but I guess he figured his audience was to a large degree running to Obama and as their leader, he'd better follow.

But did want to call attention to one telling quote from David Gergen, on whether he's disappointed the administration isn't living up to its promises about ending indefinite unconvicted detentions:

I know Leon Panetta, and these must be wrenching decisions for him. If he comes down a certain way–that we've got these incorrigibles who are dangerous, and we have to detain him–then I tend to give the benefit of the doubt.

Not nearly as wrenching as it is for the people detained, Gergy baby. (That's what his pal Leon calls him, so I hear.) A 50 percent discount rate of seriousness, at least, should be applied to every former government employees' musings on politics.