David Harsanyi on Whether President Obama's Ideas Are Un-American


It seems that one of Mitt Romney's top surrogates, John Sununu, recently gave us a guided tour of the life cycle of a political gaffe. First, he wished that President Barack Obama "would learn how to be an American," and then he amended the comment with a "what-I-really-meant-was" clarification, and finally, he surrendered, as they almost always do, by saying, "I made a mistake."

But did he? You don't have to be a birth certificate conspiracy kook to ponder the question. After all, writes David Harsanyi, we're no longer debating whether government should just be huge or whether it should be ginormous anymore. We're not really wrangling over what levels of debt or spending are acceptable. The president's central case rests on the idea that individuals should view government as society's moral center, the engine of prosperity, and the arbiter of fairness. Traditionally speaking, that's not a very American notion.