Tuesday, August 23, 2016
Here's why "I hope he fails" was such an important statement.
Vanderleun dares to explore the things that others dare not think:
Presence of malice...
We can survive many traits in presidents, but malice is not among them. In the unfolding saga of the Libyan adventure I note that, even though it is early innings, a popular strain of conservative criticism centers around the always popular idea of 'stupidity in government;' with a variant on the subset of ‘the president is not as smart as he thinks.’ The popular variant this time is: 'deep down, Obama is shallow.' This notion includes various complimentary subsets such as 'he is lazy,' 'he is incompetent,' 'he's hooked on the perks and doesn't care for the work.' All comfortable notions that imply that the critic is, conversely, smarter, more diligent, and more fit to make governmental decisions than the president. The problem here is that the critic is not the president and hence has no power to do anything remotely presidential....Self-identified conservatives, it seems to me, are only too happy to “rule out malice” when it comes to examining the actions of this oddest, most alien, and most unconnected to the American earth of presidents. I believe this is because it is both comfortable and gratifying for conservatives to do so. Conservatives love to think of themselves as being not only reasonable and right, but polite as well. Progressives are only too glad to help them smother in this self-nullifying delusion....Such an intellectual posture is typical of a classic American conservative attempting to come to grips with this strange phenomenon who holds the keys and the go-codes to the armed might of the United States of America. It is an attitude that worships the lie that a person occupying the role of the president of the United States must, he simply must, have the best interests of the nation, as he has come to understand them, at heart. It’s a bright and shiny concept and has a lot of innate attractiveness to the American conservative mindset. But like many contemporary conservative concepts it has little to say to the darker reality we face; a reality in which the chief executive of the nation is hell-bent on a malicious program whose intent is permanent harm to the nation he has perversely sworn to serve and protect. To a man who has no other gods before him the phrase "So help me God" means nothing.