Thursday, October 28, 2010

On bowing to foreign opinion


Shelby Steele--who is that anomaly, a black conservative--ponders the phenomenon of Barack Obama in today's Wall Street Journal. The title is A Referendum on the Redeemer, and basically it's a more intelligent discussion of an emotion first encapsulated by Sarah Palin: "How's that hopey changey stuff working out for ya?"

Mr. Obama, as Mr. Steele argues, is our first 1960s president. This is a much more momentous fact than Bill Clinton's emergence as our first Baby Boomer president: though influenced by the 1960s, Mr. Clinton actually grew up in the two decades that followed World War II, and that was the worldview that shaped him. (It wasn't until 1968, when Mr. Clinton was 22 years old, that The Sixties really got rolling.)

Why is this important? Because the 1960s mindset is one that sees America as essentially evil. Bill Clinton didn't believe that; Barack Obama does, hence the kowtowing tour that marked the first year of his presidency.

This is why (says Mr. Steele) so many Americans believe that their president wasn't born in the U.S., or that he worships in secret as a Muslim. Neither is likely, but the deeper suspicion--he isn't one of us!--most certainly is. America as a force for evil may be a popular notion at National Public Radio and indeed most of the mainstream media, in our university faculties, and among the Good People generally. It doesn't sell so well among the great mass of the Americans, including a good many who joyfully voted for Barack Obama two years ago. We will hear their second thoughts on Tuesday. Blue skies! -- Dan Ford

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