Monday, October 18, 2010

Angry, scared, bitter and frustrated

President Obama, speaking from the stump in Massachusetts:

"Part of the reason that our politics seems so tough right now and facts and science and argument does not seem to be winning the day all the time is because we're hardwired not to always think clearly when we're scared, and the country's scared.

“The biggest mistake we can make right now is to – is out of hurt and confusion, the worst thing we could do is to go back to the very same policies that caused this mess in the first place.”

Former President Bill Clinton, stumping for embattled Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid:

"The only reason this is a tough race is because its a tough time. People are having a tough time and they're frightened and confused and they're mad. Its hard to think."

"People are saying I'm mad and just mad and want to throw people out. I'm old enough to say if you make a decision when you are mad, there is an 80 percent chance you are going to make a mistake."

Vice President Joe Biden:

"Folks, people are angry -- they're angry, I'm angry.  I am truly angry as I go around the country watching…people absolutely, fundamentally blown away by the greed and the policies of the last eight years, of the last administration.”
[errm, Ok]

Note: Biden also said that the Democrats weren’t running on their legislative accomplishments because they’re “too hard to explain.”

All of the above, in remarkable three part harmony:


The Weekly Standard’s Jay Cost sums this up nicely by calling it “Obama’s Dime Store Sociology.”

It’s arrogant, condescending and elitist.  It’s saying: “We are about to get our asses kicked not because we governed against your will, but because you are too stupid, too un-nuanced and too simple to appreciate the grandiosity of our great works.  You peasants just don’t get it, so you’re angry.  You’re scared.  You’re bitter.  You’re frustrated.”

At the same time, it demonstrates a childish unwillingness to accept responsibility for their own actions.  The voice of the people must be heard, and it must be heeded as well.  To ignore national sentiment in so many breathtakingly ambitious ways, and then to blame the very people expressing the sentiment for their coming butt whooping is like a spoiled brat blaming his parents for spanking his incorrigible little kiester.

I don’t see a lot of bitterness, fear or frustration in this cycle.  I see motivation, enthusiasm and optimism that real hope and change are about to wash over the Beltway.  Anger?  Oh, yes.  There’s plenty of that, but it’s channeled and it’s focused. The anger comes from having been lied to.  It comes from having been sold a bill of goods that were never delivered.  False hope. Impossible promises. Dishonest portrayal of oneself as a centrist. A moderate. A post-partisan, post-racial political messiah who turned out to be “just another tax-and-spend Democrat.”


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