Uh-oh. President Obama seems to have learned nothing from the disaster of the "cling-to-guns-and-God" talk that almost derailed his campaign in 2008. He's back at it—blaming voters for failing to "think clearly" because they're "scared" about the economy:
WEST NEWTON, Mass. - President Barack Obama said Americans' "fear and frustration" is to blame for an intense midterm election cycle that threatens to derail the Democratic agenda.
"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," Obama said Saturday evening in remarks at a small Democratic fundraiser Saturday evening. "And the country's scared."
Obama told the several dozen donors that he was offering them his "view from the Oval Office." He faulted the economic downturn for Americans’ inability to "think clearly" and said the burden is on Democrats "to break through the fear and the frustration people are feeling."
What if he's right? In two years, the economy will have recovered and voters will feel better about his policies. But the election is in three weeks, when—according to his own theory—voters will act out of scared, hard-wired confusion. Why make them angrier? ('You poor, scared, confused people, I know more "facts" and "science" than you do.') Always Be Condescending! It's a form of political malpractice—making yourself look good to supporters, and to history, and to yourself, at the expense of the fellow Dems who are on the ballot.
a few weeks ago a right-wing reporter told me that worried Dem congresspersons who met with Obama left their meetings more worried than when they went in. I discounted the gossip, but now it's begining to ring true. We thought he was a great salesman. He turned out to be a lousy salesman. We thought he was a great politician. Instead he makes elementary mistakes and doesn't learn from them. He didn't know "shovel-ready" from a hole in the ground, and then somehow thinks admitting this ignorance without apology will add to his appeal.
I'd still defend most of the decisions Obama's made, especially on health care refom. I'd rather have him making those decisions than 85% of the likely Republican candidates. But for the first time, he's looking like a one-termer, even if the jobs start to come back. . . .
Monday, October 18, 2010
In Time for Halloween: The Return of the Bitter Clingers
Mickey Kaus writes: