Monday, July 16, 2012

A brand of politics that is bad for democracy - Denyse O'Leary

I don’t usually do the politics beat but recently I reviewed a book by the former editor of the New York Times Magazine, on why he thinks Barack Obama shouldn’t be re-elected. On principle, I agreed with him. I think that Obama typefies a brand of politics that is bad for representative government and democracy. But I was troubled by his tone, his approach. Anyway, I gulped, wrote the review, and published it here: (excerpt)
I have no reason to doubt that the unflattering things that Klein writes about Barack and Michelle Obama are true, because they would likely be true of anyone who made it to the top in an age of imperial presidency. The Obamas dissed the Kennedys and the Clintons, as Klein says, but does anyone doubt that those power families would have done the same to the Obamas, given a chance? They all know the rules by which they play, live, and govern lavishly.
What are we to make, however, of Klein’s complaint that Obama did nothing for Jews ( pp. 155-81)? Or blacks (pp. 187-90)? Nothing, really, if they will not vote for his opponent in consequence. Presumably, Klein’s book went to press before the failed Governor Walker recall election in Wisconsin. There, Obama did not intervene to help the public employee unions. But why should he? Would the unions have threatened to support a Republican nominee if he didn’t intervene? If not, the unions must be content with a serious famine of crumbs from the presidential table, jostling all the others who have nowhere else to go.
That is simply what the politics of an imperial presidency is like. The President’s supporters are his serfs, not his free electors. Multiple, and mostly unbreakable, ties bind them to him, with whatever outcome for them. More.
By the way, one of my posts at The Best Schools took off after a Christian notable linked to it. The post addressed the controversy over the fact that gifted African American neurosurgeon Ben Carson was attacked by 500 academics at George Mason University because he had refused to bow to Darwin. Even though Carson has saved hundreds of lives, the university’s president has promised to put procedures in place that will prevent such a person from ever speaking on campus again. Remember this when someone tells you that there is no conflict between Christ and Darwin. Denyse O’Leary is co-author of The Spiritual Brain.

1 comment:

Peter Black said...

Denyse, your mind moves in circles of thought and aspects of significant matters that I would not be in, were it not for your posts. So I thank you. This, with your links,was a very interesting read.

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