C’mon Krauthammer, You Can Do Better Than That!
By: David Bozeman
Charles Krauthammer, one of the few conservatives to be lauded for his intellect, can do so much better. Currently, he is best known for naming President Obama, in essence, The Comeback Kid for extending the Bush-era tax cuts. On the December 21 O’Reilly Factor, the esteemed columnist touted the intellectual bravado not only of Obama (head of the Harvard Law Review!) but of former President Bill Clinton, as well.
According to Krauthammer, by defying the far-left wing of his party, Obama has reclaimed the center and likely saved the economy, thus putting himself in far better shape for re-election than he was just after the mid-terms. But like Bill Clinton, he has kept himself relevant and beloved by his base for signing the law repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.
I’m sure DADT dominated the concerns of unemployed voters in Ohio, Indiana, Michigan and elsewhere. And listening to Krauthammer, we are to believe that an extension — not a tax cut — but a mere two-year extension of current tax rates will create a veritable frenzy of investing and hiring and prosperity and Democratic dominance and whoda thunk it? But who can predict the political climate two years hence? And how many businesses take risks based on short-term extensions of an already shaky status quo?
In truth, Bill Clinton could pull off the art of triangulation because he was not the committed ideologue that Obama is. Just peruse Obama’s history. And the much healthier economy of the early 90s left Clinton with more room to maneuver, while Obama remains stranded on a tightrope. Even a second-rate intellectual knows that history, while replete with parallels, seldom moves in a straight line with neat, predictable tiers of trends and events to foretell the future.
The pork-laden bill to extend the Bush tax cuts was not some daring feat by Obama. And even if it were, so what? Any leader with a double-digit IQ could have seen the folly of raising taxes in a stagnant economic environment. We are to believe that Democrats possess superior intellects, and, thus, political prowess, because the dominant political culture has always told us so. Singing the praises of brilliant Democrats is about as deep and daring as chatting about the weather with a stranger on an elevator. Jimmy Carter, who once recalled an encounter with a killer rabbit, was never considered as grave a threat to our republic as Ronald Reagan’s creeping senility. And remember how the gaff-a-minute Joe Biden was supposed to mop the floor with Sarah Palin in the 2008 vice-presidential debate, and then the Alaska birdbrain actually held her own? Democratic brainpower and savvy is always a given, while up-and-coming Republicans are always trying to prove an IQ above that of an eggplant.
And therein lies what is wrong with today’s political analysis — a breathless pre-occupation with the scorecard typically trumps the case for what is right and the debunking of what is wrong. To paraphrase Sarah Palin in her 2006 gubernatorial debate, the people of America deserve a better discourse than this. Fox News host Mike Huckabee recently asked a panel of guests to grade the year’s political leaders. Conservative Monica Crowley gave House Speaker Pelosi an F for policy, but she rambled on, also awarding her an A for her ability in forwarding her agenda. Radio host Mancow Muller, when given his turn, replied simply, “F.” Bravo! It’s bad enough they rob our wallets and fritter away our liberties, we shouldn’t have to praise the finesse of Democrats at talking down and explaining away our capitalist, Constitutional republic that, under their continued dominance, will end up a mere shadow of its former self. And one need not edit the Harvard Law Review to see that.