Monday, March 17, 2008
Bill Kristol's Ball
"We have been told that we cannot heal this nation, by a chorus of cynics. They will only grow louder and more dissonant..."
Sen. Barack Obama
When those who butter your bread hand over the talking points, you better start talking.
That's how columnist Bill Kristol got in trouble on Monday.
The attack dogs were on Democratic presidential frontrunner Barack Obama's heels over some things that someone, whom he knows, said.
The marching orders from Fox News and this country's rancid right were to follow-up on the matter of Reverend Jeremiah Wright's jeremiad, to stoke its dying embers into a conflagration that would burn the Illinois senator beyond recognition.
The problem with Sen. Obama, for his enemies at least, is that he is a genuinely good man with an intelligent legislative agenda. He is talented and mounting a remarkable campaign against rather difficult odds.
With a few missteps, Obama '08 has been a model of excellence and efficiency; ever vigilant, mindful of the dangers awaiting the candidate and a step ahead of everybody in America including Hillary Clinton, Kristol, the Dodos on "This Week with George Stephanopolous" et al.
So that when these unkind forces find something, they go with it, even if it's at their own risk.
Kristol rendezvoused with other carrion who make a lifestyle of personal destruction, including one Ronald Kessler who has covered Wright and told Kristol that Obama was in church when reverend said some bad things nobody should be allowed to hear in the groupthink paradise Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly and their ilk seem to equate with a free country.
There's a nice microcosm of everything that has been wrong with mainstream media coverage in recent weeks for you.
To wit: The insistence that Obama's critique of a country he is arguing must be set right is proof the candidate is no patriot, coupled with a willingness to cast aspersions upon his maturity, experience, and preparedness...regardless of the evidence.
In his own personal contribution to this effort Kristol notes, "But one has the sense that elsewhere in this great land the bloom is coming off the Obama rose."
How could it not?
"Generation Obama? Perhaps not," starts out with a lousy title that tips its empty hand goes downhill from there, even wallowing in shoddy craftsmanship.
highwayscribery got to the piece at 2:30 p.m. Pacific time and by then there was a paragraph up top, in italics, that read, and the scribe quotes:
"In this column, I cite a report that Sen. Obama had attended services at Trinity Church on July 22, 2007. The Obama campaign has provided information showing that Senator Obama did not attend Trinity that day. I regret the error."
Deprived of us his fake fig leaf, Kristol ended up with his peter-principle flapping in the wind, peddling the rather innocuous profile of a,
"...conventionally opportunistic politician, impressively smart and disciplined, who has put together a good political career and a terrific presidential campaign."
We CANNOT have someone like that leading this nation.
The more scurrilous charges are that Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner had a party for Obama at Boston's Rumor nightclub, which claims it "brings together the sexiest and hippest people from around the globe."
Kristol is perfectly comfortable hitching this marketing copy to the real message of the barackobama.com "Generation Obama," which is the activist base that is tying up caucus after caucus for their candidate and which the campaign calls, "the next great generation."
Too much "conceit" there for Kristol who sees Obamacal "scripture" everywhere he turns, rather than the enthusiasm of people younger and more excited than he is about politics, or a preacher with an axe to grind much bigger than his own.
He says maybe conservatives should prefer the cynicism of Hillary Clinton to the Obama message, which is a rather honest admission on his part.
Of course, the Obama generation's story is still being told. This chapter involves the candidate gamely beating back the attacks of lesser political gods through the power of his steadfast movement and the strength of his own constitution.
We shall see what happens.
The columnist himself has no Kristol ball, he cannot with a glib column and the connivance of much larger media attack machine tell whether generation Obama is or is not the greatest generation yet.
That is a task they have set for themselves and which Kristol has chosen to stand by and pepper with pot shots while Obama has attempted to do the more noble thing.
To lead them.