Politics & Policy

Barry! Barry! Barry!

We are the ones who are ready to get it over with already.

You know, I’ve about had it with the Republicans. Wednesday night’s “debate” proved they are a bunch of dirty, low-down, mean, nasty skunks who will stop at nothing to trash, denigrate, demean, and otherwise disrespect my guy, Senator B. Hussein Obama the Younger (D., Rezko). When a campaign stoops so low as to use a candidate’s actual words and personal associations against him, then I weep for the future of social democracy in this soon-to-be-great land of ours. Comes the revolution, er, election, we’ll know how to deal with people like this!

O.K., so it wasn’t the Rethuglicans who beat up on Barry; it was Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopoulos, two tools of the Clinton Attack Machine. Same difference. The two “newsmen” — did you know that Stefi used to work in the Clinton White House? I had no idea — had the gall to ask Obama about his association with (as that great TV critic, Tom Shales, put it) “a nutty, bomb-throwing anarchist” named William Ayers, which sneak attack Barry deftly deflected by comparing Ayers to a bona fide right-wing nut, Sen. Tom Coburn, an anti-abortion fanatic who, you just know secretly cheers whenever an abortion clinic is picketed. Thank God for moral equivalence!

O.K., so Sen. Coburn has never actually, you know, bombed anything nor cheered any bombers on. Whereas Professor Ayers, a former member of the heroic Weather Underground, was quoted approvingly on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001 in (where else?) the New York Times to the effect that he and his freedom fighters didn’t do enough when they were bombing the Pentagon and accidentally blowing up a perfectly nice brownstone in Greenwich Village that could have sold for millions today. And such is the fascist power of the U.S. of KKKA to suppress dissent that Ayers and his fellow bombstress, Bernadine Dohrn, have been forced to labor as college professors at the University of Chicago and Northwestern ever since.

Still, it was a frankly disgraceful performance. Just because Barry attended a church for years without noticing that its pastor was a raving anti-American racist; refuses to demean himself by wearing a flag pin on his lapel; is up to his ears in the Tony Rezko mess; and thinks you yahoos are, well, yahoos is no reason for the media to question either his morals, his beliefs, or his patriotism. Isn’t it enough for him to just say he’s addressed all those issues, and to ask the media to tackle more substantive questions, such as how he’s going to bring hope and change not only to the United States but also to our European allies, fellow leftists such as Angela Merkel, Nicolas Sarkozy and Silvio Berlusconi?

O.K., so the wind has been blowing in the other direction on the Continent lately. But who cares if those “garlic noses,” in Pastor Wright’s felicitous phrase, want to reelect a plutocratic fascist like Berlusconi? Italian politics are like the weather in New England (or North Dakota, or Texas, or wherever you live) — wait five minutes and they’ll change again. And it was a sad moment indeed when we Democrats realized that, for the first time since the Big One, no Communists would be seated in the Italian parliament. But hey — we still have Zapatero in Spain and that British prime minister, what’s his name, the Scottish guy wandering around Washington complaining that nobody’s paying attention to him because the pope’s in town.

No, the scurrilous attacks on Barry were totally unfair. And they were made worse by his halting, uncertain and downright embarrassed responses, replies so bad that they never came close to tipping the Obamamometer into the red zone. I mean, the pathos was unbelievable. And there was Hillary, Queen of the Undead, cackling in the corner as our brave Barry tried to deal with the underhanded tactics of Messrs. Gibson and Stephanopoulos.

Furthermore, none of the issues they clubbed Obama with really matters to the average voter, such as me. What we want to know is this: how fast is he going to extricate us from the hellhole of Iraq? How much is he going to raise taxes, so we can get our accountants thinking ahead as to how to avoid them? How is he going to make life fair? And how is the federal government going to take care of us, the Little People?

O.K., maybe not take care of us in Hollywoodland. Sure, times are hard here, especially when you have to decide between leasing a new Jag or buying a Prius to help save the planet. Or maybe do both, so that they carbon-offset each other and you can feel virtuous about driving either one.

But take care of you. Yes, I’m talking to you, you poor benighted helpless fools who can’t function without the beneficent help of Uncle Sam. You, who can’t pay your mortgages, can’t afford to send your kids to decent schools, are forced to pay nearly $4 a gallon for gas so you can drive your miserable selves from your soulless suburbs into horrifically declining inner cities, on your way to work as bail bondsmen and exotic dancers. You know who you are.

O.K., so the mortgage crisis affects almost nobody; we liberals managed to turn the public schools into the nightmares they are today; our noble environmental policies forbid oil companies to, you know, actually drill for oil off the California coast and in Alaska; we haven’t built any new refineries for a decade or more; and most of what you’re paying for gas goes right back to federal, state and local governments in the form of taxes.

Still, none of that should matter. Bambi was right to look like a wounded faun as Charlie and George disgracefully pounded on him. And who among us has a soul so dead that he couldn’t listen to BHO Jr., righteously complain: “that was the rollout of the Republican campaign in November. They will try to focus on these issues that don’t have anything to do with how you’re paying your bills at the end of the month.” Because it plainly says, right there in the Constitution, that the federal government primarily exists to help you pay your bills.

Or, rather, it will, after we win this election, appoint more justices like Ruth Bader Ginsburg and David Souter, and I finish the rewrite.

David Kahane is the nom de cyber of a Hollywood screenwriter. You can write to him directly at kahanenro@gmail.com He thanks you for your letters and wants you to know he is not Dennis Miller, Mark Steyn, Pat Sajak or Vincent D’Onofrio.

Since February 2007, Michael Walsh has written for National Review both under his own name and the name of David Kahane, a fictional persona described as “a Hollywood liberal who ...


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