The Corner

As Inevitable as the Sun Rising . . .

By 2006 a once-pro-Bush press (that had earlier wished to piggyback on his popularity between 2001–2003) had turned on the president and offered four liberal critiques of Bush and his supporters: One, he had run continual deficits, and as a conservative was hypocritical in not balancing the budget; two, he had crafted an extensive “war on terror” that in aggregate eroded civil liberties; three, his rhetoric and unilateralism in Iraq and elsewhere had strained relations abroad, and made the world much more unsafe; and four, he had said little about a “culture of corruption” among Congressional Republicans. 

Both parties are hypocritical and object to policies and methodologies when out of power that they often embrace when in office. But liberal-media silence is mind-boggling over Obama’s massive deficits (projected over ten years to outpace all the red-ink run up by all the presidents of the past); his embrace of Bush-era renditions, tribunals, wiretaps, intercepts, Predator attacks, and policies on Iraq and Afghanistan; the sudden confrontational mood of North Korea, Iran, Russia, and simmering contempt from Merkel, Sarkozy and some eastern Europeans; and Obama’s complete indifference to  rampant corruption not only of tax-challenged cabinet nominees, but serial congressional offenders like Chris Dodd, John Murtha, Charles Rangel, etc. 

An objective press might have warned us that the Obama deficits are simply unsustainable and quadruple Bush’s; that Obama has employed euphemism to disguise the fact that the Bush pedestrian war on terror apparently is now considered to have kept us safe after 9/11; that a firm but unfortunately sometimes insensitive America is less dangerous than an equivocating and therapeutic United States; and that corrupt but emboldened congressional Democrats apparently believe they are completely exempt from the sort of censure that once met their Republican counterparts.

As the world becomes more unsafe, as inflation will soon roar in, and as more Congressional scandals emerge as a result of trillions borrowed and spent recklessly without proper oversight, eventually public dissatisfaction will mount, and the press will, as they did in 2006, likewise turn on their hero.

And just as they claimed that they never were for the Iraq war that they once had chest-thumped, so too those in the media will insist they always were skeptical of Obama’s reckless deficits, his Cartesque foreign approach, and the “culture of corruption” that he failed to take on.

Victor Davis Hanson — NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author, most recently, of The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won.

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