The Corner

Unfriendly Rhetoric

I’ve been out of pocket since Thursday, but turned on the Sunday shows and nearly hurled. John Lewis plays the race card like no one else. The idea that he would use George Wallace’s name to describe the McCain/Palin campaigning is sickening. John Lewis is not to be criticized given the abuse against him during the civil-right marches, but John McCain can be compared to Wallace despite his heroic service to this country and torture as a POW.

Barack Obama’s campaign has managed to paint Geraldine Ferraro, Bill Clinton, John McCain, and Sarah Palin as racists. Meanwhile, how dare anyone suggest that Obama’s voluntary association with a racist pastor for 20 years, and his lame defense of the association, raises character questions.

Will the lib media be upset if we quote Aristotle, whose insight seems useful in this context?

“Those, then, are friends to whom the same things are good and evil; and those who are, moreover, friendly or unfriendly to the same people; for in that case they must have the same wishes, and thus by wishing for each other what they wish for themselves, they show themselves each other’s friends.” (Aristotle, Rhetoric, Book II, Chapter)

We choose our own friends and associates. And this is significant in Obama’s case in particular as we are trying to get a sense of who he is and what informs him. Obama is asking the nation to honor him with its highest office. Yet, during most of his adulthood, he has befriended some of the worst kind of people — many of whom detest the nation Obama seeks to lead. And when combined with Obama’s own extremism on issue after issue (is there a left-wing position he does not embrace?), there can be no doubt that an Obama administration working with a Democrat majority in Congress will fundamentally alter the nation’s character in ways that will be very difficult to unravel.

As for Obama’s commercials, they are deceitful even by the Washington Post’s standards. They flat out lie about McCain’s health-care plan and the tax consequences. Indeed, one of the sources he cites for the truthfulness of his ad is the Center for America’s Progress, which is John Podesta’s group. But Obama doesn’t care. He is spending a fortune on the ads, hoping to scare people into believing McCain will take their health care away. Obama’s ad about McCain’s position on corporate taxes is another flat out lie. McCain isn’t proposing a $4 billion tax for oil companies or loopholes for corporations. He opposes letting the Bush tax cuts lapse and wants to further reduce corporate tax rates across the board. Obama has been called on the ad as well, but he is running them non-stop.

And then there is ACORN. Obama worked for them, represented them, and has now given them $800,000 from his campaign. Is Obama unaware of what a fraudulent operation this is? Of course not. He rejects any responsibility for their actions. And what of Obama’s thuggish tactics in intimidating those with whom he disagrees? He asked the Justice Department to prosecute a private group that was running ads about his ties to William Ayers — and later sought tax information from them to file complaints with the IRS. He tried to silence our own Stanley Kurtz by using his campaign e-mail list to encourage calls to the management of a radio station on two separate occasions to keep Kurtz off the air. And then they flooded the show with calls when Kurtz was on.

The vast majority of conservative intellectuals and grassroots activist comprehend what’s at stake in the election, even if David Brooks, Christopher Buckley, Doug Kmiec, and other eccentrics do not. Obama and David Axelrod know exactly what they are doing, and so do most of the media anchors and reporters. And they hope to alter this country in ways we should all find revolting.


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