I’ve tried to claim, throughout my many posts endorsing Barack Obama’s candidacy, that I have not let foggy notions of hope and a selfish sense of liberal condescension cloud my independent judgment about the upcoming presidential election.
To wit, David Brooks’s much-emailed op-ed today in the Times, How Obama Fell to Earth. If nobody emailed it to you, essentially he says that the damage has been done and now Obama is a pedestrian pol with all the double-talk, false promises and pandering that entails. The unsullied usher to the promised land has been reduced to that basest of human life-forms: the politician.
Ready for my retort? Well, I don’t have one. I completely agree. It’s been hugely sad to me to watch Obama engage in all the games he said he wouldn’t play and the tactics he said he’d never use. All along I’ve been worried about his pledges to bring our troops home from Iraq unequivocally, thinking surely his lawyerly prudence would assess the situation from inside the Oval Office and make the best decision for our country and the world. And actually I think this is still the case, but now veering even slightly from his current prescription will mean he lied outright. And that’s really disappointing.
I still find him hugely inspiring as a leader, thinker, speaker, and yes, even as a politician. For as much as he has sadly succumbed to the lowest common denominator, he still stands head and shoulders above the field. As a supporter, one can only hope that Clinton’s unabated and opportunistic attacks have only tempered the steel of his electability and promise, and not done any permanent damage heading into November.
God help us, when we make it to November, that is…