It had all the dignity of a Filene’s Basement bridal gown sale. It was as uniting as a Westboro Church rally. It was as inspirational as the golden arches of a McDonald’s fast food franchise. It was Obama’s “Let’s Make A Deal” moment.
Many Republican/conservative writers today reacted not with revulsion but with applause for Obama’s remarks. Why shouldn’t they applaud? Obama and his thugs tried all week to sell the notion that Sarah Palin and the Tea Party were to blame for the Arizona shootings. The Big Blog Boys collaborated with the Obama White House to perpetuate the smear. Last night Obama waved a surrender flag on that carefully calculated ploy.
“For the truth is none of us can know exactly what triggered this vicious attack. None of us can know with any certainty what might have stopped these shots from being fired, or what thoughts lurked in the inner recesses of a violent man’s mind. Yes, we have to examine all the facts behind this tragedy. We cannot and will not be passive in the face of such violence. We should be willing to challenge old assumptions in order to lessen the prospects of such violence in the future. (Applause.) But what we cannot do is use this tragedy as one more occasion to turn on each other. (Applause.) That we cannot do. (Applause.) That we cannot do.”
Poof. The White House strategy of smear and fear went up in a puff of Obama. The Big Blog Boys and the Hausfrau auxiliaries had the propaganda carpet pulled out from under their feet.
How stupid is what passes for the left these days? They have not yet noticed how Obama pushed them under the bus in this latest publicity stunt. Consider: The left has been denouncing Obama’s “moves to the center” since December’s surrender/acceptance of the Bush tax cuts. The left has been denouncing Obama’s lack of fight for two years now. Yet what passes for the left these days is so stupid that it is unable to even see that Obama’s “unity” speech of last night is one further move into the land of surrender.
For Obama not fighting makes a great deal of political sense because it is the right move for a careerist interested only in what advances himself. For the left Obama’s “go along to get along” strategy is a disaster. Call it the politics of the wet noodle. Most people don’t like fighting and name calling and it makes public figures popular when they are seen as uniters not dividers.
For the politically ambitious without principle the saying is “go along to get along.” The trick as Hillary Clinton has put it is to know when to stand your ground and when to reach for common ground. Barney Frank articulated it best when he made the point that the best way to avoid a fight is to surrender to the opposition.
No fighting makes sense for Obama politically. Obama not fighting makes even more sense for Republicans. No wonder wily Republicans thought the Obama speech good. “I surrender” is always sweet to hear across the aisle.
That is not to say that last night should have been a place for Obama to declare war and be obnoxious. But why is the left smiling and declaring victory when last night was their Appomattox Courthouse? The “blame Palin, blame Tea Party” DailyKooks got slapped down with another major Obama capitulation and they are still too dumb to realize once again Obama sold them out to advance himself.
Last night was a time to remember those killed, pray for or encourage the families of those fighting for their lives in hospitals, and in a dignified manner remind the nation that what unites us is greater than what divides us. We did not get that either.
The protocols and conventions of memorial services and funerals are fairly well established. Whether in a small church or a large auditorium, gym, or open field the necessaries are well known. A choir, a hushed solemn audience, speakers in soft voices, hymns, spirituals, and dignified bearing by all are ingredients for these events.
T-shirts, whooping, booing, screaming, carnival barker voices booming into microphones are memorial service “don’ts.” We suppose gratitude should be expressed in that there were no vuvuzela horns, pom-poms, air horns, hookers, or Greek columns.
What we got last night was a Peter Pan president turning a dignified congresswoman into a Tinkerbell that applause could revive. Instead of dignified grief we witnessed treacly embarrassments calculated to tickle the tear ducts. Fortunately for us all, the family of Christina Green allowed us a glimpse of dignity.
May she and the others killed rest in peace.