Ed Driscoll

Great Minds Flashback Alike

In his latest Best of the Web column, James Taranto writes:

What’s a bit astonishing is that Obama and his advisers still seem to believe that he has the capacity to work magic with a speech. So, to judge by their disappointment, do journalistic admirers like Alter and Milbank. But has he ever actually done so?

He made a good first impression with his uplifting 2004 Democratic National Convention speech. Since then, what? His “race” speech drew extravagant praise at the time, and it succeeded in diverting attention from his association with his hate-mongering “spiritual mentor,” Jeremiah Wright. But no one remembers what he said in it. We liked his Tucson memorial speech last year, but apart from that the Obama presidency has been a long series of supposedly crucial speeches that amount to nothing.

Obama’s admirers sometimes describe him as a “rock star.” If so, he’s a one-hit wonder. They thought they were getting the Beatles but ended up with A Flock of Seagulls.

Great minds — who may have both wanted their MTV during their younger days — flashback alike: to accompany a post by my follow PJM columnist Richard Fernandez titled “A Flock of Flunkies,” I created the following Photoshop for the PJM homepage back on June 6th:

While I liked A Flock of Seagull’s one hit (and both admire and am appropriately horrified by their lead singer’s luxuriant and iconic ’80-era coiffure), I fear that if Obama wins reelection, what we’ll really be looking at is four years of Tears for Fears. And we’ll be continuing to look back nostalgically at the 1980s, and not just for the music and hairdos.