Ed Driscoll

Our First Postmodern President

Victor Davis Hanson records Mr. Obama’s travails in Never-Never Land:

The chief tenet of postmodernism is that truth and facts are arbitrary constructs, set up by the privileged to manipulate others less fortunate. In the case of our first postmodernist president, Barack Obama, there cannot be facts, past or present, only a set of shifting assertions that gain credence to the degree that they prove transitorily useful for progressive causes. A sympathetic biographer, David Maraniss, noted that almost all the touchstone events in Barack Obama’s mythographic memoir were fabricated. Of course, Obama would object to such a value-laden term and instead call them composites, impressions stitched together and presented as truth to serve the higher moral narrative: a young biracial idealist searching for his identity in a mostly racist and oppressive America. To the degree that Dreams from My Father enhanced that narrative, then all of what was in it was “true” — even the literary agent’s bio attesting that the exotic author was born in faraway Kenya.

For the fabulist Obama, the past is a vague mess with shifting narratives that can serve noble contemporary causes. Take World War II — the old war that supposedly proves that victory is now an obsolete term, since, as Obama explained, Japanese Emperor Hirohito capitulated to General MacArthur, apparently on the deck of the Missouri, in a rare act never to happen again. Obama’s own grandfather was in the forefront of stopping Nazism, and the more dramatic the circumstances the better — so who cares whether the Russians, and not an American unit, liberated Auschwitz and Treblinka?

And in his latest ad (click over to Hot Air for the video), Obama makes postmodernism synonymous with sleaze:

The pro-Obama super PAC Priorities USA Action lobbed a heavy-duty attack at Mitt Romney this morning, airing an ad that links the closure of a GST Steel plant in Kansas City to the loss of a family’s health insurance — and the death of a woman some time later…

In the case of this particularly jarring super PAC ad, it may also be relevant that Soptic’s wife died in 2006, years after the GST factory closed down

I asked Priorities USA strategist Bill Burton to explain the connection between Romney, Bain and a cancer fatality that happened near the end of Romney’s tenure as governor of Massachusetts. The lapse in time between the plant closing and Soptic’s death doesn’t mean the ad is invalid, but it raises questions about the cause and effect relationship here.

Nevermind that it was an Obama bundler running Bain when Soptic’s wife died. As Allahpundit writes:

I have to say, though, it’s a comfort to me to know that Hopenchange will be well and truly shattered come November, no matter what happens on election day. Even if he pulls it out, after a campaign like this the idea that he and his team represent some sort of new, more exalted form of politics will be fully exposed for the joke that it is. His second term won’t be better, but at least people won’t be kidding themselves anymore, if any still are. There’s some small consolation in that.

Though as Michael Walsh writes, “as much as Obama hates Romney and loves the golfing and partying aspect of being president, the truth is that many Democrats won’t be sorry to see him go.” But he’ll leave quite a legacy, nonetheless:

But even should Romney win, the Democrats can still afford to smile, knowing that Obama’s “advances” — such as Obamacare — are going to be very hard or impossible to roll back. They know from history that American counter-revolutions never really restore the status quo ante, and that “progressive” ideas are nearly impossible to root out, especially with the media blocking for them. And they know their unfireable, beetling minions in the judiciary and the regulatory agencies aren’t going anywhere soon, no matter who wins.

Which is why the real fight lies elsewhere. For conservatives are engaged in a two-front war, one against the Democrats and the other against the sad, wan, spineless things known as mainstream Republicans. Alas, some of these creatures hold actual positions of authority in both the party and the government, in effect acting as facilitators for the other side.

The left are betting that the GOP don’t have the spine to repair the damage they’ve done since 2009. And they may very well be correct, as the SS Cloward-Piven sails even further into the pack of icebergs.