Barracking Your Way to the Top
It is one of the curiosities of language that the transitive verb “barrack” (chiefly British, origin unknown) means to “shout or jeer at.” For that is precisely what our Barack, the one now occupying the White House, has descended to in his campaign against Mitt Romney. Shouting, jeering, name calling, and above all lying: “whatever it takes” to smear his political opponent and maintain his hold on the reins of power. It is, to use an adjective Romney himself employed recently, a disgusting performance. “Can a Candidate Lie His Way to the Presidency?” John Hinderaker asked recently at Powerline. The answer, alas, is Yes. But John offers this hopeful addendum: “a candidate likely can lie his way into office, but I doubt that an incumbent president can lie his way to re-election. For the first time in his life, apparently, Barack Obama has a record.” He won’t, in short, be able to seal up the records on his dismal performance these past several years the way he has managed to seal the records of his high school, college, and law school years, not to mention his years as a practicing attorney.
I recently wrote in this space that “Who Is Barack Obama?” was the question that won’t go away. A lot of people, me included, thought it appalling that Barack Obama’s utter lack of experience wasn’t more of an issue in 2008. Looking back on the election, however, even more extraordinary is the fact that the people of the United States elected a man to be president whom they knew almost nothing about. It wasn't just Obama’s lack of experience that was at issue; it was the lack at the center of his being: we really had no idea where this fellow came from, who he was, what he stood for.
Well, some of us had a pretty good idea of what he stood for. He stood for the “fundamental” transformation of the United States of America -- its devolution into a species of socialist dystopia. He stood, in short, for the Dependency Agenda, where the citizens are universally dependent on the government and its cadre of managers for all aspects of life.
Obama has dramatized that goal nicely in his three and a half years in office. And he won't be able to seal it up or obscure it, though, as John Hinderaker notes, that won’t stop him from trying.
The Obama campaign’s current Bain Capital smear, which many media outlets have taken up, ranks with Quemoy, Matsu and Checkers as absurd campaign “issues.” But it is all that a flailing, out-of-ammo campaign has to offer.
That and a constant, hectoring effort to distract voters from his record by demonizing or barracking his opponents. It’s already past silly. Team Romney has been quick and effective about answering the charges. Already people are talking about the incredible shrinking Obama. By the time November rolls around, all he’ll have left is the sympathy vote. But while people will vote for someone they think is an underdog, not many will pull the lever for someone they think is a pathetic loser whose empty egalitarian rhetoric was merely a ploy to perpetuate his own power. Goodbye, Barack. Or rather, good riddance.
Article printed from Roger’s Rules: https://pjmedia.com/rogerkimball
URL to article: https://pjmedia.com/rogerkimball/2012/7/14/barracking-your-way-to-the-top