Of course. He embraces them because they’re an Alinsky move against which he can triangulate, and he really agrees with their schtick. He refutes their sloth and ignorance, though, because he can’t exactly identify with it. He has to sound moderate and reasonable to the middle, and here’s how he does that:
“The most important thing we can do right now is those of us in leadership letting people know that we understand their struggles and we are on their side, and that we want to set up a system in which hard work, responsibility, doing what you’re supposed to do, is rewarded,” Obama said.
The occupiers don’t actually believe in any of that. From their incessant demands to squat on other people’s property and use other people’s bathrooms and poach off their wi-fi networks, to their wish to have all their student debt magically waved away, the occupiers aren’t about having responsibility and hard work rewarded. They’re about taking other people’s stuff. The POTUS can’t very well voice direct support for that, so he replaces the occupiers’ values with those of the mainstream, and then identifies with those. Neat trick.
He also pulls another trick in this interview, which will air on ABC. Obama tries using the occupiers to reach out to the Tea Party. As implausible as that sounds, if the media doesn’t call him on it, he might benefit.
“I understand the frustrations being expressed in those protests,” Obama told ABC News senior White House correspondent Jake Tapper in the interview to air this evening on ABC News “Nightline” from Jamestown, N.C.
“In some ways, they’re not that different from some of the protests that we saw coming from the Tea Party. Both on the left and the right, I think people feel separated from their government. They feel that their institutions aren’t looking out for them,” he said.
The Tea Party, of course, was lawfully protesting directly against many of Obama’s policies. The occupiers are squatters who have attacked police, advocated violence and anti-Semitism, and are in bed with anarchists and Communists. And at the beginning of the Tea Party, President Obama wasn’t accommodating of them at all. He mocked them. And his allies slurred them and accused them of being fakes.
This is a pretty clever play on Obama’s part. He’s counting on fooling low information voters into thinking the OWS people aren’t so bad, and neither is he. Heck, he’s even said something nice about the Tea Party! The big lug.
Obama is every inch the radical, but OWS gives him the chance to mobilize the far left while he gets to appear more reasonable, even while he and his union and big money friends on the left are egging them on rather openly.