Fallows has since backtracked from his Bush derangement syndrome confessional, merely calling whatever he thinks is going on “radical.” But the word is still there in his URL, and the paranoia has lost none of its flavor in the revised post:
(Midnight update: This item went up three hours ago with a more blunt-instrument headline than it should ever have had: “5 Signs the United States is Undergoing a Coup.” I used the word “coup” in a particular way in the longer item this was drawn from. Using it in the headline implies things I don’t mean. Through the past decade, there has been a radical shift in the “by any means necessary” rules of political combat, as I describe. Previous conservative administrations have nominated previous conservative Justices — but not radical partisans, happy to overthrow precedent to get to the party-politics result they want. That is the case I mean to make. And I hope the upcoming health care ruling ends up being evidence on the other side.)
Among his “coup” evidence, Fallows drafts a list of 5 points knocking around in his head from Bush v Gore to then Bush appointing Supreme Court justices. Which was his job, as president. It’s worth pointing out, by the way, that Bush’s coup was so successful that it got Barack Obama elected president in 2008, on a platform of basically rejecting everything Bush did before appropriating some of it.
Following that, Fallows cites academia to support his position:
Underscoring the point, a Bloomberg poll of 21 constitutional scholars found that 19 of them believe the individual mandate is constitutional, but only eight said they expected the Supreme Court to rule that way. The headline nicely conveys the reality of the current Court: “Obama Health Law Seen Valid, Scholars Expect Rejection.”
Academia is overwhelmingly left-of-center, to the point that right-of-center profs all but have to live in secret societies with special handshakes and codes. Polling academia on a political question will just about always render a predictable verdict from the left. It means absolutely nothing outside academia. Unless you’re a lefty Atlantic blogger, anyway, in which case OMG, it’s a coup!
What Fallows is doing in his coup/non-coup post amounts to battle space prep. If SCOTUS strikes ObamaCare down on Thursday, he’ll rally lefty metrosexuals everywhere to put their lattes down long enough to post a very angry screed with supporting tweets. He might even come up with a very important Action Item.
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