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December 8, 2010
Obama lashes out at friend and foe
I think John Podhoretz hit it right on the money: he called the president's press conference yesterday, "one of the most bizarre political events of my lifetime."
Somehow, I don't think the Democrats disenchanted by his policy choices over the past couple of days are going to be in a coronating mood after Obama furiously upbraided them in ad hominem language of a kind we may never before have heard from a president.Had he followed their counsel and refused to deal with the GOP, he said, "We [would] be able to feel good about ourselves, and sanctimonious about how pure our intentions are and how tough we are." The look on his face, his demeanor, his posture all denoted a man out of control of his emotions. Spiteful, sarcastic, hateful - it was a remarkable performance.
And the Republicans who just struck a deal with him will surely be less inclined to compromise in future negotiations if they are going to be insulted immediately afterward.
"I think it's tempting not to negotiate with hostage takers," he said, "unless the hostage gets harmed. Then people will question the wisdom of that strategy. In this case, the hostage was the American people, and I was not willing to see them get harmed."
The hostage takers were the Republicans, whom he also likened later to bomb throwers.
The conversion of Mr. Cool, the president who never gets ruffled, into the would-be King of All Wild Things took, in Sendak's words, "almost over a year." That's what was revealed by the president's near-tantrum -- there is no other word for it -- about the Left's disappointment with him.
Too bad most Americans missed it, since it was in the middle of the day. This was the real Barack Obama - the man they sent to Washington to effect a "post partisan" change in the political culture and who now has to deal with hostility from friend and foe alike.
Hat Tip: Ed Lasky