Pathological Progressivism

Why couldn’t someone just wave their magic wand and make the world into the Progressive utopia the Democrats are trying to tell us they’ve created?

I mean, if you think about it, whose fault is it that the economy went into the tank in the first place? And let’s not forget how conciliatory President Obama had been toward the Republicans in his first term! He took the public option out of his health care to get Republicans to vote for it, which a zero of them did! The whole jobs bill fiasco? President Obama included tax hikes on the wealthy in the text of the bill, and those blasted Republicans wouldn’t vote for it, even though they did just that to avert the fiscal cliff–those hypocrites!

From a distance, you almost have to admire the Democrats’ devotion to a narrative. It takes a certain gusto to continue to tell us how good we all have it (We are so much better off than four years ago…) and how they are in no way responsible for our problems (According to President Obama, the Republicans are the big spenders…). And still they maintain incredulity at Republicans’ challenging them (What difference does it make?). After hearing and reading this pablum, one has to wonder how they can keep the story up. They just can’t believe this stuff, can they? They can, they do, and they will continue to do so in perpetuity.

In fact, the worse the situation becomes, the more exaggerated the defense. One of the left’s most vicious and vitriolic pseudo-scriveners is Charles P Pierce, who runs the politics blog at Esquire magazine. He is as ardent a defender of Progressivism as E.J. Dionne, and as quick to issue the standard ad hominem attacks as Touré. He is not the focus of this argument, but he is illustrative of the mental contortions the left had to put themselves through in their relentless pursuit of their own fiction. In his article for this month’s edition of the magazine, he takes a very direct tack regarding the President’s re-election and subsequent apotheosis (ascension to divinity):

“He may now have a chance to free himself from his bad habit of straining for comity with crazy people. And more importantly, we may all have a chance to properly marginalize the forces that would rather see a president fail (Limbaugh) than the country succeed.”

In plain English, Charles P. Pierce believes that President Obama was too nice during his first term, and should probably quit doing that. Effectively, when President Obama first told Republicans that they needed to stop talking and move to the back of the bus, he was just being to polite. And when the country handed Obama his backside in the 2010 midterms, he should have listened to Howard Dean and moved further to the left. Twice now, this president’s party has lost the people’s House, and twice now, the Democrats have gleaned from this the same lesson: we are not leftist enough, and we need to shut the Republicans down, not up.

The only people I can think of who turn left faster than the modern DNC

But let’s compare this to the narrative from Esquire’s endorsement of Barack Obama in 2008. I give you three very critical passages, taken in no way out of context (My commentary in italics):

1. (Obama) thought (change) meant an end to “partisanship”, without appreciating that democracies are supposed to be partisan. Unless the partisans on the other side are Republicans. Remember, it was Democrat literally shooting through Obama’s cap-and-trade swindle.

2. And such is Obama’s promise. And in that, however inchoately and diffidently, Obama stands not only against Bushism, but against Reaganism, which gave it birth. And that is more than enough. This is one paragraph removed from the whole “supposed to be partisan” argument. I didn’t have to wait until 2013 for them to contradict themselves, I had to wait one whopping paragraph.

3. More than any other recent election, we are voting this year (2008) not merely for a president but to overthrow two governments. The one we can see is the one in which constitutional order has been defaced (Obamacare, recess appointments, executive orders, immigration reform by fiat), the national spirit degraded (we now have a full 39% who think we are headed in the right direction), and the country unrecognizable because so much of the best of itself has been sold off or frittered away (Thank God the economy is back!). The other one is the far more insidious one, a doppelganger nation of black prisons (still there), shredded memos (still want to know who gave Susan Rice that intel?), and secret justifications for even more secret crimes. (Well that one we did get rid of, since the media justifications are no longer secret, just ask Candy Crowley) My God, how hopeful they were!

Specifically, this shuttle launch

Now look at the most recent election, Hurricane Sandy, Benghazi, and the scandal regarding the recess appointments. Since they can’t be the party that represents optimism and truth, prosperity and security, or hope and change, they have become the party of bitter winners.

And in the midst of all of this, the economy is still a wreck at best, the debt is climbing like a shuttle launch, our social “entitlement” programs are going to be flat broke within 20 years, our military hardware and infrastructure is aging, our public education system turns out more felons than doctors, and our healthcare spending just received a government subsidized turbocharge.

I used to think that pointing this out mattered to members of the other side, but I realize now that not only did they feel entitled to retain the White House, it is their crowning achievement to have done so in such dire circumstances. What is a pathological liar? A liar who believes the lie, and does not fear punishment for its exposure.

Welcome to the era of the pathological progressive.

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