Enlightenment: VDH gets past the rose colored glasses

In some circles, the proclivity is to see the best in people. That can create dissonance. You try to figure out how to fit what you see into a paradigm where many ‘bad’ motivations just don’t get much attention. Reality tends to disabuse such situations. Professor Hanson discovers: It Was the Power, Stupid!

“In my dumber days, between 2001-2008, I used to wonder why the Left relentlessly hammered the war on terror (e.g., renditions, tribunals, predators, preventative detention, Patriot Act, intercepts, wiretaps, Guantanamo Bay) when these measures had not only proven quite useful in preventing another 9/11-like attack, but had been sanctioned by both the Congress and the courts. In those ancient times, I was not as cynical as I am now. So I assumed that Harold Koh and MoveOn.org, though mistaken, were worried about civil liberties, or measures that they felt were both illegal and without utility.

“But, of course, the Obama (who attacked each and every element of the war on terror as a legislator and senator) Left never had any principled objection at all. Instead, whatever Bush was for, they were in Pavlovian fashion against. I can say that without a charge of cynicism, because after January 2009, Obama embraced or expanded every Bush-Cheney protocol that he inherited. In response, the anti-war Left simply kept silent, or indeed vanished, or went to work extending the anti-terrorism agenda. Guantanamo Bay, in other words, was a national sin until the mid-morning of January 20, 2009.”

Hanson looks at this phenomena and his own ‘enlightenment’ and concludes that the political campaign this year won’t be the usual. As has been seen in the many political attacks on the right, from Limbaugh’s war on women to Romney’s dog vacation to the Zimmerman defense, there will be a parry and it won’t be reserved.

“But at least 2012 won’t be a default campaign. In other words, to quote Obama, Romney will get in “their faces” and “bring a gun to a knife fight.” McCain more graciously and nobly lost by putting all sorts of concerns off the table. I would expect that should Obama keep harping about Romney’s tax returns, Romney will demand Obama’s transcripts and medical records at last to be released. If Obama’s surrogates keep writing about Mormonism, we will learn of new disclosures about Trinity Church. For every Mormon bishop who said something illiberal in 1976, we will hear of a Father Pfleger or Rev. Meeks trumping that in 2007. And so on.”

Social media may play a part. The continuing jokes about dogs show how an issue raised to impugn the Republican candidate are being confronted and how hoist with your own petard is gaining new meaning.

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