“The devotees of the party in power
This photo, taken from a video of the last presidential debate, is doing the rounds on the blogosphere, and the many sycophants dissolve in mirth. It is one of those moments when I wonder to myself, yet again, about the gap between Senator Obama's seeming integrity, and his supporters' scurrilous mobbing instinct. If they love him so much, why do they behave like a horde of vultures swooping on a piece of meat?
The malign motivation encapsulated in that photo reminded of something Jane Austen's famous heroine, Elizabeth Bennet, from Pride and Prejudice, said, when she realized the extent of her own prejudice against Mr. Darcy:
"And yet I meant to be uncommonly clever in taking so decided a dislike to him, without any reason. It is such a spur to one's genius, such an opening for wit, to have a dislike of that kind. One may be continually abusive without saying anything just; but one cannot be always laughing at a man without now and then stumbling on something witty."
McCain is a decent, wise gentleman who devoted his life to public service. This kind of witless sneer is simply unwarranted.
Still three weeks to go before the US election day, I shudder to think what else will be trotted out there for the merriment of Obama's voters.
What does it say about Obama's worth when his most eager supporters advocate for him by poking cruel fun at his adversary?
This article by Oliver Kamm, for whom I have huge respect, is somewhat relevant:
I admire McCain, and his instincts on foreign policy - including the Iraq War - seem to me sound. Had there been a McCain-Lieberman ticket, it would have been neither conservative nor even Republican, and I would have supported it. Like Christopher, I am no admirer of Barack Obama, whose grasp of foreign policy is worryingly confused (in particular, his willingness to meet leaders of rogue states without preconditions shows a man unversed in the exercise of diplomatic leverage).
Possibly I'm exercising wishful thinking here, but both parts of the judgement are founded on advice from sources I trust: I take literally Obama's stated willingness to pursue al-Qaeda into Pakistan and to confront Iran's nuclear ambitions, while not believing his stated plans for premature redeployment of troops from Iraq. And, like almost all of my readers (you are always the wild card when I make generalisations like that, Mr Irving), I am impressed and moved at the prospect that the world's leading democracy might be led by a black man, when the stain of segregation was erased less than half a century ago.