Worst defense of Obama yet

posted at 9:27 am on April 19, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama has offered poor defenses of his “Crackerquiddick” remarks over the last few days, but none quite as daft as Meghan Daum in today’s Los Angeles Times. According to Daum, Obama’s comments got him in trouble not because they revealed him as an elitist snob, but because Obama is an intellectual. Echoing Obama’s remarks in San Francisco on a perfect harmonic, Daum says Americans can’t handle an intellectual because … well, let her explain:

I never thought I’d say this, but I’m beginning to think she might have had a point. As dumb as things were back then, it’s fair to suggest today’s culture is even dumber. Granted, the police aren’t raiding highbrow cultural events and arresting anyone who uses a three-syllable word, but something uncannily similar is playing out, minute by minute, on television and the Internet. With political discourse reduced to screaming contests and actual news eclipsed by exclusive and shocking footage of celebrities without makeup, we’ve become not only impatient with but downright opposed to the kinds of ideas that can’t be reduced to a line on a screen crawl or a two-sentence blog entry.

What’s more, a lot of people who harbor an intolerance for complexity see it not as a character flaw but a cognitive virtue. That’s because they’ve fallen into the trap of believing that complicated ideas (“complicated” now constituting anything that requires reading, watching or listening to in its entirety) are the purview of the “elite.”

The effect of that trap has been on a continuous loop in recent days, following Barack Obama’s ill-chosen remarks about bitter rural Americans clinging to guns and religion. The takeaway, of course, is that this sentiment proves once and for all that Obama is an elitist fatally out of touch with the average American. But in deference to my onetime dinner companion, let me ask this: Is he vulnerable to the out-of-touch charge because he is an elitist, or because he is usually (even if not in this case) comfortable with and in command of nuanced ideas? Is he bashable because he’s a snob or because he’s an intellectual?

Daum’s argument boils down to this: Obama was essentially right about life outside of the intellectual circuits in the top half-dozen or so urban cocktail-party circuits, but don’t call him an elitist!

If one wanted a demonstration of both irony an cluelessness in concurrence, Daum’s article provides it. She so thoroughly takes an elitist position that she even sniffs at the current definition of intellectual as too broad, and complains that Woody Allen isn’t intellectual enough to meet her standards any more since “he traded intellectuals for boring rich people a while ago”. As a writer, she certainly fails to meet her own standard. She sneers at “two-sentence blog posts” but fills her column with parentheticals that wind up acting like an obstacle course through her snobbish chatter.

In short, Daum provides an example of why Obama is so “bashable”: it’s because both of them are phonies. Daum aspires to intellectual snobbery, as she herself describes in the article, while Obama attempts to hide his, but both are as inauthentic as can be. Further, she essentially agrees with Obama’s assertion that people outside of her intellectual circles are Bible-thumping, gun-hugging bigots out of Deliverance who can’t understand concepts that take longer than the average Geico commercial, but chastises Obama for saying that so bluntly and in an unnuanced manner.

Just as Obama did in the debate when he repeated the same comments but just changed “cling” to “focus”, Daum winds up reinforcing the insult. Middle Americans have ruined American culture, we can’t speak in words of more than three syllables, and we can’t understand nuance from a master like Barack Obama. Maybe — but we can spot self-involved phonies when we see them, and especially when we read them.


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Obama…nuanced

Not!

jgapinoy on April 19, 2008 at 9:33 AM

Is he vulnerable to the out-of-touch charge because he is an elitist, or because he is usually (even if not in this case) comfortable with and in command of nuanced ideas?

She seems to take this as a given. He didn’t seem very comfortable with the nuance of capital gains tax rate vs revenue the other evening.

mikeyboss on April 19, 2008 at 9:35 AM

There’s always been a difference between intelligence between “book smarts” and “common sense”, and far too many of the former think university degrees, money and the people they associate with impart on them both types of knowledge. What is usually does is isolate them in such a small cocoon of people they turn disdainful of anyone outside that circle and snobbish towards anyone who doesn’t hold the same cultural and political beliefs that they do.

Daum simply reflects the ideas of someone who’d be horrified to have to spend any time more than 60 miles away from either coast except on specially-designated islands of the left (Chicago, Austin, Sundance, Utah) in the nation’s heartland.

jon1979 on April 19, 2008 at 9:37 AM

More to the point about what she is saying about Obama is what she says about herself. Talk about nuances!!

jeanie on April 19, 2008 at 9:39 AM

No dice, Daum. I might be an enlisted man in the Army (Kerry would say I didn’t pay attention in school) who only has a GED and some college, but I’m smart enough to tell the difference between intellectualism (mighty big word there) and being an elitist snob who thinks he knows what to do with my hard earned better than I do.

Spc Steve on April 19, 2008 at 9:40 AM

I are stupid person. This are stupid article.

JasonG on April 19, 2008 at 9:40 AM

Obama is an intellectual?

Hope…blah….change….blah….GWB is bad…..hope….. government is good…..change…. small town America is racist…..religion is an opiate……nuance nuance… blah….change.

Anyone notice that when this guy is off script, he’s a blowhard? He doesn’t even speak that well when he’s not reading. Maybe he can take Katie Couric’s job when she gets canned.

p40tiger on April 19, 2008 at 9:41 AM

He offers up ideas that don’t lend themselves to sound bites but require some sustained attention.

The really funny part is that that just isn’t so.

‘Mon, Meghan. Offer up just one of those nuanced ideas.

One will do.

‘Course she’s about as likely to read this here as she is to be able to do it, but still…ever wonder why Barry’s running now?

Wouldn’t it make more sense for him to get a little seasoning on him? Wouldn’t it make more sense for him to get some accomplishments under his belt?

Well it would. It would unless he’s so far to the left that he feels his best shot is as a clean slate.

So not only does he not campaign on complex issues. He campaigns on no issues at all.

Hope! Change! Yes we can!

Here’s a tip: if it ends in an exclamation point, it’s not nuanced.

Typhoon on April 19, 2008 at 9:43 AM

He offers up ideas that don’t lend themselves to sound bites but require some sustained attention.

The really funny part is that that just isn’t so.

‘Mon, Meghan. Offer up just one of those nuanced ideas.

One will do.

‘Course she’s about as likely to read this here as she is to be able to do it, but still…ever wonder why Barry’s running now?

Wouldn’t it make more sense for him to get a little seasoning on him? Wouldn’t it make more sense for him to get some accomplishments under his belt?

Well it would. It would unless he’s so far to the left that he feels his best shot is as a clean slate.

So not only does he not campaign on complex issues. He campaigns on no issues at all.

Hope! Change! Yes we can!

Here’s a tip: if it ends in an exclamation point, it’s not nuanced.

Typhoon on April 19, 2008 at 9:44 AM

Yes, Daum reinforces the insult while indicting herself.

Her snobby apology for Obama is just a rehash of the same old crap the left hauls out whenever their candidate’s words
fail for daftness or incredulity: Oh, it’s because he (John Kerry, Algore) is such an intellectual (so nuanced) that most people can’t understand what he says.

To which most people reply: BS

petefrt on April 19, 2008 at 9:47 AM

Intellectuals spend all their time coming up with ways to bury the truth. Elitists stand on the grave of truth looking down on those who labor with shovels to dig it back up.

Connie on April 19, 2008 at 9:52 AM

Oh, it’s because he (John Kerry, Algore) is such an intellectual (so nuanced) that most people can’t understand what he says.

My mother, saint that she is, would call that being “too smart for your own good.”

Spc Steve on April 19, 2008 at 9:55 AM

This is the same as claiming the sorted company Obama keeps are intellectuals. Bomb throwing sociopaths and racists are now the intellectual elite as long as they are against Republicans and Conservative ideals. I can’t recall the KKK or neo-Nazis ever being bestowed with the same label.

In fact, these clowns are the same type of “out there”, Sixties, radical loons with new packaging. It is becoming clearer each day that Obama represents a dangerous group that is willing to do anything in order to gain power and effect “change”.

Hening on April 19, 2008 at 10:01 AM

My mother, saint that she is, would call that being “too smart for your own good.”

Spc Steve on April 19, 2008 at 9:55 AM

I used to hate that phrase, but now I think I get it. It’s having a great engine but dim headlights.

mikeyboss on April 19, 2008 at 10:01 AM

Soer Obma is now a “complex” “intellectual”?

(Excuse me while I laugh and vomit simultaneously.)

Obama is about as “complex” as a pickpocket’s fingers.

They may be dexterous, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be doing you any good.

And “intellectual” doesn’t guarantee honesty.

Marx was an “intellectual”.

And his historical and philosophical frauds have been seen-through for over a century.

Keep digging, O-supporters.

You have only just begun to alienate people.

profitsbeard on April 19, 2008 at 10:02 AM

Obama speaks convincingly only when he follows a prepared speech which he delivers very well. He is hardly “articulate” when speaking spontaneously. I do not see or hear great intellect. The many times Obama has said,”what I meant was”, surely does not demonstrate a great gift of communication skills. When he is unable to make his meaning clear without subsequent clarifying remarks
he demonstrates not intellect but very average abilities.

Pat in NC on April 19, 2008 at 10:03 AM

Eh…If Obama’s so smart, he’d have the nomination wrapped up by now.

JetBoy on April 19, 2008 at 10:07 AM

I still blame Obama, He should have known us country bumpkins were to stupid to understand what he really meant and should have told us how foolish we are in words we could understand.

abinitioadinfinitum on April 19, 2008 at 10:10 AM

They can nominate their empty headed Marxist pretty looking candidate from central casting, if they like, but they had better be ready for a stunning defeat in the fall.

The majority of Americans are too smart to fall for the siren song of an attractive con man who is an unaccomplished, empty headed, empty suit that has never made a sacrafice for his country and who has spent the last 21 years worth of Sundays sitting next to his America hating wife clapping his hands and shouting hallelujah while his pastor preached hatred of America and Whitey.

This “intellectual”, elitist professor, couldn’t even understand the simple concept that revenue goes down as you increase the capital gains tax. So, he would actually be willing to have the governement make less money, just in order to impose his class warfare, marxist policies.

Obama supporters are howling in impotent rage at ABC, because their candidate was not given the easy questions they felt he was entitled too. How dare they ask a candidate for the most important political office in the country tough questions that reveal his lack of character.

DAMN YOU ABC, they howl in impotent rage, but the problem is not ABC, the problem is they backed the wrong horse. The cries will increase in tempo and shrillness and by Novemebr, we will all be grimly assured that anyone that doesn’t vote for Obama is a a Racist Troglodyte and closet Klan member.

And on the day after the election, when President-Elect McCain is sleeping off the hangover from his victory celebration, the Democrats will be once agaon scratching their heads and calling Americans stupid and Racist for not voting for the Chosen One.

It will be a fun year.

JayHaw Phrenzie on April 19, 2008 at 10:11 AM

And on the day after the election, when President-Elect McCain is sleeping off the hangover from his victory celebration

So you mean by 1930, after a glass of warm milk?

That’s 7:30 pm, for you non-military types.

Spc Steve on April 19, 2008 at 10:13 AM

In other words, if Obama is talking down to you, it’s only because he’s so much smarter than you. So don’t get your panties in a bunch over it, you ignorant hicks.

Squid Vicious on April 19, 2008 at 10:15 AM

If Barry is an intellectual, then I’m a Chinese aviator.

there it is on April 19, 2008 at 10:18 AM

It will be a fun year. JayHaw Phrenzie on April 19, 2008 at 10:11 AM

It WILL be a fun year and McCain will win but look at the prize??? No friend to conservatives, he.

The best thing that Republicans always have going for them is how bad the Dhimmicrat nominee always is.

Carter – disaster
Dukakis – effete snob
Clinton – sexual predator
Gore – dork
Kerry – effete snob (who served in Vietnam)
Obama – effete snob Marxist

You can always count on the Dems. So let’s focus on all the OTHER races out there this year ’cause we’re gonna git what we git for CINC.

Mojave Mark on April 19, 2008 at 10:23 AM

Beware of any article that uses the words “cognitive” and “purvey” and “nuanced” in one turgid gush.

I was waiting for “phallocentric” or “deconstruction“, but I guess they’re being held in reserve for the next stirring defense of one of Obama’s upcoming buffooneries.

The guy’s a shallow, smarmy charlatan.

HOPE will not CHANGE that.

profitsbeard on April 19, 2008 at 10:24 AM

It WILL be a fun year and McCain will win but look at the prize??? No friend to conservatives, he.

He is far more conservative than he is given credit for. He has been a maverick on a few key issues and his reputation has been colored by that.

I think the country will be well served by having a president that has unquestionable honor, integrity, and patriotism. I can live with the fact that he is 80% in agreement with me instead of 100%.

I am unreservedly supporting Senator McCain.

JayHaw Phrenzie on April 19, 2008 at 10:30 AM

Wow Ed, ya sho do use alot of big fancy werds!

ThePrez on April 19, 2008 at 10:31 AM

Read this line from her article:

“Yes, Obama’s richer than most ordinary people, but in that pantheon, he’s the guy most likely to know how much a can of tuna costs.”

I sent her the following e-mail:

You’ve got it all wrong my dear.

Obama hasn’t a clue about the cost of a can of tuna.

But he’s spot on with the price of the everyman veg, arrugula.

Did I spell that right? Oh, what does it matter. I’m not an intellectual.///signed///

How’s that for some nuance?

catmman on April 19, 2008 at 10:37 AM

Oh Snap, Ed! Nice takedown!

nailinmyeye on April 19, 2008 at 10:41 AM

“Arrogant snob is as arrogant snob does.” My mother told me that. – Forrest Gump

NNtrancer on April 19, 2008 at 10:49 AM

Ed, I have a problem with this line of anti-Obama logic, and I strongly hope that Obama loses all his elections including his Senate seat.

We have to give people the right to say that most people don’t think enough about political issues without being called an elitist and thus stopping the conversation. It easy to demonstrate the cluelessness of many people because they believe political values that are mutually contradictory–for instance, open borders on immigration because of a labor shortage and also higher minimum wage laws. We have to be allowed to diagnose this problem if we are going to solve it.

Furthermore, to give Obama the only degree of credit I can give his capital gains tax raising, open borders candidacy, he does seem to want to encourage people to think more seriously about issues–even if his own thinking is shallow. And wouldn’t it be great if we could get people to think more seriously and deeply about politics. For instance, if we were able to engage Obama in serious conversation about tax policy, his idea of raising the capital gains tax would go out the window. It would be a big help.

Sadly, I think the accusation games of both Hilary and even us do not encourage thought. Obama is right that we need to better. Please note that replies of the form that Obama is hypocrite because he did sin 1, sin 2, and sin 3 against this concept is exactly one of the problems with current politics. HotAir has kept us well informed about all Obama’s sins, but our arguments against him shouldn’t begin with his sins, but his policy errors (like on capital gains) and our policy disagreements (like open borders).

thuja on April 19, 2008 at 10:56 AM

This is from the same ‘intellectuals’ who can’t wrap their minds around the fact that lowering tax rates can increase tax revenue, or see a contradiction in crime going down while the prisons are filling up, or boggle at the increase of violent crime after they pass laws to disarm the law-abiding.

William F. Buckley talked like a snob, too. But he didn’t have to put anybody down to do it, and his ideas worked.

Socratease on April 19, 2008 at 11:35 AM

As smart as she is, she could have at least called me homeonormative.

I think the best way to handle this would be to admit that Barry is way, way too smart for us and ask him to come back when we’re finally worthy of him.

snaggletoothie on April 19, 2008 at 11:44 AM

I don’t see what the rub is here. He was addressing a roomful of elitist snobs, in what could arguably be the Elitist Capitol of the United States(if not the entire Universe). He got outed on a website that is run, and frequented by, wanna be elitist snobs. And now we get yet another ES jumping on the pile trying to justify his pandering. Not much different when Hillary dawns her laughable southern drawl when the need arises.

There’s always been a difference between intelligence between “book smarts” and “common sense”,
jon1979 on April 19, 2008 at 9:37 AM

Exactly, the Capital Gains question was good. He had a chance to back up and think about it and all he could come up with is ‘Fair’. The liberal mantra…We can turn back the forces of the Universe if you just give us enough money and blind faith. We will make the world ‘FAIR’.

I’d really love to see how this Daum cow would handle the earth shattering crisis of say, getting a flat tire out on the freeway, or GOD FORBID, some where out in sticks out of any cell phone coverage. After she got done peeing all over herself, she would, no doubt, put her plainly superior mind to work waiting for an ignorant tow truck driver. Worse yet, she might have to bailed out by some local savage.

BigWyo on April 19, 2008 at 11:46 AM

TLDR

Jim Treacher on April 19, 2008 at 11:49 AM

The true intellectual is one who can express his/her ideas clearly and succintly. C.S. Lewis was an intellectual as was Ayn Rand, despite their vastly different points of view. Neither Obama or Daum are intellectuals

billhedrick on April 19, 2008 at 11:54 AM

HotAir has kept us well informed about all Obama’s sins, but our arguments against him shouldn’t begin with his sins, but his policy errors (like on capital gains) and our policy disagreements (like open borders).

thuja on April 19, 2008 at 10:56 AM

Well said! But we should not ignore his ‘sins’ either, as they are mostly serious character flaws that need to be exposed.

The issues are exceedingly important, but so is the character of those espousing said issues.

techno_barbarian on April 19, 2008 at 11:54 AM

It’s not anti-intellectualism to take offense at having your belief system dissected like some bug on a slide. Tell Democrats you think that for all the puffery about “America’s working families” their party is just a big machine that takes votes and hands out checks, and they’ll tell you that’s demeaning. What Obama did is no less demeaning.

DrSteve on April 19, 2008 at 11:55 AM

Would an intellectual say “Massatoosits“?

benrand on April 19, 2008 at 12:08 PM

What a dream job: To get paid by writing what you think about stuff people can waste time arguing over your work. Life is peachy.

Weebork on April 19, 2008 at 12:09 PM

When you can’t dazzle ‘em with brilliance, baffle ‘em with bull-sh!t.

One sentence

franksalterego on April 19, 2008 at 12:09 PM

Has anybody really taken a close look at Obama’s speeches–line-by-line? I mean a really close look. He isn’t all that intellectual. He’s just a typical post-modern liberal who considers rhetoric as all important and truth an irrelevant inconvenience. That’s why elitists don’t seem to be dissuaded when he gets caught lying. Elitists are the least likely to engage in critical thought. If you know you’re right–whatever that can mean, and the masses are hopelessly ignorant, then why waste time in logical thought over your own beliefs. I wonder how many elitists hold the views they do simply because they want to be among those seen as elite—a classical case of herd instinct. The real intellectuals are to be found in the general population, not among the elite. Perhaps somebody has pointed out, but I have yet to hear anyone say, that Obama’s speeches have no substance and are therefore uninspiring and down right boring. To openly say that you get nothing out of an Obama speech is to say the king has no clothes. If you’re going to follow Daum’s argument or listen to Obama, it’s better to put your brain in passive mode because there is no real substance in either.

under on April 19, 2008 at 12:20 PM

Liberals don’t like to actually debate their ideas, because they know that they are usually both unappealing and unworkable. Instead they try to shut down debate by sticking derogatory labels on their detractors. The LA Times has an op-ed labeling ‘crackergate’ critics as racist by trying to show how the term ‘snob’ is synonymous with ‘uppity’. Now Doum tries to label them as ‘anti-intellectual’. They can’t defend Obama’s ideas (or what we can figure out they are on the rare occasions when he speaks clearly) on their merits, all they are capable of is trying to silence his critics.

Socratease on April 19, 2008 at 12:45 PM

Would an intellectual say “Massatoosits“?

benrand on April 19, 2008 at 12:08 PM

It’s actually Massivetwoshits

blackrepublican on April 19, 2008 at 12:52 PM

Further, she essentially agrees with Obama’s assertion that people outside of her intellectual circles are Bible-thumping, gun-hugging bigots out of Deliverance who can’t understand concepts that take longer than the average Geico commercial, but chastises Obama for saying that so bluntly and in an unnuanced manner.

So I’ll squeal like that cave man pig that I am.

Tell me how many syllables are in Ewwwwwwwwwww

Kini on April 19, 2008 at 12:57 PM

If Obama had served a tour in the military, he would likely have a much different perspective of the American nation he wants to lead. He would have served with Americans from all walks of life, black, white, rich, poor, country-boys and inner-city kids and everything in between. And, he would have learned a true respect for them in the process. He would have learned that intellectualism and ivy league degrees are not going to keep you from pissing your pants before you jump out of an airplane at night, or walk the mean streets of Fallujah. These things require stuff like courage, physical and mental toughness, strength of character and integrity, and comradeship. I’m sure he would have learned to love and respect those he now wants to lead from the highest office in the land, but whom he doesn’t really undersand…Hence, his recent idiot-speak.

Nozzle on April 19, 2008 at 12:58 PM

Bravo. Ed.

Griz on April 19, 2008 at 1:15 PM

Is he vulnerable to the out-of-touch charge because he is an elitist, or because he is usually (even if not in this case) comfortable with and in command of nuanced ideas?

Has Barry every sat down and discussed what he means by “change” and “hope”? If he is such and intellect, he should be able to discuss what these concepts mean to him and how they should be the guiding light for America the next four years. Haven’t heard it yet. But, he’s an intellect, so I guess we should trust him to have our best interests at heart.

Barry’s level of intellectual discourse appears to be a nuanced flipping of the bird to Hillary on a campaign stop.

Mallard T. Drake on April 19, 2008 at 1:41 PM

FIRE… GOOD!
PLEASE SEND IDEAS ON “WHEEL”.
me poor knuckles drag :(

christophercube on April 19, 2008 at 1:57 PM

Megan, I’m not buying it. I have three degrees and still love God and hunting. I’m not voting for the Messiah because he’s a fraud, a socialist, and a panty-waist, not because I’m to stupid to support him.

second digit on April 19, 2008 at 2:18 PM

Obama’s comments got him in trouble not because they revealed him as an elitist snob, but because Obama is an intellectual.

Is he bashable because he’s a snob or because he’s an intellectual?

Meghan Daum made the perfect case for what he did, and why. Oh the irony of the ‘intelligentsia’ not getting it.

profitsbeard, you misogynist, you :)

p.s. my instincts are in line with yours on this one.

Entelechy on April 19, 2008 at 2:25 PM

It has been my experience that everyone who thinks that they, their friends and peers are intellectuals: Are Not.

LegendHasIt on April 19, 2008 at 2:34 PM

“Is he vulnerable to the out-of-touch charge because he is an elitist, or because he is usually (even if not in this case) comfortable with and in command of nuanced ideas? Is he bashable because he’s a snob or because he’s an intellectual?”
Bwahahahahahaha!
I didn’t notice that he was comfortable and IN COMMAND of NUANCED ideas. Snicker, snort! Apparently Daum isn’t either. The nuance here is that as an intellectual BO has the choice of being an elitist snob or an truly open-minded person who doesn’t pretend to understand or tolerate middle America, (the home of common sense, courage, faith and tradition), he would ACCEPT them as they are: his fellow Americans. Gee, that sounds like (gasp) Christianity, and I haven’t clung to my Bible since i was in Communicants class in 1968!!!

Christine on April 19, 2008 at 2:43 PM

I have been in academia for 36 years (yikes), I have worked for and with intellectuals (like Nobel Lauriates in physics). I will not claim that I am an intellectual, but I know who are and why they are. Obama is not even smart.

David on April 19, 2008 at 2:48 PM

She is way off base. First off, what Obama said wasn’t even his idea, so he’s not an intellectual, he’s a parrot. Second, it wasn’t a complicated nuanced idea. It was a gross over-simplification of the motivations of other people — a gross oversimplification he never would have made about rich liberals or poor urban blacks.

What Obama’s comment and this dolt’s article show is that liberals insist on describing overly simplistic motives to people who disagree with them; that they think they know more about those people than they know about themseleves. And that’s the problem.

Spolitics on April 19, 2008 at 2:58 PM

First Rule Of Holes seems to be lost on the smart set.

Keep the story alive, lady.

misterpeasea on April 19, 2008 at 3:28 PM

Hahaha! I love that little lizard!

Dan Collins on April 19, 2008 at 3:49 PM

The beauty part is that most Americans are not dazzled by fundamental bullsh*t dressed up in empty slogans and nebulous rhetoric. They reject phonies.

The self-annointed intellectual set may fancy itself the determiners of culture, values, and ideas. However, if these effete fools examined our American life, they would find that many of our greatest contributors to art, literature, music, politics, inventions, science, etc., sprang from some small town, rural, and/or humble beginnings.

Politicians like Obama, who view the world through an urban prism lose focus, belittling the richness of our varied population’s strengths and contributions. They see others without a city’s cultural advantages as lesser beings.

The Obama-like snobs view their urban poor, made passive through decades of nanny-state dependence, as the measure of all of American society. The cultural snobs assume that those outside of city limits are even bigger hayseeds, unable to grasp complex ideas, nuance, and irony.

When his mask slips, Obama actually reveals his own limitations, his lack of experience, his lack of genuineness, and his pitiful unawareness of what it means to be truly intellectual, cultured, and sophisticated. The smooth operator is a phony with just the veneer of “class”.

We all know people who have degrees and dazzling credentials yet are not educated. We also know people who socialize in supposedly elite circles who have absolutely no class. Obama seems most at home with these groups. His admirers appear to believe that style is substance.

onlineanalyst on April 19, 2008 at 4:11 PM

Rather than trying to think critically about Obama’s gob-smackingly stupid remarks (as Bartels and Krugmann have), Daum essentially asks her readers not to think too hard about the whole thing because Obama is an intellectual. Yikes.

Vassar girls are notoriously easy to impress. Someone should look into that.

Infidoll on April 19, 2008 at 4:35 PM

That’s because they’ve fallen into the trap of believing that complicated ideas (”complicated” now constituting anything that requires reading, watching or listening to in its entirety) are the purview of the “elite.”

I read this tripe in my fish wrap. She bemoans the fact that we non-intellectuals cannot handle complicated ideas. But then when she refers to BarryO’s San Francisco flub, she only refers to the guns and religion part of the comment. I guess BarryO’s association of guns and religion with xenophobia and protectionism was just too “complicated” for the intellectual that she is.

It’s the “intellectuals” that are not grasping the “complicated ideas” (i.e., elitist socialism) presented by BarryO’s candidacy. The Kansas rubes are very perceptive and are seeing what the the city folk are missing — he refuses to wear the flag pin, he will not put his hand on his heart during the anthem, his wife was never proud of America, his openly racist pastor damns America, he exchanges ideas with and was introduced to liberal politics by a radical “professor” that waged war against America. He wants to double the capital gains tax even though it will reduce revenues, because it is a matter of fairness.

Really, it doesn’t seem very complicated. Maybe that is why the “intellectuals are having trouble grasping it.

tommylotto on April 19, 2008 at 4:41 PM

Is he bashable because he’s a snob or because he’s an intellectual?

YES

He is even more bashable because of his appearent political agenda!

Finally we get a glimpse of his personality, what more is there that we have not yet seen?

allrsn on April 19, 2008 at 5:35 PM

Calling Obama an intellectual is a distraction.

onlineanalyst on April 19, 2008 at 5:35 PM

Daum aspires to intellectual snobbery,

Both in 2000 and 2004 I can recall liberals telling me how smart gore and kerry were as opposed to how stupid Bush was. That is a symtom of the psychosis, an exaggerated self view. Of course their chosen candidates are brilliant because they are brilliant.

peacenprosperity on April 19, 2008 at 10:11 PM

symtom

Oops, I misspelled symptom. I must be a conservative.

peacenprosperity on April 19, 2008 at 10:12 PM

Apparently the leftmost wing of the Democrat party believes that people who can’t tell the same version of the truth twice, can’t answer substantive questions, can’t conceive or implement real solutions to problems, and whine when you challenge them are “intellectuals” (confusing this word with “ineffectuals”).

landlines on April 19, 2008 at 10:58 PM

Is B.Hussein shooting us the bird in that pic.

He’s got Willy fingers.

Texyank on April 20, 2008 at 12:10 AM

Daum doesn’t even have the integrity to accurately quote Obama’s actual statement, so she sets up a straw man argument. The funny part is, she’s too stupid even to outwit the straw man she has invented.

Intellectual, indeed.

Jaibones on April 20, 2008 at 12:21 AM

Fantasy question at a hypothetical Obama Townhall Meeting:

What is your real take on Crackers and do you think they will get behind you in Pennsylvania?

Fantasy question at a hypothetical Michelle Obama Townhall Meeting:

Has the Cracker Factor affected your marriage? If you could take back just one word, would it be ‘Cracker’ or ‘Factor’?

entagor on April 20, 2008 at 2:15 AM

O-BA-MA.

That’s three syllables, isn’t it?!

Better stick with SCOUNDREL around those Dems.

Lockstein13 on April 20, 2008 at 8:58 AM

“Is he bashable because he’s a snob or an intellectual?”

I no da anser: SNOB.
Nex queschon.

Capitana on April 20, 2008 at 10:49 AM

Sorry, my white-knuckled grip on my guns must be shunting blood flow away from my feeble brain as I’m googling arugula….did she say she likes or hates Barry?

moxie_neanderthal on April 20, 2008 at 12:54 PM