The Woodward fiasco is different only in that a few liberals now feel that, given that Obama need not face election again, they should be allowed to salvage some journalistic integrity by mild cross-examination and pathetic eleventh-hour confessions of past White House pressure. Or, in the words of journalist Mark Halperin, writing of the Woodward affair, “It’s a little embarrassing none of the rest of us was as aggressive as he was.” Four years ago it was a little embarrassing; now it is only predictable.

Cannot Obama be somewhat magnanimous and give our modern-day Nazgûl a few face-saving measures after they have sold their souls on so many occasions when it counted? Of course not; emaciated wraiths remain wraiths. Dissent is equated with a sort of disloyalty among the supposedly kindred minds of fellow culture warriors. By questioning motives, they have earned justifiable rebuke — or worse.

You see, in the worldview of Barack Obama, he has only so much time to protect the helpless and, for the first time in our history, transform us into a fair and just America — a monumental task that can brook no reactionary dissent, especially among those who certainly should know better and had so long ago pledged their fealty.