Noemie Emery observes the epidemic of Obamamania among the members of the mainstream media, but wonders if the epidemic will communicate itself to the great unwashed casting votes in the general election. Following Michael Barone, she notes that even among Democrats, the mania was “contained and confined.” It reached “white voters in only two places–state capitals and university towns, where he amassed huge followings among students, teachers, and employees of the government.” As for them, Emery comments:
They tend not to notice that [Obama’s] frame of reference is always himself and his feelings, and that his appeals to racial healing, bipartisanship, government reform and sweet reason do not connect to his acts in real life. In the real world, he has voted party line on almost all issues, has managed to befriend and hang out with an amazing collection of people whose lives contradict all these themes, including racists, demagogues, some of the most corrupt practitioners of machine urban politics, and people whose idea of political action once involved planting bombs. These sorts of things may not bother students or shoppers at Whole Foods, but they do bother people who cling to God and their guns out of sheer desperation, and tend to vote in places like, say, Pennsylvania, where Obama lost to Hillary Clinton by ten points.
Emery hypothesizes that the “press may love itself–and Obama–just a little too much.” Her column is written in a hopeful key, suggesting that reality will assert itself and prevail. I am confident that reality will eventually prevail, as it always does, but there are strong grounds for worrying in this case that it may do so too late.
JOHN adds: I can’t resist applauding Scott’s reference to one of the classic horror movies of the 1950s. I was too young (and too chicken) to see the film, but I remember hearing that theater seats were wired so that at a climactic moment, moviegoers would think they were being attacked by the Tingler. Alas, no such device is necessary to send a thrill up the spines of our reporters and editors at the thought of a Barack Obama presidency.
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