Ever since I turned against Obama and his progressive acolytes in 2008, both right-wingers and left-wingers have included my email address on their mailing lists. You might say that my inbox provides the bed where strange bedfellows meet.
Yesterday, I received an inquiry from a student surveying attitudes among conservative bloggers. He presumed that I was among that company. Before waiting for a reply, the same student wrote again, apologizing for his first letter. He had originally taken me for a rightist, no doubt because this site has been known to criticize our current leader; further research uncovered a subtler truth.
My reply may be of general interest:"Being an anti-Obama Democrat kind of freaks people out, and they don't know where or how to pigeonhole a guy like me."It's a weird situation. I'm old enough to recall the Johnson, Carter, and Clinton presidencies. They all had plenty of liberal critics. Liberals loathed LBJ. Liberals castigated Carter almost as vehemently as the right did. (Hence the Ted Kennedy run in 1980.) The magazines of liberal opinion (The Nation, The New Republic) almost never had a kind word for Clinton, at least not until the Lewinski scandal."But nowadays one is expected to be a team player."You may want to pursue that line of inquiry in your research. Were there anti-Bush Republican bloggers? Are there conservative bloggers who will take a stand against Palin or Huckabee, should one or the other become president?
We should all ponder such questions. Why has politics turned into a massive game of Shirts versus Skins (to borrow Bob Somerby's phrase)?
In the old days, not only was LBJ loathed
on the left, much of that loathing rubbed off on his veep, Hubert Humphrey. The local Pacifica station went after Carter as relentlessly as Rush Limbaugh goes after Obama. Gore Vidal's challenge to Jerry Brown's senatorial run stemmed from the belief that Brown and Ronald Reagan were ideological twins. (I met people on the Vidal campaign who actually believed
Yet today, most people on the left can't bring themselves to express that level of disdain for Obama, even though his presidency has depressed many liberals.
One could cite a number of factors, but the most important may be the ominous nature of the current Right. Rush Limbaugh, the Tea Partiers, Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin -- it really is
getting fascist out there. If forced to choose between a sell-out and a goosestepper, I must support the sell-out.
But I'll do so with a wince on my face and a clothespin on my nose.