Saturday, August 14, 2010

A Yuppie in the White House

I think better than anyone else thus far, Victor Davis Hanson has captured the essence of our young President and, for good measure, the First Lady as well. You really need to read this piece.

You don't hear the word "yuppie" as much as you used to, so Hanson reminds us.
Yuppism, remember, is not definable entirely by income or class. Rather, it is a late-twentieth-century cultural phenomenon of self-absorbed young professionals, earning good pay, enjoying the cultural attractions of sophisticated urban life and thought, and generally out of touch with, indeed antithetical to, most of the challenges and concerns of a far less well-off and more parochial Middle America.
The portrait that emerges, as Hanson paints it, describes our president almost perfectly.

I say "almost" because the portrait, while accurate, neglects one other very important defining aspect of Obama's character: He's also a stubborn left-wing ideologue.

Don't misunderstand. As a rule, I admire that hard-nosed quality, one might even call it principle. In fact, I wish "stubborn right-wing ideologue" was a phrase that described more Republican elected officials than it currently does. Nevertheless, if you want to fully appreciate our president, you must know that in addition to being a yuppie, he's also a true-believing lefty.

This is what distinguishes him from, say, Bill Clinton, who was in many ways a yuppie himself. Or at least he wanted to be one. As Hanson points out, Obama "is no Bill Clinton, whose studied yuppism was an escape from, and a conscious veneer over, a real trailer-park genesis." As Clinton affected yuppism, he similarly affected principle.

Predictably, or so it seems to me, President Obama came out last night vigorously supporting the construction of the mosque at Ground Zero. This makes no sense politically. Given broad public opposition to the proposed mosque, Obama could easily fallen back on what his press secretary has already said: " No comment. It's a local matter." But he didn't. Can you imagine Bill Clinton taking a similar stand? For heaven's sake, Clinton wanted to know what the polls said about where he should vacation. Obviously, this president has consulted no polls with respect to his or his family's multiple retreats from Washington this year.

Anyway, imagine a left-wing yuppie ideologue and you have near-perfect picture of Barack Hussein Obama.

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