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March 4, 2009

Are 'moderates' starting to experience buyer's remorse over their choice of president?

Jennifer Rubin recounts excerpts from recent essays by self-styled moderate commentators in which they appear to be coming out of their hypnotic trance. Never mind that everything known about Obama prior to the presidential election season indicated sympathies with radical leftist ideologies -- they were certain that Obama was telling the truth when he promised to govern from the center.

One of my favorite quotes from Rubin's article is by David Brooks, who takes every opportunity to avoid being labeled a right-wing conservative by colleagues further to the left. Here's how he expresses his sense of betrayal in the New York Times March 2:
Those of us who consider ourselves moderates — moderate-conservative, in my case — are forced to confront the reality that Barack Obama is not who we thought he was. His words are responsible; his character is inspiring. But his actions betray a transformational liberalism that should put every centrist on notice. As Clive Crook, an Obama admirer, wrote in The Financial Times, the Obama budget “contains no trace of compromise. It makes no gesture, however small, however costless to its larger agenda, of a bipartisan approach to the great questions it addresses. It is a liberal’s dream of a new New Deal.”
Mr. Brooks, Obama has zero -- zero -- history of bipartisan compromise. What made you think this fact would change once any meaningful opposition to his leftist ideology had been neutralized?

If you read on in Brooks' "Moderate Manifesto", you get the sense that he expected Obama to come closer to Brooks' Hamiltonian ideal of "limited but energetic government" (a term of art, that).

This would be worth a good laugh if the misperception hadn't made the difference in bringing Obama to power.

(Image credit: Made In England)

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