Monday, August 16, 2010

Collapse

The left is unpopular, undisciplined, and ill-tempered.

BY William Kristol 

August 23, 2010, Vol. 15, No. 46

The left has collapsed.

Its political support has collapsed. Public opinion polls point to a historic repudiation of the president and the Democratic party this fall—something on the order of a 60-seat Republican gain in the House. The GOP has an outside shot at taking the Senate as well.

Its claim to intellectual integrity has collapsed. Paul Krugman—Ivy League professor, New York Times columnist, and Nobel laureate (the holy trinity of the liberal establishment)—has humiliated himself with a startlingly dishonest attack on Paul Ryan’s budget proposal. Krugman, called out by Ryan, rebuked by honest analysts, and unwilling to concede his errors, has retreated into uncharacteristic abashed silence.

Its Leninist discipline has collapsed. Last week, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs complained about the craziness of the “professional left” in the punditocracy. “Those people ought to be drug tested,” Gibbs explained. “They will be satisfied when we have Canadian health care and we’ve eliminated the Pentagon. That’s not reality. .  .  . They wouldn’t be satisfied if Dennis Kucinich was president.” Members of the professional left hit back at Gibbs, dubbing the Obama White House the “amateur left.”

Its democratic credibility has collapsed. In recent weeks, the left has the arbitrary rulings and sophistic arguments of federal judges who have overturned an immigration statute that mirrors federal law passed by the state legislature in Arizona, and a constitutional amendment, defining marriage as it has been defined for all of American history, enacted by the citizens of California. The left has also heaped praise on New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, as he, having bought his way to a narrow reelection, showered disdain and contempt on the majority of his fellow New Yorkers who object to a mosque next to Ground Zero.

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