The Corner’s Andy McCarthy has it, only for him it’s a fact, not a theory: Barack Obama is a “power politician” of the “hard Left” who, like all “hard Leftists,” is “more comfortable” with totalitarianism than with freedom — only he cannot always come right out and say that:
The fact is that, as a man of the hard Left, Obama is more comfortable with a totalitarian Islamic regime than he would be with a free Iranian society. In this he is no different from his allies like the Congressional Black Caucus and Bill Ayers, who have shown themselves perfectly comfortable with Castro and Chàvez. Indeed, he is the product of a hard-Left tradition that apologized for Stalin and was more comfortable with the Soviets than the anti-Communists (and that, in Soros parlance, saw George Bush as a bigger terrorist than bin Laden).
The key to understanding Obama, on Iran as on other matters, is that he is a power-politician of the hard Left : He is steeped in Leftist ideology, fueled in anger and resentment over what he chooses to see in America’s history, but a “pragmatist” in the sense that where ideology and power collide (as they are apt to do when your ideology becomes less popular the more people understand it), Obama will always give ground on ideology (as little as circumstances allow) in order to maintain his grip on power.
It would have been political suicide to issue a statement supportive of the mullahs, so Obama’s instinct was to do the next best thing: to say nothing supportive of the freedom fighters. As this position became increasingly untenable politically, and as Democrats became nervous that his silence would become a winning political round for Republicans, he was moved grudgingly to burble a mild censure of the mullah’s “unjust” repression — on the order of describing a maiming as a regrettable “assault,” though enough for the Obamedia to give him cover. But expect him to remain restrained and to continue grossly understating the Iranian regime’s deadly response. That will change only if, unexpectedly, it appears that the freedom-fighters may win, at which point he’ll scoot over to the right side of history and take all conceivable credit.
Even for NRO, this was a bit much:
Andy, whatever policy differences we have with him, Obama surely would rather have a free Iran than a dictatorial, anti-American one.
McCarthy’s response is to double down:
I’m not suggesting that Obama loves the mullahs or that he wants to turn America into Iran. I am not saying Obama wants the mullahs to abuse their own people — I’m sure he’d prefer this all to end without (further) bloodshed. I am merely saying that (a) the president does not think the mullahs are evil, (b) he thinks they have a point, (c) he thinks he can forge a rapprochement and deal effectively with them (though he is under no illusions about stopping their nuclear ambitions), (d) he is not a big believer in freedom, and (e) he thinks the world would be more stable and easier for him to navigate if the mullahs win.
And then he paints a great big bull’s-eye right over his heart:
I detect in your post a sense that I’m this close to the fringe.
Kevin Drum draws back the bow, and sends the arrow flying:
Well, there’s no need to sense what I’m saying in my post, Andy. You are batshit crazy.
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