In what's good for the gander news, NRO's Jonah Goldberg thinks that President Obama's rhetoric has turned ugly. He's using patriotism against Republicans.
According to his new stump speech, if you oppose his agenda, then you don’t care about America as much as he does.
Well, let's see the line that Goldberg thinks crosses the line.
What is needed is action on the part of Congress, a willingness to put the partisan games aside and say we’re going to do what’s right for the country, not what we think is going to score some political points for the next election. . . . There is nothing that we’re facing that we can’t solve with some spirit of ‘America first.'
Goldberg objects that the 'America First' spirit is supposed to "separate the patriotic from the petty." But surely this is mild compared to, say, Michele Bachmann saying liberals are unAmerican or even the rest of Goldberg's article, which makes hay about how the President is going on vacation (and so thereby must not be patriotic, either!).
The point, however, isn't to make the hypocrisy charge here. The point is to say that Goldberg doesn't defend those charged with pettiness. He only cries foul at their being called petty. But surely if there is a group of legislators that are out only to save their hides for the next election rather than making hard choices or getting on with the work of governing, then they need to be called out. Moreover, it's not the charge of being unpatriotic that I saw in the Obama speech, but the charge of political cynicism. And it's easy to be a political cynic and be really patriotic. In fact, those all too often go hand in hand, don't they?