**Posted by Phineas
A couple of days ago, George Will wrote a column that probably left our thin-skinned, petulant president crying for his binky — “TheAdolescent President.” Here’s an excerpt:
Recently, Barack Obama — a Demosthenes determined to elevate our politics from coarseness to elegance; a Pericles sent to ameliorate our rhetorical impoverishment — spoke at the University of Michigan. He came to that very friendly venue — in 2012, he received 67-percent of the vote in Ann Arbor’s county — after visiting a local sandwich shop, where a muse must have whispered in the presidential ear. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) had recently released his budget, so Obama expressed his disapproval by calling it, for the benefit of his academic audience, a “meanwich” and a “stinkburger.”
Try to imagine Franklin Roosevelt or Dwight Eisenhower or John Kennedy or Ronald Reagan talking like that. It is unimaginable that those grown-ups would resort to japes that fourth-graders would not consider sufficiently clever for use on a playground.
Will then described how Obama relies almost solely on four argument tactics common to teenagers: the straw man; declaring the argument over; why argue, because everything is fine; and “you’re saying no because you hate me.” Here’s what he wrote about the second:
Adolescents also try to truncate arguments by saying that nothing remains of any arguments against their arguments. Regarding the ACA, Obama said the debate is “settled” and “over.” Progressives also say the debate about catastrophic consequences of man-made climate change is “over,” so everyone should pipe down. And they say the debates about the efficacy of universal preschool, and the cost-benefit balance of a minimum-wage increase, are over. Declaring an argument over is so much more restful than engaging with evidence.
Will’s right, of course. We do have a callow, narcissistic 13 year-old in charge whose only response when opposed is to taunt, shout-down, and denigrate. He also assumes his audience is stupid (1), which is about the only explanation for the constant lies in the face of all evidence to the contrary. (“If you like your plan, you can keep your plan” being just one example, albeit a spectacular one.)
Do read the whole thing. I’m sure it left a mark.
PS: Yes, it’s true. I have no respect for Barack Obama. For his office, yes. For him, no. And he’s earned it.
(1) Which, to be fair, is not wholly unjustified when talking about his own supporters. They put up with so much and keep coming back for more.
(Crossposted at Public Secrets)