The Spectacle Blog

Does Krauthammer Have a Man Crush on Obama?

By on 12.17.10 | 8:57AM

In his latest column, Charles Krauthammer hails President Obama as "the new comeback kid."

Has Krauthammer gone all David Brooks on us?

Has Krauthammer developed a man crush on President Obama? Well, consider this passage:

Now, with his stunning tax deal, Obama is back. Holding no high cards, he nonetheless managed to resurface suddenly not just as a player but as the orchestrator, dealmaker, and central actor in a high $1 trillion drama.

If President Obama is "the orchestrator, dealmaker, and central actor in a high $1 trillion drama" then why did he odiously refer to the Republicans with whom he made this deal as "hostage takers"?  Indeed, if one accepts President Obama's characterization of the GOP then one can only conclude that the President agreeing to this tax deal was the equivalent of paying a ransom. And no one pays a ransom on their own terms, not even President Obama.

So why is Krauthammer spinning this as the most lopsided trade since the Cardinals got Lou Brock from the Cubs for Ernie Broglio?

My guess is that it has something to do with Sarah Palin. While Krauthammer has not called Palin "a cancer" or "a joke" as Brooks has done, his distaste for Palin is palpable. This was certainly the case in August 2009 when Krauthammer suggested that we ought to ask "Sarah Palin leave the room" after she coined the term "death panels." Earlier this week, during an interview with Bill O'Reilly, Krauthammer said:

Now I would have hoped she'd spend the next years getting really deep into policy and becoming an expert the way a lot of other candidates have done as they mature and approach the presidency. She hasn't. She has a political star. She's out there, she's very attractive both politically and ideologically to a large segment of Republicans. But I think if you want to expand your base you have to get into policy even though it sounds dull.

It seems to me that Krauthammer cannot get past Palin's accent. The prospect of a Palin presidency has Krauthammer so troubled that he is now prepared to cast Obama as another Bill Clinton and have four more years of Obama in the White House. How else does one explain Krauthammer concluding his article by comparing Obama to Ronald Reagan?

The greatest mistake Ronald Reagan's opponents ever made -- and they made it over and over again -- was to underestimate him. Same with Obama. The difference is that Reagan was so deeply self-assured that he invited underestimation -- low expectations are a priceless political asset -- whereas Obama's vanity makes him always need to appear the smartest guy in the room.

Krauthammer's analogy is fatally flawed. Since when has anyone underestimated President Obama much less had low expectations of him? After all, this is a man who has been described a "sort of God" capable of receding oceans and healing the planet? It it any wonder President Obama hasn't lived up to those lofty expectations? 

If anyone has been beset with low expectations, it is Sarah Palin. In fact, Krauthammer's expectations of Palin are so low that he cannot acknowledge his soft bigotry. It is the sort of thing one cannot acknowledge when one has developed a man crush on President Obama.

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