Glenn Beck 1
Barack Obama 0
Whereas Harry Truman would have no doubt treated the guy to a hearty “give ‘em hell” and a celebratory tumbler of bourbon, Barack Obama fired White House aide Van Jones for insulting Republicans, and, in particular, annoying Glenn Beck. Or to put it another way, Glenn Beck, of all people, became a presidential personnel manager.
By showing Mr. Jones the back door, Obama was sending two signals. The first underlined that Obama is a typical Dem, growling at anything to his left and groveling at anything to his right. It was a warm-up for his forthcoming congressional battle with the Reps over health care. Who wants to bet that the Dems won’t start with compromise and, at the merest hint of opposition, move swiftly to capitulation?
The second was that we no longer have to take Obama seriously. Given our fatuous politics, there comes a time when every president is recast as a fool and gentle parody becomes grisly put-down. Given their awful personalities, Nixon and Bush II got the raspberry almost from the git-go. It has taken Obama, a cooler type, six months to don the clown costume.
There’s an old bromide that says never wrestle with a pig because you only get dirty and the pig enjoys it. Even worse is the pig winning. The Elmer Fudd-faced Glenn Beck was already a farce on his way to becoming a freak. He had dumbly accused our half-white president of hating whites, for which he lost dozens of sponsors. He had begun inspecting old paintings for pinko propaganda. He found subversive depictions of carpenters using hammers and farmers wielding sickles. He sobbed a lot on his show, leading to bets on when he would move on to public pants wetting. And he went on the wacko warpath against the "Bolshevik," "Marxist, "anarchist," "fascist," anti-Christ Van Jones, who was spreading the stigmata of socialism to all and sundry from his White House cubby hole of communism. Surely, Beck was nearing the Joe Pyne-Morton Downey, Jr., moment of self-destruction.
By firing Van Jones in the middle of the night for calling Republicans “assholes,” Barack Obama not only saved Beck from himself, but made him an even bigger star on the right--someone who could bully the leader of the free world. Not even the mighty Limbaugh had such a scalp on his belt. No wonder Obama’s crestfallen aides on the Sunday talk shows looked like they had just been convicted of wimpery with intent to cringe.
Contrast this exercise in pusillanimity to the incident a few years back when Vice President Dick Cheney told Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont to “go fuck himself.” As far as I know, the Reps all had a good laugh while the Democrat Leahy more than likely seriously considered the suggestion.
It looks like despite all the fertilizer that gets spread in Washington, there will never be enough to help Obama and the Dems to grow a pair.