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DemocratSinceBirth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 09:54 AM
Original message
David Brooks’s Awful Advice to Obama
In his continuing, illusive quest for the Grand Bargain, New York Times columnist David Brooks has now offered some free campaign advice to President Obama: Drop the angry and divisive populist talk; link your reelection to the Congressional supercommittee to tackle the deficit; lower the ideological temperature. Political independents now recoil from big government, Brooks argues, so Obama should be blurring, not highlighting, the differences between the two parties over the role of government.

Obama should say thanks, but no thanks for the advice. Based as it is on a series of tired and false assumptions, this strategy would doom whatever chance Obama has of winning reelection.


In making his case, Brooks frames the 2012 elections almost entirely in terms of the ideological proximity of independents and swing voters to the two parties. But he fails to mention that the shifts in ideological placement that polls have measured since 2008 have primarily been on account of the financial meltdown and Great Recession: The voting public might now say that it is more conservative and desirous of a more limited role for government, but that’s more an expression of their general frustration with the state of the economy and the seeming failure of ambitious government initiatives to produce tangible results than their true convictions. Move beyond these labels to ascertain public views on specific policy options and you quickly realize that a conservative swing in public opinion is a chimera.

http://www.tnr.com/article/politics/96784/obama-brooks-...

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TwilightGardener Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:00 AM
Response to Original message
1. People need to know that there is a big difference between the parties.
I think Obama is on the right track.
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:00 AM
Response to Original message
2. TNR isn't exactly a bastion of populism. In fact, it led the Neoliberal charge to privatize SS in
the 1990s. I'd say, there's a couple degrees of difference, not more, with Brooks. Radical centrists and close to 1 Percenters, both.
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DemocratSinceBirth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:07 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. TNR Is not the NATION but I'm not sure they ever supported SS privatization
Anyway their advice is spot on now.
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. The TNR Publisher, Martin Peretz, was a strong promoter of it during Clinton. Now against OWS
Edited on Fri Oct-28-11 10:17 AM by leveymg
Today, one could call Marty a Neoliberal Neocon. Not a strong progressive populist voice. See,

http://my.firedoglake.com/phoenix/2011/10/12/ows-lech-w...
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DemocratSinceBirth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:19 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. I Would Have To See His Specific Writings
But liberalism and populism aren't necessarily synonymous especially when you have had people like George Wallace, Ross Perot, and Donald Trump (egads) claim the populist mantle.
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libinnyandia Donating Member (526 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:31 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Populists
And Sarah Palin!
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:54 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. TNR invented the term, "Greedy Geezers"
In 1988, The New Republic helped inaugurate the media sport of bashing the elderly when Peretz's magazine ran a leering cover illustration of an army of malevolent oldsters armed with golf clubs and gardening tools underneath the banner, “Greedy Geezers.”

Very little copy in TNR from the 1990s shows up on Google, but I remember in 1996 or '97 being appalled by TNR's endorsement of the SS privatization scheme being floated at that time.
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Mimosa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-29-11 10:40 PM
Response to Reply #5
20. They sure did.
Andy Sullivan was one of those right leaning types too.
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Enrique Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 12:23 PM
Response to Reply #2
11. also the Iraq War
correct me if I'm wrong but I think they did support that. Peter Beinert, he was with them right?
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tularetom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:12 AM
Response to Original message
4. And David Brooks really really wants Obama to get re-elected
In the dictionary next to the phrase "concern troll" you will find his picture.

Sheesh! Could they be anymore transparent?
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Tippy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. Well said,,,,
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Robb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #4
15. Yup. (nt)
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CTyankee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-29-11 10:22 PM
Response to Reply #4
19. I always wonder who Brooks thinks he's fooling with his stuff.
He always has this "I'm so modest and really nice I can't be much of a threat...not little ole me..."

Nobody respects that. Nobody.
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ChairmanAgnostic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 10:39 AM
Response to Original message
9. taking political advice from Brooks is like
taking hygiene lessons from Pigpen,
learning Astrophysics from Forest Gump,
learning diplomacy lessons from Anne Coulter,
taking logic classes from Michelle Bachmann,
learning debate techniques from Rick Perry.
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NICO9000 Donating Member (574 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 12:35 PM
Response to Original message
12. Who cares what this douche thinks about anything?
Keith had a joke about him a few weeks ago where he basically called him a wimp who nobody really listens to.
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Dawson Leery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 01:54 PM
Response to Original message
13. David Brooks and The Neocon Republic magazine.
What a combination! :eyes:
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whosinpower Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 02:28 PM
Response to Original message
14. Well that proves it beyond a shadow of a doubt
Obama rightfully blaming congress, and the populist message is getting to them.

They are not immune - as much as they would think.

The voting public favour congress by an unheard of approval rating of 9 percent. Good. It is time for these yahoo's to START WORKING instead of trying to find ways to undermine Obama, and hurt America for the sole purpose of seeing Obama as a one term president.

This is actually good news. The strategy is working in that their work ethic, and job performance are now blatently on display - they risk losing their own jobs now for sowing such cynicism, disdain and disrespect. They are in damage control mode.
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BeyondGeography Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 03:42 PM
Response to Original message
16. David Brooks gets paid to have conversations with himself
about this fictitious place called bipartisan America. Obama used to do that, too. It took the better part of three years, but he has (happily) finally realized there's no there there.
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The Velveteen Ocelot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 05:09 PM
Response to Original message
17. When was that precious little git David Brooks ever right about anything?
His track record is comparable to those of Mark Penn, Bill Kristol and Dick Morris.
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Cali_Democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-28-11 06:22 PM
Response to Original message
18. Terrible advice
Obama would be wise not to listen to that garbage.
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FormerDittoHead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-29-11 11:00 PM
Response to Original message
21. That's running scared talk - I could not IMAGINE a better sign for Obama's reelection... n/t
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woo me with science Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-29-11 11:35 PM
Response to Original message
22. In other words, David Brooks is recommending that Obama be more truthful about his agenda
Edited on Sat Oct-29-11 11:36 PM by woo me with science
and how he will actually govern.

But, no, that's not likely to win him votes.

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