Friday, January 13, 2012

Shrink Rap

David Brooks puts presidents on the couch and decides that “great presidents are often aristocrats and experienced political insiders. They experience great setbacks. They feel the presence of God’s hand on their every move.”

Unfortunately, we’re not allowed to talk about these things openly these days. We disdain elitism, political experience and explicit God-talk. Great failure is considered “baggage” in today’s campaign lingo.

I suppose there’s a quota in the Columnists Credo for going Dr. Phil every so often, but if so, at least make it plausible. The disdain for “elitism” and political experience is Tea Party blather (and they only object to those qualities when it’s the other guy) and explicit God-talk is only objectionable when it becomes “I was talking to Jesus the other day….”

For what it’s worth, I’d rather not have a president whose life and experience can be summed up in a Lifetime Movie of the Week starring Treat Williams and Markie Post, but it’s better than one who channels either Dr. Stranglove or Elmer Gantry.