You’re traveling through another dimension — a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That’s a signpost up ahead: your next stop: the Twilight Zone!
You unlock this door with the key of imagination. Beyond it is another dimension: a dimension of sound, a dimension of sight, a dimension of mind. You’re moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of things and ideas. You’ve just crossed over into… the Twilight Zone.
There is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call “The Twilight Zone”.
– Rod Serling
One of my favorite sites (now in the blogroll) is the website for Commentary magazine. After posting about post-modernism this past week, I really enjoyed this column by Peter Wehner titled: “Obama Enters the Twilight Zone”.
Wehner tags Obama as the first true post-modern president and says that we are about to see the first post-modern campaign.
If you want to gain a better appreciation for the fantasy world that President Obama is trying to create in order to win re-election, you couldn’t do much better than to read this New York Times story. The thrust of the article is that the president is planning to step up his offensive against an unpopular Congress, concluding that he cannot pass any major legislation in 2012 because of Republican hostility to his agenda. He intends to “hammer the theme of economic justice for ordinary Americans rather than continue his legislative battles with Congress,” said Joshua R. Earnest, the president’s deputy press secretary, previewing the White House’s strategy.
But here’s where things get interesting. “In terms of the president’s relationship with Congress in 2012,” Earnest said at a briefing, “the president is no longer tied to Washington, D.C.”
True enough. Obama isn’t tied to Washington, D.C.; it’s more accurate to say he embodies it. He is, after all, the nation’s chief executive. He lives in the White House. His desk is located in the West Wing. And his home and work area code is 202. Obama is primus inter pares of the political class.
Moreover, Obama, during the first two years of his presidency, was enormously successful in getting his agenda enacted into law. He got almost everything he wanted, which some of us believe is precisely the problem. And to the extent that we’re facing a “do-nothing” Congress today, the responsibility lies with the Democratically-controlled Senate, not the GOP House. These days the Senate (which has not passed a budget in more than 900 days) is the place legislation goes to die.
But to really enter the Twilight Zone, consider these two priceless sentences from the Times story: “Winning a full-year extension of the payroll tax, Mr. Earnest said, will still be a top priority. He noted that House Republicans were now also arguing that it should be extended for a year, after some initially opposed extending it at all.”
Come again? On December 13, the GOP House passed a full-year extension of the payroll tax cut – and was promptly criticized by – you guessed it — the president. Obama favored a much shorter, two-month extension. House Republicans, under intense political pressure, eventually agreed to the two-month extension. Now the White House is declaring a full-year extension is a “top priority.” Yet as recently as three weeks ago the opposition to the president’s “top priority” came not from House Republicans but from Obama himself.
We are now reaching the point in which the president is running a truly post-modern campaign, in which there is no objective truth but simply narrative. Obama’s campaign isn’t simply distorting the facts; it is inverting them. This kind of thing isn’t unusual to find in the academy. But to see a president and his campaign so thoroughly deconstruct truth in order to maintain power is quite rare. The sheer audacity of Obama’s cynicism is a wonder of the modern world.
I think that it goes to something more basic and far less complicated. What the president is doing is not “post-modernism” at all. This term “post-modernism” is just another pseudonym for an action that was invented shortly after Eve took a bite of the forbidden Granny Smith (some theologians think it was a Macintosh)…we have chatted about it here in a post titled “Over Suggesting“ – it is just simple, old-fashioned prevarication or mendacity – in short, lying.
Of course, all candidates try to create a meme that puts them in the best light while showering negatives on their opposition but to create an alternate reality for the purpose of getting elected (or re-elected) is tantamount to fraud. If a stock-broker, a CEO or a hedge fund manager did something like that to enrich themselves, they would go to jail – and they have and they should. It is just a crying shame that when it comes to politics, there are so many out there that will buy the fantasy that Obama is selling – hook, line and sinker.
We have pointed out countless times that modern “progressives” are bereft of a sense of irony and hypocrisy. The three requirements to be a modern “progressive” are more in evidence today than ever:
- Selective memory/political amnesia
- Cognitive dissonance
- Confirmation bias
To accomplish this feat of mental gymnastics, one has to forget the past, convince oneself that something is true when it is known to be objectively false and then form an alternate reality around oneself to keep the intellectual and logical contradictions from driving a person stark raving mad.
It is no wonder why mood altering antidepressant drugs are the number one sellers in the American market.
I really would like to give my friends from the other side of the aisle the benefit of the doubt, it is hard for me to believe that they aren’t intelligent enough to understand the logic. I just don’t think they WANT to…because if they do, the carefully constructed personal “reality” they live in crashes down around them like the biblical walls of Jericho.
There actually is a clinical diagnosis for people who can’t separate reality from fantasy. It is called schizophrenia.
Schizophrenia is a complex mental disorder that makes it difficult to:
- Tell the difference between real and unreal experiences
- Think logically
- Have normal emotional responses,
- Behave normally in social situations
You tell me if the diagnosis fits. I’m not saying that liberals and “progressives” in general – and Obama supporters in specific – are mentally ill or even crazy – what I am saying is that they seem to be able to self-induce some sort of political schizophrenia when it comes to electoral politics. They sure as hell don’t live their lives or treat their families the way they vote so there has to be some sort of psychotic break when politics are involved.
2012 promises to be a landmark year for a pandemic of “progressive” schizophrenia . I’m thinking that I need to invest in Janssen Pharmaceuticals, maker of the anti-psychotic drug Haldol. Sure money…
You really do have to wonder why classes in simple classical logic aren’t taught in high school. That would cure this problem.
I don’t agree with firebrand radio host Michael Savage on much but he may have one thing right – modern liberalism does seem to be a mental disease.
There is just no way I was going to post this without this from Golden Earring:
You know you wanted it…
Tip of the hat to Professor Reynolds at Instapundit for the link to Wehner’s column.