I always found relevance in David Brooks, whether intended or not.
Whether it was the occasional good snark
For this election isn’t about the past or the present, or even the pluperfect conditional. It’s about the future, and Barack Obama loves the future because that’s where all his accomplishments are.
or candid revelations of class contempt.
That first encounter is still vivid in Brooks’s mind. “I remember distinctly an image of–we were sitting on his couches, and I was looking at his pant leg and his perfectly creased pant,” Brooks says, “and I’m thinking, a) he’s going to be president and b) he’ll be a very good president.”
I don’t recall a lot of protests from the right over this, but then, I didn’t check closely either.
Today however they are up in arms. Steams Michelle Malkin
How much of a tool is New York Times columnist David Brooks?
This much: On the PBS NewsHour last night, Brooks admitted that President Obama told him a year ago that he knew that the “shovel-ready project” propaganda he employed to pass the massive porkulus bill was a steaming load of bullcrap.
JIM LEHRER: He said this to you a year ago?
DAVID BROOKS: It was obvious. I mean, you are trying to build a stimulus package. And when they were trying to build it, believe me, they would have loved to have filled it with infrastructure jobs. But the projects just didn’t exist. They couldn’t do it. They couldn’t find them.
Personally, I am not all that interested in what Malkin and her ilk feel.
For me, there’s another significant point, part of it made by Krugman
Why has stimulus become a dirty word? Many reasons, I guess: an inadequate plan combined with a wildly overoptimistic forecast was more or less guaranteed to create the impression of a failed program. But it’s also true that the president himself has had a deeply self-destructive tendency to echo his opponents’ arguments
Both Brooks and Krugman comment on the interview Obama gave to NYT which can be summed up as: Since it’s clear that the R will take congress, I’ll stop pretending to be a D”
(for those of you who igured out that Obama wanted Ds to lose this November – please collect your silver dollar)
Only a very small numbers of true believers were shocked by that – although more pretended of being shocked.
So then, what is Brooks relevance in this story?
His admission speaks plenty for us too.
Obama officially told the NY Times he’ll start acting like a Republican now, but privately shared this with Brooks over a creased pants encounter an year ago.
This is pretty much equivalent to Daschle’s revelation that while Obama was giving the public option some lip service he’d already sold it to the hospitals last summer.
Only this is more significant, because it goes to the essence of being a democrat and of Obama’s promise to revive the economy.
The stimulus could have never been adequate – with all the majorities he commanded at the time.
Because, as Brooks confirms, Obama NEVER BELIEVED IN STIMULUS.
Obama was always an admirer of Ronald Reagan and his trickle down. Now that the balance of power changes, he’ll make it public. But privately, his real allies who helped put him there, knew all along.
Brooks may have betrayed his followers, but Obama didn’t. To betray, implies belonging at one point. Obama never was who his voters thought he was. It was a big con job all along.