Thursday, April 11, 2019

Beto O’Rourke Is Fauxbama

Lucas Jackson/Reuters
Obama's platitudes are still platitudes in the mouth of the less-talented O'Rourke.
Only once did I sit in a medium-sized room with Barack Obama. It was May 19, 2006, and the then-senator was speaking at a BookExpo America breakfast to promote his book The Audacity of Hope. He warmed up by noting that some people were cynical about politics. “At best we just hope it does us no harm,” he said, which was true enough. But then he kept going.
There has always been this other idea, and the idea can be described very simply. The notion that we all have a stake in each other, and that my success is directly tied to the success of my neighbors…for all of our much-vaunted individualism, there is also this sense that we are tied up in a mutual destiny, and every once in a while that sense, that interpretation, expresses itself not only in our families, in our churches…but it also expresses itself in our government, in our collective lives. And it’s that sense that propelled me in politics.
Winding down, he deployed Martin Luther King Jr.’s remark about how “the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice” and said, “I look forward to working with you guys to spread the hope.”
The place went bananas. In a room full of booksellers and librarians, I was the only one not applauding. I was the only one who didn’t leap to my feet as though I had just received a life-altering revelation. As my success is obviously not tied to that of my neighbors, I am obviously not caught up in a mystical mutual-destiny tour with 300 million Americans and never have felt any rhapsodic “collective life” created by the nurturing bonds of government, Obama’s speech struck me as completely false, not to mention vapid, platitudinous and void of all meaningful content. (Tell me, at what capital-gains tax rate does the epiphany of “collective life” kick in?)
Still, a great many people were entranced by Obama’s platitudes. Giving speeches, it turned out, was the only thing he was good at. But those speeches made him president. Closely hewing to the Obama script, Beto O’Rourke reminds us that the power of a script depends entirely on the skill of an actor, and how well he fits the role. Anthony Hopkins makes a convincing King Lear. Justin Bieber, not so much.
Read the rest from Kyle Smith HERE.

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