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David Brooks Slams Palin, Bush; Praises Obama

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He’s jumping ship from the USS Anti-Intellectual…

[Sarah Palin] represents a fatal cancer to the Republican party. When I first started in journalism, I worked at the National Review for Bill Buckley. And Buckley famously said he’d rather be ruled by the first 2,000 names in the Boston phone book than by the Harvard faculty. But he didn’t think those were the only two options. He thought it was important to have people on the conservative side who celebrated ideas, who celebrated learning. And his whole life was based on that, and that was also true for a lot of the other conservatives in the Reagan era. Reagan had an immense faith in the power of ideas.

But there has been a counter, more populist tradition, which is not only to scorn liberal ideas but to scorn ideas entirely. And I’m afraid that Sarah Palin has those prejudices. I think President Bush has those prejudices.

I couldn’t agree more.

However, the big problem for the GOP here is Palin actually IS anti-intellectual, while Bush just sort of pretends to be. I mean, sure, people don’t think Bush is very bright, but I don’t buy that. He may be uncurious and stubborn, but he’s certainly not dumb. Palin on the other hand doesn’t give me any indication she’s even qualified to be the Governor of Alaska, much less be VP.

By the way, have I mentioned that she won’t do a public press conference before the election?

Yeah…good times…

Long story short, if Palin is the future of the Republican party, they’re doomed. Independents will continue to run away from her as fast as they can. She’s just not that appealing to anybody but the base.

Meanwhile, just listen to this praise Brooks has for Obama…

Obama has the great intellect. I was interviewing Obama a couple years ago, and I’m getting nowhere with the interview, it’s late in the night, he’s on the phone, walking off the Senate floor, he’s cranky. Out of the blue I say, ‘Ever read a guy named Reinhold Niebuhr?’ And he says, ‘Yeah.’ So i say, ‘What did Niebuhr mean to you?’ For the next 20 minutes, he gave me a perfect description of Reinhold Niebuhr’s thought, which is a very subtle thought process based on the idea that you have to use power while it corrupts you. And I was dazzled, I felt the tingle up my knee as Chris Matthews would say.

And the other thing that does separate Obama from just a pure intellectual: he has tremendous powers of social perception. And this is why he’s a politician, not an academic. A couple of years ago, I was writing columns attacking the Republican congress for spending too much money. And I throw in a few sentences attacking the Democrats to make myself feel better. And one morning I get an email from Obama saying, ‘David, if you wanna attack us, fine, but you’re only throwing in those sentences to make yourself feel better.’ And it was a perfect description of what was going through my mind. And everybody who knows Obama all have these stories to tell about his capacity for social perception.

Up is down. Left is right. Cats and dogs living together…