Hentoff Disillusioned

• Views: 1,060

Of all the Village Voice socialists, Nat Hentoff has always seemed the most intellectually honest, and the most willing to critically examine the received leftist wisdom. And now he’s disillusioned about Barack Obama.

During my more than 60 years of covering national politics, I have never seen a candidate’s principles and character so effectively tarnished — after so extraordinarily inspiring a start — as Barack Obama’s. He has come to resemble another mellifluous orator I came to know in Boston during my first time reporting on a campaign — James Michael Curley, the skilful prestidigitator whom Spencer Tracy masterfully played in the movie “The Last Hurrah.” Obama’s deflation has not been due to ruthless opposition research by John McCain’s team but by the “change” candidate himself. Like millions of Americans, I, for a time, was buoyed by not only the real-time prospect of our first black president but much more by the likelihood that Obama would pierce the dense hypocrisy and insatiable power-grabbing of current American politics.

Also, as a former teacher of constitutional law, Obama gave me “hope I could believe in” that he would rescue the Constitution’s separation of powers, resuscitate the Bill of Rights and begin to restore our reputation around the world as a truly law-abiding nation.

Savoring the high expectations he had secured among so many Americans, Obama has decided he can also come closer to securing the Oval Office by softening his starlight enough to change some of his principles toward the calming center of our stormy political waters.

In a defense by Dan Gerstein, a New York political consultant — echoing what you’ll be hearing more of from Obama’s campaign operatives — the gossamer script goes: “He is trying to broaden his appeal to a larger electorate and to be true to this postpartisan, unifying message that he’s been campaigning on.” But instead of the ennobling clarion trombones of CHANGE we have been promised, this “adjusting” of one’s principles has long been the common juggling of our common politicians.

Accordingly, as his presidential campaign gathered such momentum, Obama, with justifiable pride, pointed to the resounding fact that most of the bountiful funds he was raising came from small donors, “the people,” not the sort of supporters who move above us in private jet planes.

But after abandoning his pledge to abide by public financing, this apostle of cleansing the political culture is now going after the high rollers. As the July 3 New York Times reported, “Last week, the Obama campaign collected about $5 million at an event featuring celebrities in Los Angeles. The evening began with a dinner at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for more than 200 people who had contributed $28,500 per couple, or raised $50,000.” Then there is the current furor among a rising number of Obama contributors with wallets far below the $50,000-a-pop crowd about his change on the “compromise” FISA Amendments Act of 2008 that passed the House and Senate, and has been signed by the grateful president.

He’s still wrong about a lot of things, but at least he isn’t wearing partisan blinders.

Jump to top

Create a PageThis is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.
Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.
Last updated: 2016-01-01 10:29 am PST
LGF User's Guide RSS Feeds Tweet

Help support Little Green Footballs!

Subscribe now for ad-free access!Register and sign in to a free LGF account before subscribing, and your ad-free access will be automatically enabled.

Donate with
PayPal
Square Cash Shop at amazon
as an LGF Associate!
Recent PagesClick to refresh
Sade - the Sweetest Taboo (Official Live Video From San Diego) Sade – The Sweetest Taboo (Live From San Diego)Listen on Spotify -smarturl.itListen on Apple Music -smarturl.itAmazon - smarturl.it Follow Sade Website - sade.comFacebook - facebook.comTwitter - @sadeofficialInstagram - instagram.com LyricsIf I tell youIf I tell you nowWill you keep ...
Thanos
5 hours, 42 minutes ago
Views: 95 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
King Princess - Hit the Back (Live Performance) King Princess - Hit The Back (Studio Performance) Literally all King Princess does is take fierce selfies and make gorgeous songs. Well, that’s not everything. The 20-year-old phenom is a proud queer ally, nimbly blending humor and activism both ...
Thanos
8 hours, 20 minutes ago
Views: 104 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
SAINT MOTEL - Old Soul (Official Visualizer) "Old Soul" - Track #1 from The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack: Part 1 by SAINT MOTEL. Available everywhere now!saintmotel.lnk.to Follow SAINT MOTEL:instagram.comfacebook.com@saintmotelsaintmotel.com Lyrics: I got rubies in my hands nowI got rubies in my hands nowHow they shine I ...
Thanos
8 hours, 24 minutes ago
Views: 118 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Jury Finds Abortion Foes Harmed Planned Parenthood, Awards Over $2 Million SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – A federal jury found an anti-abortion cohort led by David Daleiden caused substantial harm to Planned Parenthood by infiltrating abortion industry conferences to secretly tape abortion doctors and staff – and awarded punitive damages of ...
Thanos
16 hours, 39 minutes ago
Views: 141 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
The Raconteurs - “Somedays (I Don’t Feel Like Trying)” [Official Music Video] Music video for The Raconteurs single “Somedays (I Don’t Feel Like Trying)” from their latest album HELP US STRANGER. Shot at The House On The Rock in Spring Green, WI. Listen to HELP US STRANGER here: theraconteurs.lnk.to Catch The ...
Thanos
1 day ago
Views: 217 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Vampire Weekend - Sunflower (Live at Austin City Limits) “Sunflower” by Vampire Weekend performed live at Austin City Limits 2019 Father of the Bride available now: smarturl.it Recorded live at The Moody Theater, Austin, TX, August 22, 2019Produced by KLRU-TV, Austin PBSProducer: Jeff PetersonDirector: Gary MenottiEditor: Dan MartausCopyright ...
Thanos
1 day ago
Views: 191 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
A Magnificent Cover of David Bowie’s “Heroes” by David Byrne and Choir! Choir! Choir! Choir! Choir! Choir! teamed up with David Byrne and a TON of singers in the Ford Foundation lobby of the Public Theater during the Under the Radar Festival to sing 'Heroes' written by David Bowie and Brian Eno It ...
teleskiguy
2 days, 2 hours ago
Views: 314 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 2
Tweets: 3 • Share to Facebook
Hors Piste: Hilarious Animated Short About a Mountain Rescue Where Everything Goes Wrong Only one goal: SAVE THE WORLD! After 46 awards in festivals (including a BAFTA for best student film) and more than 150 selections... Our film is online in FULL length for 1 month! Follow us on Instagram and Facebook ...
teleskiguy
2 days, 4 hours ago
Views: 362 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
#Thegreatpoolpondconversion - 191110Another really satisfying and curious weekend. Last week we reminisced about the tarp and how well it’s been holding up. Well during the week it tore and leaked a bit. Not enough to do damage. We’ll kludge something using both ...
DangerMan (misuser of the sarc tag)
4 days, 8 hours ago
Views: 344 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 5
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Dan Deacon - Sat by a Tree (Official Video) Dan Deacon - "Sat By A Tree", from 'Mystic Familiar', out 31st January 2020 on Domino Record Co.Please note: Viewers with an aversion to watching close up footage of insects should be advised against viewing this video.Hear Dan Deacon ...
Thanos
5 days, 16 hours ago
Views: 254 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook